We Learned That Creatine May Help Athletes
In our first review this week, I tackled a recent manuscript that tested the use of creatine along side of a concurrent training approach.
Concurrent training is essentially every athlete in existence. You're attempting to maximize strength and hypertrophy gains while also trying to optimize endurance. Surely, it's not the easiest thing to do in the world so finding ways to optimize this process is always welcome. These researchers placed participants in essentially equal groups, only giving creatine to one group while the other received placebo.
Results indicated that when creatine was ingested, strength was maintained and even increased whereas placebo did not. Essentially, the creatine allowed for some benefit that reduced the impact of endurance exercise on strength gains. However, it's important to consider that the training protocol used itself may have played a role but since placebo did the same thing, yet experienced no benefit, the creatine may have played a significant role.
If you or someone you know is an athlete, you'll want to read about these findings and what they mean for your performance.
We Learned Longer Rest Periods Are Better For Gains
Many people assume that shorter rest periods are beneficial but what if it was actually the opposite?
In our second review, I tackled research that indicates longer rest periods are more advantageous for muscle and strength gains than shorter rest periods. Really, this makes a ton of sense. Longer rest means greater recovery. More recovery means effort for each set will be higher. More effort per set means more total volume, which if we're assuming volume is important for gains, we've got ourselves a winner.
Just keep in mind that shorter rest periods still have a purpose and benefit. Adjusting rest periods according to the goal of the workout is imperative.
What's In The Works
Overall, my main focus currently is on building clientele, writing articles for you and also building some trianing programs that other people will enjoy. Additionally, I'm working on getting a new article published elsewhere. Once that happens, I'll be sure to share here.
Have topics you're interested in? Questions you need answered? Let me know as I love to feature questions and answers from readers in blog, article and even video format. If you're interested in something like that, please consider messaging me using the facebook plugin at the bottom right of your screen or alternatively, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
We Found Out That Autoregulating Exercises May Be A Key To New Gains
First this week, I reviewed a manuscript, which was actually authored by a few of my colleagues from graduate school at The University Of Tampa.
Autoregulation is a technique that allows you to adjust the intensity that you're training at, based on how you feel and by your performance. While it might seem confusing, being able to adjust how much weight you use for a given rep range is important. Some days, you just don't have it in you to squat 95% of your 1 RM. By using autoregulation, you don't have to.
However, this research was the first to test out this method, except with specific exercises. Essentially, sure you can manipulate intensity, but what if you just don't want to squat? With this method of autoregulation, opting for a leg press instead, might actually be more beneficial for you as an individual.
Which really, that's what this is about. Catering to individuals and individual needs on a day to day basis.
I suggest reading more about this and understanding how autoregulation can optimize your training each and every day, regardless of how you feel.
We Learned Spot Reducing May Be Possible
In our second article, I reviewed a recent paper that actually evaluated the possibility of spot reducing body fat. Pretty cool stuff. Spot reduction has long been thought to be mythology. God forbid you can drop body fat, let alone pick where it comes from.
Despite my skepticism, the protocol they used actually is one that I've used myself, quite often in fact. The idea goes like this: You resistance train specific body parts. Theoretically, this should allow for lipolysis or the release of fatty acids from those tissue areas. Afterwards, the subjects then completed some steady state cardio, which has been shown to be optimal for metabolizing fatty acids.
Essentially, you resistance train, release fatty acids into circulation. Then, you complete some cardio to metabolize those recently released fatty acids and voila, you're potentially spot reducing.
While these findings are very interesting and surprisingly exciting, it's best to take this information with a grain of salt, understanding that these findings may not be indicative of the truth. Consider clicking the image above to learn more about the technique used and my own thoughts on the matter.
We Answered More Burning Questions
In this week's Q&A, I tackled some questions about transitioning out of a calorie restrictive diet. Further, I dove into transitioning out of Keto-based macros as well.
One of the biggest issues with dieting is that most people gain all their weight back. Around 90% of people, gain all their weight back and then some, to be more precise. Essentially, this comes at the hand of drastic calorie restriction for some time, followed by an immediate increase of calories once the "diet is over."
While I don't suggest doing a slow reverse diet, I do suggest having an incremental increase of calories over the course of a few weeks. By doing so, you'll get out of a deficit but also won't consume so many calories at once, that you end up overweight or fat.
Additionally, transitioning out of a keto-based diet (very high fat, very low carbohydrate) it's not advised to immediately introduce all of your carbs back overnight. In addition to the terrible gastric distress you'd probably experience, your body might have difficulty appropriately metabolizing and storing all of that glucose, leading to accidnetal fat accumulation. Theoretical, but at least logically sound. If you're dieting or planning to diet, consider clicking the image to learn your next steps once the "dieting phase" ends.
I Re-Opened The Free Training Contest
Moving forward, I'm planning on offering free training every month. Last month, we had two people sign up and one of them is actually a full time client now.
All you have to do is enter your email and then fill out a consultation form. If you're chosen, I'll contact you and get started on your free plan. But don't worry, if you aren't chosen, you'll still win. I give everyone that enters exclusive discounts on training should you decide you want training advice.
What's In Store
This week, we'll have another round of 3 articles. In addition, I've also begun work on an extensive bodybuilding type program that will accommodate beginners to intermediates with the goal of improving muscle definition, size and strength. I'm planning on having it be anywhere from 24 to 48 weeks and will surely be one of the best training programs you can get your hands on.
Lastly, I'm in the works of creating an option for short term, one time purchases of personalized training programs for the duration of your choosing. If that's something that interests you, please let me know.
Until next week, thanks for stopping by and supporting me. You have no idea how much it means to me.
We Learned How Resistance Training Affects Sleep
To start the week, we revisited an old study and reviewed it once more to ensure we were on the right track.
In this study, researchers had subject resistance train at either 7 AM, 1 PM or 7 PM and then observed how this affected sleep variables such as sleep latency or how long it takes to actually fall asleep after you initially try, how many times awoken through the night and finally how long you stay awake after waking in the night.
Overall, resistance training was beneficial, but as it turns out, the time of day that you do resistance training may actually have differing effects, with one time frame being optimized for reducing sleep latency, while others may reduce the time it takes you to fall asleep.
If you have difficulty sleeping or believe that your sleep stands to improve, you may want to see how the time of day that you lift, affects your sleep ability and quality.
We Learned About Optimal Protein Dosages
In our second research review, we tackled a recently released paper that addressed optimal protein intakes. The amount of protein that you should be consuming on a daily basis is an argument that has been raging for years, potentially even decades.
In this study, researchers had subjects resistance train in ways that would produce damage. They then had subjects consume around 1.8 grams/kg (.8 grams per lb.) or a high amount of 2.9g/kg (1.3 g/lb) and observed their objective and subjective ability to recover.
The results? There wasn't a large or significant difference between the two groups, but as you'll see when you read, this is far from definitive. With strong tendencies of high protein intakes being optimal, the time frame of this study is arguably its biggest limiting factor.
If you're interested in what the science has to say about protein intake, you won't want to miss this.
We Answered Some Important Questions
In a rehashing of an old tradition, we returned to answering some reddit/r/fitness questions.
With this segment, I search through reddit and find good questions that I believe many people have and then answer them as if it were my own client asking the question. I personally find these to be quite useful, not only for others but also for me to decide on definitive answers to commonly asked questions.
This week, we tackled the following questions (full questions are in the article):
All that and more in our latest exercise and nutrition question and answer.
Training Program In The Works
Right now, I'm in the process of building a training program that people can purchase for a reasonable price. This plan is tentatively around 24 weeks (25-27 with deload weeks) and has a focus of building muscle and definition and can be used by beginners or advanced trainees.
I really think people are going to love it.
If you're interested in this sort of thing, regardless of your training style, please consider clicking the button below to fill out a brief survey. It's four questions and will literally take you less than 1 minute. I've done this to ensure that the programs I build are in line with what you, the reader, actually wants. Your participation is greatly appreciated and if you decide to fill out the questionnaire, you'll be provided with a 25% discount once the product drops!
Additionally, I'm in the process of working on two additional sections of the website. One will be membership based, somewhere between $5-10 per month, providing training and guidance, while the other will provide personalized training programs. These programs will essentially be the same as normal online training, but much cheaper.
I truly think these are going to be great options for just about anyone and I'm excited for you all to see them.
Keep in mind, if you ever require guidance, but have concerns, please reach out. I'd love to work with you in any capacity I can.
This Week We Hit A Milestone
This week at Boss Strength was a big week for us. At the beginning of the week, we actually hit our first milestone of reaching over 1000 unique viewers per week to the site. Best thing is, this was accomplished without the use of advertizing. Just plain ole' fashioned consistency. I also wanted to take this opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart if you happened to be one of those 1000 individuals. Truly, I am so grateful that you're interested in the information I'm providing.
It's all uphill from here.
The Holiday, Healthy Eating Guide Was Launched
This week, I also launched the first, standalone E-Book to be offered at Boss Strength. Additionally, it's totally free (apart from entering your email address). The purpose of this guide was to provide normal people like you and I with some special ways to tackle your holiday season without just gaining weight and dealing with it. I'd rather be ahead of the curve and have a few techniques to avoid bingeing over the holiday season. I assure you there is no catch here, just some decent information that I thought might be helpful to many for eating around a holiday that is based on consuming large amounts of food (which isn't an issue, read to learn more). If you're interested in this kind of thing, just click the banner and enter your email address. It's that simple. (downloads available: .PDF &. EPUB).
We learned Low Blood Sugar Isn't Making You Hungry
The first article dealt with the idea that a drastic drop of blood sugar is cause for increased hunger. The theory goes like this: you're hungry, you eat a meal high in carbohydrate, you have a drastic rise and fall of blood glucose, and because of this drastic dip, you become hungry.
Well, these researchers debunked that idea, at least when glucose is intravenously injected (potentially much different from responses to real foods). I personally think this increase in hunger is due to a rapid expulsion of food from the stomach, but really, we don't know. If you're interested in learning about the research or more about my insights, click the image above.
We revisited Post Activation Potentiation
This week, I revisited our article on Post Activation Potentiation; an advanced technique that forces you to increase the weight you're lifting and then decrease, giving you the perception (or reality) of increased strength. Originally, when I wrote this article I felt it may be a bit too confusing. After rehashing this idea, I re-wrote much of the article to be a little bit more clear and concise.
If you want to set a new PR immediately and happen to be interested in the science behind motor neurons (really cool brain stuff) and muscle contraction, you really don't want to miss this one. In fact, it's easily in my top two favorite articles that I've ever written.
We learned about Protein Dosing
In our last research review, we tackled the idea of BOLUS doses of protein (1 large dose) compared to PULSE dosages and their effect on stimulating protein synthesis, the leading theory behind how a muscle grows. Interestingly, they tested the same amount of protein for each group. As it turns out, 1 dose of 25 grams of whey is far superior to 10, 2.5 gram doses, in terms of stimulating this muscle building process.
If you regularly sip on protein or aminos, you may want to consider re-thinking that position. Further, it's important to remember this was all done with Whey protein, a relatively fast digesting protein. It's possible this also sheds light on the idea that "real food" protein (chicken, steak, etc.) may not be optimal immediately post workout. But I'll let you make that decision for yourself.
This week, I decided to make the transition into some bodybuilding training. I'm in the works of building a training program for myself and I'm considering building an option into my website that will allow others to join in and compete with me. I think that might be cool.
Otherwise, I spent this week writing, recording videos, playing video games and watching some trailer park boys. Otherwise, it was a really productive week and I'm actually quite optimistic about what's to come.
What's To Come
To come this week, we'll be having an additional 3 articles, being released on Tuesday, Thursday, & Sunday so be on the lookout.
Additionally, I'll be beginning work on a new training program that will be focused on providing a complete beginners training program with the focus of improving physique, increasing muscle size & definition and of course, strength. This program will likely start off with a linear progression model and eventually move into DUP, with some advanced training techniques.
Additionally, I'm in the process of coming up with some other ideas, such as month to month group training, 1 time training programs based on duration and much more.
If you ever have questions or suggestions, and even article topics, please do let me know and I'll consider anything and everything.
Thanks for stopping by! I'll see you next week.