My personal experience with skipping breakfast (pics included)

Breakfast sucks

I’ve said it once and I’ll continue to beat this in the ground that for fat loss eating upon waking up does not work for you trying to lose body fat.

I’ve even argued that eating every 3-4 hours isn’t necessary for fat loss either.

I know that this may go against a lot of main stream fitness media but hey if all that really worked we would see alot more lean gym rats than bloated puff balls with muscle.

This blog is really just to document my personal experience with skipping breakfast and just taking a break from eating on occasion.

 

Breakfast sucks

Month 1

Here is my back before I started this journey. Why am I taking progress pics of my back? Well to be honest my back is where I will see any progress first so this would be best and quickest way to asses this new style of eating.

In this pic was eating a typical bodybuilder style of eating at this point consuming 5-6 meals a day or eating every two to three hours working out 5 days a week with only two days of cardio. You can see that I do have some foundation there but not really any clean details or lines.

This was especially frustrating to me at this point in time because I lived by my meals and the clock, so it was ALWAYS on my mind. I’m sure some of you can relate to this.

In fact it’s the frustration that led me to take this step into this new style of eating.

[Read more…]

Sit-ups Build Legs

Sit-ups build legs, not abs    

Seriously you may challenge me on this but I want you to think about it. How many times did you do sit-up or decline sit-ups and have to stop do to your abs burning so bad? Honestly, I can admit very few really do experience an extreme ab burn during decline sit-ups, in fact most probably notice that their hip flexors start burning more than anything.

 

What you didn’t know about the Hip Flexors

First off your hip flexors are NOT just one muscle they are a group of muscles that are responsible for flexing the femur (thigh) towards the torso, think of bringing your knees towards you.Hips Flexors and and sit ups - Fitness Revolution Rowlett

If you were to look at the image to the left these are ALL the muscles of the hip flexors… if you notice that the abdominal wall is NOT one of them.

These are the PRIME movers in decline sit-ups and most other sit up variations.

So doing countless reps and decline angles only further continues to improve the functionality and muscular development of the hip flexors, not develop the abdominal wall.

In addition to this I have seen this further tighten the hip flexors more than what most need. Guys I hate to say this but your hip flexors are probably tight enough as it is and they don’t need any reaosn to get tighter, if they do they will just hate you for it.

What ends up happening it that as they tighten up even further they begin to pull your hips down towards your knees and if you think you have hip problems now just wait till those things get tighter.

[Read more…]

Scary Stuff

scared - Fitness Revolution RowlettThe stuff that scares you the most is the stuff you should be doing first.

Normally I don’t deviate too far away from topics of fitness and health but I just had a big wakeup call recently that really caused me to take action on something that I have been terrified of for the past 6 months.

What that is I’ll save for a later blog but I realized how this closely relates to workouts.

One of the most dreadful work outs my clients have is when there is a lower body focused day or when we have to work to correct their weaknesses.

We always want to train our strengths, that’s fun, but correcting our weaknesses or areas of improvements is… well not fun and sometimes downright scary! It hurts and breaks down our tender egos that we have worked so hard to build along with our bodies.

Think about this for a second. [Read more…]

An Understanding of Poor Insulin Sensitivity

Side Note: I had someone do a guest writing series with this blog and a few others, so let me know what you think!

There are many who suffer from diabetes. Poor insulin sensitivity is a problem that many people face. This happens when the insulin levels in your body stays the same because the body is unable to get sufficient glucose into the muscles. When this happens, this means that the pancreas will have to create even more insulin to handle the situation.

 

If you think that you are facing a problem with poor insulin sensitivity, there are a few things you should do. The first thing that needs to be done would be to talk to your doctor. They might want to do a glucose tolerance test. In order to do this, you will need to fast for about eight hours. When this is done, you then drink a sweet liquid and once that happens, they then test your blood sugar levels. They are looking to see if this results show a calculation of over a hundred. If they see this, it could mean a problem with insulin insensitivity.

 

For some of those who have found that they might have poor insulin sensitivity, this might require them to look at their lifestyle to see what could have been the habits that lead them to become this way. Some might have a family history of this problem. There will be some who find out the problem is caused due to the fact that they are overweight. Some will find this problem is caused by the lack of getting up and moving around. Some have also found that they have cardiovascular issues.

 

When you are deemed to have poor insulin sensitivity, you will need to then look at the levels of bad cholesterol in your body. They also need to look at what their blood pressure levels are like. In order for the body to not be so sensitive to insulin, they will find that they have to get their cholesterol and their blood pressure under control. In certain extreme cases, patients might have to go under medication to assist them with this issue. And most of the time, this medication is consumed throughout the rest of their lives.

 

Another thing that a person with poor insulin sensitivity might have to put up with is their energy levels and their emotional state of being. The fact that those who have insulin insensitivity feel tired all the time, and they will feel as though they don’t get enough sleep no matter how many hours they rest. This will cause them to lack focus in everyday tasks. Some will find that poor insulin sensitivity can cause their memory to go bad as well. Most of the time, patients do not know what causes this fatigue and low levels of focus. But once they are diagnosed, many people find it hard to accept the fact that thet are facing this problem. If this is something that you are facing, then it will be a wise decision to talk to someone about this sooner rather than later. Get tested because this can eventually kill you.

Side Note: I had someone do a guest writing series with this blog and a few others, so let me know what you think!

 

In Health and Awesomeness,

 

 

 

Travis Merritt, BS, CPT, CES, RBT is the owner of Fitness Revolution in Rowlett, TX.

P.S. – If you enjoyed this post please share it with your friends using the social media buttons below.

P.P.S. – Please ask a question or share a comment with us in the Leave a Comment section at the very bottom of the page.  We love your feedback and will use it to develop future blog posts.

PLEASE CLICK THE “LIKE” BUTTON, POST A COMMENT AND SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS…

 

High Blood Acidity in Relation to High Energy Activities

Side Note: I had someone do a guest writing series with this blog and a few others, so let me know what you think!

There are many who are learn from their doctors that they need to pay attention to their blood acidity levels. This is also known as the ph levels. It can’t be too high as excessive high blood acidity can be a huge problem to deal with, but it can’t be too low either. There are many factors that cause blood acidity to rise and fall. Here are some things that you should know about blood acidity.

The one thing that can cause the blood acidity to rise is high levels of exercise or physical activity. This is because the body needs much more energy compared to normal. This means that you are going to need more oxygen. Even though there is a higher need for oxygen, the body still produces energy, but without the use of oxygen. This condition usually last for forty seconds to six minutes, but if you are trying to reduce high blood acidity, this isn’t one of the things you will want to avoid.

 

One of those reasons why you don’t want the blood acidity to get too low is that it can cause fatigue. Fatigue is something that many of us face, but don’t pay that much attention to. However, this could be a warning that something is wrong. What many of us don’t know is that our brains work to keep us healthy. When we take part in activities that might decrease high blood acidity, we get tired and worn out easily. You will find that there are many who learn that one of the ways to prevent fatigue is to slow down to keep the acidity levels from reaching too high.

 

When you are looking for things that will help with lowering or preventing high blood acidity, it is said that you need to look for buffers. The body actually has natural buffers in them. You shouldn’t be surprised as our bodies are equipped with a lot of automatic mechanisms. What the buffers allow you to do is to help us produce energy without affecting the blood acidity too much. Some of you might be wondering how to create that natural buffer. This is where two natural supplements come into play. These two nutrients come in the form of supplements in which you can take when you find that you have a lack of buffers. The first is sodium bicarbonate which increases the bicarbonate levels in the blood. The other thing is beta-alanine which helps with the muscle’s carnosine levels.

 

It is important that you learn how to deal with issues regarding high blood acidity levels as this can allow you to perform at the highest level without putting too much strain on your body. You have to be able to keep up with the activities that you love. These natural supplements are safe to take and can be bought at a pharmaceutical store near you. If in doubt, you should talk to your doctor to be sure that he or she agrees with the usage of these supplements.

 

Side Note: I had someone do a guest writing series with this blog and a few others, so let me know what you think!

 

 

In Health and Awesomeness,

Travis Merritt, BS, CPT, CES, RBT is the owner of Fitness Revolution in Rowlett, TX.

P.S. – If you enjoyed this post please share it with your friends using the social media buttons below.

P.P.S. – Please ask a question or share a comment with us in the Leave a Comment section at the very bottom of the page.  We love your feedback and will use it to develop future blog posts.

PLEASE CLICK THE “LIKE” BUTTON, POST A COMMENT AND SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS…

7 Shoulder Saving Tips

shoulder savers - Fitness Revolution Rowlett

Why do I work on shoulders so much? Well, if you bust your knee you can still train upper body, BUT if you mess up your shoulder then you’re just about done in the gym.

The more shoulders I see, the more I realize that the bitch of the matter is fixing them when they are busted. Usually this is because the majority of the time it’s a learned movement pattern that has to be broken and re-taught. This blog is for those people that THINK they are starting to notice a slight twinge in that area. If you feel the twinge, then trust me… stop.

Below are some tips that I have accumulated to help keep those shoulders healthy so you don’t have to suffer though the aches and annoyances of feeling hindered while you have to let yourself heal.

If you are already having some shoulder pain I would recommend taking a look at this first: Shoulder Pain

[Read more…]

Why Breakfast Makes You Fat

I’ll go on record to say that breakfast sucks. It, in my opinion, is the LEAST important meal of the day.

I’ll put it in bold letters…

BREAKFAST SUCKS

 

Oh boy, I’m sure I made some people mad. I can hear some of the criticism now…

Other trainers are saying: “WTF! That’s heresy!Breakfast makes you Fat - Fitness Revolution Rowlett

People: “But isn’t it the most important meal of the day?! This guy is weird… come on Stacey lets go eat a bagel and walk on the treadmill.” 😉

Do any of your know where the idea of breakfast orientated from? We grew up taught that breakfast was the most important meal of the day but who started that and WHY? Our parents? Who told them? Where did the idea of breakfast orientate from?

First the word breakfast just means “break-fast” duh I know, but wouldn’t that mean that your first meal AFTER sleep, no matter what time, is breakfast? What if I work a night shift get up at 4pm and my first meal is at 5, is that breakfast or dinner? What is I wake up at 8am and eat 30min later, is that breakfast? Or if I were to wake up and not eat till 3-4 hours later… is that breakfast? All of them are yes, breakfast just means “breaking your fast” no matter what time of the day you eat… its breakfast. In today’s society we have labeled that word as strictly a morning meal when in all reality it can be at any time.

Ok so why they hell did I tell you all that? Well it’s to get your mind in a different concept that the idea of breakfast is just your first meal of the day, whenever it may be, and NOT strictly a morning time ritual.  BUT… for this blog for fear of confusing you I’ll be referring to breakfast as your meal that is consumed within an hour upon waking. [Read more…]

Jeep Wrangler Chest Press

Rowlett Personal Trainer Jeep Chest Press

Good ol' Jeep Presses

 

I wanted to change things up a bit this weekend and instead of posting up a training article I figured that I would showyou some of the fun things that we do in our workouts. I know that the word “fun” can be subjective, but I still think its pretty cool.

Sometimes at the end of  a workout I’ll want to do something a bit different so the last few weeks my partner and I have been using his Jeep for some of our exercises. For those of you who are just now reading this blog may be surprised by that but for those of you who know me probably aren’t surprised at all. Now to those clients that I have that are reading this they are probably just shaking their heads thinking “Oh my trainer is crazy”… well maybe a bit 😉 [Read more…]

Some Intermittent Fasting questions answered

Some questions that I had about IF hope that you read the last IF blog and it may have peaked in your interest, heck maybe you even went a head and ordered Eat Stop Eat (highly recommend it). For today I’m going to go over some of my initial questions that I’ve had when I began researching IF.

 

You need to eat every three hours to keep your metabolism up:

This initial question was the my very first response to IF. I mean come on we have all heard it that we need to eat small frequent meals to lose weight, this has been posted in just about EVERY website, magazine and news series about weight loss. I remember this was the first thing that was ingrained in my head as a young gym rat.

Ever felt like your day was tied to the clock with food?

So I thought, heck I’ll find plenty of research proving that small frequent meals promote weight loss and honestly its was very difficult to find research that really supported this. Weird huh?

You see when I did find a journal article that was cited small frequent meals as a case for weight loss I did real rescarch into the journal article, otherwords not just was was quoted to me but I wanted to read it myself… the entire thing. [Read more…]

Top 10 questions I get as a trainer

10 of the most common questions I get asked as a personal trainer

After doing this blog post I feel that over the coming months I’ll need to dedicate a blog or two to each question, what you see below is just scratching the surface. If you have any others that you have leave a comment below!

1. Can you just give me a routine?

Me: (Now I have mixed feelings about this). My usual answer to this is “no”, and its really for the big reason that I don’t know anything about that person. I don’t know their movement patterns, background and health history, their comfort level with exercise, do they even know what exercise I’m talking about and even if I do show them will they continue to perform it correctly? Here is what I usually tell this person: I do wish it was as easy as writing a program for you but I don’t know enough about you and a program HAS to evolve with your needs over a period of time. Not all programs are created equal and not all fit everyone BUT I never leave anyone emptied handed so here is one below that I feel is a good starter for most beginners looking to add some muscle (or tone for the ladies) and lose bodyfat.

2. I need to work my core, what’s the best exercise?

Me: Do you want to get it stronger for something in particular or do you want to have abs showing?

  • If you want have your abs showing then do cardio and eat cleaner
  • If you want to have a strong core, do the ab wheel
  • If you want both… well do both of the above 😛

3. Do I have to drink those protein drinks?

Me: Well I do recommend it to most people for the sole reason is that you need protein to not only build muscle, but to help with fat loss (yes protein helps you lose fat), it helps with nervous system function, just to name a few things. Whey protein is the most common after workout protein there is and it gets into the blood stream to the muscles MUCH faster than anything else. Now you can skip a workout shake but I have had clients that I have made consume them right after our workouts and I can say every one of them notices a big difference in the way they look and feel. In my opinion, if you don’t your missing out on a key part of you getting the results that you want. Not all are nasty there are some quite good ones out there 🙂

Here are the ones I personally use:

4. Is there a pill, like a fat burner, that I can take to help lose weight?

Me: The best fat burners only give you about a 6-7% edge in your fat loss and they all say that this MUST be done with a proper workout and diet plan. So if you don’t work out you may lose a pound or two but then put it back on next week. If you are doing everything right then you may notice a slight increase in your fat loss ability, but keep in mind what got you to lose those pounds in the first place was clean eating and busting your butt in the gym not a magic pill.

5. Can’t I just workout 20 or 30min three times a week?

Me: If it was that easy you would have done it already then. This answer is a double edge sword but yes and no you can work out 20min three times a week and reach your goals (your particular goal is a big factor in my answer on this one). SOME people can and it totally depends on their understanding of their own body, do they have movement disorders, have they worked out before, do they have good neural recruitment patterns, etc… If they are in tune with their body then yes they can, but if you have never worked out before then probably not. I AM NOT SAYING THAT YOU WON’T SEE RESULTS because you will, but you may not look like that bowflex model.  An example that I used recently was is that lets say your back in school and you’ve been assigned to write a 5 page paper. Now if you were in 5th grade this may take you a week, but if you’re in college you may knock this out in an hour; your experience is a big factor. The same principle applies to working out.

6. Do I need to cut our carbs before bed?

Me: Depends on your bed time and depends on the type of carbs. To keep this simple I would recommend to stop eating complex carbs in your last meal and instead have vegetables, yes they are a carb but they won’t spike the insulin like some grains and other carbs would. Understand without specific goals and variables answers can vary. So whatever your last meal would be just have an extra serving of veggies, this will fill you up and help with fat loss.

7. How much cardio do I need to do?

Me: Just like anything else the answers can vary from person to person and goal to goal. My general recommendation for starters is 4 days a week, two days of steady state cardio and two days in higher intensity interval cardio. If we were to have a scale of 1-10 in intensity (10 being the highest) you would want your steady state to be at a 5 or 6 on that 1-10 scale. You know you’re working out but you can keep going for a bit of time. I would generally recommend this for 30min. On the other two days I would want two days of interval training. Do a warm up of 10min at your typical steady state then immediately after that alternate between 8 and 5 (on our 1-10 scale) for 30sec a piece. So do 30sec at an intensity level of 8 then 30sec at an intensity level of 5. Do this back and forth for 7-10 min. You’ll notice a big difference.

8. If I lift heavy weight won’t I get “bulky”? (This is mostly from the women)

Me: 99% of women don’t produce enough testosterone to garnish the same muscle growth as men, and don’t even think that you’re the 1% who does because you would have been diagnosed and on medications at an early age. For me to get a female “bulky” we would need some pharmaceutical help AKA anabolic steroids and lots of time. The women that you see with masculine figures trained themselves like that, it didn’t happen by accident. Other words they didn’t go to bed with 28% body fat then wake up the next morning looking the way they do. Have no worries ladies it won’t happen. From my experience the harder and heavier I train a female client the more shapely and tone they get.

9. What’s the best exercise to get rid of this inner thigh fat and bring my butt off the back of my legs? (Another common one I get from the ladies… but guys should pay attention)

Me: Fat distribution patterns are different per person, some carry it around their legs, some their hips, others lower abs and back. Unfortunately that is genetic and something that we can’t change, but to get rid of the inner thigh fat you need to lose body fat and build your legs. I would recommend looking at my sexy leg video series for my recommendation on the best leg exercises, increase you cardio and if not already begin eating very clean. If you do that you will notice a visible difference in how your legs look in a matter of weeks.

A sample exercise routine would look like:

10. If I stop working out won’t all my muscle turn to fat?

Me: It is biochemically impossible for muscle to turn to fat, they are two completely separate substances. It would be the equivalent of turning silver into gold, can’t be done. What you may think is that if you go for a long period of time (3+ weeks) without working out, the muscle just loses it’s tone, and eventually the muscle will leave all together. You don’t use it you’ll lose it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Health and Fitness,

 

 

 

Travis Merritt, BS, CPT is the owner of Fitness Revolution in Rowlett, TX.

P.S. – If you enjoyed this post please share it with your friends using the social media buttons below.

P.P.S. – Please ask a question or share a comment with us in the Leave a Comment section at the very bottom of the page.  We love your feedback and will use it to develop future blog posts.

PLEASE CLICK THE “LIKE” BUTTON, POST A COMMENT AND SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS…

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