Protein is used as building blocks in our bodies for new cell formation and has an important role in recovery for this reason, each gram of protein has 4 calories. Protein can also be used as a fuel source and depending on how low your glycogen stores are will affect how much protein is used when energy is needed. Which means if we don’t get enough carbs in our diet and although we may intake a sufficient amount of protein, this protein is not being used to repair our muscle but being converted to energy which can therefore lead to a loss in muscle mass.
Protein is made up of 20 different amino acids some of which we get from our diet (known as essential) and others are created in the body (known as non-essential). The most often referred to amino acid when it comes to muscle recovery is leucine, this amino acid plays a close role with promoting muscle protein synthesis (muscle repair). Sources of leucine include Dairy, soy, beans and legumes. Protein requirements for individuals involved in regular exercise is 0.75g/kg of body weight as it is believed their bodies are better adapted to protein synthesis, however various studies have shown that beginners require a higher amount of protein intake and the recommended amount is in the range of 1.2-2g/kg of bodyweight and 1.8-2.7g/kg of bodyweight during weight loss to minimise and reduce loss of muscle mass. It is recommended to increase protein intake when dieting as it promotes satiety more than carbs.
The best sources of protein are meat, fish, poultry, eggs, cheese, lentils, nuts and seeds.
Anyone who's trained with me, done my classes or been in ear shot whilst I'm doing either would have heard me speak continually of intensity & efforts.
Changes in body composition & fitness come from a reaction to stress. Eg. I attempt to lift a heavy weight for a desired number of reps, I push as hard as I can but still struggle to perform the desired work load (weight x reps) so the human body, being the highly adaptable machine it is, grows me some muscles to better deal with this stress in future.
Another example is I want to run a certain distance at a certain pace, however my body can't perform to the desired level(this time) so I push as hard as I can to try & get through, this results in the body finding a way to store more oxygen in your blood increasing our cardio fitness, which eventually leads to greater performance output(longer distances, faster speeds etc) this is a very simplistic explanation of the process as theres other factors involved, but the point being effort/intensity is going to get results.
Comfort Zone training will not do this, ever! I'm not calling anyone out here & never would, knowing that only 8-12% of the population are involved in any kind of regular physical activity, anyone in this modern society prepared to take the time out of their day to go to the gym already has my admiration & respect, but you're only half way there, you need to make your time count otherwise why are you training in the first place?
Do you ever try to find a way to make exercises you don't like easier? Make excuses or fake an injury to avoid certain exercises you don't like? Skip workouts & classes regularly? If this is you, you're selling your results short & will more than likely just go through the motions you're comfortable with, without any progression which will keep you looking the same as long as this attitude persists.
Intensity is a mindset, it gives us the drive & motivation to push through barriers, giving us the desired results which in turn lead to more motivation to get even more positive results, these types get the job done, they turn up consistently, don't make excuses & try to get a bit better at something everytime they're in the gym. Be this person!
Happy Training & as always if you have any questions pertaining to this article or anything else for that matter, feel free to hit me up in the gym, you know I love a chat!
Most diets are for short periods of 6 weeks 8 weeks or longer. If you’re maintaining a restrictive diet over a long period of time then you can be doing more damage than good to your metabolic system. The reality is that those restrictive diets are unsustainable, are you never going to eat a piece of chocolate again? No.. and is the cutting of those favourite foods going to cause you to crave them and then binge out? More than likely. The best diet you can learn to master is a balanced one with an 80/20 approach.. this means that 80% of the time you’re eating clean and nutritious whole foods and 20% of the time you can have that biscuit or go out for that nice family meal. Adopting this approach breaks that viscous cycle of binging and feelings of guilt that cause the massive cutbacks and restrictions.
So here's your challenge for this week, give the 80/20 a go this week and see if you feel a difference!