Monday, April 25, 2005

All About Supplement Timing

Out of the hundreds of emails I get each week, more than half are from people who are interested in knowing which supplementsto take or what the best way is to take the supplements they're currently using.

So this week's newsletter will show you when to take some of the top supplements and how to get the most out of them.

Creatine, glutamine, and protein are 3 of the top supplementsfor gaining lean muscle and strength.

But what are the best times to take these proven supplements?

Here's what I've found personally works best for me aswell as tracking clients progress using these 3supplements (which, by the way, are about the only 3 Irecommend to clients, other than protein/mealreplacements, EFA's and a good multi-vitamin).

There's a lot of conflicting research that shows creatine and glutamine may compete directly with one another for cell transportand absorption.

That's because both creatine and glutamine use the same transportmethod (sodium) to be absorbed by the body, so there's a chance that one will get absorbed more than the other.
Even though there are different theories as to whether this is true or not, here's my thought:
By-pass the entire problem by just splitting up the timing a little bit.

Here are the best times to take these 3 proven supplements:

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Creatine
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Best taken 1/2 hour or so BEFORE a workout andagain RIGHT after a workout.
What I do is take a creatine/juice/proteindrink about a half hour before a workout and thananother shake right after.

This "bracketing" technique helps set up an anabolic (muscle-building) state for your muscles and helps prevent muscle breakdown from a workout (catabolism).

Other than these 2 opportune times, you can addanother creatine serving or two any time throughout theday.

I usually recommend 25 to 30 grams of creatine on a loadingphase and 10-20 grams a day on a maintenance phase.

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Glutamine
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Definitely take glutamine right before bed.

This is where the overwhelming research shows the value ofglutamine raising Growth Hormone levels significantly by taking 5 grams before bed.

Also, another great time is upon waking, when yourmuscles have been without significant nutrition for upto 6-8 hours.

Another good time for glutamine is about a half hour orhour after working out.
This helps in the recovery/recuperation process fromdemanding workouts.

So, creatine definitely before and after your workoutand glutamine right before bed and right upon wakening.

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Protein
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The best times to take ANY protein drink or proteinsupplements are as follows.

I've listed them in order of importance, so based uponyour affordability, start at the top of the list andwork down.

1. Most important time---right after a workout.

Your muscles are like a sponge and need instantnutrition for muscle recovery and growth.

2. Right before bed.

You're about to sleep for 6 to 8 hours. That's a long timewithout protein.
Could you imagine going throughout your day (when awake)not eating 6 to 8 hours?
Right before bed is important.

3. Right upon waking.

Same thing, you've just gone 6 to 8 hours withoutproper nutrition. Your body needs protein quick.

4. Half hour before a workout.

This sets up the "anabolic window" before your workout and provides your muscles with adequatenutrition so that the effects of weight training(weight training breaks down muscle--called catabolic)are not as severe.

These are the best times for protein.

It can be regular whole food or protein supplements,again, based on your affordability.
Protein supplements may be better than whole food inthese times because its digested quicker.
But start at the top and work down.

If you can afford 4 servings, you'll really notice thedifference in muscle gains and fat loss.
I hope this article helped shed some light on when to takethe 3 most important supplements for gaining mass and strength:Protein, creatine, and glutamine.

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The Best Supplement Info On The Market
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If you're interested in getting honest and unbiased reviews of popular muscle building supplements - from someone who doesn't sell them - then you should get to know Will Brink.
Will has put together a superb and professionally written resource to help you learn which supplements are truly worth taking.

It's called "Muscle Building Nutrition" by Will Brink.

http://www.musclebuildingnutrition.com/cgi/at.cgi?a=239719

You could spend hours searching online for detailed supplementinfo and you'll never find a guidebook more complete than you will in Will's "Muscle Building Nutrition".

This e-book shows you exactly what it takes to build muscle and itcovers every major muscle building supplement on the market, including:

* Creatine* Andro* ZMA* HMB* BCAA's* MCT's* Methoxy* Whey* Tribulis* Ecdysterone ...
and many more.

When new supplements are released, Will posts updates on the latest news, research and developments - and gives the updates to thosewho own this e-book.

Even though I've always said that most supplements are a completewaste of money, there are a few effective products that will help you gain more strength and lean muscle mass.

And Will cover's these supplements... as well as the supplements you should stay away from.
If you're spending ANY money on supplements and you're not sure whether you made the right decision, save yourself some cash in thefuture and get Will's "Muscle Building Nutrition".

It will allow you to stretch your supplement dollar further, so you onlyspend money on tried-and-true muscle builders. This is not just a "supplement review book" either. Will has written a great section on muscle building nutrition which teaches you exactly what to eat to gain muscle - without getting fat.

Go here to get all the info from Will Brink's website:

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PS. "Muscle Building Nutrition" is a muscle-gaining program.

If you're interested in reviews of weight loss and fat loss supplements, check out Will's other e-book, "Diet Supplements Revealed":

http://www.aboutsupplements.com/cgi/at.cgi?a=239719

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Which Is Better For Building Muscle: Machines Or Free Weights?

Want to know the Million Dollar question I get asked probably more than any other?

Which is better for muscle growth: Machines or Free Weights?

Well, first of all, overloading the muscle with heavy weight -- whatever the type of equipment you use -- is what promotes muscle growth. Any exercise that limits overload is not a good choice.

However, in most cases, it's much more effective, and more efficient, to overload the muscle with dumbbells and barbells.

Most machines are very inefficient and not nearly as effective at muscle stimulation as free weight compound exercises. That's because they limit the amount of overload you can achieve.
Less overload... less muscle fiber recruitment and less muscle growth as a result.

Sticking with basic free weight exercises enables you to handle maximum overload and use natural biomechanics as you perform the movements. Machines restrict your natural movements, again, making them less effective for building muscle.

Now, if I had to use a machine for resistance training, it'd probably be Hammer Strength machines. Hammer Strength is a company that recognizes that humans do not lift weights in a perfectly straight line. The range of motion of Hammer Strength equipment generally follows the natural arc of our own force curve.

And the thing is, you can probably lift more weight on Hammer Strength equipment than a free weight barbell. And it makes sense why.

The machines help you out by balancing and stabilizing the majority of the weight for you. This makes it easier to lift more weight. But it's not an advantage. Muscle fiber recruitment will always be less than if a free weight were used.

Even though the absolute poundage is greater on a machine, the actual overload on the muscle is greater with free weights because you're responsible for balancing and stabilizing all the weight yourself. This, along with an increased range of motion, is why free weights are better for more muscle fiber recruitment and maximum stimulation.

Bottom line, good old-fashioned free weights are the number one selection for building muscle!

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If you're looking to pack on more muscle massand get a lean, tight physique, use my "Simple Steps To Get Huge And Shredded" program.

If you want to shed some stubborn fat and lose your love handles in time for the beach season,use Tom Venuto's "Burn the Fat" program.

Either way, start taking action now if you want a body you feel good about on the beach:

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The Secret To Effective Cardio

Psssst.... Lean in. I want to tell you a secret.

It's the secret to doing cardio efficiently and effectively. It's the way to make sure all your time sweating and grunting... trying to burn fat... pays off.

Ready for the key: Get Moving!

The most effective form of cardio is one that allows you to move your body the most. The more you move your body, the more calories you burn.

Of course, intensity levels also play a factor. That's why jogging is more effective at burning calories than walking. Running is more intense, so it's more effective.

Want to know one of the most effective and intense methods of cardio?

Go to the deep end of a swimming pool, jump in, and tread water as though your life depends on staying afloat (well, I guess, actually it does).I don't mean just leisurely trying to stay above water. I mean flapping your arms, kicking your legs, and slashing around as though it's "sink or swim" time.

It's effective at burning calories because you're moving your entire body at a very intense pace.

Try it.

And if you can run, don't walk.

Other effective forms of cardio include jogging, the Stairmaster, theElliptical.

Whatever.

It's not so much what you do, it's how you do it.

Just choose something that allows you to maintain a higher intensity level. It boils down to whatever machine you feel you can work the hardest on because cardio is all about intensity. Greater intensity over a shorter time period (15-20 minutes) will have a bigger impact on the fat burning process and less of any negative effects on muscle building.

Sometimes the best way to choose your cardio is to try a couple different machines. After you compare a few different ones, you'll figure out which ones work the best. Which ones you feel that will allow you to work the hardest on.

Please, don't make the mistake I see several people in the gym make. They grab the daily paper and sit on a bike, lightly pedaling as though breaking a sweat will be the death of them.
Please. You get back what you put in.

If one of your goals is to lose your love handles and get rid of some of that stubborn fat, start picking up the pace of cardio.

Again, the more you move your entire body (at an intense pace) the more calories you burn and the more effective your cardio is. Move, move more of yourself, and move often and soon you'll begin reaping the rewards.

----------------------------------------------------
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