How To Control Cortisol To Keep Muscles (Part 1)

cortisol hormone organ body

Cortisol. It’s a weird name that I hear rarely. One time, in the gym, a guy told me to be careful about it. When I asked him what is it, he told me: “It’s the stress”. Follow this logic, we stress every day, it means each day we lose a little bit of muscle? It makes no sense. The first time I tried to learn about it, I didn’t understand anything. Cortisol is a hormone and you have to learn some medical things. I didn’t like this situation, because I wanted to know how to control cortisol to keep muscles.

This week, someone told me about cortisol and his explanation was very vague. I see that many people are afraid of it because they don’t understand it. It’s time to go deeper to understand Cortisol, because the body doesn’t create it to destroy itself.

What is its role

role

Cortisol is a stress hormone and it works like a type of alarm system in your body. It controls your fear, motivation, mood to handle dangerous situations. This hormone has several role:

Organize the energy of the stores

It organizes all type of energy that your body has to always be functional for a dangerous event. It means amino acids from muscle tissue, muscle and liver glycogen and fatty acids from body fat.

Stabilize blood sugar levels

When your blood sugar levels are very low, it helps to keep normal levels.

Boost your stamina and attention

Cortisol boosts Phenylethanolamine-N-methyltransferase (PNMT). PNMT is an enzyme that transforms noradrenaline to adrenaline. This method increases your adrenaline’s rate.

Boost the power of muscle contraction

This is a consequence of a high rate of adrenaline.

Boost the power of heart contraction and rate

It’s an effect of a high adrenaline’s level. Oxygen move better to muscle

Weaken the immune system

When there is a threatening situation, the body needs all the resources possible. For example, a fight. The high rate of cortisol will weaken the immune system to have the maximum of energy possible. When the rate decreases, the immune system has the full power back to repair the damage from the fight.

All these roles help you to get through an unsafe situation and survive. The thing is if the cortisol has a high rate for a long time, it can create problems in your body. Let’s see in different areas how cortisol can be bad.

Muscle Gain

gain muscle

A high rate of cortisol for a long period can impact muscle in a unhealthy way with these methods:

Muscle is less feed by food

Muscle receive fewer amino acids to create new tissue. Restocking of glycogen stores is decline too.

Boost muscle damage

There is a high level of protein damage (catabolism) than protein synthesis (anabolism). This is why we say “stress (cortisol) eat the muscle”.

Muscle take more time to repair

The immune system is very important to repair muscle. When a high rate of cortisol is recurring, it weakens the immune system.

Boost myosatin

Myostatin is a myokine, a protein created by the muscle and it limits its growth. It means when you have a high rate of myostatin, it limits your muscle gain.

On the long term it declines testosterone rate

Pregnenolone is a hormone that creates testosterone and cortisol. To have a high rate of cortisol, your body needs a huge amount of pregnenolone to make it. It means there will be less pregnenolone to create testosterone.

At the end of your training session, the level of your protein synthesis is big for around 24-30 hours. This is the period where your body repairs your muscle and add new tissue. When your immune system is fragile, your body uses these amounts of hours to only repair the breakdown you caused. Your body is not able to produce new muscle, it means you don’t gain muscle.

Recovery

fat loss weight

A long period of high rate of cortisol can impact your recovery in these ways:

Decrease the production of growth hormone

At night you have a natural spike of growth hormone and a high rate of cortisol disrupt your recovery. When your recovery is not optimal, you don’t progress.

Decline muscle glycogen storage

Gycogen is critical in the process of recovery.

Speed down the reparation of muscle

Growth hormone maintains, build and repair tissue. It means it also builds muscle mass. You gain muscle by repairing muscle. When the cortisol decreases the production of growth hormone, you don’t have results.

Increase adrenaline rate

Adrenaline (or epinephrine) is a helpful hormone before a workout session. It boosts your cardiorespiratory activity (more oxygen to the muscles). It also improves your metabolism, your mood, and your body is more reactive. Before to go to bed, it doesn’t help you to sleep.

Fat loss

The famous coach Charles Poliquin said that when you have too much cortisol, it stores your fat in abs. There is a problem here because cortisol has also as function to organize stored energy. Fat is a kind of energy for the body. It means cortisol doesn’t store fat, you know, fat is energy.

Another function of cortisol is that is a fat loss hormone when the rate is high while a short time. If the high rate is recurring, it complicated the action to fat loss.

Decline the transformation of hormone T4 to T3

A little explanation about these hormones. The thyroid is a gland in the neck. It creates three hormones: triiodothyronine (T3), thyroxine (T4) and calcitonin. T3 and T4 adjust the temperature of your body, your metabolism, and your heart rate. T3 usually sticks to protein in your body.

The thyroid creates a lot of T4 to change it in T3. T3 modifies the metabolism rate. When you have a high rate of metabolism, you burn more calories. In the case where your body has a low level of energy, the thyroid creates less T4. Fewer T4 means fewer T3 and the result is a low metabolism rate and the body burns fewer calories.

Do you remember what happens in a situation when your body lacks food? The cortisol rate is high to keep blood sugar stable and organize stored energy. This is a mechanism of the body to survive since the prehistoric era. Today is good because access to food is better. Unfortunately, cortisol can have a high rate because of other stress factors.

Insulin resistance

Cortisol boosts the blood sugar rate in a crisis event (lacking food, running away or fighting). These emergency circumstances allow the body to release glucose for energy. When people are sedentary and the blood sugar level is high, it’s not good. The level stays longer high and can drive to hyperglycemia. The body to avoid it creates insulin to decline the rate of blood sugar to a normal level.

Imagine a situation where cortisol’s rate is high a lot of time. It boosts the blood sugar levels and the body produces insulin every time. The result of this is insulin resistance. In the plan to lose fat, settle a caloric deficit is crucial. Unfortunately, insulin resistance and a metabolic rate low make the process more difficult. It can even create a surplus of fat.

Let’s be things clear, insulin alone doesn’t make you fat, it stores the elements of your food. It’s when insulin has a high rate that is tough for the body to use fat in a good way.

Insulin resistance means that the cells work badly with insulin. The result is the body needs to create more insulin to do the same task with the cells. When there is a huge amount of insulin, it takes more time to go back to the normal level. When there is a big quantity of insulin for a long time, the body has trouble to use fat.

It is the same thing for cortisol. Alone, cortisol doesn’t make you fat. It’s when cortisol has a high rate that is tough for the body to use it in a good way.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

Sudden Cardiac Death

sudden, cardiac, death, hearth, sport, athlete, scd

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in biomechanics to avoid injuries. I read « Sport Medicine Media Guide » and I learned some good stuff.

Sudden cardiac death (SCD) is an extremely rare event. The most common reason for cardiac death related to sports is the cardiomyopathy hypertrophic, an abnormal enlargement of cardiac muscle. It’s a rare heart disease that predispose a person of SCD because of physical exertion.

Commotio cordis is another reason for SCD. It’s a direct trauma to the chest at a specific moment in the cardiac cycle and this trauma triggers a dangerous arrtyhmia (abnormal rhythm) of electrical system of the heart. A commotio cordis usually arrives in sports where a blunt projectile, such as baseball ball or hockey puck, hits the athlete’s chest.

Treatment

Cardiac arrhythmias that threaten the lives of young athletes are very difficult to treat. The immediate use of AED (automated external defibrillator) can provide an advantage.

Prevent

sudden, cardiac, death, sport, hearth, athlete, scd

Unfortunately, the only way to prevent death from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is to identify the disease and recommend the athlete avoid any strenuous activities. Cardiac ultrasound can diagnose this condition. Some experts have called for the screening of athletes with ultrasound or electrocardiograms (EKG), although this screening is controversial because of the high cost and scarcity of this condition.

However, athletes with cardiac symptoms such as dizziness, fatigue, shortness of breath in relation to physical activity, palpitations, convulsions and especially syncope (fainting) must stop the competitions and must do deeper tests.

In addition, a family history of cardiac abnormalities justifies a complete cardiac evaluation. Especially a known parent with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or a history unexplained sudden death in a family member.

There is the creation of different forms of protection for the chest and pads, but unfortunately no method has prevented this tragic event. The rules regularly change in the sport and some times to try to avoid commotio cordis. For example in baseball and softball, it’s the limitation of the use of aluminium bat. This rule can protect the pitcher by decreasing the speed of the ball after contact with the bat. There are other rules too, such as using a softer ball and teaching players to turn their chest when the ball is hit by the bat.

Stats

  • Fortunately, SCD is extremely rare in the sport. For the majority of people do sports to cardiac benefits.
  • In young athetes, the most common causes of SCD are 25-30% hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and 20% commotio cordis.
  • Coronary artery abnormalities are the cause of 14% of SCD in athletes.
  • Marc-Vivian Foe, a Cameroonian soccer star had a sudden cardiac death during a match in 2003.

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

Steroids

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in biomechanics to avoid injuries. I read « Sport Medicine Media Guide » and I learned some good stuff.

We regularly read in news articles, the use of anabolic steroids or performance enhancing drugs by elite athlete. But you should know that these dangerous drugs are more and more used by children in college, high-school and middle school.

What

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug

Anabolic steroids are synthetic derivatives of testosterone. Testosterone is a male sex hormone. Steroids help to create new proteins to increase the size and strength of muscles. The body is already doing this process naturally but steroids increase the activity of this normal process. Find performance enhancing drugs in communities, gyms or internet is easy.

Steroids are consumed orally or by injection. Anabolic steroids in themselves aren’t effective. However, when they’re used at the same time with a strength training, they increase the strength in an impressive way.

Side effects

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

Performance enhancing drugs allow an athlete to have bigger and more powerful muscles, but users may have deadly health problems. Performance enhancing drugs have several side effects that continue to work even after you stop using them. Users are also more likely to have risky behaviors such as having unsafe sex or taking illegal drugs.

Symptoms of use of anabolic steroids are :

  • Acne (often severe) visible on the face and back

  • Severe mood change such as extreme aggression or suicidal behavior

  • Premature balding, breast enlargement (gynecomastia), irreversible shrinking of testicles in boys.

  • Deeper voice, shrinking breast and clitoral enlargement in girls

  • Dangerous enlargement of the heart that can increase bad cholesterol and blood pressure.

  • Irreversible liver damage

  • In children, premature closure of the growth plates, stopping normal growth of bones.

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

A reason to take anabolic steroids

Anabolic steroids may be advisable for people who have lost testicular function like men with a testicular tumor. They’re also advised in some type of anemia to stimulate the bone morrow.

Prevent

The true is the problems of performance enhancing drugs aren’t solely related to elite athletes. Children are also exposed to this every day. Ask kids what they know about these drugs. Ask them if they know anyone in their school class who uses these drugs. Ask them if they know the dangers of these drugs. If you think that your children or children in your family might be experiencing these drugs, talk to your doctor.

It’s also important to talk to coaches and ask them if leagues or schools require annual physical exams for athletes. A physical examination by a doctor can detect the use of performance enhancing drugs in athletes (doping test). Ask coaches if any of their athletes have experienced performance enhancing drugs.

Stats

As many as four 4 American children and teens are using performance enhancing drugs such as anabolic steroids.

Subscribe to my newsletter and share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

Mature Athlete

mature athlete

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in biomechanics to avoid injuries. I read « Sport Medicine Media Guide » and I learned some good stuff.

Physical exercises are for everyone, including the mature population. Exercises allow older people to keep a healthy body and maintain their independence. The main health problems of the mature population are arthritis, high blood pressure, heart disease, lung disease, depression and hearing and sight loss. With the exception of hearing and sight loss, all these health problems can be serious decrease with an adequate workout program.

All mature athletes should have a complete medical and musculoskeletal assessment before starting any workout program. Having a complete medical examination, medical advice and a workout program helps to avoid serious injuries and health accidents. These 3 things should meet the needs of a mature athlete to avoid disease, increase endurance, strength, body image and competitiveness.

Exercises are beneficial

It’s important that a qualified personal trainer create a specific workout program to improve strength, endurance, balance and flexibility. If the workout program includes sports such as golf or tennis, the technical knowledge of the golf/tennis instructors is helpful to avoid injury and improve performance. For results, workout programs must be consistent for at least 30-45 minutes, 3-4 days a week.

If physical conditions require correction, a cardiac or pulmonary rehabilitation program or physical therapy may be helpful before starting a workout program. These rehab programs should be taught to mature athletes at a fitness level where they could continue with their own workout program.

Exercise type for the workout program

physical exercise type

An athlete should use types of exercises based on his/her desire, pre-existing conditions and his/her ability to exercise without pain. For an athlete with lower extremity joint problems such as arthritis or instability, it’s recommended to avoid exercises with repetitive impacts like running. For athletes with an unstable shoulder, it’s recommended to avoid overhead exercises such as military press and pull-ups.

Using several types of exercise to improve strength, can allow better recovery of muscle and tendon tissue. If a mature athlete wants to make a sport that can aggravate a pre-existing problem on a muscle, tendon or bone, that athlete should be in a good condition before doing this sport. It’s recommended to decrease this sport’s frequency to reduce the painful symptoms.

What equipment to use

Having shoes that fit with the exercise and/or the sport is beneficial. If the person has a foot with significant deformity such as flat feet (fallen arches), using orthopedic shoes helps to reduce stress on the entire lower extremity. The symptoms of arthritis in the knee may be decrease by the use of specialized braces.

Prevent injury or discomfort during exercise

If there is discomfort during or after physical exercise, this should be analyzed to prevent it from starting again or getting worse. Over-the-counter painkillers and anti-inflammatory can be used in the short term if there is no interference with other medical conditions. It’s important to know that the use of ice, heat, massage and flexibility programs can decrease several symptoms caused by exercise.

There is more aggressive treatment with narcotic analgesic and/or cortisone injections but this should only be used to treat a specific lesion. This shouldn’t be used to allow an athlete to complete in the short term.

Summary

Creating a customized workout program with a medical professional and/or a qualified personal trainer helps a mature athlete to :

  • Keep independence

  • Increase physical abilities

  • Prevent injuries

  • Improve the quality of life

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food. Click here.

Back To The Source Of Human Strength (Part 1)

source

I read a Nerd Fitness article  and I learned good stuff.

When I’m in gym, people tell me why they started to train. There are several reasons, lose weight, gain muscles or to be in shape for a special event. There is a golden rule to have result in strength training, it’s eat clean and lift heavy.

Everybody says it, eat clean and lift heavy but what does that means ? I think it’s time to go back to the source.

Why

why

The life is easier when we’re stronger, did you notice it ? By exemple, to carry bags from supermarket, to carry a piece of furniture, to run to be in time, etc. Everything is easier.

Strength training is extremely efficient to build muscle and burn fat. Whether to lose 6kg (15lbs) or 45kg (100lbs), it’s the same thing.

Strength training help to build muscle and lose fat but it also help to stop or even reverse sarcopenia (it’s skeletal muscle reduction with aging). Train our skeletal muscle allow us to be independant (therefore avoid nursing homes) and live longer.

The profits list isn’t finished yet.

A nice athletic body

Strength training help you keep your muscles while you’re in calories deficience and losing weight.

Strength training allows you to have a better oxygen consumption than aerobic exercices. After training your body needs to make a lot of efforts to recover and return to the normal state so the state you had before the training. Scientific studies have shown that your metabolism‘s level increase for 38 hours after your training.

Strength training increase your metabolism, increase your Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) because your body needs more calories to keep your muscls than to keep your fat. It’s estimated that for each 4.45kg (1lbs) of muscle, your RMR increase of 30-35 calories.

Improve your health

Strength training help you to improve your balance and coordination, improve cholesterol’s rate, help to control blood sugar, stop muscle loss, improve blood flow, reduces your resting blood pressure, build a stronger heart and increase bone density.

Feel better

It’s clear with strength training you have more self-confidence, your have more energy, a better mood, less anxiety and less stress . It also improves the quality of your thoughts, a scientific study has shown that this increases the cognitive function .

It’s not advisable to do a strength training 1 hour before sleeping. On the other hand to train early in the day helps to prevent sleep apnea  and insomnia.

Prevents diseases and degenerative diseases

You notices that many men and women die because of cardiac disease. Stength training helps to solve problems that are factors of heart disease such as inactivity, diabets, obesity, high blood pressure and cholesterol. Cardiologists begin to advise strength training to people who have heart attack.

Strength training helps to manage and improve the lifestyle of people with clinical depression , cancer survivors , have had a spinal cord injury ,who have recently had a stroke , fibromyalgia , Lymphedema , Down Syndrome , Parkinson’s Disease , Osteoporosis  and Arthritis.

It’s fun

Strenght training helps to reach your goals whether an effective training of 20 minutes to have a good naked body or to do a sports competition. It’s fun to see our progress because it’s like increase level in a video game. If you want to be better in a sport like badminton or rock climbing, strength training is a good choice.

People who shouldn’t train

The only people I’ve found who shouldn’t train are people who have an injury and it’s a break that doesn’t last long. We’re human being and it’s natural to carry things and move. Strength training is recommended for pregnant women , children and teenagers  and even paraplegics .

Obviously, it recommanded to see his/her doctor before beginning a strength training program to adjust the training program.

Basic objections

objection

But I’m too old, it’s not reasonable

When people between 30 and 60 years old tell me that they’re too old, I laugh because it’s a lie. It’s like say : « I don’t have time » and later I see a messsage on Facebook like : « Yestersay, Game of the thrones was epic ! ». Scientific studies have shown that people between 70 and 90 years old had impressive results in 10 weeks .

Other scientific studies have shown that this helps to avoid dementia  and to delay Alzheimer’s .

People who think they’re too old to train are exactly people who should train.

But I just want to be better for a sport and I want to stay fit

Strength training improve your muscle’s endurance, scientific studies have shown it. Resistance exercices help to increases overall muscles endurance , fix nervous system problems and increase activation of motor units within your muscles.

I don’t want to bulk too much

It’s a great strength training’s myth, it’s not in 1 year than you’ll have the bodybuilder’s body no matter wheteher you’re a man or a woman.

For women, here 2 exemples of moms who have become strong and fit without having a bodybuilder body. This is the story of Veronica  and Bronwyn .

Have a the body of a famous bodybuilder doesn’t happen in one night. Naturally we don’t have the amount of homones to have the body of a famous bodybuilder. We need to eat a huge amount of food (8 000 – 10 000 calories per day) and a huge amont of drugs (no, no, it’s another type of pharmacy, it’s true).

I’m fat, I want only lose weight

I’m fat, I want only lose weight

It’s a good reason to start strenght training. By losing weight, you surely want to keep your muscles. I mean, yout want to keep your muscles while you lose fat. With strength training you lose quickly centimeters (inches) in different body’s parts. It’s true that the overall weight loss may seem slow, that’s why is important to track your measurements. With strenght training when you eat with a caloric deficit, it’s increase your metabolism so you lose fat.

It’s boring

What I like with strength training, it’s we can see our progress quickly. It’s like increase level in a video game. I think people get bored when they expect nothing to do between 2 sets. This is why I advise people to have headphones to listen to their own music selection or an audio book to increase motivation.

Muscles and strength training

muscle fiber

Don’t be fancy, it’s interesting to understand how our muscles work to avoid failling into the Matrix’s trap. What I mean is that the only person you gave to impress is yourself and not the others.

It’s our muscle fibers that are small muscle cells that build up our muscles. Our muscle fibers are long, cylindrical and have the size of a strand of hair. Our muscle fibers are composed of myofibrils surrounded by sarcoplasm. I really summarized that but if you want to see it in detail, click here .

We have around 642 skeletal muscles that work together to make move our body. Imagine, when you bend your arm, your biceps contracts and your triceps does the opposite (elongates) to let the elbow bend. Every muscle of your body work as a team to make you move.

We have different type of muscle fibers :

Slow twitch (Type 1 fibers)

Slow twitch fibers are used to convert oxygen into energy for a long period of time. They don’t move quickly to be resistant to fatigue. These are the fibers we use most for marathons.

Fast twitch (Type 2 fibers)

Fast twitch move quickly so they’re not resistant to fatigue. Our body has 2 categories of fast fibers. The type 2A fiber has an endurence characterisitc used for long sprints. The type 2X fiber has « super fast » characterisitc used to short sprints or lift weights. I really summarized that but if you want to see it in detail, click here .

Each individual has a different percentage of slow and fast fibers. It’s for this reason that people are naturally better to run long distances or sprints. It’s funny because we can see it in strength training with people who are better to do sets with high or low repetitions.

It’s the end of the first part and the second part is event more interessting.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

P.S. To read Part 2, click here.

Calories Are Good Or Bad

calories

I read a Nerd Fitness article and there is good stuff.

In the world of nutrition, we can find contradictory things. It depends of the point of view of people about food :

  • I’m Paleo and I eat only meat, vegetables, fruits and nuts.

  • My diet is based on my macros (protein, carbs, fats). Paleo is ridiculous.

  • Fool, a calorie is a calorie. You can lose weight by eating less.

  • I have a good physique and I eat pizza. I’m weird

Each person has his/her vision about « eat healthy ». It for this reason that this theme is confused with a lot of contradictory scientific studies.

What’s this

what's this

A calorie is a unit of energy

This is the equalent of 4.184 absolute joules (that is different of 1.21 gigawatts.

Here what is means : 1 calorie of food is equivalent to 1 kilocalorie that is the amount of energy required to increase the temperature of 1gr of water from 15C° to 16C°.

In a certain way we can say that a calorie is a calorie but what is interrests us is « does different kind of calorie affect our body differently ? »

  • Is what 1000 calories of cookies is the same as 1000 calories of grass-fed steak and vegetable ?

  • Does our body treat these foods differently or it’s only energy in and energy out ?

  • Does the type of food affect our body other than just to lose weight and gain muscle ?

These questions create a lot of debates and on internet everything is amplified with people who show scientific studies. Internet is good to debate but we’ll go deeper.

First step

first step

It doesn’t matter the « nutritional philosophy » you have, but something is obvious. How you eat is responsible of 80-90 % of your success ou your failure.

You can improve you cardiovascular heath by running a lot but if your goal is to transform your body, how you feed your body will play an important rôle.

Training (exercices) have a role of support of maintenance of the body.

When we talk about pure weight loss, eat less calories that you burn each day is the key of the equation.

But we want do everything to avoid to have heart disease and diabetes. It for this reason we need to focus on the food’s type that we eat and the amount of food that we eat.

Calories are equal to loss weight

equal

A person eat around between 3000 and 3500 calories per day of everything he/she wants. And now, he/she wants to lose weight.

This person decides to eat 2200 calories per day by eating less. This person doesn’t change what he/she eat but change proportions.

This person see that he/she loses weight, it’s good and it’s possible that he/she feels unhappy because he/she decreased drastically his/her normal amount of calories. Yet, it’s a good step in the right direction.

When we consume on average less than 500 calories per day, we burn 500 calories that we have in excess in our body. We can combine this with exercice and we can lose aound 0.45kg (1lb) of body mass per week.

As quoted on Examine.com , « a net negative energy balance…is responsible for weight loss ».

You noticed, it says « lose weight » and not « lose fat ».

It’s at this point that the big problems begin. People eat less and it’s enough for them.

We know our body react differently to certain types of food like sugar. Certain food fill the stomach more than other without have a lot of calories (vegetable). And others fill us less the stomach with a lot of calories (soda, cookies and candy).

Remember that all processed foods are scientifically created so that you are always lacking this type of food as a drug addict.

Use small plates is very effective to help to eat less. A study from Cornell University  found that if they gave people a large tub or a medium tub of popcorn, and then gave them stale popcorn, the size of the tub mattered far more than the staleness of the popcorn in determining how much people ate !

We’re not rational creatures. Some food are dense in calories and low in nutrients and make us hungry all day.

Compared to a diet of vegetables and meat, it’s the opposite. It’s food low in calories and dense in nutrients and we have a sensation of satiety. Which make it easier the reduction of calories to lose weight.

If you have a lot of weight to lose, eat less to start to be in the good direction.

Now if you want an athletic body, it’s a little bit different. There is 2 type of food that affect the composition of our body and our athletic performances.

Eating for health and success

health success

To have an athletic body, you must take care about your macros (a certain amount of fats, carbs and protein).

It’s clear that 100 grams of vegetables carbohydrates is not equal to 100 grams of candy :

  • Consideres that sweets and processed food are created for you to eat and buy more like a drug addict.

  • Look the difference of micronutrients between vegetables and candy

  • Pay attention of your energy after eating vegetables and sweets/candy. With which you have the most energy ?

We searching a way to eat that allow us to have a good look/appearence and to feel good. A diet that takes us away from the hospital and allows us to enjoy life.

Look, if you like the idea to eat less but you don’t like the idea to count calories and macros each day, you can hack something. Stay focus on a type of food : Real food !

Instead to count calories

At each meal, have 1-2 vegetables in your plate (or the half of the plate) and have a great source of protein.

Not aim to lose weight for a few weeks

Track your calories and macros for few days or 1 week to analyze what you eat. Take note, note the size of portions and do the total of the quantity of the day. This allows you to plan your meals during the day and during all the year.

We know that eat less and to more physical activity, help us to lose weight and we are still overweight. Eat less isn’t a permanent solution because there is also the element of behavioral psychology.

Real food

It’s simple, our body is a complex machine. And even if a calorie is a calorie is a simple equation to lose weight, each « health » factor can be affected by the quality and nutrients of this calorie.

For this reason, I want you eat real foods, decrease sugar and think long term (new habits) rather than the 12-weeks formulas.

What methods you used and that didn’t work ?

What are your goals ?

-Steph

P.S. Do you want a free training program ? Click here 

Become Antifragile

fragile

I read a Nerd Fitness article  and there is good stuff.

There is a interesting book « Antifragile : Things that Gain From Disorder » of Naseem Taleb.

The concept is to rebuilt our body and our environment to become antifragile, getting stronger and more resilient as more chaos is introduced.

Do you want be strong like your movie’s hero or your comic’s hero ? Read the next !

Antifragile

antifragile

In all domains in life, there is 3 types :

  • Fragile

    This object must be handled with care. This object could break if there is a variation in handling. This object must be out of danger to survive.

  • Solid

    This object doesn’t need to be handled with care. This object can be throw or hit, it will not change. It’s well built and resistant. If it breaks, it will be rebuilt exactly in the same way.

  • Antifragile

    This object doesn’t handled it wiht care ! This object can be throw, broke, throw in chaos, it becomes stronger. It’s like Hydra’s myth, you cut a head and two heads apprears. In fact, an antifragile object become weak when it handled with care.

Did you believed like me that human being was a « fragile » type ?

Nature like chaos and use it to make corrections and make change to survive like an ecosystem. Disasters, climat changes and others elements erase « fragile » members of a species. Stronger and antifragile members of a species survive.

The good new is we can become antifragile. Look :

  • When you take something heavy, your joints, muscle and bone rebuild themselves to become stronger in cas where there would be more chaos. This is the basis, if we don’t do physical activity, our muscles and bones can atrophy and weaken.

  • When we have a disease in our body at a certain dose, our body built a resistance et become stronger against it.

  • When we’re children, we learn than pans on the stove are hot, animals bite and life is difficult. We learn all these little pieces of chaos to prepare us to survive when we become adult.

Because we’re antifragile creature, we need chaos and failure in our life or we will die.

Do you remember how are humain being is the move « Wall-E » ? Humain beings are without muscles and are unable to take care of themselves. Don’t get out of you comfort zone and you become like them (and like my father) !

Antifragile body

antifragile body

If we want be ready to survive in the unknown, we need to constently get out of our comfort zone, challenges and chaos in our body.

In summary, it’s :

  • Enough chaos to force our body to rebuilt itself to become stronger.

  • Chaos in a specific amount of intensity

  • Enough time to our body to recover after chaos (training)

If you walk the same distance with the same speed every day, your heart will adapt to use less energy to do this until there is too much chaos like a very stress day at school/work.

When you feel this distance is easy, walk faster or another challenge. Transform your heart to become stronger and more resilient to manage some chaos more powerful.

There is another way to put chaos in your body, training :

  • if you do a deadlift at 90kg (200lbs) a time, your body is forcing to adapt in different way to lift 68kg (160lbs) several times (reps).

    By forcing your body to adapt to lift heavy weight, your bones, your nervous system, joints and muscles need to adapt to become more antifragile to lift weight heavier. Talibe say we must force our body to adapt to the maximum level of chaos (heavy weight training) to go beyond our limit differently than medium weight or sets with a lot of reps.

Antifragile diet

healthy food

The construction of an antifragile body can be totally destroyed by an « fragile » nutrition like fast foods (Nutrisystem, microwave meals, etc ).

To have an antifragile diet, we need to learn to cook ourselves and don’t be afraid to try new ingredients. Cook isn’t a thing we have to afraid or to be ashamed, it’s something good and important to have a good health. Embrace it. There is a lot of healty meals on internet, it ‘s cool.

Chaos in your diet ? Eat more meals training days and skip a meal non-training days. Don’t become a maniac to count calories or to have the perfect number of hours between meals. As long as you eat 4-6 meals per day, it’s ok.

You want to the next level : grow your food. If you can grow vegetables and raise animals, it’s great my friends. Some resources here  and there .

Here are the basics to build an antifragile body prepared to any amount of chaos and a nutritional strategy to have the energy needed to cross each chaos.

What is your first step to become antifragile ?

-Steph

P.S. Do you want a free training program ? Click here