Making Gains During Ramadan

Ramadan is a time of the year where those who practice it and are also looking to build muscle tend to struggle. This is because this holy period which goes for a month requires believers to fast from sunrise to sunset, completely restricting both fluid and food intake. If you’re looking to maximise your gains we know that consuming protein every 4-5 hours would be ideal, and in some cases people eat more frequently to get in the necessary calories throughout the day. Having a fasting period of 14-16 hours is quite common amongst the intermittent fasting enthusiasts, however they are typically still hydrated and consume coffee to make the process more manageable. The fluid restriction makes Ramadan quite a […]

Pre-Workout Nutrition For Better Performance

When it comes to optimal training performance and strength outcomes there are a few key things to consider. It’s without a doubt that having an effectively periodised and goal specific training program is the foundation, along with sound nutrition to support the training, and recovery methods to allow for repeated efforts towards adaptation and well ultimately; gains. There are also finer details and considerations to be made within your approach, which are often overlooked but may actually play a big part in the outcome, and one of those in my opinion is the setup of the pre-workout meal. We often say that meal timing and frequency play only a very small role in the grand scheme of things, but it’s […]

Screw The Scale!

Okay before you throw your scale away, let’s talk about body weight changes, and why your current weight isn’t an honest representation of your body fat percentage or fitness progress. I was actually just in the middle of reviewing a client’s weekly check-in and her weight was unexpectedly lower. In fact, it was almost 2KG lower than last week, and she isn’t holding a lot of body fat by any means. Reviewing her recent weeks of check-ins, her weight goes like this… (7 days between weigh ins) 55.3 55.6 (+0.3) 55.4 (-0.2) 55 (-0.4) 56 (+1.0) 55.6 (-0.4) 57.4 (+1.8) 55.5 (-1.9) Now as you’ll see, there was a spike in weight last week, which makes it seem like close to a 2KG loss […]

So You Binged? Try This Hack (Intelligently)

When it comes to binge eating we have to look at why it happened. Are we cutting calories too hard, is our training too demanding which requires more food intake, are we stressed, or do we need to just be more dedicated to the goal and embrace the struggle (contest prep related). Sometimes an adjustment to the plan can reduce the likeliness of a repeat and ongoing binge cycle. Now, depending on the extremity of your caloric intake overshooting, with the knowledge we have about effective nutritional strategies you can actually soften/eliminate the effects of a binge. How? Here’s an example… Daily Dieting Intake: 2,500 calories Binge: 6,000 calories Excess: 3,500 calories Spread the excess over a 3-7 day period (depending on how […]

Should We Rule Out Cheat Meals?

A client of mine recently shared the nutritional information of a popular chocolate dessert in our coaching group. If you’ve visited the Max Brenner Chocolate Bar, you already know how ridiculously amazing their menu is, and the likeliness of it being a perfect destination for “cheat meals”. There was some discussion about what a typical cheat meal at Max Brenner would include, and the total calories consumed as a result, which got me thinking. In a time where nutritional science has exposed us to information which can positively influence our eating behaviors and nutritional flexibility, why do people still fall into the “clean eating” & cheat meal cycle. We know that we can pretty much consume any food we like, […]

NEAT & Structured Training: Finding Balance Through Awareness

Earlier this month I travelled to Sydney to attend a fitness summit which featured four key influencers of evidence based fitness: Alan Aragon, Brad Schoenfeld, Bret Contreras, and James Krieger. I had seen these guys speak last year in the UK and figured they would be presenting on similar topics, so the summit would simply offer networking opportunities more than anything. Being amongst Australia’s leading fitness professionals, it was in fact an investment in regards to connecting with like-minded people, but to my surprise and excitement, I actually learnt a few things too. First I want to start off by saying my career path has lead me to predominantly being office bound, as an online fitness coach offering minimal face […]

The Ultimate Guide to “Fitting Easter Into Your Macros”

If you’re anything like me, your fridge already has a few Easter eggs on chill, and the anticipation for some workplace chocolate gifts this week is strong. So naturally you’re thinking there’s no way I can fit THAT chocolate bunny into my macros – my dietary fat target is too low or, I’d have to starve all day to make it work. Whilst there is some truth in that thinking, it doesn’t have to be a completely miserable or restrictive experience. After all, flexible dieting is all about reducing the restrictions and maximizing the enjoyment around food, without sacrificing your hard work. So if you want to enjoy a 650 calorie Ferrero Easter Bunny (or two) and still keep your […]

Training Efficiency

If you’re looking to get the most out of your weight training, whether it be maximal strength or hypertrophy (muscular gains), it would be wise to setup your training in an efficient manner. This means training towards your goal from a sets/reps/load standpoint, but also an exercise selection standpoint, in a way that is most productive. For strength focused progression you want to spend most of your time on the bigger lifts that utilise more muscles which also allows for greater weight to be moved. Training intensity is an important factor and cycling through phases of training upwards of 80-95% of your 1RM will be effective to push for maximal strength. Strength focused training isn’t going to be based around […]

Your 2016 Fitness Goals Start Here

If you’re getting pumped for the new year; an opportunity to put yourself and your health first and get back in the gym after months or years of procrastination, you probably need some guidelines that will keep you excited and motivated for longer than a few weeks, and hopefully through to this time next year and beyond.   One of the first things to consider is that longevity is key. You’re not going to get “shredded” or “bikini ready” in four weeks so don’t create a plan with that goal in mind. If you’re looking for a lifestyle change you should structure things with your schedule considered. You should have mini-goals with a realistic time frame. You should have some […]

Stay On Track This Festive Season

With Christmas just around the corner it can be a little overwhelming planning how to stay on track with your fitness and physique goals. I mean, in some ways it is just another day and your goals are your goals, but in other ways having a physical and mental break during the festive season can be beneficial. Right now I’m working with people who are planning a short little pre-Christmas diet phase, others who are wondering how to track their nutrition whilst being away on holidays, and some simply ready to embrace the inevitable food baby to come. Regardless of your strategy, I’ve come up with 3 tips to keep your gains and maybe even bust out your abs on […]

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