Sunday, June 29, 2008

How To Lose Belly Fat

Lose Belly Fat - How To Lose Belly Fat
By Vince DelMonte

Almost everyone wants to lose some excess fat on their body somewhere. For the vast majority, they're looking to lose belly fat and they want to lose belly fat fast! Whether you want to admit it or not, most of us spend far too many months of the year overeating and then scramble at the first sign of warm weather in order to remove what's accumulated over the time. Unfortunately, if you're trying to learn how to lose belly fat, it's not exactly a quick fix.

The problem most individuals run into is they overlook how difficult it can be to lose belly fat off their body. If the truth be told, a fat belly is probably one of the hardest areas to successfully remove because it's made up what is known as 'stubborn' fat.

You're body is actually physiologically slightly different when it comes to fat around the abdominal region. What's the reason for this? Primarily, it's the first place we tend to store fat and where body fat is needed for protection the most - to protect the organs and internal structures.

As such, your fat belly is going to do everything it can to hold onto it. Not a good situation in your quest to lose belly fat.

In order to outsmart this, you're going to have to work really hard. That's not to say it can't be done - it most certainly can, you just have to have realistic expectations about the time line you will achieve this goal over and how much effort you'll have to put in.

First things first, lets talk about exercise to lose belly fat. First, hit the weights. When lifting, be sure you are lifting as heavy as you possibly can, as this is what will ramp up your metabolism the highest. You want to shoot for the 6-10 rep range, as this is most appropriate for metabolic effects.

Second, get that cardio up there. Don't do hours on end though, focus on doing sprints. In fact, better yet is to sprint first, then do more steady state cardio afterwards. This will help to release the fatty acids from the tissue (mobilize them) and then burn them off during the steady state cardio. This type of set-up can be far more effective at getting that stubborn fat off your body than doing a typical cardio session is.

Lastly, check over that belly fat diet. Too many fat or carbohydrates calories will slow your progress, while protein, generally speaking will help due to the fact the body burns more calories just digesting it.

This can be taken too far though - there is no need to exceed 1.5 grams per pound of body weight, but keeping it up around that level is your best approach. Then, fill in the remainder of your calories with carbohydrates around the workout period and fat during the other times.

As long as you are patient with the process and continually push yourself in the gym, there is no reason why within time, you can't be sporting your own set of six-pack abs.

About the Author:

Vince DelMonte is the author of Your Six Pack Quest found at

He specializes in helping chubby guys and gals get without gimmicks, supplements or dieting.

© 2006-2008, Your Six Pack Quest All rights in all media reserved. You may reprint this article so long as the article and author bio are reprinted intake and all links are made live. This article may never be sold individually or as part of a package

Friday, June 27, 2008

Detox Diets for Fat Loss

Detox Diets for Fat Loss
By: Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS

Are detox diets necessary for fat loss?

Nah, not really.

Although it can help someone that is eating Doritos everyday, but only if they take up some long-term healthy habits as a result, of course.

A detox diet for fat loss won't suddenly reverse the bad health status of someone that has lived the Western Lifestyle for 40 years.

It is what it is...2 days of not eating crap (although it's often 2 days - or more - of not eating anything, which has its own detractions...).

So detox diets might seem like a good idea, and might even give you piece of mind and help kick-start a new program, but just realize that they are not a quick fix to your health problems.

The LONG-TERM FIX is dumping the Western Lifestyle, as I have said many times before.

Besides, if you think you can actually remove all the toxins in your body, think again. It can never happen. Every breath you take, every move you make, you are creating waste products in your body.

In fact, research studies have found that ALL of us contain surprisingly high concentrations of toxins in our blood, all due to AIR pollution.

So no matter how "great" your detox diet, you'll never be able to combat toxins that enter your blood through your lungs.

And many toxins are fat-soluble - meaning they are stored in our fat cells for months, and slowly released over time - not just 2 days.

You'll never truly detoxify...but enough of the science class, let's get to the bottom line on detox diets...

So is living on a juice diet for 2 or 3 days going to kill you?

No. Heck, that's probably healthier for you than a weekend in LAS VEGAS.

But is it going to add years to your life?

No, of course not.

So unless a 2-day detox diet is really off the wall unhealthy, they are generally neither helpful nor harmful.

All that matters is what you do on a consistent basis for the other 363 days of the year...year in, year out.

If you pick up motivation for healthy habits from your "detox", then maybe it can help you.

But if you go right off the detox and back to the Nachos and Bud, then what was the point at all?

You know what I'm all about - lifestyle change.

It's nothing radical, its nothing fancy or magical. If you want to succeed you simply have to make changes for good.

You aren't going to make all the changes overnight or be able to stick to each one the first time you try it (Hey, I'm still trying to get better and healthier everyday, and I've been at it for all of my adult life).

Hard truth: It might take you years before you perfect your healthy eating habits and kick your cravings.

But as you do, you'll have the rest of your life ahead of you for high-energy living thanks to healthy eating.

Eat well, live well,


P.S. Want to know how to change your eating lifestyle?

Get Dr. Chris Mohr's Fat Loss Nutrition Guidelines that comes with Turbulence Training.

About the Author

Craig Ballantyne is a Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist and writes for Men's Health, Men's Fitness, Maximum Fitness, Muscle and Fitness Hers, and Oxygen magazines. His trademarked Turbulence Training fat loss workouts have been featured multiple times in Men’s Fitness and Maximum Fitness magazines, and have helped thousands of men and women around the world lose fat, gain muscle, and get lean in less than 45 minutes three times per week. For more information on the Turbulence Training workouts that will help you burn fat without long, slow cardio sessions or fancy equipment, visit

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Foods For Fat Loss

The Top 9 Foods for Fat Loss
By Leigh Peele

Number 1 Water

Okay fine so water is not "food" but it is the most important substance you can take into your body. 70% of people are walking around at least partially dehydrated in this country and they do not even know it. How could they? This makes me think of so many movies where they show a person peeing in the snow and it's yellow. We don't want yellow snow, that is not healthy.

The goal is to have very light off yellow, almost clear, urine. This is a sign of good hydration. The more yellow, the more dehydrated. Water is 100% essential need to the body, and 100% essential for fat loss. If nothing else, remember this the next time you chug down. How do you think that fat leaves the body? I will give you a does not just magically disappear into nothing.

Number 2 Eggs

My next choice is eggs, especially egg whites and omega 3 eggs. You know there is just nothing you can't do with these guys. Scrambled, hard boiled, baking, pancakes, added protein to smoothies (egg whites only for that one guys okay). They have the greatest Biological Value of protein you can ask for, and the omega 3 has good fats. Not only is it an easy food, it is a cheap food. So yeah, number 2 on the list, eggs.

Number 3 EFA's (Essential Fatty Acids)

Next up is EFA's or essential fatty acids. Whatever source you choose to get this from is yours. I personally, and I will try not to advertise or name drop here, but go with a supplement oil blend. We not only want good fats, we want a balance of good fats. Now this does not mean not to get any fats from whole foods. Fish, nuts, oils, are all great, but somewhere in the diet getting a pure and solid form of supplemented oil blend is something that I think is key, not only for fat loss, but for health.

By the way has the best EFA Supplement on the market:


Number 4 Oatmeal

Now oatmeal is a personal obsession, it is hard not to put it at one because of my pure love for it. A lot of people get very confused about oatmeal, how to cook it, which brand to buy. Do I get instant, steel cut, rolled? My advice, cost wise and ease wise is to go with the Old Fashion Rolled Oats. Now, do steel oats have a higher fiber source and better process? Of course, but they are not as cheap, not as easy to find, and take longer to cook. I find in some areas if you ask too much of people they end up giving up all together. So go into the store, get the old fashion rolled oats, still lower GI than instant, a great source of fiber, and great for the heart. Best of all they are easy to work with and cheap to buy.

Number 5 Berries

Berries, particularly I would choose wild blueberries, raspberries, and cranberries. Some of the best sources of anti-oxidants, fiber, low calories, easy to make anything taste good with. Also if you buy frozen you can save some cash, if you buy frozen and in bulk you can save a bundle.

Number 6 Greens

Greens is classified as turnips, spinach, collard, kale, I would even throw in broccoli into that mix. These are the true super foods. Vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants, low calorie, the list goes on and on.

Number 7 Whey

Okay now that I am finished with my "eat your veggies" talk we are going to get to Whey Protein. If you are whey intolerant you can go with egg, but basically what I am speaking of is whey protein supplement powder. In general I am really pro whole foods, but in certain times, a protein supplement has its place. Especially post workout, and if choosing a protein powder, whey is number one. If you use it right, and time it right in your diet, but still provide yourself with whole foods, it can be one heck of a protein source and save you some time as well.

For the best protein supplement on the market make sure to check out

Number 8 Fish

Next up is fish, I think that fish know really I do not like it. I still have not come to enjoy any fish that was not a childhood fish stick, but I eat it! I eat it because it is a source of good fats and amazing source of protein. So maybe you are in the same boat as me, and you do not like getting it down, do it anyway.

Number 9 Sweet Potato

Alright, last one, Sweet Potatoes. Sweet potatoes deemed the "anti-diabetic" food are filled with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and of all starch foods are the easiest to digest. Did I mention they are really yummy?

So with this list realize that if you ate nothing but what is on this list that you have a complete balanced diet right here. Complete amino acids, good fats, vitamins,
minerals, anti-oxidants, all right here in these 9 foods. Mix them up even and have real power meals, put the berries in the oatmeal, put the spinach in the omelets, it is
endless. Some people might say "hey you did not list this or that", don't get me wrong there are definitely some other great foods out there, but as far as I what I feel
the average person can easily and should keep in their daily diet, these are my top nine.

By Leigh Peele

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

7 minutes and counting..

Just a quick reminder of what I told you the other day ( You know, about the shorter workouts?

You can get a great workout in just 7 minutes. No gimmicks. Just good science, common sense, and a darn clever way to workout.

Go here --

So many people are seeing the results from training smarter, not longer.

They are not only adding lean muscle to their body, they are adding months to their lives just from the time they save.

Isn't it time you give it a shot yourself?


Art Breshears

P.S. This is one of the few workouts "guaranteeed" to work. Crazy, but true. Try it for 60 days and see:

Best Ab Workouts

Ab workouts - Finding The Best Ab Workouts
By Vince DelMonte

When trying to achieve the illusive six pack, it' easy to get confused by all the "best ab workouts" available. You'll likely notice that there a multitude of ab workouts to choose one, so deciphering which ones will work the best can be tricky.

The thing to remember is that whenever you are trying to work your core, everything works, for a certain period of time. Everything from high reps, low reps, weighted work, bodyweight work, stability ball exercises, and BOSU ball exercises - it all works until your body adapts and says, "This is easy, I'm not going to change unless you give me a new reason to adapt."

Your ab training should be progressed from stable floor work with your body weight to a unstable surface with weighted work. Progressing to movements that will reduce your base of support as much as possible are the best ab workouts because they will call into play all the muscles within the core, especially those really deep that stable floor work can not target.

Such examples of floor ab exercises that would do this would be crunches, sit ups and leg raises. Eventually you want to do these same exercises against gravity, then a load and then on unstable surface like a stability ball. Body weight exercises like "front planks" and "side planks" should be the foundation of a core program and progressed to one arm planks in the frontal and side planes and then eventually on a stability ball or BOSU ball for further recruitment.

The best ab workouts to make your abs "pop" would be a variety of weighted movements. I'm sure you've skinny guys with a flat stomach but no "eye popping" abs, which is because they have not developed the actual abdominal muscle, just like every other body part. Part of getting nicely chiseled abs is going to be developing the muscles underneath the fat, and weighted ab crunches with cables or on a stability ball with a heavy dumbbell will do this best.

During all your ab workouts be sure to get a full stretch during the eccentric phase of your ab exercises. Going through an entire range of motion on the way up (if doing a crunch on the floor or ball) is not necessary, however, you should be "crunching" your upper abs onto your lower abs during each rep to maximize the burn, recruitment and full development.

The one weighted exercise you will not find in my programs is weighted side bends, as this could make you look wider in the waste, distracting from creating a lean image.

One concerning question most people have is regarding lower ab workouts, typically the most troubling spot. Yes, hip flexion (emphasis more so on lower abs) is important to perform and should be done first in the workout but the reality of the matter is that you cannot specifically separate your abs into upper and lower components. Whenever you perform any type of ab movement you should automatically be focusing on working both the upper and lower portion at the same time.

Good exercise to definitely direct a little more force into the lower area would be the progression of lying leg raises, lying leg raises on a incline and eventually hanging leg raises fully vertical. Lying leg raises on a stability pull is also an extremely challenging and advanced exercise to create razor sharp abdominals.

Finally, the last thing to consider is when you are going to perform your ab workout is training frequency. Again, generally speaking, the more the better assuming your abdominals have recovered. Whether you want to perform it at the end of your workout, before your workout, during your workout or on a day of it's own is up to you. My ab workouts incorporate all methods depending on if you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced. Some theories of that warn you not to start with abs is because abs work as a synergistic muscle for so many of the other exercises you'll do, if you pre-fatigue them before the start of the workout, you may not progress as much during the rest of your workout. I don't agree with this and if you're abs are your weakest link then they should be given first priority when you are the most fresh, the start of your workout.

Incorporating a specific ab workout is only a small part of the battle - diet, lifestyle and overall caloric expenditure through weight training and cardio are the true building blocks to creating a sexy and desired mid section.

About the Author:

Vince DelMonte is the author of Your Six Pack Quest found at

He provides chubby guys and gals with the to get a six pack without gimmicks, supplements or dieting.

© 2006-2008, Your Six Pack Quest All rights in all media reserved. You may reprint this article so long as the article and author bio are reprinted intake and all links are made live. This article may never be sold individually or as part of a package

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


Antioxidants And Free Radicals
Are You Getting Enough?

Antioxidants are molecules which can safely interact with free radicals and terminate the chain reaction before vital molecules are damaged.

Although there are several enzyme systems within the body that scavenge free radicals, the principle micronutrient (vitamin) antioxidants are vitamin E, beta-carotene, and vitamin C. Additionally, selenium, a trace metal that is required for proper function of one of the body's antioxidant enzyme systems, is sometimes included in this category. The body cannot manufacture these micronutrients so they must be supplied in the diet.

Free radicals are atoms or groups of atoms with an odd (unpaired) number of electrons and can be formed when oxygen interacts with certain molecules. Once formed these highly reactive radicals can start a chain reaction, like dominoes. Their chief danger comes from the damage they can do when they react with important cellular components such as DNA, or the cell membrane. Cells may function poorly or die if this occurs. To prevent free radical damage the body has a defense system of antioxidants.

Vitamin E : d-alpha tocopherol. A fat soluble vitamin present in nuts, seeds, vegetable and fish oils, whole grains (esp. wheat germ), fortified cereals, and apricots. Current recommended daily allowance (RDA) is 15 IU per day for men and 12 IU per day for women.

Vitamin C : Ascorbic acid is a water soluble vitamin present in citrus fruits and juices, green peppers, cabbage, spinach, broccoli, kale, cantaloupe, kiwi, and strawberries. The RDA is 60 mg per day. Intake above 2000 mg may be associated with adverse side effects in some individuals.

Beta-carotene is a precursor to vitamin A (retinol) and is present in liver, egg yolk, milk, butter, spinach, carrots, squash, broccoli, yams, tomato, cantaloupe, peaches, and grains. Because beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A by the body there is no set requirement. Instead the RDA is expressed as retinol equivalents (RE), to clarify the relationship. (NOTE: Vitamin A has no antioxidant properties and can be quite toxic when taken in excess.)

These nutrients are also thought to have a role in slowing the aging process and preventing heart disease and strokes, but the data is still inconclusive. Therefore from a public health perspective it is premature to make recommendations regarding supplements and disease prevention. New data from ongoing studies will be available in the next few years and will shed more light on this constantly evolving area. Perhaps the best advice, which comes from several authorities in cancer prevention, is to eat 5 servings of fruit or vegetables per day.

Endurance exercise can increase oxygen utilization from 10 to 20 times over the resting state. This greatly increases the generation of free radicals, prompting concern about enhanced damage to muscles and other tissues. The question that arises is, how effectively can athletes defend against the increased free radicals resulting from exercise? Do athletes need to take extra vitamins?Recommendations

* Follow a balanced training program that emphasizes regular exercise and eat 5 servings of fruit or vegetables per day. This will ensure that you are developing your inherent antioxidant systems and that your diet is providing the necessary components.

* Weekend warriors should strongly consider a more balanced approach to exercise. Failing that, consider supplementation.

* For extremely demanding races (such as an ultradistance event), or when adapting to high altitude, consider taking a vitamin E supplement (100 to 200 IU, approximately 10 times the RDA) per day for several weeks up to and following the race.

* Look for upcoming FDA recommendations, but be wary of advertising and media hype.

* Do not oversupplement.

Sean Barker, C.P.T.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Burning Fat - Part 3 of 6


Writing a series of lessons on “sure things” for fat loss is not as easy as you’d think. There are so many opinions about the “right way” to eat for getting leaner, that getting all the experts to agree on anything occurs about as often as Haley’s comet flies by. Even the subject of dietary fat is hugely controversial. Just try mentioning “saturated fat is bad for you” in a nutrition forum these days and you’ll see exactly what I mean. But when it comes to one particular type of fat, the vote is almost unanimous:

Omega-3 fatty acids are sure things for your health. Even better: Scientists are beginning to uncover the important roles they play in the fat burning process as well.

Omega-3 fatty acids are labeled “essential” because your body can’t manufacture them, so you must get them from the food you eat (much like certain amino acids, vitamins and minerals).

Omega-3 fatty acids can be obtained from plant or animal sources.

The richest animal source of omega-3 is fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, albacore tuna, rainbow trout, sardines or herring.

The fat in fish contains two important long-chain polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids: eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These appear to be the major players responsible for the biological activity in fish oil that produces the long list of benefits.

The richest plant sources of omega-3 fats are seed oils, flaxseed in particular. Flaxseed contains alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) which your body can convert into DHA and EPA.

The list of potential health benefits from eating these “good fats” is so long, that if you couldn’t look up the scientific references to confirm them for yourself, you would swear I was just pulling your leg.

Peer-reviewed research has been published on the use of fish oil and omega-3 fats for the treatment, management or prevention of all of the following:

Cardiovascular disease, atherosclerosis, hyperlipidemia, high blood pressure, cardiac arrhythmias, inflammatory diseases, joint pain, arthritis, osteoporosis, kidney disease, prostate cancer, colon cancer, breast cancer, skin cancer, crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, Alzheimer’s, asthma, cystic fibrosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, sickle cell anemia, glaucoma, lupus, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, cirrhosis, epilepsy, chronic fatigue syndrome, menstrual symptoms, psoriasis, diabetes, insulin resistance, migraines, response to stress, bipolar disorder, depression, psychological disorders, and metabolic syndrome.

Although it should not be implied that fish oil or omega-3 fats can cure or heal all these conditions, there’s no doubt that omega 3 fats are vital to our health and may have many potential health benefits.

Here’s why I also suggest that omega-3 fats should be added to the list of “sure things for fat loss”:

At least a half a dozen human studies and more than two dozen animal studies suggest that the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish may help you burn more fat or at the very least that they play an important role in the fat burning process, or that a deficiency could inhibit fat burning.

Some studies found that omega 3 fats may function as fuel partitioners and increase fat oxidation. This means that omega-3’s shift glucose toward glycogen storage and direct fatty acids away from body fat formation and toward fatty acid oxidation.

Omega-3 fatty acids also enhance the expression of the Uncoupling protein 3 (UCP3) gene in skeletal muscle. Scientists say that this may indirectly increase energy expenditure by dissipating calories as heat.

Other potential mechanisms include increased sensitivity to the “anti starvation hormone” leptin, decreased insulin, reduced fat cell proliferation and improved cell membrane fluidity.

It’s an exciting area of research and a highly publicized one as well.

If you pay attention to the news or read any fitness or nutrition literature, you probably already knew about the benefits of omega-3 fats - it’s no secret anymore.

What’s surprising is the fact that most people are still deficient in omega-3 fats, according to the latest statistics.

As with that other “super food” - vegetables - most people seem to know that they “should” be eating more healthy fats, but they still don’t do it.

This gap between knowing what to do and actually doing it is a real problem, when it’s so easy to take advantage of the benefits of this incredible “power nutrient.”

Here are 7 tips that can accommodate both vegetarians and fish eaters alike:

1) Eat fatty fish at least twice per week and even daily if practical and economical for you. If not, you could supplement with fish oil (1.5-3 grams of combined DHA/EPA daily)

2) Omega 6 fatty acids are also essential, but most people have an unbalanced omega 3 to omega 6 ratio. This can be remedied by increasing the omega 3 consumption and or reducing the omega 6 consumption (by decreasing intake of processed foods, refined grains, and supermarket cooking oils, with the exception of extra virgin olive oil)

3) Grind up flaxseeds and sprinkle them on salads or add them to oatmeal, protein shakes or morning cereals. Alternately, supplement with flaxseed oil; 1 tbsp is equivalent to 3 tbsp flaxseeds (use as a supplement; Not for cooking)

4) Snack on walnuts, which contain modest amounts of omega 3 fats (other types of nuts and seeds may also contain significant amounts of omega 3 fats)

5) Increase your consumption of leafy greens which contain small amounts of omega 3 fats.

6) If you eat red meat, try game meats or grass fed beef or bison. They don’t contain as much omega-3 as marine sources, but they are higher in omega-3 and have a better omega-3 to omega-6 ratio than conventionally raised and fed beef.

7) Try omega-3 fortified eggs instead of regular eggs.

See how easy it is to get more omega-3?

With all the health benefits stacked on top of the potential fat loss benefits, you simply can’t go wrong by making this one change to your diet program - eat more omega 3… it’s a sure thing!

* Always consult your physician before taking any supplements or making any changes to your diet program. In some individuals, there may be contraindications to increasing omega-3 intake. Overdoses of any substances can be harmful.

About the Author:

Tom Venuto is a natural bodybuilder, certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) and a certified personal trainer (CPT). Tom is the author of "Burn the Fat, Feed The Muscle,” which teaches you how to get lean without drugs or supplements using methods of the world's best bodybuilders and fitness models. Learn how to get rid of stubborn fat and increase your metabolism by visiting:

Use the form in the upper right at to get on the mailing list to ensure you receive all parts of this 6 part mini-course.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Does Hoodia Really Work?

Hoodia - Does Hoodia Really Work For Fat Loss?
By Vince DelMonte

If you are anxious to get fat loss going, you've likely looked into the diet supplement, hoodia. Hoodia gordonii is a plant that was used in South African many years ago by hunters who would need to go for long durations of time without food and grows very slowly in harsh conditions and needs to be harvested for four to five years before it's ready.

But how well does Hoodia really work for fat loss? Many people turn to hoodia thinking it is the answer to all their prayers. Never hungry? Sounds like a dietary dream. After all, following a diet should be easy if you never have any feelings of hunger, shouldn't it?

Unfortunately, it isn't so simple.

First off, if you are a trying to get a lean, sexy midsection, not eating is the last thing you want to be doing. Sure, you definitely will need to eat less in order to lose body fat, but if you aren't eating enough, you'll actually just lose muscle rather than body fat. Since muscle tissue is your calorie burning engine, destroying it would be counterproductive to getting the results you want.

Who wants a slower metabolism at the end of the day? That'll just make further fat loss next to impossible.

If hoodia is affecting your natural hunger signals, it will be hard to get in the foods that you do need - the foods that will work with your body to lose the body fat while still keeping muscle tissue intact.

Secondly, you must understand that hoodia is not a thoroughly tested product and cannot be deemed safe. If you take enough of it, it can actually damage your metabolism, causing a variety of thyroid issues that will be stuck with you into the future. While fat loss and getting abs is important, you must do it a healthy way so that you don't do anything disrupting to your health.

Finally, hoodia diet pills are by no means a proper method to losing abdominal fat. In order to lose abdominal fat, you're going to have to find a method that will be sustainable over the long term. If you think that you're just going to skip eating for the years to come, you are very mistaken. You will not get the proper nutrients you need to sustain life, therefore, to put it bluntly, using hoodia as a means to help you maintain fat loss could very well put you in the hospital with severe malnutrition.

What you need is a diet that supplies all the nutrients you need, while still being affective with stomach fat loss. Then, you'll also need to make sure this diet is something you can work into your lifestyle so that your abs aren't going to be just covered up by more body fat again once you move off the diet.

The more time you waste chasing after gimmicky supplements that only hurt you in the long run, the more time you spend without the results you are after.

About the Author:

Vince DelMonte is the author of Your Six Pack Quest found at

He specializes in helping decipher the truths and myths about all the supplements such as hoodia that are marketed for helping you achieve a .

© 2006-2008, Your Six Pack Quest All rights in all media reserved. You may reprint this article so long as the article and author bio are reprinted intake and all links are made live. This article may never be sold individually or as part of a package

Friday, June 20, 2008

The Best Ab Exercises

Ab Exercises - The Best Ab Exercises
By Vince DelMonte

When it comes to getting a solid six pack, doing the right ab exercises is crucial. You can spend hours doing needless sit-ups that aren't really going to have all that much benefit, much to your disappointment. Taking the time to choose smart ab exercises will save you not only gym time, but a great deal of frustration as well. In this article we will discuss the best lower ab exercises and the as well.

The best movements for the abdominal muscles are going to be ones that reduce your overall stability. The reason for this is because this will require all your muscle tissues, even the ones deep within the core, to contract in order to maintain balance. When you perform regular sit-ups, for example, they are really only going to target the more superficial muscles; one that will still help, but not get you near the results you could be seeing.

So what ab exercises are ones that reduce your balance?

Basically, anything done on an unstable surface is going to get the job done. This would include movements such as walking across a balance beam, performing one leg squats, one arm shoulder presses, or bent over dumbbell rows standing on one leg and of course, utilizing an exercise ball for any laying abdominal movement you perform. Working on a BOSU ball and stability ball ab exercises are also excellent options. As long as you have a set of free weights and stability ball then these would qualify as your best home ab exercises as well.

By far the most effective lower ab exercises are hanging leg raises while you use your lower abs to rotate your pelvis which is the secret to performing this effectively. Lying leg raises, lying leg raises on a 45 degree incline and cable crunches are also rock hard ab exercises.

Another area you might want to venture into with your ab exercises are those that utilize heavy weights.

While this will not necessarily get you 'cut' so that all your individual muscles are showing - that takes having low levels of body fat, what weighted movements will do is help further build the muscle tissue and make your abs "pop".

The more muscle mass you have, the faster your metabolic rate will then be, so in an indirect way, that could in fact help you burn off excess body fat.

Furthermore, doing weighted movements will also increase your strength greatly, reducing the risk of injuries from any other type of exercise you may attempt. Weighted ball crunches with a stability ball on your chest is my favorite home ab exercises.

When choosing when to perform your ab exercises, if you are looking for performance, do them on a separate day from all your other work. Just like any muscle group, you want to be fresh when you do them.

If, on the other hand, you are more just doing them to help build some strength, but more to round out your exercise program, then you should be doing them at the end of your workout session. This will prevent them from fatiguing early, because they are going to be predominately used in all the other lifts you perform (heavy squats for example).

In many cases this rule can be bent though. For example, if a client comes to me and their abs are the weakest muscle group then performing them at the end of the workout makes no sense because they will be pre fatigued from the workout and you will not be able to train them as intensely so prioritizing your abs at the start of the workout can become the exception in this case.

So, next time you are creating your workout and are picking out ab exercises, keep these points in mind. Having good dedication to performing these exercises on a regular basis and then following a clean diet based around raw vegetables and proteins are the two main components to developing that six-pack you're hoping for.

About the Author:

Vince DelMonte is the author of Your Six Pack Quest found at

He specializes in helping chubby guys and gals get without gimmicks, supplements or dieting.

© 2006-2008, Your Six Pack Quest All rights in all media reserved. You may reprint this article so long as the article and author bio are reprinted intake and all links are made live. This article may never be sold individually or as part of a package

Thursday, June 19, 2008

6 Pack Abs

6 Pack Abs - The Secret To 6 Pack Abs
By Vince DelMonte

Everywhere you turn, someone's promising the next secret to getting 6 pack abs. Some of these so called 'secrets' have some degree of accuracy, while others, not so much. Deciphering which are the best methods to getting 6 pack abs is going to be critical to your having success with this goal.

The biggest area you need to focus on when trying to obtain 6 pack abs is going to be on your diet. Like it or not, the old saying that 'abs are made in the kitchen', is probably one of the most truthful statements in the fitness industry. If your diet isn't in line, your stomach is going to show it.

So, what should you be doing with your diet?

First, ensure you are getting enough protein. Not only is protein going to form the key building blocks you need to build muscle tissue, but it's also going to provide you with a better feeling of fullness than eating just carbohydrates alone would for example. Protein is more "expensive" than any other macronutrient meaning that your body will burn more calories breaking down protein compared to carbs and fats.

Next, don't be afraid of dietary fat that comes from primarily monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats such as olive oils, fish oils, a mix of nuts, natural peanut butter and avocado. While it's true that eating fat will increase your calories fast, as long as you keep it between 20-30% it can be one of the best things to get 6 pack abs fast. The important point here is that dietary fat helps keep your insulin level stable, which, when high enough can actually cause fat gain itself.

Furthermore, dietary fat will keep you feeling the fullest for the longest duration in time; longer than both protein or carbohydrates would. Interestingly, some diets high in fat can get you 6 pack abs fast because your body learn to metabolize fat for energy.

So, while you do need to watch it, be sure you are getting some in your diet.

Finally, when it comes to carbohydrate intake and getting , you want to focus most of your carbohydrate intake around the post workout period.


The biggest reason for this is because this is when your body is going to need those carbohydrates the most and will really suck them up into the muscle tissue. When you eat them at this time, it is least likely that they will turn into body fat.

Additionally, consuming carbohydrates during this period will also help to aid with muscle recovery and repair, so that means less down time from the gym for you.

If getting 6 pack abs fast is your goal than each meal should consist of 1-2 cups of raw vegetables to control insulin levels, improve absorption of your protein and flood your body with vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants.

So, if you are aiming to get 6 pack abs in the coming months, have a good hard look at your diet. That is the big secret that must not be overlooked if you are to succeed.

About the Author:

Vince DelMonte is the author of Your Six Pack Quest found at

He specializes in helping chubby guys and gals get without gimmicks, supplements or dieting.

© 2006-2008, Your Six Pack Quest All rights in all media reserved. You may reprint this article so long as the article and author bio are reprinted intake and all links are made live. This article may never be sold individually or as part of a package

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Cardio Training For Fat Loss

Cardio Training For Fat Loss - Should I Do It BEFORE or AFTER My Weight Training For Best Results?
By Nick Nilsson

Training for fat loss is not easy and proper cardio training is an important part of the process. But if you're doing your cardio at the WRONG time, you could be shooting yourself in the foot! Find out the best time to do it and why.

When it comes to fat loss, one of THE most frequently-asked questions I get is "to maximize fat loss, should I do my cardio before or after my weight training?"

I know there are times when I like to be kept in suspense…

But I'm not going to do that to you here…

Physiologically speaking, if maximum fat loss is your goal and you want to incorporate cardio into your training schedule, you're better off doing your cardio training immediately AFTER your weight training.

Here's why:

1. When you do weight training first, you have more energy and strength for that weight training.
I know cardio junkies won't want to hear this, but intense, QUALITY weight training is actually MORE effective for fat loss than cardio training. Why the emphasis on quality? Well, if you go to the gym and just flail around with light weights for 30 minutes, it's not really going to be very effective for fat loss.

However, if you really put some effort into it and train hard, the metabolic boost you get from weight training (in terms of not only calories burned while doing it but the increase in metabolism after AND the increase in muscle mass you get from weight training) is greater than the boost you get from cardio training. And, when compared to slow, long-duration cardio training, that boost is MUCH greater.

So by performing your weight training FIRST, while you're fresh, you're going to have more energy to put into it and you're going to be stronger. This will increase metabolic and muscle mass stimulation and therefore overall fat loss. It's a win-win situation!

That's not to say you can't do a couple of minutes of cardio as a general warm-up before starting into the weights...just don't do an entire cardio session before weight training. Always keep in mind that the weight training is the REAL engine behind your fat loss efforts.

And if THAT isn't enough to convince you to do cardio after weights, I've got another reason for you…

2. Performing weight training first decreases available blood sugar and puts the body in "fat burning" mode.
When you train with weights, you're performing short, intense muscle contractions. Glucose (blood sugar) is the preferred fuel for driving these intense contractions. As you go through your workout, your body gradually uses up its readily-available supply of sugars and starts mobilizing fat for energy.

Here's the key…mobilizing bodyfat for energy is a process that takes time. If you do your cardio first, your body will be initially working on that blood sugar before getting started on the bodyfat. By the time you're done with cardio and move to weights, THAT is when you're in the optimal fat-burning mode.

But the problem is, fat is NOT an efficient fuel for weight training. By doing cardio first, you use up all the "good" stuff for weight training and force your body to make do with a less powerful fuel source. Your weight training workouts will decrease in quality and your cardio efforts won't be as effective for achieving fat-burning, which is your primary goal!

So basically, you're shooting yourself in the foot TWICE!

Think of your body as a hybrid gas-electric car. This car uses gas to provide more power for acceleration and electricity to provide long-term power for maintaining speed.

Now think of blood sugar as gas and weight training as powerful acceleration. When you press the pedal (performing weight training), you're going to get much better acceleration when you're using the proper fuel (i.e. gas).

If you try and power the acceleration with electricity, you'll go forward but not nearly as quickly as if you were using gas.

The bottom line is this…perform your weight training first so you use up the "fast" energy first. Then, by the time you hit the cardio, you're ALREADY in fat-burning mode and every single second you're doing that cardio is going to be burning more fat than if you did it first.


These two reasons apply no matter if you're doing slower, long-duration cardio or high-intensity interval training (which I recommend). The key thing to keep in mind is that WEIGHT TRAINING is what's going to help you change your body FAST…cardio is a useful tool for improving your results but it's NOT what drives your fat-loss results.

And that being said, if you absolutely feel you MUST do your cardio first, I'm NOT going to tell you it's the worst thing in the world…the fact that you're doing SOMETHING trumps doing nothing ANY day of the week!

But if you're looking for maximum impact for the time and effort you're putting your training, DEFINITELY hit the weights first and cardio after.

If you're interested in more articles and information on fat-loss, interval training and programs, check out the following links:

High Intensity Interval Training

How To Lose Fat NOW - A Basic Fat-Loss Program That You Can Put To Work Today!

BASIC Nutrition - A Quick, Common-Sense Guide To What You Should Be Eating to Stay Healthy and Get Results Right Now

What Do You Mean Low-Intensity Training Isn't The Best For Fat Burning?

The Insider Secrets of Interval Training - Learn How Now!

8 Week Cardio Interval Training Blast! Get Increased Fat Loss AND Take Your Cardio Fitness To A Whole New Level

Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss

Nick Nilsson is Vice-President of the online personal training company BetterU, Inc. He has a degree in Physical Education and Psychology and has been inventing new training techniques for more than 17 years. Nick is the author of a number of bodybuilding eBooks including "Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss," "The Best Exercises You've Never Heard Of," "Gluteus to the Maximus - Build a Bigger Butt NOW!" and "The Best Abdominal Exercises You've Never Heard Of" all available at He can be contacted at

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Fat Loss via Turbulence Training

The First 100 Pound Fat Loss Turbulence Training Success Story
By: Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS

Juan Ruiz first started Turbulence Training in August of 2007 while weighing 315 pounds. He's come a long way in 9 months, and everyone at TT Members is incredibly proud of him and his accomplishments.

Juan recently became the first person to lose 100 pounds with Turbulence Training.

As Juan said in his Transformation Contest essay,

"I have tried many diets and exercise plans and nothing has really worked well for me.I was at the end of my rope, and really starting to look into bariatric surgery.

Even though it has worked wonders for my friends and family, I never wanted that surgery for myself.To have that surgery would mean that I would never know how good it felt to lose weight on my own, to find the discipline and mental fortitude to push myself and watch what I am eating.

How long will it be before I gained back that lost weight after the surgery because I never learned how to really be healthy!

In early August I found Turbulence Training, and signed up for the FREE Report - The Dark Side of Cardio. I have to admit, it peaked my interest. I was so disgusted with what I read; because it was so true.

I couldn't tell you how many hours I have wasted doing just cardio and staying away from weights just to watch my body stay the exact same.I knew that I needed to get Turbulence Training. I knew that TT was going to change my life forever, I wasn't wrong.

I also knew though that any workout program I used wouldn't be successful if I didn't change my eating habits. I started eating a low carb regimen, eating only complex carbs, and allowing myself a cheat meal once a month.

I started TT in August 2007, since then I have lost a total of 86lbs (it is now March 3rd, 2008).

I have never looked better in my life, I have never felt better in my life. For the first time in my life I have signed up for my first fitness contest. Never did anyone, let alone myself think that I, of all people would be signing up for a fitness contest.

Yet here I am, I have gone through 84 days of this contest. During this contest I have had quite a few challenges. A month long plateau, final exams, and a bum shoulder, just to name a few, but I have also met some of the greatest people that are in this contest trying to do the same thing I am doing (trying to live a healthier lifestyle). They have been some of the most understanding, caring, and motivational people I could have ever had the pleasure to meet.

I started this contest using the Original TT workout, after that I went into TT 2k3, and finished this contest with the 4 week Intermediate Body Weight program. In this contest I have had gains and losses; I have learned the benefits of fasting and how to fast properly. I have learned how to truly eat balanced meals and how to keep pushing myself when I have nothing else left to give.

I have also learned how to cope with injuries, and how to not let them get the best of you. I have been able to do most of this mainly because of the great people involved in this fitness contest. Their inspiring words have kept me honest to myself, and have helped me keep my head up when I just wanted to hang it down in defeat. I have learned that you may lose a battle here and there, but the war is far from over.

I have lost 3 inches from my chest, 4 inches from my gut, 3 inches from my waist, 3/4 inches from my biceps, 1/4 of an inch from my thighs, and 25lbs since starting this 12-week transformation contest. I am far from being done, and even when I finally hit my goal weight, my journey will not end there. My journey will last me a lifetime, everyday will be another day to strive for a healthier, more active me.

When I think about living this way for a life time, it doesn't overwhelm me, I am grateful that my obesity didn't cripple my body, that I still have a chance to reverse the side effects, and that I am healthy enough to go to the gym and use my body to it's full potential.

Granted to win a prize in this contest would be sweet, but whether I win a prize in this contest or not, it doesn't matter I already feel like a winner.

Throughout this contest I have learned so many valuable lessons, and I have met some of the most motivational people one could meet. I am a lot healthier today than I was when I started this contest, and I have joined my first fitness contest ever; and I have stuck with it through the end."

But Juan is not done. He's still going in the 2nd Turbulence Training Transformation Contest, and kicking butt, all while going to school and raising his little boy.

If he can do it, so can you.

Let me know how I can help,

Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS
Author, Turbulence Training

PS - If you don't know where to start, just take it one day at a time.

And always try to improve over what you did yesterday. If you need beginner workouts, you can start with the Introductory Turbulence Training Workout. If you are already working out, you can start with the Intermediate Turbulence Training Workout.

Get all those workouts in the TT for Fat Loss manual here:

About the Author

Craig Ballantyne is a Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist and writes for Men's Health, Men's Fitness, Maximum Fitness, Muscle and Fitness Hers, and Oxygen magazines. His trademarked Turbulence Training fat loss workouts have been featured multiple times in Men’s Fitness and Maximum Fitness magazines, and have helped thousands of men and women around the world lose fat, gain muscle, and get lean in less than 45 minutes three times per week. For more information on the Turbulence Training workouts that will help you burn fat without long, slow cardio sessions or fancy equipment, visit

Read more articles at

Monday, June 09, 2008

Burning Fat - Part 2 of 6

6 "Sure Things" For Burning Fat: Part 2


It seems unthinkable that there would be any question about the value of exercise in weight control, but believe it or not, this is the topic of a heated debate.

There's no debate about the need for a calorie deficit. What experts do argue about is whether you should create a calorie deficit by eating less, exercising more, or a combination of both.

A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism in early 2007 had fitness professionals up in arms when it said, "Diet and exercise take off the pounds equally."

The study found no difference in pounds lost between one group that created a deficit with exercise and another group which created an equal deficit with food reduction and no exercise.

Other studies produced the opposite result - distinct weight loss benefits were achieved by adding exercise to caloric restriction. Differences in study design, including the type of exercise, may have influenced these conflicting results.

But even if you take the weight off with severe caloric restriction (starvation diets) and no exercise, the real question is: What happens next? That is the question some researchers have failed to ask. Fortunately, others have, and they all came to the same very decisive conclusion:

The difference between "losers" and "maintainers" is exercise.

Most people in our quick fix society don't seem to care about what happens in the long term. They want the weight off as fast as possible.

Ironically, it's these short term quick results that continue to be advertised, rewarded and remembered. What a different story would be told if we did some follow up case studies.

What if there were a three year "reunion" for these starvation diet "success stories" and the extreme makeover and rapid weight loss reality show winners, but with one catch: The "reunion" had to be a surprise (so they wouldn’t have time for another crash diet).

What do YOU think would happen? I think that you'd see confirmation of the statistics we've all heard before: Over the long term, at least 90% of dieters gain back everything they lost.

So why is it that almost everyone insists on following the herd of “losers?” Wouldn’t you like to know what the successful maintainers - the top 10% - are doing differently?

Fortunately, research has given us some answers. One study by Judy Kruger and colleagues published in the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, found major differences were seen between "losers" and "maintainers."

Successful maintainers exercised 30 minutes or more daily, and added other physical activities such as recreation, sports, and physical work into their daily schedules. Substantially more maintainers also included weight training in their exercise regimens than did the losers.

"Reducing sedentary activities” (less TV watching, etc), was another big difference between losers and maintainers.

One group which has been the subject of much study is the National Weight Control registry (NWCR), which consists of men and women who have lost at least 30 lbs and kept it off for over a year. Many NWCR participants have kept weight off for 5 years or more.

The conclusions drawn from questionnaire-based studies of groups like the NWCR can't prove causation, but this is still a great place to look for patterns of success.

In the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers from the University of Pittsburgh published their research about the NWCR in a paper called, "A descriptive study of individuals successful at long-term maintenance of substantial weight loss."

The part where subjects were asked how they maintained their weight loss was important:

"Nearly every member of the registry reported using a combination of diet PLUS exercise to both lose weight and maintain the weight loss. This finding provides evidence that long term maintenance of weight loss is facilitated by regular physical activity."

So what does all this mean to you? Well, that depends on what stage in the game you’re currently at:

(1) If you haven't started a structured fat reduction program yet, then choose one which emphasizes the long term and not the quick fix, and which includes nutrition and exercise (not just a diet). One program that fits these criteria is Burn The Fat, feed The Muscle.

(2) If you're currently on a diet program that doesn't include exercise - then add an exercise program immediately and you will skyrocket your odds of long term success.

(3) If you've already lost weight with a combination of caloric restriction and exercise, congratulations! But keep in mind that if you want to join the successful maintainers, you have to keep it up! You may be able to cut back on the amount of exercise, but you have to keep training!

(4) If you've lost weight and you've done it with ONLY caloric restriction, you should be also congratulated, but also be warned: NOW is the time to start exercising. At this time, adding an exercise program into your lifestyle is the single most important thing you can do to maintain your ideal weight long term.

If you're overweight and not sure what you can or should do, then start with walking and build from there. Weight training + cardio training is the ideal combination, but you don't need a fancy training program to get started, you just need to increase your energy expenditure - It's all about BURNING more, not "starving" more.

Many things are debatable in nutrition and exercise science today. One thing, however, that almost EVERY expert and researcher now agrees on is that to keep the unwanted pounds off and to maintain your perfect weight for life, exercise is a SURE THING!

About the Author:

Tom Venuto is a natural bodybuilder, certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) and a certified personal trainer (CPT). Tom is the author of "Burn the Fat, Feed The Muscle,” which teaches you how to get lean without drugs or supplements using methods of the world's best bodybuilders and fitness models. Learn how to get rid of stubborn fat and increase your metabolism by visiting:


Use the form in the upper right at to get on the mailing list to ensure you receive all parts of this 6 part mini-course.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Women's Greatest Health Fear

Women's greatest health fear is different from the facts.?

When the National council of aging surveyed women age 45-64 about the disease they fear most , 61% of women cited cancer, mainly Breast Cancer. Only 9% cited heart disease. When in fact more women die of heart disease than Breast Cancer every year!

Get Up and Get Busy

Honor, respect and treat with dignity and care. It is the temple that houses your soul. Victoria Johnson

If you had a precious piece of valuable sculpted art, say 1 million dollars, would you leave it lying around unprotected? If the appraiser said to your you have to keep it in a safe clean environment,

Exercise is one of the most valuable life enhancing activities you can engage in. It is natural for us to be physically fit. By habit, we teach ourselves to be complacent and inactive. Our bodies are continuous streams of energy and nutrients. It is ever-changing, just like our thoughts, emotions and feelings. Our bodies are not designed to spend several hours motionless and stagnant.

Exercise improves your overall health, helps you control your weight, relieves stress, reduces your chance of a heart attack. Exercise is a necessity not an accessory when you have a few extra minutes. You deserve to live a high quality live filled with energy, vigor, vitality love, enthusiasm and peace.

In a recent magazine survey, it was discovered that there are 5 major reasons why people DON'T workout. I’ll refer to them as "Health Robbers" . I’ll bet if you aren't working out the recommended 5 times per week, you may be losing health to one of these pesky ?Health Robbers?

1. Lack of Motivation
Get yourself inspired by setting some great and powerful goals. Start off by setting short range attainable goals. An example would be: Walk fifteen minutes every day. Drop 5 pounds
before you go on vacation, Once you've accomplished those gradually make more long term goals and

Establish new rituals- use pyruvate, you will see results much more quickly. It is shown that you will stick with new activities when you see immediate results.

2. Lack of Time - Prioritize your days, activities, your life. You can't put off health. Every day you don't work on your health is a day you are allowing the degenerative effects of living affect your longevity.

Here are some quick tips to find 30 minutes per day to invest in your heart, lungs, liver, muscular system, etc.
• Give up 30 minutes of television
• Give up 30 minutes of non effective tasks
• Let the laundry sit in the basket for 30 more minutes
• Set your alarm and get up 30 minutes earlier
• Invest 30 minutes during your lunch hour

Get organized and stop wasting time looking for things you can't remember where you put them. Work on your health and fitness now, you will reap the benefits for years to come.

3. Bored- Research shows that music is one of the most powerful stimulants to the body. It can change your mood, enhance your energy, improve your rhythm and coordination. Add music to your workouts, walking, treadmill, cycling,.

Catch up on reading , get your favorite book on tape and listen to it while you exercise. Workout with a friend. Many of my video friends will buy a video and workout out together at each other homes, during lunch time.

Join a fitness class..step, body sculpting, jazz dance, kickboxing, karate. Join a walking group, if there's not one at work, start one. Organize it set up a meeting time and go for it.

Check out the videos - special? Energetic titles, fun high energy, working out with a group

4. Too Self Conscious. Just know that when you are in a workout situation, you are doing something for yourself. It doesn't matter what anyone else thinks. I know because I was teaching aerobics at 170+ pounds. At first I felt like everyone was judging me. You know what, I was right. People that judge others will find any reason to judge. They will never change, therefore you must change how you think about it. Get out there and hold you head high. You are taking a step towards becoming healthy, strong and fit. They won't be there to see it, so don't let them stop you.

If you want to get started right away while you are reprogramming your thinking. Get one of my videos today and close those drapes and get to work. I designed my videos in such a way that I become your personal trainer. I teach you how to start at a level that is safe. I guide you through the workout with positive motivation, unlimited energy, clear directions and pure fun. There are so many great titles, choose a couple and start shaping up today.

5. Too Tired - go to bed earlier , turn off the TV set, change your diet, drink less caffeine, give up sugar ... Get more ENERGY with My Quick Start Unlimited Energy Program!

Okay, now it's time to get up and get busy. I know that you will do great and powerful things when you have energy, enthusiasm and strength. Motion stimulates emotion and Health equals Happiness! Start moving quicker, smile, laugh all the time, walk as much as you can. Spring is in the air, renew your spirit today!

Have an awesome week!

Victoria Johnson is the nation's premier Health & Fitness and Wealth & Spirit "activist." Victoria is the owner and president of Victoria Johnson Intl., a personal training, consulting, marketing and management company. She is not only a fitness guru, she’s a born and bred entrepreneur. She believes everyone should be healthy and prosperous. She has produced and starred in over 24 award-winning exercise and dance fitness DVD’s and videos, produced and starred in her own television show entitled "Victoria's Body Shoppe" and most recently authored her third book, Body Revival, Lose Weight, Feel Great and Pump Up Your Faith!

Quick Start Energy Program

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Build Muscle and Burn Fat

Jon Benson wrote a great article on how to gain muscle and lose bodyfat at the same time.

I know...I didn't think it was possible myself. But it is.

Jon tells you how here --

I trust you'll find this article as eye-opening as I did.


Art Breshears

Burning Fat - Part 1 of 6

6 'Sure Things' For Burning Fat


There are not many “sure things” in life. Almost every worthwhile endeavor comes with a certain degree of risk and no assurance of the outcome. In the case of chiseling your body into a lean machine, there’s always some trial, error and experimentation necessary, especially because each person’s genetics, body type and physiology are so unique. There can be great value in the trial and error process as a learning experience, but what if you could skip the unnecessary trial and error by placing your bets on “sure things” instead of guessing or gambling?

That would be great wouldn’t it? Unfortunately, in the health and fitness field, there appear to be fewer “sure things” than anywhere else!

Fitness experts are known for having opinions and theories that range from one extreme to another. Many competing fat loss programs represent polar opposites: high carb vs low carb being the most common example.

Scientists often end their papers with, “more research is needed” and they rarely stick their necks out and take a strong stand, unless the evidence is air-tight and rock-solid.

And then there are some questions where the answers are just not known yet.

But amidst all the chaos, confusion and conflicting advice of the nutrition and fitness world, there are a small handful of “SURE THINGS” and you’re about to learn them all…

These are things that most of the researchers and most of the fitness and dietetic professionals agree on.

Of course, we will never get 100% consensus on exercise or nutrition, because science is continuously unfolding and one decade’s “sure thing” has been known to become the next decades “myth busted.” Should we close our minds and accept our current “sure things” as final, we may be closing our minds to future discoveries and potential for advancement.

Even if we get a nearly unanimous vote, there’s almost always a lone dissenter out there somewhere, and people sometimes believe weird things, even in the face of science. People also often believe in their dietary approaches NOT for scientific reasons, but for environmental, spiritual or humanitarian reasons.

Nevertheless, if we use science as our guide, then the weight of the current evidence is heavy enough that we can say these are as close to SURE THINGS as we can get, and that you can’t go wrong by applying these principles in your own fat loss program immediately…


One thing that virtually the entire scientific community agrees on is that the law of energy balance is always with us. In order to lose body fat, you must burn more calories than you consume.

This is known as having a “caloric deficit.”

Although there are a few people who still claim that “calories don’t count,” I will be as bold as to say that those people are mistaken.

PLEASE NOTE CAREFULLY: There is a huge difference between saying “you don’t have to count calories” and “calories don’t count.”

Some diet programs are “ad libitum” in nature. This means they do not advise calorie counting; they simply tell you what to eat and what not to eat. You eat as you please, as long as you follow the food restrictions provided.

What they usually don’t tell you is that the eating restrictions are the equivalent of having built-in automatic calorie control. These programs do not refute the law of energy balance, they confirm it.

When a diet program claims, “Eat as much as you want and still lose weight”, you are hearing a Big Fat Lie. Incidentally, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) says it is illegal to make this claim in advertisements and they can sue you if you do.

Many people still deny the law of calorie balance in the face of scientific evidence.

For example, some of the old school low-carbers are notorious for disputing the calorie balance equation, in favor of believing in some type of “metabolic advantage” that comes from low carbs. I.e., “eat X grams of carbs or less, and you can eat as much as you want.”

I assure you, if you have a caloric maintenance level of 2000 calories a day and you eat 3000 calories a day of protein and fat (no carbs) you WILL gain fat!

Perhaps it will be harder to consume that many calories in the form of protein and fat as compared to sugar and protein and fat, but if you manage to pull off that gastronomic feat, you will gain weight nonetheless (and low carb writers might be surprised at how much food some people can shovel down their throats - even sans carbs!)

Fortunately, the low carb community today has some intelligent voices speaking out, saying that low carb does not mean “unlimited calories” and that low carb diets also require a caloric deficit; they may simply make it easier to achieve that deficit, automatically without counting calories.

While I am very much in favor of doing things “by the numbers,” programs that tend to make you “automatically” eat less without counting calories are not a bad thing at all (the spontaneous reduction in caloric intake often occurs due to an appetite-suppressive effect of certain diets, and or due to the selection of low calorie-density foods which are highly satiating).

That said, no combination of foods, elimination of foods, or arrangement of macronutrients will override the law of calorie balance. To lose fat, you have to eat less than you burn, period.

You have to be diligent about maintaining your deficit too, because:

(1) Energy balance is dynamic, and what is a deficit for you today, may not be a significant deficit six months from now

(2) If your maintenance calories are 2000, and your intake is 1500 one day (a deficit) and 2500 the next (a surplus), you have NOT achieved a caloric deficit over the two day period - you are in energy balance. Conveniently, most people seem to have some kind of selective “amnesia” and they only remember the days they were in a deficit! Consistency over time is the key!

The sooner you accept that the cornerstone of fat loss is a caloric deficit, the sooner you’ll be able to think clearly about your nutritional choices and the better you’ll be able to judge everything you ever read, see and hear about nutrition, for the rest of your life.

By the way, did you know that there are two corollaries to the law of calorie balance, which almost no one teaches?

In my Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle program, I reveal these little-known calorie corollaries (chapter 6) and I teach the exact, scientific formulas for calculating your ideal calorie intake for burning the maximum amount of fat, without losing muscle or slowing down your metabolism.

You can learn more by visiting:


About the Author:

Tom Venuto is a natural bodybuilder, certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) and a certified personal trainer (CPT). Tom is the author of "Burn the Fat, Feed The Muscle,” which teaches you how to get lean without drugs or supplements using methods of the world's best bodybuilders and fitness models. Learn how to get rid of stubborn fat and increase your metabolism by visiting:

Use the form in the upper right at to get on the mailing list to ensure you receive all parts of this 6 part mini-course.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


Craig Ballantyne from Turbulence Training has just released a new bodyweight circuit workout that you can do at the park!

This fat burning bodyweight challenge takes only 30 minutes and you will get this workout as just one of the monthly workout bonuses when you grab your copy of Turbulence Training.

PS - Don't forget, if you are still skeptical, you can try Turbulence Training for only $4.95 for 21 days. I promise you that you'll love this fast way to lose fat.

PPS - Let me know how you do in the 30-Minute Bodyweight Challenge.


There are two video's posted below. Those receiving this post by email my have to visit the blog to view them!



Weight Lifting Rules

Weight Lifting Rules For Skinny Runts
By Vince DelMonte

You wake up in the morning and look in the mirror.  Pleased with your appearance? If you more resemble the appearance of a long distance marathon runner than a world class sprinter, don’t worry, you aren't alone. You just need to start following these weight lifting rules.

There are quite a few guys who simply have trouble packing on the lean muscle mass.  Whether their hormonal environment isn't quite as favourable or genetics was just out to get them at birth, one thing is for sure and that's that they need to follow a slightly different set of weight lifting methods than those who seem to grow muscle overnight.

Luckily for you, you're taking the time to do your research about weight lifting so you won't be destined to a life where it seems like a strong wind might knock you over.

First, one of the key factors that skinny guys need to remember is that they must avoid volume work at all costs.

Rule #1:

Get in the gym and get out! That should be your motto from this day forward. Repeat it. Breathe it. Live it.  Weight lifting is a calorie expensive activity and you need all the calories you can get at this point. If you are burning it up in the gym every single day, how do you expect to grow? You won't.

You grow when you are resting and generally, the skinnier you are, the more rest you are going to need.

Now, that doesn't mean you should park it on the couch for a few days in between your workouts.  It simply means that each weight lifting should not consist of set after set after set. Followed by a rest break to talk to that hot receptionist and then back to another twenty sets.

No, you're workouts need to consist of ten-twelve or fewer sets where you are pushing yourself to the MAX. There is no room for sissy, light-weight work in your weight lifting program.

Which brings us to Rule #2:

Ditch the isolated exercises. Who needs them? You certainly don't.

If your workouts normally include bicep curls, followed by tricep kickbacks, followed by leg extensions, followed by chest flys, followed by… you get the picture, you've got to change this pronto.  Remember, you've only got so much time you are allowed to be in the gym for. Don't you want to get the biggest bang for your buck?  Likely you do, so that means focusing on compound lifts only. This includes weight lifting exercises such as squats, bench presses, deadlifts, rows and military presses.

Become friends with those exercises and you will have new muscles in the picture soon enough.  Toss the five day split program, get yourself on a good upper/lower or full body workout program and you have found the key to unleashing new muscle mass.

Now onto the next significant point. Cardio.

Rule # 3.

I know, I know, you want to be big, but you don’t want to be fat.  Let's not worry about that at this point, because you and I both know you are a long ways from fat.

Gaining fat weight is going to be more a concept of diet than anything else so as long as you are being smart in the kitchen, you don't need to perform hours of cardio to remain lean. Cardio is just going to further burn off precious calories that could have gone towards building you new muscle mass. For you, calories are a hot commodity and should not be spent on the treadmill.

If you want to keep up some cardio for general health sake, fine, but limit this to two or three twenty minute sessions per week - TOPS. And make it low to moderate intensity as well.  The only place you are to be intense is in the weight room.

This leads to rule #4.

REST! You've put in your effort at the gym, fed your body with some good food and now what? Plans to go out partying all night with your buddies? You might want to rethink that.  While you definitely want to maintain your social life while trying to gain weight - and you should - it should not come at the sacrifice of sleep.

Sleep is primetime when it comes to your body repairing itself and growing stronger so short-circuit sleep and you are short-circuiting your results. Just don't do it. Period. It's that simple.

Get ready for rule #5.

Technique.  Ever seen that guy in the gym who is hoisting so much weight on his barbell for barbell curls that it looks like he's got more momentum going on than the Gravitron at the fair? He's pretty much working every muscle in his body except his biceps. Not so beneficial.  Not only that, but give him two weeks and a hundred bucks says he's out with back pain.

You must maintain proper form throughout your weight lifting, not only to prevent injuries but also to see the muscular gains you are looking for. If you cheat form, you are only cheating yourself.  If you don't know what proper form is yet, book a session with a trainer or find yourself a spotter who can help you.

And now, bonus rule #6

Find a mentor.  You want someone who's been there, done that. They used to be a skinny bastard just like you and they've managed to overcome the curse and now tip the scales and dominate the weight room.  This guy will do wonders for your motivational levels. Don't feel like lifting? Have a good look at his body.  You'll want to pick that weight up after that. Furthermore, he can let you in on some of his tried-and-true secrets that just might be key for you as well.

So to sum up your new approach to your weight lifting sessions - get in, train hard and with proper technique, get out, eat and rest. Repeat this process over a few months without getting distracted or becoming too much of a party animal and you will make this the year you change your dreaded skinny image. 


About the Author:

Vince DelMonte is the author of No Nonsense Muscle Building : Skinny Guy Secrets To Insane Muscle Gain found at

He teaches skinny guys a new set of rules, without supplements, drugs and training less than before.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Fat Burners

Fat Burners: The Unadulterated Truth
By Tom Venuto, NSCA-CPT, CSCS

Fat burner supplements are advertised everywhere these days - on the Internet, in magazines and even on TV. The ads almost always feature a very lean fitness model or bodybuilder and claim that these products, usually pills, were the secret to their six pack abs and very low body fat levels. Some of these ads suggest that the only way to get as lean as the "hot bodies" you see in the ads is by taking their "miracle pills" and that proper nutrition and exercise alone is not enough.

While I won't dismiss the fact that there are ingredients in some fat "burner" products that might help a little bit, I take great displeasure in seeing misleading advertising claims as well as the misleading use of models who are often paid to endorse the product even though they may never have even used it (they're just models!)

Many “fat burner” companies have been sued by the Federal Trade Commission for false advertising, false claims and falsifying before and after photos.

The best you get is a slight thermogenic effect and possibly some slight appetite suppression. A few products might work through other mechanisms like improving thyroid, but if you forgive me the generalization, I consider the effects of all these “fat burner” products to be minutia.

In one of my previous newsletters, I said that in my opinion, 97% of your results come from nutrition and training and maybe you get an extra 3% advantage from supplements. Just so you know those numbers aren't something I just pulled out of thin air, lets take an example:

I have reviewed scientific data that EGCG, the active ingredient in green tea extract, if consumed in enough quantity, could increase thermogenesis / metabolic rate by an average of about 75 calories in 24 hours. Since ephedrine was taken off the market, green tea extract appears in many ephedra-free formulas these days. What is a typical calorie expenditure for an active male in 24 hours? lets say 2700 calories per day. 75/2700 = 2.7%.

That little extra doesn't hurt, especially when it's delivered in a healthful package such as green tea (rather than central nervous system stimulants), but it's minutia in the bigger picture. Another way to put this into perspective is to make a list of what other things would burn 75 calories (for 150 lb person:)

- walk your dog for 15 minutes
- walk for 5 minutes at normal casual pace three times a day
- 30 minutes of ironing
- bagging leaves and grass clippings for 14 minutes
- rearrange your furniture for 10 minutes
- wash your car, 15 minutes
- vacuuming for 15 minutes
- 7.2 minutes of walking up stairs (could be spread throughout the day)

Ah yes, but why move your body when you can take the pill and metabolism increases while you sit and watch TV? How about for your health? A body that is not moved, rots away. Unlike a car which only has so many miles on it and wears out from over-use, people are the only “machines” on earth that fall apart from under-use.

Here’s what any good personal trainer will always tell you: No amount of calorie restriction or pill-popping will ever give you FITNESS. It will never give you STRENGTH. it will never get you MUSCULARITY. It will never give you FUNCTIONALITY. At best it will help you reduce body mass slightly.

On one hand, I’m tempted to say that everything counts and that yes, 75 calories here and 75 calories there, it ALL adds up, because it does. After you’re exercising regularly and all your fundamentals are in place, details and little things do matter.

I’m simply asking you to put the benefits of any fat burners in proper perspective and realize that (1) there is no “need” for taking them and (2) the claims made in the ads are often erroneous or exaggerated.

My advice on fat burners:
1. NEVER buy a fat burner unless you get independent verification of the claims made for the product.

How do you KNOW they really work? Are you SERIOUSLY going to take the advertisers word for it? Are you SERIOUSLY going to take someone else’s testimonial as fact? Get verification for yourself by going to the pub med data base and looking for the primary research.
2. Put it in perspective

With those products that work, such as those providing a small thermogenic effect, put that in perspective as compared to how easily you could burn that many calories with even light exercise like walking or housework. Keep in mind the additional fitness and strength benefits you will obtain from exercise as opposed to doing nothing and popping a pill.
3. See if there are any side effects or health warnings.

With all supplements and especially with prohormones or stronger thermogenics like the ephedrine and caffeine stack, (if you still have access to them), understand the risk to benefit ratio, and be certain you know the dangers and contraindications.
4. Read the label and see if the product contains enough active ingredient to even work.

A classic scam is when a “fat burner” advertisement quotes research that a certain ingredient boosts metabolism, which might be true. What they may not tell you is that all the research with positive results used a large dosage of the ingredient, which might not be cheap. So the supplement company includes a “pinch” or “light dusting” of that ingredient just so they can say it’s in the bottle, even though it's nothing more than “label decoration.” Then they have the audacity to invoke the research studies in their advertisements when the amount of the ingredient in their product is no where near what was used in the research!
5. Proprietary blend scam.

Some companies don't let you see how much ingredient is in the product formula, because it contains multiple ingredients and they say their formula is a “trade secret” aka “proprietary”, so they list what is in the product but not how much. Well, if you don’t know how much is in there then how are you supposed to know whether it contains the proper dosage? (answer: you don't!)

6. Make sure there is human research, not just rodent research.

In many cases, advertisements cite studies on rats and mice as “proof” under the assumption that the product will produce the same results in humans. Animal research is an important part of the scientific method, as it is often used to help find areas of research where human study should be pursued, or in the other direction, to trace back the mechanism that makes something work. However, for obesity research in particular, a positive finding in rats does not mean the same thing will happen in humans.
7. Look for more than one human study.

Consider trying a supplement after it has human research that has been replicated by different research groups which are not industry-sponsored. My policy is that I will usually only give a “buy” rating to a supplement when a product has an initial well-designed human controlled trial published and then similar research has been replicated by another research group that is not supplement-industry funded.
Actually, I think it’s a good thing that nutrition and supplement companies fund and sponsor some of the research. They should. They should not only back up their claims with published clinical trials, they should share some of the cost of this expensive research.

However, a basic principle of the scientific method is replication. Other researchers should be able to duplicate the findings. Therefore, while the funding source does not necessarily prove bias, if there is only one study available on a supplement and it is company or industry sponsored, I usually take it with a grain of salt and put an asterisk next to it while I wait for confirmation from another study. (You might be surprised at how infrequently this type of confirmation occurs).
Do you really need “more” than nutrition and exercise?

Now, when you weigh the fact that even the products with research backing them only help a little, with the fact that many of the ads lie to you about research, exaggerate claims and hide vital information about ingredients, and with the fact that you can do a few more minutes of exercise per day and get the same results for free, how enthusiastic are you about fat burners? Yeah, that’s why I’m not real excited about them either and based on the fact that I use no drugs and no “fat burner” supplements and I compete in bodybuilding - very successfully - I’d say that the assertion, “it takes more than nutrition and exercise to get six pack abs” is patently false.

Train hard and expect success,

Tom Venuto

About the Author:

Tom Venuto is a natural bodybuilder, certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) and a certified personal trainer (CPT). Tom is the author of "Burn the Fat, Feed The Muscle,” which teaches you how to get lean without drugs or supplements using methods of the world's best bodybuilders and fitness models. Learn how to get rid of stubborn fat and increase your metabolism by visiting: