We’re Thinking About Fitness (and we want you to think about it, too).
Many years ago when we first started training in the gym, there were few supplements on the market. You went into a health food store where the usual hot topic of conversation was either macrobiotics or raw veggies and asked some hebephrenic leftover hippy at the counter who looked like he’d been hiding from the sun for the last few years where the Blair protein powder and liver tablets were. Blair protein tasted like sawdust and made you fart. Those liver tablets from a bygone era probably wouldn’t do very well in today’s market due to mad cow prion concerns.
But it was relatively easy to make a choice between products long ago because basically, there wasn’t much choice going around.
Things are so very much different today, the question is: ‘what to choose, what products are really worth it’?
Here’s Our Opinion:
(Note* there is no reason these suggestions should not apply equally to men and women-of course we’re different, just not that different.)
1. BCAAs: BCAA is code for Branched Chain Amino Acids. The branched chain amino acids are Leucine, valine and isoleucine. Branched chain amino acids are an important supplement for trainers because they aid in workout recovery, building muscular strength & stimulate muscle growth after intense workouts. Use a brand formulation that gives you a 3:1:1 ratio with at least 3g of Leucine per serving. Particularly useful when on a calorie or carbohydrate restricted diet.
2. CLA: Conjugated linoleic acid. Like many nutrients, CLA can be acquired through the right choice of high quality foodstuffs in your menu; but supplementing with CLA is hassle-free, quick & convenient. This is an important supplement for most bodybuilders because it helps with the reduction of body fat while assisting in muscle tissue repair. It is one of the safest and most useful non-stimulatory fat-mobilisers available. Unlike stimulatory thermogenic fat burners, it won’t keep you up at night if you take it late in the day. Dosage range about 4g daily.
3. CREATINE: is one of the most popular bodybuilding supplements available today with lots of science to back it up. It has been an impeccable safety record, providing users with more energy to lift heavier, be stronger, lift longer and recover faster.Brought to the popular market in the 1990’s (we remember back when it was £1/gram. These days you can get 250g of good quality monohydrate product for less than £10).It might even help your brain. It’s not expensive. There is really no reason that you shouldn’t be using this supplement.
- Use Pure Creatine, as either creatine monohydrate (the water soluble form), micronized creatine (the water soluble form broken down to very small bits), or ceatine ethyl ester (the fat soluble form). Dosage Range: CMono 5g-20g daily; CEE 4g-8g daily.
4. GLUCOSAMINE: Glucosamine is derived from natural sources and helps to improve the body’s flexibility, range of motion and can be used by damaged connective tissue for repair. This supplement is available in capsule, powder & liquid form. Dosage Range 1.5-4g. daily.
5. GLUTAMINE: Glutamine is one of the 20 essential amino acids. The body has the capacity to supply limited amounts of glutamine, but with intense workouts glutamine can also become depleted. Glutamine supplements are superb for assisting in the restoration of muscle tissue and facilitating muscle tissue growth through a variety of pathways including stimulating growth hormone release. Dosage range depends on your goal: taken exclusive of other amino acids for Growth Hormone stimulation 2-2.5g. Dosage taken with other amino acids 5-10g for storage replenishment and muscular recuperation.
6. OMEGA FATTY ACIDS: The use of Omega Fatty Acids is vital when undergoing any building regimen. Not only do omega fatty acids assist in the rebuilding of healthy muscle tissue, improving cholesterol profiles, lubricating painful joints, diminishing delayed onset muscle soreness and helping decrease an individual’s body fat percentage, they are also beneficial for increasing cardiovascular health. Omega Fatty Acids exercise beneficial effects on mood and provide the building blocks for brain structure and function. What can’t they do? These little guys are powerhouses of nutritional value, very useful little substances.
Note about Omegas and Fish Oil Supplements. There are fish and non-fish sources of OFAs. Make sure that whatever you decide to use is fresh and in date. Oils can quite easily go rancid if kept under the wrong conditions. Also, make sure that the supplements you choose have reasonable levels of EPA and DHA associated with them. Dosage Range will vary depending on how much fish you eat and the EPA/DHA content of the product that you are using. Average is about 3-6g daily.
7. PROTEIN: Protein is just such a ubiquitous Old School supplement! A staple for every serious trainer out there or, at least should be. However, the protein available today is not the lactose-laden cr*p of yesteryear. New technology applied to the processing of modern protein supplements is very New School and is constantly evolving. Protein supplementation are one of the small group foodstuffs that has actually benefitted from modern food processing technologies.
There are seven different types of protein available in today’s marketplace: casein, egg albumin, milk protein isolate, hydrolysate protein, soy, whey concentrate and whey isolate. Casein protein works more slowly than other types of protein. It is a great supplement to take in the evening time, right before bed to help repair broken down muscle tissue. Egg albumin is just the egg whites and no yolk. It is a pure protein and wonderful for promoting lean, healthy muscle tissue. Milk protein isolate is a combination of casein and whey. Hydrolysate protein considered one of the highest quality proteins available; it is also one of the most expensive protein supplements available.Hydrolysate protein absorbs quickly into the muscles, so it is best to take this protein supplement right after an intense workout, and has a great amino acid profile. Soy protein is available for purchasers who are concerned with following a vegetarian style diet. But Soy protein is also heart healthy, helps aid muscle recovery and is also good for speeding up an individual’s metabolism. Whey concentrate is an inexpensive form of protein and highly popular among bodybuilders and non-bodybuilders alike. This form of whey protein has an impressive amino acid profile and is easily absorbed into the muscles. Whey isolate is well-known as one of the fastest acting protein supplements out there. It is also extremely low in carbohydrates and sugars.
8. THERMOGENICS: A thermogenic is a fat burner and in most cases, a metabolic stimulant. They help you ‘waste’ or burn calories. Two very well-known thermo compounds that are readily available are caffeine and nicotine. Some compounds can also help suppress appetite. Some studies show that show fat burners will support increased energy levels, mental acuity and athletic performance. Other ingredients that you may find in good thermogenics are capsaicin, carnitine, ephedra, chromium picolinate, berberine and ginseng.
9. ZMA: Not a particularly popular or well-known supplement. Zinc & magnesium are two of the most underutilized supplements for bodybuilding. Zinc is important because it boosts the body’s immune system, which assists in the prevention of most illnesses and helpful in increasing an individual’s stamina. Magnesium lowers blood pressure, increases insulin sensitivity and is useful for building aerobic capacity. Both are slightly sedative and are useful for helping to make a good night’s sleep, so it’s probably best to use them before bedtime.
Can’t Afford Your Own Personal Trainer or Just Can’t Find The Right One? At BodyWorks “That’s No Problem”.
A personal trainer, a really good personal trainer that is, is worth his weight in gold.
A good trainer will guide you over unfamiliar territory. Will help you navigate a landscape in which you may be unaware of the differences between what is important and essential and what is junk or dangerous. He can focus you, give your workouts backbone and structure.
He should also be able to assist you to become the architect of your own fate by helping you turn knowledge about yourself and the science of training into tools for personal fulfilment & self-improvement. Although this will be an investment in your health and well-being that will repay itself ten-fold, it will undoubtably not come cheap.
Until you’ve decided to make that commitment to your evolution and the related investment that it requires, BodyWorks is here to give you a helping hand by introducing a proprietary new SCAN & PUMP technology.
This new facility will enable you to come to grips with getting familiar with our equipment and getting started with the sometimes daunting phase of starting to get fit. It’s COOL, it’s FREE, it’ll get better and better & it will UP YOUR GAME. If you’re already a member, we’ll get you sorted. If you aren’t yet a member, inquire within and we’ll get you started.
Contact us for more information.
People often want to know what we’re about and they don’t want a long treatise on the subject, so here’s a short one.
For most of us, the calves are a difficult & awkward muscle to train satisfactorily. The Horizontal Calf Raise is a useful, effective tool to enlist in your struggle to build a larger, more defined and toned calf muscle. Add it to your arsenal of weapons to help you master this difficult muscle group.
You’ll be glad you did.
We originally designed these instructional videos to be a total of 12 in the series but got a little carried away and shot a few more.
As we’ve had a reasonably interested response to these videos, through YouTube, FaceBook and on our website (www.bodyworksfc.com) we are retitling the series to reflect the addition of a few more “unloved and under appreciated exercises that you really need to know how to use in the gym”.
We really do hope that you enjoy these videos and find them useful.
Presented here for your viewing pleasure is the 12th exercise in the series.
The Paramount Pec Dec is a machine supported pectoral fly movement.
Not a purely functional exercise, but if you want to isolate the chest & add shape to the outer pec region while simultaneously putting thickness onto the inner area then this machine might just do the trick.
The pentultimate instalment in this series. A great alternative to the more popular flat bench press.
The Compound Chest Press is a really fantastic way to give a full, defined look to the pecs. You can use it either bilaterally (both arms to lifting and lowering the weight at the same time) or unilaterally (alternating arms to lift and lower the weight).
This week’s addition to our popular Video Series: THE DIRTY DOZEN.
Another great ‘old-school’ exercise, the Standing T-Bar Row.
This is a movement that has the potential to offer a more functional alternative to the standard deadlift, precisely targeting thickness & width in the lats and strengthening the erectors.
Introduction: Mr. B is the successful CEO of his own company. He and I have known each other for years. In fact, Mr. B. was one of the first people I met after wondering on to the island fresh from Los Angeles in the early 1990’s. Way back then Mr. B was just starting out, an ambitious young accountant. I on the other hand was a guy struggling to make my way as the island’s first personal trainer and doing my best to figure out how to build the gym of my dreams here in this newly adopted land.
Over the next dozen years or so, Mr. B and I traveled down our own individual paths, progressing through our respective professions and making our way across our chosen fields. We lost touch with each other for quite some time…until one day I received a surprise visit from him at BodyWorks.
When it concerned business, Mr. B possessed all the necessary attributes: drive, self-discliple, ability to put off short term pleasure in favour of long term gains, etc. He had all these and other characteristics that were necessary to help him rise in the world of finance.
What he didn’t have was fitness. He was pretty out of shape and putting on weight fast…and lots of it. The time had come to climb out of a rut. What he needed was simply needed a helping hand to get rid of some excess baggage.
To make a long story short, over the next 4 months, we created a plan & put it into play. We got right down to the business of getting fit and kept at it until we got what we were after.
What we were after was a brilliant transformation for this man. And that’s exactly what we got.
Profile: Mr. B
Interests: Golf, Skiing, Cycling, Traveling, Armwrestling
& Leading the Good Life.
Member of Bodyworks: 4 months.
Mr. B Comments:
“To say that Alex and Bodyworks have completely changed my life for the better would be an understatement. Alex formulated a training and lifestyle/diet regime that fit in with my life: in 4 months I have lost 4 stone of flab and have been transformed from an overweight middle-aged man into a athlete.
“Sure, I pumped the iron, gave up bad food and applied the necessary dietary principles myself, but without the structure, discipline and guidance of a very qualified and competent instructor, I would never be where I am now on my own steam.”
Putting It All In Perspective:
“After working hard, living a full, varied life and acquiring the necessary resources, the years pass and you suddenly find yourself in a middle aged body. Society will do its best to convince you that you cannot be like you were at 20 years old (unless possibly you are a movie star or a rock musician).
“Alex provides the tools and motivation to prove this myth completely wrong. I have more energy, better self-esteem, I sleep better and I am 100% more chirpy than I was before I signed up with Alex.
“Alex listens very carefully and frequently asks me questions about sleep, energy levels etc – all designed to gauge what tweaks we need to place into my workout schedule, eating habits and so on.
“Pay attention to your trainer, don’t try to be perfect, be as honest as you can with him and you will be amazed at the transformation that will ensue…following Alex will result in you vastly exceeding your expectations for your own physical health, well-being, transforming and empowering your life.”
Update 30/01/15 MR. B is currently enjoying a skiing holiday in France and writes:
” Re: Ski Trip. My fitness is a major positive factor, so much better at skiing and my rate of progress, on Piste and off, is stratospheric since initiating our training plan. Core work is easy, upper body so strong, calves very strong, legs strong…But we are skiing the powder so much, with far fewer breaks and the first muscle to tire is the Quadriceps. Next year, for ski season only, we need more focus on them. The immeasurable improvement in fitness etc is so evident and remarkable. More to follow, thanks again for all the hard work that actioned this leap in my overall level of fitness.”