Author Archive

Despite the ubiquitous pitch to trim down by most people who seek my services, I often get questions about how to successfully gain weight. Contrary to popular belief, gaining quality weight (without a subsequent increase in significant body fat) can require as much dedication as trying to reduce body fat while maintaining muscle mass. A big part of this conundrum circles around each individual’s somatotype (refer to “What’s your body type…or should I say Somatotype?”). It also comes down to having the right information. I gave 8 major weight gain tips in “quick tips to gain weight the right way”. The following tips compliment the 1st 8 and further assist anyone trying to gain quality weight:

1. Create a calorie surplus – gaining weight and losing weight honestly boil down to simply mathematics. To gain weight, eat more calories than you burn. To lose weight do the opposite. Without question though, you must eat big to get big. Since muscles are metabolically active they require a certain amount of cals to grow, more than that of non-metabolically active tissue. There are several recommendations of how many calories one should intake to gain weight, some based off fat free mass, some off entire body weight, some based in kg, others in lbs., etc. Generally, when counting cals, around 15-20 cals/lb. of bodyweight has worked well for me and people I’ve worked with. The exact number will of course vary by individual. Some hard gainers may need up to 25 cals/lb. of bodyweight to see any real weight gain. For others, its imperative that you keep an eye on your overall physique to make sure flab isn’t on the come up. If that happens trail back the cals/lb. of bodyweight. Also keep in mind the amount of cals you burn throughout the day will impact your recommended calorie intake as well.

2. To eat more, eat less – intuitively you may think hoarding cals into 3 huge meals will be the best way to ensure increased calorie intake. However, it’s actually easier on your metabolism, digestive system, and muscle growth to divide your daily calories into 5 to 7 meals a day. Eating big meals trigger extreme insulin responses by the body guaranteeing excess fat storage, lethargy and increased time between meals. Keeping consistent intervallic calorie intake allows for constant nutrient delivery to muscles and facilitates anabolism. Rule of thumb is to eat every 2-3 hours; time between meals and snacks shouldn’t exceed this.

3. Shake shit up – no matter how big you are, how ravenous your appetite, there’s only so much food you can eat in a day. Liquid cals are great for this purpose because they give you complete control over what you intake (homemade shakes), they are portable and easily accessible, and they digest quickly. One to two shakes a day can add a surplus of over 500 – 600 cals a day.

4. Quality over quantity (keep it healthy!!!) – “getting big” or “bulking” is not an excuse to devour gratuitous calories from junk foods. Poor diet choices destroy physiques; one or two cheat meals a week to keep you from losing your mind is fine, but make healthy foods the foundation of your diet. Beware the cheat day! One cheat day can cancel out a whole week of hard work.

5. Low carb, no carb, no way! – Carbohydrates fuel exercise and will give you the energy to lift big. Complex, low glycemic, slow digesting carbs are best (quinoa, rolled oats, whole grain cereals). The exception to the rule is post workout where your meal should be filled with high glycemic, simple, fast digesting carbs to replenish energy lost during exhaustive exercise (juice, white potatoes, dextrose).

6. Get enough protein – protein/amino acids are the foundation for muscle growth. 1 – 1.5g/lb. of body weight for mass gain (up from the normal .8 recommendation for the average person). Aim for high quality high bioavailable proteins from varying sources to ensure adequate amino consumption.

7. Get enough fat – fat provides more cals than protein or carbs making it an easy way to increase calorie intake. It also helps keep testosterone elevated for muscle growth. Aim for polyunsaturated fats (flax seed, salmon, walnuts) and small amounts of sat fat (beef and dairy). Avoid trans fats (processed, baked and fried foods).

8. Post workout – eating the proper meal in a proper window (2 hours or less) after exhaustive exercise maximizes recovery and anabolism at a time when your body is most primed for nutrient uptake: Ingest high glycemic carbs with high quality protein (refer to “A Summary of Macronutrients”)

9. Preplan for success – maximize efficiency and reduce missed opportunities by using downtime to prepare meals in advance. This reduces the likelihood of ingesting unhealthy non-progressive food due to lack of time or lack of options.

The glute maximus is the largest muscle of the gluteal group and arguable the strongest muscle in the body. It inserts into the IT band so it is responsible for hip and trunk extension as well as lateral rotation of the leg and hip. The responsibilities of the glute maximus make it vital in the performance of everyday activities like jumping, standing up from a seated position and bending over. However, present day sedentary lifestyles involve more sitting and less physical activity. Sitting on the glute maximus for extended periods of time keeps the glute maximus under constant tension and pressure. This, over time, causes a shortening of the muscle leading to glute maximus weakness. Weak glute muscles force other muscles in and around the hip complex to work harder. The resulting overcompensation from surrounding muscles increase the risk of injury because these muscles end up doing more than they are supposed to (synergistic dominance).
Due to the interconnected nature of the body, compensations near the site of weakness (the gluteus) can lead to compensations farther away from the site of weakness leading to injuries as part of a “cumulative injury cycle”. Two muscle complexes particularly vulnerable to injury post gluteus maximus weakness are the hamstrings and the adductors. When the glute maximus is weak the hamstrings become overactive trying to control and facilitate the extension and rotation of the leg and hip (especially the biceps femoris/lateral hamstring) leaving them prone to overstretching, strains and tears. The adductors are also at increased risk because they are more heavily recruited during sharp movements in order to try and control pelvic flexion, a job typically done by eccentric activity of the gluteus maximus.
Most sports that incur increased hamstring and adductor (groin) strains typically involve swift motions of the leg and hip as well as sharp changes in speed and direction (ex: football, basketball, soccer). The best way to prevent these injuries is to incorporate stretching and to facilitate proper muscle activation of all the musculature in and around the hip complex. Most people don’t properly train because they don’t know how to spot glute weakness since the body compensates for it so well. The best program to ensure gluteal activation includes unilateral exercises that require hip extension and leg abduction and external rotation (ex: 1 legged dead lift, 1 legged squat, 1 legged step up).

Wake the F*** up!!! #Obama2012

Posted: September 27, 2012 by williampower in Uncategorized, Videos

Life Is Your Sport And Momentum Is Key…

Posted: August 1, 2012 by williampower in #HARDWORKPAYSOFF, Videos
Tags: , , ,

My thoughts through his words…#respect

“The Truth About Addiction”

Posted: July 6, 2012 by williampower in Behavior Modification

I liked this article when I read it so I felt I should share it…

The Surprising Truth
About Addiction

By Stanton Peele

Change is natural. You no doubt act very differently in many areas of your life now compared with how you did when you were a teenager. Likewise, over time you will probably overcome or ameliorate certain behaviors: a short temper, crippling insecurity, smoking, overeating.

For some reason, we exempt addiction form our beliefs about change. In both popular and scientific models, addiction is seen as locking you into an inescapable pattern of behavior. Both folk wisdom and modern neuroscience regard addiction as a virtually permanent brain disease. No matter how many years ago your uncle Joe had his last drink, he is still considered an alcoholic. The very word addict confers an identity that admits no other possibilities. It incorporates the assumption that you can’t, or won’t, change.

But this fatalistic thinking about addiction doesn’t jibe with the facts. More people overcome addictions than do not. The vast majority do so without therapy. Quitting may take several tries, and people may not stop smoking, drinking or overeating altogether. But eventually they succeed in shaking dependence.

Kicking these habits constitutes a dramatic change, but the change need not occur in a dramatic way. So when it comes to addiction treatment, the most effective approaches rely on the counterintuitive principle that less is often more. Successful treatment places the responsibility for change squarely on the individual and acknowledges that positive events in other realm may jump-start change.

Smoking is at the top of the list in terms of difficulty of quitting. But the majority of ex-smokers quit without any aid – no nicotine patches, gum, Smokenders groups or hypnotism. At your next outing, ask how many people have quit smoking on their own. You’ll be surprised!

People change when they want it badly enough and when they feel strong enough to face the challenge. Educational programs and incentives will only go so far. You can give them the tools, but until they decide to take action, they can’t break down the bad habits and build the new.
Even when people are ready to make a change, it often doesn’t happen all at once. The following are six principles of change that patients go through on their way to success.

Six Principles of Change

One: The belief that you can change is the key to change. This is not the powerlessness message of the 12 steps but rather the message of self-efficacy. Addictions are really no different from other behaviors – believing you can change encourages commitment to the process and enhances the likelihood of success.

Two: The type of treatment is less critical than the individual’s commitment to change. People can select how they want to pursue change in line with their own values and preferences. They don’t need to be told how to change.

Three: Brief treatments can change longstanding habits. It is not the duration of the treatment that allows people to change but rather its ability to inspire continued efforts in that direction.

Four: Life skills can be the key to licking addiction. All addictions may not be equal. The community-reinforced approach, with its emphasis on developing life skills, might be needed for those more severely debilitated by drugs and alcohol.

Five: Repeated efforts are critical to changing. People do not often get better instantly – it usually takes multiple efforts. Providing follow-up care allows people to maintain focus on their change goals. Eventually, they stand a good chance of achieving them.

Six: Improvement, without abstinence, counts. People do not usually succeed all at once. But they can show significant improvements; and all improvement should be accepted and rewarded. It is counter-productive to kick people out of therapy for failing to abstain. The therapeutic approach of recognizing improvement in the absence of abstinence is called harm reduction.

Taken from: Annual Editions: Health 05-06
The Surprising Truth About Addiction, Psychology Today, May/June 2004.

Hard Work Beats Talent

Posted: February 20, 2012 by williampower in #HARDWORKPAYSOFF, Videos
Tags: ,

#DroppedScience

Posted: February 17, 2012 by williampower in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

Although he’s not 100% right he does have several points that should be addressed…like advertising to kids and the over manipulation of the foods we eat. Even though it has been shown that organic farming isn’t very practical in terms of feeding the planet as a whole, there’s still a fundamental problem with the way we produce food and distribute it. I just thought that this was way cool that this young kid feels so strongly about an issue that more people should care about.

Im bbbaaaacccckkkk…with the facts to help you get your act back on track….lets get right into it…

Truth: the best way to start off in the gym is to have a goal. Dedicate yourself to the goal. Be consistent. It doesnt matter if your goal is to lose 100 lbs or to play for the Knicks (although playing for the Knicks might be easier since they are seemingly letting anyone play now a days…)

Truth: Im fairly confident when I say no one EVER, in the history of everdom (yes…everdom), has reached their goal by slowly pedaling on a recumbent bike while playing words with friends #stopit

Truth: most gyms have horrible music = only like 1 song out of every 10 actually belong in a gym and not in a country jamboree, a club in lower east side manhattan or playing in the background during a fight on Love and Hip Hop. Just bring your own music and chill with all that noise (no pun intended)

Truth: don’t fall for gimmicks…seriously the only way to really lose 10 pounds in 72 hours is by having really bad food poisoning (not recommended)

Truth: yes…every gym has an over enthusiastic trainer that needs to sit down somewhere #fact, every gym has an overenthusiastic member that makes a whole bunch of noise to make his lifting of 30lbs sound like hes military pressing 300lbs #fact, and yes every gym has that strange guy that lurks in the shadows…just when you think he’s not there…he pops up in the corner by the dumbbells with the Charlie Murphy look on his face #superfact

Truth: every gym has two types of members…those that actually wipe down machines and put weights back…and those that are the worst people on the planet…the ones who make you feel guilty about the ill will you find yourself wishing upon them.

Truth: “recovery energy bar with antioxidants and dark chocolate, the perfect after workout snack thats good and good for you” = chocolate bar on steroids

Truth: you should always beware of that guy in every gym that offers unsolicited advice, you know the one who looks flabby and sick but takes 45 min to tell you why you should be lifting like 100lbs over your max so that you can look like him

Truth: you can take 10 min abs, 20 min abs, bootcamp abs, burn baby burn abs, get ripped abs or you can try one that actually works…the stop eating pizza, pastries and popeyes abs…

Truth: if a gym class is going to be effective it has to be difficult, so if your relaxed and enjoying yourself you’re just in a big babysitting class for adults

Truth: its not practical to buy $150 dollar sneakers, $100 dollar tights and $5 voss waters to workout and then complain about how healthy food “costs so much”…”yea but you have them new Nike Max Airs doe…” #fail

Truth: thinking about going to the gym burns between 0 and 0 calories…per minute!!!!!! Thats crazy…

Truth: “a gym membership is alot like a marraige…if its good you show up committed and ready to put that work in…if its not, you show up in sweatpants and watch alot of bad tv” -j. gay