Frequently Asked Questions
You asked, we answered!
What should I eat before a training session?
Eat something light about 45 minutes to an hour before you train. Choose something that is nutritious and easy to digest. A few recommendations would be oatmeal, a banana, yogurt, cottage cheese, baked yams, eggs or cereal.
How many days a week should I be training?
It depends on what your fitness goals are but if you want to see lasting results you should be training at least 3-5 days per week. You want to be sure that you split up the work-outs properly throughout the week to ensure that you target all of the major muscle groups in the body.
How many days of cardio should I be doing each week?
This depends on what your fitness goals are but if you’re looking to lose weight I would suggest that you do at least 3-4 days a week. These sessions should last somewhere between 30 to 60 minutes depending on the intensity of your sessions.
Should I being doing my cardio before or after I weight train?
This is completely up to you and what you prefer. There have been many studies that go both ways so it comes down to a personal preference and what works best for you. If weight loss is your main goal I would probably suggest you do your cardio first while you have the most energy.
What is the best type of cardio to do if you are trying to lose excess body fat?
The best type of cardio to do if you want to get rid of excess body fat is HIIT (high intensity interval training). HIIT is short bursts of very intense cardio followed by short recovery periods done multiple times in a single session. This type of cardio helps push you past your comfort zone and kicks your metabolism to the next level. This allows you to burn more calories throughout the day which means you will lose weight faster and more efficiently.
How many reps should I be doing if I want to increase muscle mass?
If you are looking to increase your size and gain lean muscle mass you should be lifting in the 8-12 repetition range. Anything less and you will be increasing your strength, not size and if you lift more than 12 reps per set you will be increasing muscular endurance which will actually lean you out and decrease the size of your muscles.
What types of foods should I be eating if I want to bulk up?
If you are looking to bulk up and put on some added size then you want to increase the amount of calories that you are eating everyday. Make sure you make good food choices like lean meats, fresh produce, whole grains, pastas and rice. If you want to increase your muscle mass your diet should consists of 20-25% protein or 1.6-2.0 g/kg per day.
How many calories should I be consuming per day if I want to lose weight?
If weight loss is your main fitness goal then you need to be consuming no more than 1200-1400 calories per day. These calories need to come almost entirely from fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats and low fat dairy. You need to eat every couple of hours and should drink at least 8 cups of water per day (it's recommended that woman drink 2.7 liters and men 3.7 liters of water).
Will doing crunches flatten my tummy and give me a six pack?
When done properly, crunches will definitely strengthen and tone your abs. You can do as many crunches as you want but it will not help to shed excess fat and flatten your tummy. To get that six pack you are going to have to really clean up your diet and do a lot of cardio in combination with your strength training.
Will lifting weights and strength training make me look "bulky"?
Women lack the hormones necessary to get "bulky" and greatly increase muscle mass. Secondly, if you are training in the 12-15 repetition range you will be focusing more on increasing muscular endurance which will help to tone and lean out the body.
What should I be eating after I work-out?
After you train you want to refuel your body with good carbs and lean proteins. A protein shake or smoothie is always a convenient, easy choice. A turkey and cheese sandwich on whole grain bread, fresh fruits and vegetables, low fat yogurt and berries, cottage cheese or a handful of raw almonds would also be excellent choices.
How do I know how many repetitions to do and when to increase the weight?
How many repetitions depends on your fitness goals. If you want to increase strength you should be doing 5-8 repetitions. To increase size and muscle mass then you should be training in the 8-12 repetition range. And if you want to tone and increase muscular endurance then you should train in the 15-20 repetition range. When choosing an appropriate weight, choose one that you can complete the recommended number of reps while maintaining proper form. Once you can easily do the recommended number of reps, increase the weight until you again reach muscle fatigue within your rep range.
What should I wear when I'm training?
Wear whatever you feel comfortable in. I mean obviously you want to be wearing athletic clothes like sweats, shorts, tank tops, t-shirts, stretch pants and running shoes but choose something that you feel comfortable in and is either loose fitting or allows you to move freely in it while exercising.