Author Archives: Julius
Author Archives: Julius
"I'd like your advice on this new business I'm starting."
We get this question at least twice a week. It must be the first line in the MLM (Multi Level Marketing) textbook.
"you don't want to tell them it's MLM. It scares people. No business person can resist helping someone else who asks them business advice though, so that's your best angle..."
We don't promote any MLM schemes. We have used some products, but we won't promote any. So if you're reading this hoping to find a way to get us into your downline, sorry but "no".
But if you really, really want our advice on your new business, read on...
No matter how good they tell you the product is, and no matter how many people they tell say you can "get over the line," remember that it comes with a cost.
To be successful, you have to nag and hassle your family and friends.
And that's understandable. You'll have likely just invested to get the super-kick-starter sales-champion-world-domination-kit. You'll need to make that money back before your spouse finds out how much you spent.
Time to bust your ass, get on FB and post cryptic posts about your "amazing 3 day detox... message me for details."
Start doing some hard core exercise so you look less shabby. "People will ask you what you're doing, so you just tell them... it's that easy!"
As soon as that first subtle sales post hits facebook, the "block" button gets a flogging.
Word will get around that you're part of a "scam". You'll be treated like a criminal. Behind your back, news will spread of your "obvious desperation for cash." The housewife telegraph will be buzzing. "Maybe they are having marital trouble"
People will stop inviting you to stuff. It's not because they don't like you, it's because your friends are your prospects. People want to relax, they don't want you telling them how many times you now take a crap and how amazing your skin feels.
They want to talk to you about you. You are not the product you're selling.
Most "detox" drinks work. That's why MLM companies are built on them. But that's not because they are amazing products, its because they are better than the crap most people have been eating.
Usually, the detox drink is a catalyst for overall change. More than likely the amazing feeling you're getting is because of your overall changes, like more exercise, a better attitude to life, more water etc.
You're feeling great because of you, not because of a product.
After the first 3 weeks of using a product, your body should be back to optimal. You will no longer need it.
Remember that if your MLM product is a detox, detoxes end. Once you have finished your detox, you no longer need it.
But that doesn't make good business sense. The greedy fat cats at the top know that you will continue using (buying) it, if there is a financial incentive for you.
Even sponsored athletes get their sponsors product for free!
Remember that it's a supplement.
A supplement is meant to supplement parts of a lacking diet. If you need more protein in your diet because you just cannot ingest enough through your regular food, you supplement with a protein powder.
If you don't get enough antioxidants in your diet because you can't eat enough greens, you supplement with a green powder.
But a supplement is a poor substitute for the real thing.
Your supplement should not be thought of as a staple. No supplement can replace a well rounded, calorie controlled, macro balanced diet.
It's actually much cheaper to eat real food. Especially when you consider the true cost of MLM supplements (coming next, but first:)
Did you know that Tupperware used to have stores?
The reason they pulled their stores after trying them was because they were FAR more successful at selling their usual way.
It's easy to say "no thanks, just browsing" to the store attendant.
It's a lot harder to say "no" to a friend or relative, after they've brought you into their home. Your MLM knows this. That's the number one reason they chose the MLM business model. Not because the product is good. It's because of the business model.
Which brings us to our next question:
It's a pretty simple question. Would you do it for free? Would you really?
Not just competitive products. What we mean is what competes for that same dollar?
For example, people who start a car cleaning business are not only in competition with other car cleaning businesses in the area, but also the people who clean their own cars and the people who don't clean their cars at all.
People are lazy. If we can buy a competitor to your product from the supermarket, at a cheaper price, we'll do it.
Waiting for something to be delivered is inconvenient, especially if it's expensive.
You'll also have to factor the annoyance into the cost.
"It's about the same price at Woolies, and If I buy it from Woolies, I won't have to listen to Amy's annoying fucking speeches about what a wise decision I've made or how I can start earning money."
People will say this.
If your product is truly unique and is cheaper than the supermarket or health food store, it might be worth looking into.
And by unique, it needs to be truly unique. Digestive enzymes aren't unique. Green powder isn't unique. The "proprietary blend" isn't unique enough.
Don't try to convince someone to buy something they don't need. Find something people are looking for. Go where they are looking, then stand in front of them with that product.
The people we know who are successful in MLM do it as a full time job. The hours are just as bad as a real estate agents hours. Do not be fooled into thinking you're going to get to diamond level without a SHIT-TON of HARD WORK and pissing people off.
MLM is sales, it is degrading, gruelling work. People automatically hate you for the company you represent, your friends avoid you. People won't buy as much as you hope, because it's just easier or cheaper to buy it from the supermarket or supplement store.
To get people to consistently buy enough to make you money, you have to consistently visit them, call them and email them. Add up how many hours you will really put into the business and weigh it up against the return.
A study by MLM expert Robert Fitzpatrick found that 99% of MLM salespeople actually lose money. Doing well means you may earn less per hour than the minimum wage. Are you better off working more hours at your job.
What we mean is "if I make 10 sales, then I basically get mine for free." This doesn't mean you get your product for free. What it means is that you have to make 10 sales to earn enough money to pay for your product. 10 sales might take 10 hours.
For a $30 "saving" you're working for 10 hours.
Are you better off working a job for 3 hours at $10 per hour to pay for your product.
The people making the most money out of MLM are at the top of the pyramid. The people who first bring it into an area. Years ago, business moved slowly, so you could hold an area for a long time.
Nowdays, a new product comes out each month. Chances are if you're looking for a better paying MLM, your upline AND downline are doing the same thing. People who LOVED one product suddenly become huge fans of another, subsequently trying to get everyone to switch.
Are you ready to jump ship?
I've always been amazed at how many MLM businesses are closed down because of dodgy shit. I feel so sorry for the mums and dads who sold out their friends for this product, only to find it shut down for fraud or illegal practices.
Are you prepared to have your clients (family) turn on you?
MLM is basically a pyramid scheme, except that it's still legal (for now) because there is a product that gets sold, not just a "business opportunity." You could say that MLM is like laundering for pyramid schemes.
Think back to your first intro to the MLM, was it about a product, or was it about a business opportunity?
And come on, if your job relies on you to convert your customers into your competitors, you're setting yourself up for failure.
Most people who get into MLM are great people, loved by many. It's why they're told they will be good at it. That's probably why you think you'll be good at it. But just like any business startup, you need to look at the potential downsides as well as the potential upsides.
We've seen too many wonderful people end up losing a lot of friends for the tiny amount of money they make from a product.
If you know someone that might need to just ask themselves these questions, please share!
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The difference between the photos above are 6 months and 16kg. It doesn't look like much in a photo, but I can tell you that for the first time in my life, people have asked me if I am on steroids, because I've gained so much muscle so fast.
This is going to be a long blog post - remember that I'm an author, so writing a short blog post is difficult for me! But I guarantee you will get something out of it. This is not one of those "I've never missed a day of gym for 10 years" bullshit stories that make you feel like you just don't work hard enough.
Nope, you probably do. You probably spend more time in the gym than I do. You probably go more often than I do.
Here's the first big clue, and it's about my sex life.
Most people, when they hear that Sharny (my wife) is pregnant with our 6th baby, say to us "geez, you must have a lot of sex!"
Well, the truth is, you don't need to have sex often at all to get 6 kids. You just have to do it 6 times. Ever. But each of those times has to be effective.
You can spend 3 hours a day, doing thousands of reps, lifting tons of weight and not gain muscle fast.
I'm convinced that I put on weight easily because I'm always getting beginner gains.
I'm fickle when it comes to fitness. I immerse myself into one type, like lifting weights, then when I've conquered it, I drop it completely. Gaining muscle is like that for me. My entire adult life, I've been around weights. But I just don't get the motivation to do it day in and day out for longer than about 8 weeks or so.
Partly because I get too big, and partly because I just get bored. So I move onto something else, like running.
But the fact is, the gains I get are always like beginner gains. Good quality, fast muscle growth.
So my first tip, if you're struggling to gain size, is to just stop going to the gym for a while. Do something else. Stay away long enough that when you get back you feel like a beginner again.
The photo on the left was taken at the end of the Fitdad program. I loved every single moment of that program, because it was the first time in my life that I had incorporated my two greatest loves - fitness and family. I lost a whole bunch of weight and ended up in a photo shoot (left).
FitDad is incredible, I've been blessed and lucky to be the person held responsible for so many dads reconnecting with their kids through fitness. If you're a fat dad with no time, I urge you to check it out. I guarantee you'll love it.
Until Fitdad, one of the things I loved to do was to help young guys to get bigger.
Wherever I’ve been in the world, it has always been around rugby. Every rugby player wants to get bigger. I have in my time helped a whole bunch of young guys pack on weight so they could play up a grade, or get picked up by a professional team.
While I was doing this, I helped older, skinny guys to just put on some decent size. Just so they could fill out their T-shirt or impress their more masculine physique onto their wives.
Check out this video from way back in 2010... Yes, our PT studio was called Stripfit.
The problem for me though, was that by the time I had helped each of the guys for the day, I was just plain burnt out, and wanted to play with my kids. I avoided the gym outside of work. Every now and then, I’d slip under the bench press between clients, or do some pull-ups, but mostly I just did nothing.
Then came FitDad, and I basically cut most of the fat off me, and exposed what was underneath.
For someone in the fitness industry, it’s like taking off your clothes and looking at what you really look like. You see, for male “athletes” muscle size determines your shape, once all the fat has come off.
While I didn’t have tiny muscles, I could certainly pick some areas that I wanted to improve on. (notice in the above photos how I never showed my legs?)
This, combined with a whole bunch of once-fat-now-skinny FitDads who had reached the end of the FitDad fairytale, prompted me to document what I’d learnt over the past 20 years of helping men get bigger.
Initially I was just going to “tell” the skinny dads what to do, I worked so hard to get lighter, and enjoyed running at such a light weight. I loved chasing my kids around all day, and I just didn’t think I had the capacity to put the time into physically fatiguing my body every night.
4 of my 5 kids are too young for school and don’t go to daycare.
To get bigger, you have to train to complete exhaustion and rest/recovery is essential.
It’s said you’re meant to sleep for 9 hours a day to get the right conditions for size gains. I sleep a maximum of 6. I’d love more, but I have to get work done while the kids sleep, so I get up at 2AM to work.
Getting fit GIVES you energy. You can survive on less sleep, the endorphins turn you into a cocaine fairy. Always high, always ready for a challenge.
Getting big, on the other hand, requires full concentration and full use of your energy. It burns you out.
I train in the gym at night after the kids go to sleep. I tried to train in the morning, but I’d be asleep on the couch by 9am.
So I’d get the kids to bed at 6PM, lie there with them for half an hour to make sure they actually were asleep. Most of the time I’d fall asleep, remember that this all happened in winter.
That delicious end of day exhausted sleep? I had to wake myself out of it every single night. While it was hard to get up, it worked out to be the best pre workout. By the time I had stumbled to the kitchen, I was ready to hit the iron.
You can get big and fat quite easily, but if you want to maintain some sort of definition, whilst gaining solid muscle, you have to split your day into two phases. The diet phase and the growth phase.
For me, the diet phase starts when I wake up, until around 2PM. I find I can stay pretty lean on food for the first 12 hours of the day. But by 2PM, I’m not only hungry, but I’m actually pretty sore. The DOMS is already there.
I find that DOMS is a great indicator of how well I trained. If I feel it the next day, I know I over reached. If I feel it in the workout of the next day, once the blood is flowing to the next body part to get pounded, I know I did a good job.
If I don’t feel DOMS, I know I’ve cheated myself.
If you want a body part to grow, train until you can guarantee you’ll be sore the next day. In the muscle belly. Not so much in the joints. If your joints are sore, but your muscles aren’t, then you lifted too heavy and put the strain in the joints. Drop the weight and do your reps slower. Keep tension in the muscle the entire movement.
So to achieve scoreless the next day, you have to forget about how heavy you’re lifting and instead make the focus on mentally isolating the muscle you’re working, and flexing the shit out of it across the entire rep range for the entire set.
This is one of the hardest things to do, because it’s like holding your hand in a fire, but the longer you can work while burning, the better your results will be. Often, the difference between shitty results and miraculous change is actually in the one or two reps you didn’t do, but could. This is the fun of the game, the mind of the lifter. It’s why you see posters saying “It’s you against you.”
Not doing the pain reps is like the mountain climber not climbing the final peak to the summit. He’s done so much work to get there, but balks at the pain. Push through the pain and find true failure. It fucking hurts, but it is better than staying the same.
Back to the eating...
Until 2 O’clock, all that matters is that I have antioxidants (veggies), water and a steady stream of amino acids (protein). The protein came from eggs, left over chicken breast or BCAA, and sometimes a protein shake.
I am also very partial to Sharny's banana bread recipe, made with Banana flour (a really healthy resistant starch).
Calories are kept quite low. I wanted all the calories I ate to be put toward muscle growth.
After 2, it was time to eat for the nights workout.
I think of everything analytically. It’s how I’m wired. Here's something I think about all the time:
If you are doing a body part once a week, then that means you have only 4 opportunities to change that body part each month.
I really, really hated to waste any of those opportunities (still do). I know all too well that one of the biggest killers of a good workout is not having enough fuel.
So I ate a good, solid meal at 2PM, with lots of sweet potato, but no sugars, starchy carbs or fat. I would definitely include a lean protein source, for example chicken breast, tuna, beef round, barramundi.
By the time I worked out at 6pm, the meal would all be in my system, ready to be used.
If I was still hungry at around 4PM, I'd smash some oats or some more sweet potato.
With each of these meals, I’d have as little fat as possible, only what was in my meat and I cooked with coconut oil if I had to. Coconut oil is dynamite for fat loss.
Immediately after my workout, I'd have my post workout cocktail, then a massive feast of carbs and protein. Basically I'd aim to eat at least half my day's calories after my workout, and then go straight to bed (around 8).
At 2AM, I'd wake up, take a big ol' shit, measure myself (weight, gut circumference, skin folds and body fat), then go for a 30 minute walk or do some intervals to wake me up so I could work.
I made the following pics for you to save to your phone. It's my way of saving cash on some pretty heavy expenses. You can get pre made stuff, which is fine, but just look at the ingredients list to see if it has the right amount of each key ingredient. If not, you may need to buy a filler bottle of the missing ingredient.
This is a great way to get your pre workout to taste good, but still be effective.
I buy all of my supplements from the guys at Nutrition Warehouse. Their house brand is called Genetix Nutrition, and it's cheap. If you email me, I'll give you a code that will give you a 25% discount on any genetix nutrition product, plus a free shaker bottle.
save these photos and post them to instagram/facebook so you have them handy.
The pictures are quite self explanatory, but in case, LMM means Lean Muscle Mass. Dextrose is just brewing sugar that you can buy from the supermarket for about $3 per kilo.
So I decided I'd have a damn go at it, I'm going to see where I can get with what I know.
So I did. I decided I'd do EVERYTHING that I expected the IronDads to do.
Part of the IronDad program is to pick on weak body parts. For me, I’ve always had big arms. They just develop really fast. My chest though, well, it stays flat… like a 2 day old chicken. I’ve also got a bad lower back, so leg day has always been ignored for "more important things". I also copped some shit about my calves, so decided I’d focus on them too.
At first, it sucked. I wanted to quit. I did quit. On the basic lifts, by focussing on proper form, I could barely lift a child’s weight. On the bench press, I shook like a leaf on 40kg at around 6 reps. (The tempo I find best is a 3010 or 4010.)
But worst of all was that I just literally couldn’t get my arms to let my chest do any work. I was so pissed off. I would burn out in my triceps, and my chest was still flat and cold. Like it wasn’t even being used. Because it wasn’t.
Still now, 6 months on, I have to concentrate really, really hard to get my chest to do any work. I’m getting better at it, sure, but it takes SO MUCH concentration.
Another thing that I sucked at was squats. I could do body weight squats or burpees at speed infinitum, but put a weight on my shoulders and I’d buckle in the knees like a baby giraffe.
In the past 6 months though, legs have become my favourite workout. It’s still not easy, I have to hang off the chinup bar after every single set and cannot do more than about 20 squats total before my lower back flares up too much. But I can report that last week I did a 180kg squat with good clean form, and then tried a 200kg squat.
If you look at the photos, you can see the difference that working legs has made. My quads are not good yet, but they’re better. I’ve purposefully trained them every 3rd day to complete failure and beyond for the entire 6 months. My calves are actually my favourite muscle to train - I do them every second night (alternating with abs).
I still hate doing abs. I don’t like the burn, but they feel harder, so that’s something. I know my abs have something to do with my back problems, so I’ve been working them quite hard.
This is how I do abs:
and this, when the kids are asleep:
While my body fat percentage has stayed about the same, it's a percentage. This means that I have put on fat. The illusion of being ripped is actually because my abs are just bigger, so poke through the fat better.
I'm hoping that by the end of my cut, I'll still have the bigger abs, but less fat - so they may some day look good. Hopefully!
I’m very fortunate that I didn’t get injured, but I know from years of training footy players that ego causes injury, so lucky for me in my home gym, I have nobody to impress. I also know that one of the limiters to size is the tightness of the sheath around the muscle, called the fascia.
Rolling out the muscles really, really slowly on a foam roller has helped me to reduce the risk of injury, as well as stretching the fascia. Try it yourself. Lay one of your quads on the roller with your full weight like the photo above. Then try to relax the muscle. Keep relaxing until you feel the quads separate.
It's a weird 'slipping' feeling inside the muscle, and when you're done you’ll feel like you’re resting directly on the bone. Now inch ever so slowly up (or down) while trying to keep your muscle as relaxed as possible. The pain is intense, but it radiates away and you’ll feel a million dollars when you stand up.
I really, really enjoyed the following:
I didn't enjoy this:
Well, it's summer here now, so it's back to FitDad workouts with the kids. I will do weights at night still until I get bored, and for now I'm not giving up on my supplement addiction!
FitDad is awesome, absolutely awesome. I really think though, that IronDad is my best work yet. There are subtle nuances to the program that literally turn it into a masterclass on fat free muscle gain.
FitDad is all about exercising with your kids, and being a better dad. But with IronDad, I had a clean slate to create the perfect program, using everything I had learnt over nearly 2 decades. I literally picked the best parts of the best programs I had created or used in the past.
If this is something you might be interested in, then go here... everyone who signs up gets lifetime access (for less than you would pay a personal trainer), as well as that massive NW discount.
PS it's not just for dads. While filming it and programming it, I thought about all the young guys that have asked me for help. IronDad is for anyone wanting to learn how to gain muscle, without getting fat or taking steroids.
If you see me out on the Sunshine Coast, Australia, I'll be at one of the playgrounds, or at Point Cartwright with my kids... I don't have a pram.
Lost some weight doing HCG or some other very low calorie diet and now put on fat just looking at food? Your metabolism might be broken. Let's fix it...
Every time I see someone promoting a VLCD (Very Low Calorie Diet) as a lifestyle diet I just want to slap them in the greedy little faces. We once promoted it. We tried it and lost weight. Then we slapped ourselves in the impatient faces when we finished the diet and found we would put on fat eating a f*(n salad.
So we got fat and blamed ourselves. "Low self control," we said.
Out came the whip of self loathing...
Jokes. We don't do that shit. We don't hate ourselves when we try something and fail!
That just doesn't help. Instead, we educate ourselves. Which is what I'm going to do here for you. Save you the 5 years of yo-yo dieting we went through...
A very low calorie diet should only be done once in your life... ever. Unless you're in the first 3 months post partum, you risk permanently shutting down your metabolism by repeatedly starving yourself.
If you've done a HCG diet before, then you should NEVER do it again. And if someone tells you to, especially if that someone profits from you (buying their magic woo-woo potion), run away and never buy anything from that low life, cash guzzling monster again.
NOTE: This post is not about doing HCG or a low calorie diet, it's about what to do if you have done one and want to actually eat something again.
first, let's quickly work out if your metabolism is running ineffectively...
Fill in the following form:
Scroll down to the bottom of the results, and you'll see the following table:
Your numbers will be different to the above ones, but whatever they are, you should be able to eat somewhere around this many calories every single day, without gaining or losing weight.
If your look at your calculated calories and think, "no way can I eat that much," then your metabolism could be broken. So read on...
If you have no idea how much food that is, then get on over to the App MyFitnessPal (it's free) and log your day's food. Compare it to the numbers above and see where you're at.
We just calculated what is called your "maintenance" calories. Every time you eat less than your maintenance calories, your body responds by dropping or slowing non essential processes, like reproduction, hair growth, muscle growth etc.
The most important thing for dieters is to be patient, diet as close to maintenance as you can, so you avoid any of the following:
After years of fucking up my metabolism with the diet/binge roller coaster yo-yo, I just thought the feelings I had meant I was getting old. But since I fixed up my metabolism, I found that most of the problems I had were just little odd jobs my body was putting aside until the calories came rolling back in.
So if you have been doing the same diet-binge-diet-binge yoyo for a while, you'll most likely feel like shit. I can tell you that once you correct your metabolism, you'll experience some or all of the following:
imagine being able to eat so much more food that you never feel hungry, and still lose weight? It is possible. It's why top fitness models can stay lean year round. Read on to find out how you can too...
Alright, you know your metabolism is stuffed and you'd like to eat way more without becoming Jabba the Hut, so let's do it, in 3 easy weeks.
go back up and see what your maintenance calories are. Eat at or above your maintenance calories to give your body the signal that the famine has ended. Good times are here and they're here to stay.
Make sure you eat early and don't skip meals. Don't let yourself feel hungry ever during the 2 weeks.
*It's not a free for all junk fest. In this 2 weeks, ensure you eat a wide variety of fresh fruit and vegetables as well as meat. Try to steer clear of addictive foods or over processed foods. The additives in them can mess with your metabolism dramatically. So stick to eating a healthy balanced diet, and making sure you eat a lot of it.
You WILL gain weight. But that's not because this process isn't working, its because the diets you've been doing have broken your metabolism. Your body needs to regenerate organ tissue, blood, hair, brain matter and all the other things it's been putting off for so long. The weight gain won't be only fat, it will be necessary weight.
Spend 3 weeks getting it back and you'll be set to lose fat on more calories than you can currently stomach.
For the third week, drop calories below maintenance, but no more than say a 500 calorie per day deficit, otherwise you risk undoing your good work.
It's actually really healthy to eat just a bit less than maintenance.
I'm sure you would have noticed people talk about carb cycling. Carb cycling done right will prevent the downregulation of your metabolism, and in most cases, force upregulation - you can eat more and still lose fat.
There are two ways you can do this.
Two ways to carb cycle:
fixed diet plan
2 days low carb, 1 day high carb or 3 days low carb, 1 day high carb
low carb until you hit ketosis (See ketones, then have a carb load (refeed) meal.
The first method is a fixed diet plan - 2 days low carb/low cal and 1 day high carb/high cal. Or something like this. But we're not a fan of "one size fits all" dieting, so we prefer a tailored approach, specific to you.
Doing this may seem a little more work, but you'll benefit by being responsible for your own results. Something most people don't want to do. It's important to remember though, you have no vested interest in your diet other than your own success.
Firstly, buy from the chemist something called Ketostix - you put them in your pee and they will tell you if your body is producing ketones.
Ketones in the blood mean that you are burning fat, yes, but this is because you have run out of useable carbohydrates.
This is the alarm bell for your body to downregulate non-essential processes, the result being homeostasis, but for you, the dieter, that means a plateau. To lose weight, you'll need to then diet harder. You’ll eat even less and the down regulation happens again.
Worse still, if you go back to your original maintenance calories, your body will take a bit of time to upregulate - the excess calories consumed will be stored as fat.
This is the diet trap most people find themselves in - their bodies have become efficient. Only using consumed energy for essential processes - storing the rest for better times.
But remember that efficient doesn't mean healthy. A lot of processes are just not getting any energy and therefore not working. If you have been dieting on and off for a few years, I'd suggest first taking about 2 weeks of eating LOTS of NUTRITIOUS food. Not a junk fest, but eating LOTS.
If your head is starting to hurt, just click here and we'll do the grunt work for you.
What is important is that there is a bit of lag between states - diet hard and a few days later, the process is downregulated. Eat lots and a few days later the processes are upregulated - business as normal.
So keep checking your ketone levels - normal is zero. You're not meant to have ketones. Ketones are a survival mechanism. For a week, check them 2 or 3 times a day (don't worry ketostix are really affordable). Try and see how long it takes you, while dieting, to produce ketones.
AS SOON AS YOU SEE A CHANGE, you need to eat carbs.
But not just any carbs - carbs that have glucose, not fructose. Remember that fructose doesn't affect the hormones the way you want them to. Now, how many grams of carbohydrate is up to you.
The severity of upregulation depends on the type and quantity of carbs consumed. Eating high glucose, high GI carbs will force upregulation nearly straight away. You'll notice this on your ketostix.
Another great indicator that you have upregulated is that you poo lots. Your body believes food is in surplus so flushes out the excess (the opposite happens when you’re restricting calories).
I start the carb refeed by eating bananas. I know there is a little fructose in them, but the greener, the more glucose. AND bananas have so many other health benefits. I blend 2 bananas with a tablespoon of cacao powder, wait 20 minutes and see if that has changed my ketone levels.
If not, I will have a bowl of oats with rice malt syrup, water and a protein powder (I add the protein because one of the benefits of high GI carbs is insulin, which promotes better storage - I want my body to take up the protein.).
Realistically, you can eat any high GI carb you want, I know some people who eat lollies (candy). Some would argue that they are better for upregulation, since they are mostly glucose.
High GI carbs can make you hungry as hell too. You don't want a carb load to become an all day feeding frenzy. So choose your carbs wisely. I don't like grains, sugar or dairy, so I stay off them as a blanket rule for overall health reasons. I choose carbs that will carry an ancillary benefit, like sweet potato, pumpkin, quinoa - they give you that full gut feeling, psychological break and good nutrition.
You can feel like you've come off your diet, but not blown it. I also like to make banana bread with banana flour. It's a resistant starch - really good for you and for digestion.
When you see ketones, do a conditioning workout (gut busting, lung burning, heart rate lifting workout that lasts up to 15 minutes). The FitDad or FitMum programs are all about this.
As soon as you're finished the workout, have your carb feed - this will ensure that the carbs you do eat are taken up by the muscles and the liver - not converted to fat.
Test your ketones and add more carbs until ketone levels are 0 again. As you progress, your metabolism will lift and you will be able to eat quite a lot of carbs, which is very exciting!
This is a very confusing thing for people, but it's actually very, very simple. Just eat AT LEAST the difference between your diet calories and your maintenance. So if you are dieting at 500kCal less than maintenance, then eat at least 500kCal of carbs for your refeed meal.
maintenance cal - diet cal = refeed cal (at least)
It's that simple.
If you’re restricting calories, especially if you’re restricting carbs, big workouts just don’t have the same punch - so I program the biggest workouts (squats) for carb day.
The night of carb load, try to put the carbs to use - doing legs at the gym is best I find. Nothing upregulates metabolism like heavy squats. I used squats every third day to gain muscle, but keep fat low.
Do conditioning (HIIT) workouts 2 to 5 times a week and remind your body that it needs to keep muscle tissue by strength training in the gym at least one night a week.
Better cardiovascular fitness is essential to slowing the severity of downregulation.
But, I would avoid traditional cardio (like running or cycling etc) anything above say 20 minutes will force your body to become more efficient so that it can stay in homeostasis (sounds counterintuitive, but think about it for a bit longer…).
walking is a great exercise for fat loss without any downregulation, or muscle loss.
You should be able to last about 2 days between carb refeeds. Initially this may be less. If you can't last this long, then you need to increase daily calories by bumping up carbs and/or fat.
Some people like to do a depletion day (or a few). This means continuing with low carb/low cal for a few days once you’re producing ketones. This is OK if you can still train at intensity, some people are good with ketones, some not.
It has been proven that when in ketosis, we consume 60% protein and only 40% fat. You can reduce this through strength training, but I just don’t like those numbers.
Carb cycling properly will actually increase your maintenance metabolism higher than it was before. Your body will essentially be allowed to do more stuff (which in turn means you will be healthier) and the big plus is that you get to eat way more than you are right now, while still losing body fat.
That's the holy grail of dieting right there!
If you want us to create a customised carb cycling meal plan individualised to you and your needs, then go here:
Earlier this week, I got interviewed for a national publication, their questions were really good, so I thought I'd share the transcript:
Most experts seem to all agree that nuts are very healthy, but they seem to have a lot of fat in them. Won't eating high fat foods like nuts make it more difficult to lose weight?
People seem to focus on and single out one food type and ask if it is good or bad.
My experience is that someone asking is usually asking about their favourite food, or one they just can't give up; nuts being a very popular food in this case. Instead of looking at whether nuts are good or bad, we are best off looking at the bigger picture – are they eating a balanced diet with some protein and plenty of greens. If so, and in this context, nuts are good.
But if someone is eating a whole packet of nuts by themselves while they watch a movie after eating a pizza... then the answer is no.
But to answer the question directly, will eating unsaturated fats as part of a balanced diet make it more difficult to lose weight and the answer is no, simply because fat makes you satiated (full), and is essential as part of a clean diet.
How long should people rest in between workouts?
That depends on the type of workout and the intensity. Within 3 hours if they are training for endurance, 48 hours if training for hypertrophy (getting bigger) or upwards of two weeks if they are training for strength.
General rule of thumb is to leave 3 days between body parts for weights, and 24 hours for cardio.
Should children lift weights?
Kids lift weight all the time, and more than most adults. Think about how often a kid climbs up a tree or jungle gym. They are lifting their entire body weight. When they piggy back one another, they carry a friends' entire body weight on their back whilst running.
If your kid shows an interest in lifting weights, let him try lifting a light weight – he probably just wants to copy your movements.
If it's too heavy, he just won't lift it anyway – there is no way a kid will keep straining, they're not motivated by ego like us oldies.
A broomstick is a great substitute for a curious kid.
Who should the average person talk to about which exercise program would be best for them?
A good personal trainer will find out their goals, their time commitment, their limitations and put together a realistic exercise program that will facilitate their achievement within the parameters.
Should a personal trainer know all of the medications someone is on?
When training with a personal trainer, a person is being pushed beyond their perceived limits. Sometimes those limits are real ones, and the reason being chemical, not mental or physical.
If a client has fully disclosed their medications, a personal trainer can then know which exercises to avoid due to the limitations that drug imposes on their body.
How important is nutrition if someone works out consistently?
You can't out train a bad diet.
Is it a good idea to workout when feeling mentally stressed?
Exercise releases endorphins, which will calm you down. It is also best to channel that stress into something productive like exercise than to unleash it on your spouse, kids, dog or self.
Is it safe for obese people to lift weights?
Yes, natural, functional movements are safe and encouraged for obese people. The only thing to keep in mind for an obese person is that their organs are being crushed by their visceral fat, so have to work harder, therefore intensity must be managed to prevent organ trauma.
When they do lose their weight however, previously obese people can become phenomenal athletes because of how powerful their organs have had to become.
Should women lift weights if they don't want to get bulky looking?
If yes, how can they lift weights and not get that bulky/masculine look?
Body type and levels of testosterone determine how a person will respond to weights. 99% of women will respond to weights in a feminine way. i.e. they will tone up and harden up, not bulk up. Unless they are taking steroids, a person will only reach their genetic potential, and for most women, that is an athletic looking body that will definitely turn heads for how sexy she is, not how manly she is.
To address to 1%, if do find you are looking manly from doing weights, try supplementing more cardio, and change your weight program to one that has higher number of movement repetition per set, with a lower weight.
Is it true that some people naturally lose weight faster than others?
Yes, there are many factors but the main two are predisposition to stress, and metabolism.
The first one is (in non-nerd speak) the way someone reacts to stress. People will either eat more (comfort eaters) or eat less. In this busy world, stress plays a major role in body composition, and whether a person is a comfort eater or food avoider when stressed will determine their predisposition.
Metabolism (in my opinion) is secondary.
If someone has a high metabolism (uses more energy to stay alive) then they will naturally lose weight faster than a person with a lower metabolism.
Age and gender are the major contributing factors to metabolism; a younger person has a faster metabolism than an older, and a man would have a faster metabolism than a woman.
In saying that, of every 100 people who lose weight quickly, 99 will put it back on. Consistency is far more important in a weight loss journey than speed.
What precautions should seniors take into consideration, when starting a new exercise program?
Be aware of and manage structural and mobility issues, such as injuries, weaknesses, tight spots.
Be aware of your limitations, for example, arthritic knees would be a limitation, so running ultra distances would not be as wise an exercise as say swimming, which has much less impact on the knees.
Another issue to be aware of is low blood pressure. If this is the case, avoid any overhead exercise.
What are some simple things that people can do, in their day to day routine, besides working out, to see results faster?
Is it true that it's not a good idea to do the same exercises during each workout session?
This depends on how long between doing the same exercise and the intensity of that exercise. The goal is to work the muscle frequently enough that you get a good result, but also to give it enough time to repair.
Remember, exercise doesn't make you stronger, fitter or faster. It is in the recovery period after exercise that your body repairs back stronger, fitter and faster.
How frequently should people change their workout routine?
When they become bored, or their results plateau.
After someone has reached their fitness goals, how should their workout and nutrition plan be altered if they no longer wish to lose weight or build additional muscle?
Great question, a lot of people diet and exercise until they reach their goal. Once they are there, they generally relax their eating and slow down on their exercise.
It is true, that there is a tipping point where you don't have to exercise even half as much as before, but the problem is that people go overboard, feeling like they need to treat themselves, starting them back on the food addictions and sedentary lifestyle downward spiral.
To combat this, come up with another goal, an event that you would like to complete, such as a marathon or a triathlon, then change your training to suit that goal, and your eating to support that type of training.
You should always stay active, always eat healthy.
When you reach your goal and feel like it is time to relax, let your hair down and take a breather, the demons of slobbery creep unnoticed into your life. When you recognise them, attack with everything you've got.
For once they take hold, they slowly strangle you like a python – every breath out, and the python tightens its grip, making it harder to fight. little breath out; tighter grip, little breath out; tighter grip, until your organs are being crushed and you lose your mobility.
Attack that cowardly monster lurking in the dark.
Is it a good idea to work out with friends or family or does that create a distraction?
It is a great idea to work out with a friend, as they challenge you when you need to be challenged and support you when you feel weak. Working out for the vast majority of the population is a chore that can so easily be avoided, so combining it with catch up time with your friends will make it more fun, and more likely that you will actually go.
Why do people have such a hard time losing belly fat?
Genetically, we are no different to the hunter gatherers wandering the plains of Africa thousands of years ago. At that time, there were no lunch tins.
You know how your mother insisted on you taking your lunch tin with you to school every day?
Well back then, mother nature insisted on you taking your lunch tin with you every day. Your belly fat is actually your lunch tin; just a couple of sandwiches in case you get hungry.
Mother nature is insistent that it stays full in case of an emergency. So the last bit of fat on your belly is actually an essential part of your anatomy, according to your genetic code. The problem is that mother nature likes to keep stuffing the lunch tin every chance she can get, resulting in some people's whole buffet stashed in theirs.
Is it true that it's good to have a "cheat day" where people can eat whatever they want once a week? Why is this a good or bad idea?
The goal of a rest day/cheat day/recovery day is to repair yourself and come back stronger for the next week.Unfortunately most people use this day to 'treat themselves' by pumping their system full of fat, refined sugar and additives, so that they are forced to use the day-after-the-rest-day as the recovery day, the “recover from poisoning myself” day.
What they don't know is that this type of recovery can take anywhere from 3-10 days, stunting or even diminishing their intended results.Speeding up the recovery period is therefore key to rapid physiological change.
There are a few creative and very effective methods to recovering faster, but the most tried and tested method is to take a forced rest day at least once a week, and if it is not enough, take another.
To ensure that your rest day is in fact a recovery day, you need to think like a body engineer; i.e. think what does my body need to recover as fast as possible?
The answer: lots of water and antioxidants to get rid of the broken bits, as well as enough protein to rebuild the muscles.
What are the best types of exercises for getting the fastest results in the shortest period of time?
Big, strong, full body movements by far outstrip any other kind of exercise. Combine it with high intensity interval training and you have a recipe for some devastatingly good body shape change.
Is it true that people with diabetes have a harder time losing weight?
Many type 1 and 2 diabetics who, through consistent monitoring and management of their insulin, have lost a lot of weight safely and kept it off. It is also true that you can reverse type 2 diabetes, so no – there are far better excuses than diabetes.
If someone needs to quickly lose a few pounds for a special occasion, what's the best way they can do this?
Eating nothing but protein for three days will help drop a lot of water weight. It's not healthy, nor is it sustainable, but it works very well.
Many commercial diets recommend this as a first step so that they can show that they have produced results and their customers don't ask for a refund.
Just remember that it is only temporary, you lose very little fat, and you will put the water weight back on once you start to eat normally again. Probably best to not get into a state where you need to lose weight quickly...