The Scientific Evidence Surrounding Intermittent Fasting 
Purpose of Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is not a diet, but a diet schedule that is purported to accelerate fat loss and muscle growth compared to traditional eating schedules. It is promoted primarily in the scientific community, however, there are currently zero scientific studies (as of February 2014) that have supported intermittent fasting for gaining muscle while losing fat.
With caloric restriction, intermittent fasting can lead to weight loss. In a recent review (Varady, 2011) and one recent randomized clinical trial (Harvie et al., 2011), authors conclude that intermittent fasting and daily caloric restriction are equally effective at promoting weight loss in overweight and obese individuals. However, no studies to date have been performed with athletes who require maintenance of muscle size, strength, and function.
Intermittent Fasting Approaches and Scientific Support Associated with Each
There have been several proposed protocols for intermittent fasting, from skipping one meal per day to eating only every other day. Most of these diets are promoted through webpages, blogs, and books published by exercise and diet enthusiasts. The procedures and philosophies are briefly summarized here; see the “More information” for links to advocates’ websites.
To date, despite the focused marketing of intermittent fasting to the athletic community, there are few well-controlled, scientific studies investigating the effects of intermittent fasting on the body composition and performance in athletes. Currently, the bulk of the scientific evidence for the health benefits of intermittent fasting has come from animal studies and the negative effects of intermittent fasting have stemmed from Muslim athletes during, both with limited ability to be translated to the general athletic community. Although more and more human studies are being conducted to validate claims found in animals, many studies are with patients with a certain illness or condition (ex. rheumatoid arthritis, hypertension, obesity) and not in healthy, active individuals.
Similarities among approaches
The various intermittent fasting approaches tend to emphasize their differences (and therefore purported superiority) however, there are also many similarities. One of the key advantages of this extreme form of caloric control is that it allows people to re-conceptualize hunger. Instead of linking “hunger” with “panic” or even “desire” “hunger” can theoretically be newly associated with “success” or “pride”, or simply ignored.
Indeed, with any method, there is a critical transition period of about 3-6 weeks during which the body and brain adapt to the new eating schedule. This period can be very uncomfortable, as restricted eating has been anecdotally associated with extreme hunger, irritability, loss of strength, loss of libido, and other negative side effects. Once the body is accustomed, however, the hunger levels may decrease and mood could become more positive compared to before the fasting program started. Elevated mood and decreased hunger on caloric restrictive diets have been noted in some but not all studies.
Intermittent fasting is not a weight loss program per se. Although intermittent fasting is one way to restrict intake of total calories to achieve weight loss, there have not been any studies to date on athletes who prioritize maintenance of muscle size and strength. In fact, there are conflicting views on whether intermittent caloric restriction vs. daily caloric restriction best preserve lean muscle mass.
All of these approaches emphasize the importance of the nutritional quality of the meals that are consumed. Nutrients such as protein, fat, fiber, vitamins, and minerals are essential for good health and, since nutrients are not consumed while fasting, they are especially important when breaking the fast. In addition, drinking a lot of water is encouraged both to stay hydrated and to alleviate hunger. John Berardi of Precision Nutrition (see “More information”) allows green powders, green tea, and branched chain amino acids during his fast, but it is unknown how these supplements affect appetite, energy levels, muscle synthesis/breakdown, or the overall benefits of intermittent fasting.
The Periodic Fast
The Periodic Fast is a fast for 24 h and is described in an article by Dr. John Berardi. The fast can be starting at any time of the day and can be done at various frequencies, though usually not more than 1-2 times per week. This diet is also advocated by Brad Pilon (“Eat Stop Eat”), where he recommends a 24-h fast every 3-5 days for weight loss.
LeanGains
The LeanGains method is a daily fast promoted by Martin Berkhan, a Swedish personal trainer and nutrition writer. In his method, fasting occurs for 16 h (ex. 10pm- 2pm), then food consumption occurs in about 3 meals in an 8-h window every day. If a workout is performed that day, it is performed immediately before the first meal to ensure a large, high-protein post-workout meal. About 5-15 min before the workout, Berkhan recommends taking about 10 g branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) to halt muscle protein breakdown during your workout (those this practice is not scientifically supported). This program also recommends eating carbohydrates or fat as components of your evening meals. On exercise days, meals should include protein, vegetables, and carbohydrates; on non-exercise days, meals should include protein, vegetables, and fat.
Anecdotally, males and females may respond differently to the LeanGains diet; females may respond better to a larger eating window, for example 14 h of fasting rather than 16 h.
Theoretically, an advantage to the LeanGains approach could be that because the schedule is followed daily, the body may more accurately learn when to expect food. For example, if you always eat at 3:00 pm, 6:00 pm, and 9:00 pm, appetite hormones and metabolism may acclimate accordingly. However, this has not yet been scientifically evaluated.

 
The Warrior Diet
This diet schedule is another variation of the daily fast and is one step more extreme than the LeanGains diet. The Warrior Diet promotes a single, healthy meal per day (typically dinner). It claims that this pattern of eating is in sync with humans’ circadian rhythm and will promote general health while “removing harmful toxins from the body”. To our knowledge, there is no scientific evidence supporting these claims.
In a study by Stote et al., participants of normal weight consumed adequate energy to maintain body weight in one meal per day or 3 meals per day for 8 wks (Stote et al., 2007). Despite consumption of the same number of calories, participants lost weight during the 1 meal per day period vs. the 3 meal per day period. In fact, fat mass was significantly reduced (p < 0.001) and lean body mass tended to be greater (p = 0.06) after 8 wks of 1 meal per day. However, hunger steadily increased during the 8-week study period with only 1 meal per day, suggesting that appetite hormones did not acclimate. Further research is needed to both confirm these findings as well as assess changes in body composition in athletes.
Alternate day fasting
Alternate day fasting is when food is consumed for 24 h, then restricted for 24 h (water is available at all times) for every 2-day cycle. This is the most frequently used protocol for intermittent fasting studies with mice and rats, though few studies of this nature have been done in humans. Many animal studies looked primarily at the effects of intermittent fasting on lifespan, with varying results depending on the breed, the age of the animal when fasting was initiated, if the animals were exercised, and other factors.
Heilbronn et al. performed a study in which eight males and eight females of a healthy body weight fasted every other day for 21 days (Heilbronn, Smith, et al. 2005; Heilbronn, Civitarese, et al. 2005). Participants lost about 2.5 ± 0.5% of their body weight including 4 ± 1% of fat mass over the course of the 21 days. Neither fasting blood glucose nor ghrelin (an appetite hormone) concentrations changed before vs. after the intervention, but fasting insulin concentrations decreased suggesting greater insulin sensitivity (Heilbronn, Smith, et al., 2005). They did not observe changes in genes involved in mitochondrial biogenesis, fatty acid transport, or fatty acid oxidation (Heilbronn, Civitarese, et al. 2005) suggesting that the metabolic machinery required for generating energy from fat was sufficient at the start of the study. Animal studies have routinely showed that intermittent fasting strengthens the body’s innate response to stress (Longo and Mattson 2014), and this was the first study to corroborate these findings in humans (Heilbronn, Civitarese, et al. 2005).
Other variations
There are many variations of intermittent fasting regimens since it is not yet known which (if any) fasting protocols are best for the desired outcome.

Halberg et al. asked healthy, normal-weight participants to fast for 20 h every other day for 15 days (Halberg et al., 2005). They observed an increase in insulin sensitivity after the fasting period as well as changes in fat metabolism. No effects were seen in regard to body weight, inflammatory cytokines, or changes in markers that are noted with an exercise intervention. On the other hand, Soeters et al. asked participants to follow the same protocol as in the study by Halberg et al. (Soeters et al., 2009). They observed no changes in insulin sensitivity, glucose uptake, or lipolysis. They also observed a decrease in mTOR phosphorylation, which is commonly associated with reduced muscle protein synthesis (MPS), although MPS was not measured in this study, nor were the participants involved in exercise.
Exercising while in a fasted state
Fasting (all approaches) can be detrimental to athletic gains for several reasons. First, meals in close proximity to your workout are essential for optimal performance, recovery, and muscle gain (Aragon and Schoenfeld, 2013). Second, increased hunger sensations may hinder compliance as well as increase the potential to over-consume food when it becomes available (Hawks and Gas,t 1998). Despite the common belief that you will burn more fat if you exercise while fasted, doing aerobic exercise in the fasted state is not recommended (review: (Schoenfeld 2011)). In fact,
Performing aerobic exercise after consuming carbohydrates does not hinder fat oxidation (Febbraio et al., 2000; de Bock et al., 2008),
Performing aerobic exercise fasted will also encourage loss of lean muscle mass, since muscle will be burned for fuel (Lemon and Mullin, 1980),
Exercising in a fasted state often does not lead to an optimal workout. In contrast, having readily available energy will allow optimal performance which will burn more calories overall and lead to the highest gains (Loy et al., 1986; Schabort et al., 1999),
Exercising in the fasted state vs. fed state decreases static and dynamic balance and can increase the risk of injury (Johnson and Leck, 2010).
There are fewer studies investing the effects of performing resistance training in the fasted vs. fed state, but it is expected that the same points hold true.
Intermittent fasting advocates recommend consuming at least 5 g BCAAs before a workout if exercising during your fasting period. This bolus of BCAAs in your blood stream theoretically could help preserve muscle protein during the workout, but there is no scientific evidence substantiating this claim. In one study, a BCAA infusion before a workout in the fasted state did not improve performance in one group of individuals on a graded incremental exercise test (Varnier et al., 1994). Advocates also advise to schedule your workout/fasting schedule so that you can enjoy a complete post-workout meal, but they tend to disregard the importance for pre-workout nutrition.
Summary
As you can see, all diet schedules share a common theme of compartmentalizing “fasting” and “eating” periods. So many variations of these diets exist because there is no one established method that is best. Further, some individuals who try intermittent fasting use a hybrid of existing approaches to find a successful technique.
Importantly, intermittent fasting is not recommended for pregnant women, women who are breastfeeding, people with diabetes, or other people who need to closely regulate their blood sugar. In addition, there has not been research on participants who are underweight, very old, or very young (<18 yrs. old) and these populations could be at higher risk for experiencing negative consequences of fasting (Longo and Mattson , 2014).
Take home messages
Intermittent fasting is a dietary approach heavily promoted to the athletic community to achieve and maintain a very lean, strong physique. However, there is currently no scientific evidence supporting these claims.
In the scientific literature, intermittent fasting with caloric restriction often yields equivalent benefits as traditional low-calorie diets in regard to changes in fat mass, alleviating discomfort due to low energy, improving insulin sensitivity, and improving blood lipid profiles.
The most effective weight loss plans and healthy life styles are ones that can be maintained, and these habits are not the same for everyone. If intermittent fasting is appealing, give it full effort for a few weeks before evaluating success or failure of that approach.

source

The Scientific Evidence Surrounding Intermittent Fasting 

Purpose of Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting is not a diet, but a diet schedule that is purported to accelerate fat loss and muscle growth compared to traditional eating schedules. It is promoted primarily in the scientific community, however, there are currently zero scientific studies (as of February 2014) that have supported intermittent fasting for gaining muscle while losing fat.

With caloric restriction, intermittent fasting can lead to weight loss. In a recent review (Varady, 2011) and one recent randomized clinical trial (Harvie et al., 2011), authors conclude that intermittent fasting and daily caloric restriction are equally effective at promoting weight loss in overweight and obese individuals. However, no studies to date have been performed with athletes who require maintenance of muscle size, strength, and function.

Intermittent Fasting Approaches and Scientific Support Associated with Each

There have been several proposed protocols for intermittent fasting, from skipping one meal per day to eating only every other day. Most of these diets are promoted through webpages, blogs, and books published by exercise and diet enthusiasts. The procedures and philosophies are briefly summarized here; see the “More information” for links to advocates’ websites.

To date, despite the focused marketing of intermittent fasting to the athletic community, there are few well-controlled, scientific studies investigating the effects of intermittent fasting on the body composition and performance in athletes. Currently, the bulk of the scientific evidence for the health benefits of intermittent fasting has come from animal studies and the negative effects of intermittent fasting have stemmed from Muslim athletes during, both with limited ability to be translated to the general athletic community. Although more and more human studies are being conducted to validate claims found in animals, many studies are with patients with a certain illness or condition (ex. rheumatoid arthritis, hypertension, obesity) and not in healthy, active individuals.

Similarities among approaches

The various intermittent fasting approaches tend to emphasize their differences (and therefore purported superiority) however, there are also many similarities. One of the key advantages of this extreme form of caloric control is that it allows people to re-conceptualize hunger. Instead of linking “hunger” with “panic” or even “desire” “hunger” can theoretically be newly associated with “success” or “pride”, or simply ignored.

Indeed, with any method, there is a critical transition period of about 3-6 weeks during which the body and brain adapt to the new eating schedule. This period can be very uncomfortable, as restricted eating has been anecdotally associated with extreme hunger, irritability, loss of strength, loss of libido, and other negative side effects. Once the body is accustomed, however, the hunger levels may decrease and mood could become more positive compared to before the fasting program started. Elevated mood and decreased hunger on caloric restrictive diets have been noted in some but not all studies.

Intermittent fasting is not a weight loss program per se. Although intermittent fasting is one way to restrict intake of total calories to achieve weight loss, there have not been any studies to date on athletes who prioritize maintenance of muscle size and strength. In fact, there are conflicting views on whether intermittent caloric restriction vs. daily caloric restriction best preserve lean muscle mass.

All of these approaches emphasize the importance of the nutritional quality of the meals that are consumed. Nutrients such as protein, fat, fiber, vitamins, and minerals are essential for good health and, since nutrients are not consumed while fasting, they are especially important when breaking the fast. In addition, drinking a lot of water is encouraged both to stay hydrated and to alleviate hunger. John Berardi of Precision Nutrition (see “More information”) allows green powders, green tea, and branched chain amino acids during his fast, but it is unknown how these supplements affect appetite, energy levels, muscle synthesis/breakdown, or the overall benefits of intermittent fasting.

The Periodic Fast

The Periodic Fast is a fast for 24 h and is described in an article by Dr. John Berardi. The fast can be starting at any time of the day and can be done at various frequencies, though usually not more than 1-2 times per week. This diet is also advocated by Brad Pilon (“Eat Stop Eat”), where he recommends a 24-h fast every 3-5 days for weight loss.

LeanGains

The LeanGains method is a daily fast promoted by Martin Berkhan, a Swedish personal trainer and nutrition writer. In his method, fasting occurs for 16 h (ex. 10pm- 2pm), then food consumption occurs in about 3 meals in an 8-h window every day. If a workout is performed that day, it is performed immediately before the first meal to ensure a large, high-protein post-workout meal. About 5-15 min before the workout, Berkhan recommends taking about 10 g branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) to halt muscle protein breakdown during your workout (those this practice is not scientifically supported). This program also recommends eating carbohydrates or fat as components of your evening meals. On exercise days, meals should include protein, vegetables, and carbohydrates; on non-exercise days, meals should include protein, vegetables, and fat.

Anecdotally, males and females may respond differently to the LeanGains diet; females may respond better to a larger eating window, for example 14 h of fasting rather than 16 h.

Theoretically, an advantage to the LeanGains approach could be that because the schedule is followed daily, the body may more accurately learn when to expect food. For example, if you always eat at 3:00 pm, 6:00 pm, and 9:00 pm, appetite hormones and metabolism may acclimate accordingly. However, this has not yet been scientifically evaluated.

 

The Warrior Diet

This diet schedule is another variation of the daily fast and is one step more extreme than the LeanGains diet. The Warrior Diet promotes a single, healthy meal per day (typically dinner). It claims that this pattern of eating is in sync with humans’ circadian rhythm and will promote general health while “removing harmful toxins from the body”. To our knowledge, there is no scientific evidence supporting these claims.

In a study by Stote et al., participants of normal weight consumed adequate energy to maintain body weight in one meal per day or 3 meals per day for 8 wks (Stote et al., 2007). Despite consumption of the same number of calories, participants lost weight during the 1 meal per day period vs. the 3 meal per day period. In fact, fat mass was significantly reduced (p < 0.001) and lean body mass tended to be greater (p = 0.06) after 8 wks of 1 meal per day. However, hunger steadily increased during the 8-week study period with only 1 meal per day, suggesting that appetite hormones did not acclimate. Further research is needed to both confirm these findings as well as assess changes in body composition in athletes.

Alternate day fasting

Alternate day fasting is when food is consumed for 24 h, then restricted for 24 h (water is available at all times) for every 2-day cycle. This is the most frequently used protocol for intermittent fasting studies with mice and rats, though few studies of this nature have been done in humans. Many animal studies looked primarily at the effects of intermittent fasting on lifespan, with varying results depending on the breed, the age of the animal when fasting was initiated, if the animals were exercised, and other factors.

Heilbronn et al. performed a study in which eight males and eight females of a healthy body weight fasted every other day for 21 days (Heilbronn, Smith, et al. 2005; Heilbronn, Civitarese, et al. 2005). Participants lost about 2.5 ± 0.5% of their body weight including 4 ± 1% of fat mass over the course of the 21 days. Neither fasting blood glucose nor ghrelin (an appetite hormone) concentrations changed before vs. after the intervention, but fasting insulin concentrations decreased suggesting greater insulin sensitivity (Heilbronn, Smith, et al., 2005). They did not observe changes in genes involved in mitochondrial biogenesis, fatty acid transport, or fatty acid oxidation (Heilbronn, Civitarese, et al. 2005) suggesting that the metabolic machinery required for generating energy from fat was sufficient at the start of the study. Animal studies have routinely showed that intermittent fasting strengthens the body’s innate response to stress (Longo and Mattson 2014), and this was the first study to corroborate these findings in humans (Heilbronn, Civitarese, et al. 2005).

Other variations

There are many variations of intermittent fasting regimens since it is not yet known which (if any) fasting protocols are best for the desired outcome.

Halberg et al. asked healthy, normal-weight participants to fast for 20 h every other day for 15 days (Halberg et al., 2005). They observed an increase in insulin sensitivity after the fasting period as well as changes in fat metabolism. No effects were seen in regard to body weight, inflammatory cytokines, or changes in markers that are noted with an exercise intervention. On the other hand, Soeters et al. asked participants to follow the same protocol as in the study by Halberg et al. (Soeters et al., 2009). They observed no changes in insulin sensitivity, glucose uptake, or lipolysis. They also observed a decrease in mTOR phosphorylation, which is commonly associated with reduced muscle protein synthesis (MPS), although MPS was not measured in this study, nor were the participants involved in exercise.

Exercising while in a fasted state

Fasting (all approaches) can be detrimental to athletic gains for several reasons. First, meals in close proximity to your workout are essential for optimal performance, recovery, and muscle gain (Aragon and Schoenfeld, 2013). Second, increased hunger sensations may hinder compliance as well as increase the potential to over-consume food when it becomes available (Hawks and Gas,t 1998). Despite the common belief that you will burn more fat if you exercise while fasted, doing aerobic exercise in the fasted state is not recommended (review: (Schoenfeld 2011)). In fact,

Performing aerobic exercise after consuming carbohydrates does not hinder fat oxidation (Febbraio et al., 2000; de Bock et al., 2008),

Performing aerobic exercise fasted will also encourage loss of lean muscle mass, since muscle will be burned for fuel (Lemon and Mullin, 1980),

Exercising in a fasted state often does not lead to an optimal workout. In contrast, having readily available energy will allow optimal performance which will burn more calories overall and lead to the highest gains (Loy et al., 1986; Schabort et al., 1999),

Exercising in the fasted state vs. fed state decreases static and dynamic balance and can increase the risk of injury (Johnson and Leck, 2010).

There are fewer studies investing the effects of performing resistance training in the fasted vs. fed state, but it is expected that the same points hold true.

Intermittent fasting advocates recommend consuming at least 5 g BCAAs before a workout if exercising during your fasting period. This bolus of BCAAs in your blood stream theoretically could help preserve muscle protein during the workout, but there is no scientific evidence substantiating this claim. In one study, a BCAA infusion before a workout in the fasted state did not improve performance in one group of individuals on a graded incremental exercise test (Varnier et al., 1994). Advocates also advise to schedule your workout/fasting schedule so that you can enjoy a complete post-workout meal, but they tend to disregard the importance for pre-workout nutrition.

Summary

As you can see, all diet schedules share a common theme of compartmentalizing “fasting” and “eating” periods. So many variations of these diets exist because there is no one established method that is best. Further, some individuals who try intermittent fasting use a hybrid of existing approaches to find a successful technique.

Importantly, intermittent fasting is not recommended for pregnant women, women who are breastfeeding, people with diabetes, or other people who need to closely regulate their blood sugar. In addition, there has not been research on participants who are underweight, very old, or very young (<18 yrs. old) and these populations could be at higher risk for experiencing negative consequences of fasting (Longo and Mattson , 2014).

Take home messages

Intermittent fasting is a dietary approach heavily promoted to the athletic community to achieve and maintain a very lean, strong physique. However, there is currently no scientific evidence supporting these claims.

In the scientific literature, intermittent fasting with caloric restriction often yields equivalent benefits as traditional low-calorie diets in regard to changes in fat mass, alleviating discomfort due to low energy, improving insulin sensitivity, and improving blood lipid profiles.

The most effective weight loss plans and healthy life styles are ones that can be maintained, and these habits are not the same for everyone. If intermittent fasting is appealing, give it full effort for a few weeks before evaluating success or failure of that approach.

source

tiffdoeslife:

Mytrainertiffany.com/services for details on all the programs that I offer. Please email me at info@mytrainertiffany.com with questions and to redeem discount at time of purchase! Also offering incentives to friends and family referred by you!

How can I get abs?
With the warmer months coming around, I seem to get this question a lot. What can I do to get a flat stomach? How can I get a 6 pack? I want abs but I don&#8217;t want bulky abs like power lifters, how can I do this? The goal for this post is to hopefully clear up the conflicting information that is out there and help my followers understand the steps that should be taken to get a tight midsection.
1. Body fat:
In order to have noticeable abs, it is keen that you have a low body fat. for females its about 17% or less. You can do ab ripper X on repeat 3 times a day, but if you still have fat covering your abs you won&#8217;t be able to notice any of your progress in the mirror. 
2. Diet
Limit foods that commonly make us bloated or store abdominal fat. Things such as gluten, dairy, soda, lunch meat, refined flour and sugar are all foods that lead to inflammation and bloating. Processed snack foods and modern wheat have been shown to cause an increase in abdominal fat as well. A healthy diet is balanced, but should consist of mostly fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, unprocessed meats, and whole foods in general. &#8220;if it was made in a factory, it will take a factory to digest it&#8221; Read ingredients and hold yourself accountable for what is going into your body. 
3. Training
The key to building muscle on any part of our bodies is variation. Constantly keep challenging yourself and don&#8217;t limit your training to one simple movement. Example: don&#8217;t do only crunches and twists. Our abdominals consist of various different muscles, each running along our waist in different directions (same goes for any other large muscle group like our legs, glutes, chest, etc) Our muscles can grow from just lifting heavy, but to be sure that our muscles remain balanced across joints, prevent injury, and also help build muscle faster, we should target our muscles from all directions.Your training regimen should include multiple exercises to target different muscle fibers. Here is an example of an ab workout that targets our abs from all directions:
plank- stabilizing/transverse abdominals
ghd/full range sit ups- rectus abdominis 
bicycle crunches- internal obliques
crazy ivan or russian twists- external obliques
Hopefully this helps put things into perspective. If you have any other questions or would like a customized fitness or nutrition program to help you reach your goals, visit my faq&#8217;s page or view info on my services here.

How can I get abs?

With the warmer months coming around, I seem to get this question a lot. What can I do to get a flat stomach? How can I get a 6 pack? I want abs but I don’t want bulky abs like power lifters, how can I do this? The goal for this post is to hopefully clear up the conflicting information that is out there and help my followers understand the steps that should be taken to get a tight midsection.

1. Body fat:

In order to have noticeable abs, it is keen that you have a low body fat. for females its about 17% or less. You can do ab ripper X on repeat 3 times a day, but if you still have fat covering your abs you won’t be able to notice any of your progress in the mirror. 

2. Diet

Limit foods that commonly make us bloated or store abdominal fat. Things such as gluten, dairy, soda, lunch meat, refined flour and sugar are all foods that lead to inflammation and bloating. Processed snack foods and modern wheat have been shown to cause an increase in abdominal fat as well. A healthy diet is balanced, but should consist of mostly fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, unprocessed meats, and whole foods in general. “if it was made in a factory, it will take a factory to digest it” Read ingredients and hold yourself accountable for what is going into your body. 

3. Training

The key to building muscle on any part of our bodies is variation. Constantly keep challenging yourself and don’t limit your training to one simple movement. Example: don’t do only crunches and twists. Our abdominals consist of various different muscles, each running along our waist in different directions (same goes for any other large muscle group like our legs, glutes, chest, etc) Our muscles can grow from just lifting heavy, but to be sure that our muscles remain balanced across joints, prevent injury, and also help build muscle faster, we should target our muscles from all directions.Your training regimen should include multiple exercises to target different muscle fibers. Here is an example of an ab workout that targets our abs from all directions:

  • plank- stabilizing/transverse abdominals
  • ghd/full range sit ups- rectus abdominis 
  • bicycle crunches- internal obliques
  • crazy ivan or russian twists- external obliques

Hopefully this helps put things into perspective. If you have any other questions or would like a customized fitness or nutrition program to help you reach your goals, visit my faq’s page or view info on my services here.

tiffdoeslife:

How I personally removed 80% of my stretchmarks in 1 application
I made a post about this on this blog a while back, but since I have been redesigning everything it was deleted. 
What you will need:
1/2 cut ground coffee
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
2 small bowls 
Hot water
Warm towels 
Directions: 
Fill one small bowl half way with hot water (can be boiled or microwaved) In the other bowl, mix coffee grounds and grape seed oil. Place coffee and grape seed oil on top of the warm water bowl to heat the coffee scrub. Let stand 3 minutes. Next, scrub stretch mark areas with the scrub for 5-7 minutes. This is going to stimulate blood flow and help tissue repair. The grape seed oil also has antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that help with wrinkles, scars, etc as well as deeply penetrating and moisturizing the skin. Once You are finished scrubbing, wrap warm towel around area and let the scrub soak into your skin for approximately 20 minutes. Shower, moisturize and you’re finished! I had stretchmarks (deep purple and thin white ones) under my butt and on the inside of my thighs for a few years and it deeply affected my confidence. After reading about the benefits of grape seed oil and various coffee scrubs in a holistic book my aunt gave me, I made my own version and was very pleased with the results. These are all ingredients that you can find at most groceries stores or in your cabinet already! If you try this, let me know how it works for you :) It is also a great way to help reduce the appearance of cellulite. 

tiffdoeslife:

How I personally removed 80% of my stretchmarks in 1 application

I made a post about this on this blog a while back, but since I have been redesigning everything it was deleted. 

What you will need:

1/2 cut ground coffee

1/2 cup grapeseed oil

2 small bowls 

Hot water

Warm towels 

Directions: 

Fill one small bowl half way with hot water (can be boiled or microwaved) In the other bowl, mix coffee grounds and grape seed oil. Place coffee and grape seed oil on top of the warm water bowl to heat the coffee scrub. Let stand 3 minutes. Next, scrub stretch mark areas with the scrub for 5-7 minutes. This is going to stimulate blood flow and help tissue repair. The grape seed oil also has antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that help with wrinkles, scars, etc as well as deeply penetrating and moisturizing the skin. Once You are finished scrubbing, wrap warm towel around area and let the scrub soak into your skin for approximately 20 minutes. Shower, moisturize and you’re finished! I had stretchmarks (deep purple and thin white ones) under my butt and on the inside of my thighs for a few years and it deeply affected my confidence. After reading about the benefits of grape seed oil and various coffee scrubs in a holistic book my aunt gave me, I made my own version and was very pleased with the results. These are all ingredients that you can find at most groceries stores or in your cabinet already! If you try this, let me know how it works for you :) It is also a great way to help reduce the appearance of cellulite. 

tiffdoeslife:

So many new things this week! First, I’ve gotten my hair cut. It was time for something new and I couldn’t decide if I wanted to go blonde or just get a different cut. So far I like it! I was iffy at first though. I’ve also been going to an mma type of gym with my friend Christine and Tom. Tom is a trainer there and he’s helping teach us stuff. It’s such a blast. I am gonna end up getting a membership there in the next few days. They have wrestling mats, cage, a ring, barbells, dumbells, kettlebells, combat ropes, cable machines, weight machines, and some other stuff. So I could learn the fighting stuff and lift there! The first night we did wrestling type stuff where you’re on the ground and we learned pumling(spelling of that I’m not sure..) different chokes and how to get out of them. Last night we did more boxing, kicking, americano, arm bar, differemt flips, kimora and some other stuff. The trainers said we are catching on pretty quick and are actually doing pretty advanced stuff! 👍 my hip flexors, wrists, neck and triceps are pretty dang sore and I’ve got little bruises everywhere but they said that happens to beginners. Any of you have experience with this type of training?
I’ve also been moving this week. Not far, just to the other side of columbia with a friend. When jared moved out it was forcing me to pay for his half of everything too and I couldn’t do it. So I’ve moved into an apartment and we are on the 4th floor which kinda sucks but at the same time it’s just a good way to get in extra workouts ;) and lastly, I’m no longer at Pro Fitness (for personal reasons I won’t go into on here) I hope you all are having a great week. Happy Thursday!!

tiffdoeslife:

Woke up for pt.. pt is rescheduled for Thursday. 😐🔫 back to bed for me! That’s okay though, today I’ll test myself and see what I get. Then thursday I’ll do army pt and Friday the Marine officer will be down and running a workout for us which will be fun. Last time there were only 2 other guys so hopefully I’ll meet more people in columbia who are doing the ocs/plc. I still need to talk to my older brother and a few of my friends in Army rotc and Marine ocs to see what job opportunities there are as officers in each branch. Right now im leaning more towards Marine ocs just because I know it’s highly competitive and I’d love to earn that title(although any branch is honorable). But, it seems that the jobs are more along the lines of combat training where Army seems to have a lot more medical job opportunities which is what I’d rather do. But who knows! I can find out more about each and maybe decide I want to do infantry than be a physical therapist. Thats what im finding out about life. You can make whatever decisions you want for yourself. If you’re not happy in a situation, move. If you don’t think you want to do something any longer, don’t. If you’re in a situation that constantly stresses you out and the reward is not worth the sacrifice, leave. No one can stop you from making decisions for yourself. But, that’s no excuse to quit when things get tough. Find out what you really want, consider all options, set a goal, make a plan, and get there.

tiffdoeslife:

A little update from me:
So, the past few days I’ve spent working on new ideas for this blog. Making it more personal, less reblogs and more informational posts. I’m working on getting a header designed, a facebook page up, new programs, wire bound books, t shirt designs, etc. This weekend I’ll be putting together a business plan for my online coaching. I’ve also made a personal blog. This one I will limit to my fitness amd health updates, recipies, supplement reviews, start making Instagram workout videos, and things that help me become a stronger, healthier, and happier person. My other blog (tiffdoeslife.tumblr.com) will just be whatever it is I want to post! Girly stuff, fitness, funny movie quotes, etc. I want to keep this one more organized and informational like what comes to mind when I think of a blog. But I don’t wanna stop reblogin all the time! So that’s what that one will be for. I’m also going to stop making this blog spamy(like I feel it is coming off as) where I’m constantly promoting products and services. Just make it more personal all around. I’m still answering questions as well! I’ve just taken the anon feature off because of some things going on in my personal life, and because I don’t like getting asked the same thing over and over again bc someone asked on anon and it got buried in my posts. At one point soon I’ll turn it back on and tag all my published asks and organize those under a tab. I’ve also went through and deleted all 40,000+ posts I had, except the personal ones I found relivant. Hope this sounds good to you all! Let me know if you guys have any other suggestions for me too :)

xoxo - Tiffany

tiffdoeslife:

How many calories do you need?
BMR is your basic metabolic rate, which is the amount of calories your body needs just to function if you were in bed all day. 
You do not want to subtract from the resting metabolic rate because that is the minimal amount without any exercise.
You would calculate the daily caloric need with activity level
Then calculate the caloric deficit
Then take away the calorie deficit from the caloric total
This leaves you with the daily amount of calories the person should consume.
Here is an example:
Let’s consider that a woman, based on the Mifflin-St. Jeor equation, needs 2450 calories/day to maintain her weight. Let’ say that she needs to lose weight and she agrees to lose 1 lb/week. She also agrees to exercise 3 times a week. For the sake of arguing let us talk about the nutrition part of the situation. I would love to understand in a practical way how to quantify this for a client. How do I create the deficit for her and ensures that she gets the amount that she needs to get?
We will call the lady Sarah 
Based on Sarah’s daily average expenditure she requires 2450 calories per day to maintain her weight. That is, she would eat 2450 calories a day and maintain the same activity level. 
Let’s say Sarah wants to lose 20 pounds in 20 weeks. This equals 1 lb per week of weight loss. Completing the Calorie deficit calculation, means she needs a calorie deficit each day of 500 calories.
20lb x 3500 (amount of calorie deficit to lose 1 lb of fat)
= 70,000 calories
70,000 ÷ 20 weeks = 3500 calories per week
3500 ÷ 7 days = 500 calorie deficit per day
Sarah needs to create a daily deficit of 500 calories. This is best worked out as a deficit of 250 calories from food (i.e. remove 250 calories from her diet) and 250 calories from exercise (burn 250 calories during exercise).
Because Sarah is not going to exercise every day, let’s use two different days as an example, as you said she wants to exercise only 3 days per week.
DAY 1 – reduce diet by 500 calories as no exercise on this day.
DAY 2 – reduce daily diet by 250 calories and burn 250 calories through exercise.
DAY 1 – 2450 – 500 calories = 1950.
Sarah must only eat 1950 calories per day on the day she does not exercise.
Then Sarah can create a diet for herself while “counting” the amount of calories up to the 1950 established amount.
DAY 2 – 2450 – 250 calories = 2200 of calories she can eat in a day
She must burn 250 calories to bring her down to the calorie total of 1950.
Diet – using above methods, Sarah creates a diet for herself allowing an intake of 2200 calories per day
You can use these calculators to estimate the calorie expenditure.
Physical Activity Calorie Counter http://www.acefitness.org/acefit/healthy_living_tools_content.aspx?id=9#sthash.sTxTS4sY.dpbs  
http://www.exrx.net/Calculators/Calories.html
http://calorielab.com/burned/
You will not be able to calculate an exact calorie expenditure for Sarah as this requires expensive lab equipment.
An example workout for Sarah to burn 250 calories:
(Let’s say Sarah is 150 lbs) http://www.acefitness.org/acefit/healthy_living_tools_content.aspx?id=9#sthash.sTxTS4sY.dpbs   
Running for 20 minutes at 6mph she will burn approx. 227 calories
+ 20 minutes of weight training = 68 calories.
Total calories burned = 295 calories.
Losing weight is a very simple math equation of the energy output needs to be greater than energy input. 
Let’s say Sarah has a 500 calorie coffee with whipped cream and eats a daily morning donuts. Instead of counting  all of her daily calories, she could simply implement holding the remainder of her daily foods stable and removing those two high calorie foods each day.
Or maybe she could change some of the foods she eats each day, instead of fried chicken, she could grill the chicken, instead of mashed potato with butter and cream, she could try a sweet potato. There are many ways you can help to make a diet more healthful and less calorie dense without counting calories.
But remember, not all calories are created equal. If you eat the right number of calories you need to lose weight but eat all junk, you will have less energy and motivation, leading to lower caloric expenditure and weight gain/maintenance. The key is to find balance. Eat foods that wont spike insulin levels, and aim for nutritious foods high in vitamins, rather than whatever hits your macro nutrient needs. You can use this calculator to find out what your macro breakdown should be.

tiffdoeslife:

How many calories do you need?

BMR is your basic metabolic rate, which is the amount of calories your body needs just to function if you were in bed all day. 

You do not want to subtract from the resting metabolic rate because that is the minimal amount without any exercise.

You would calculate the daily caloric need with activity level

Then calculate the caloric deficit

Then take away the calorie deficit from the caloric total

This leaves you with the daily amount of calories the person should consume.

Here is an example:

Let’s consider that a woman, based on the Mifflin-St. Jeor equation, needs 2450 calories/day to maintain her weight. Let’ say that she needs to lose weight and she agrees to lose 1 lb/week. She also agrees to exercise 3 times a week. For the sake of arguing let us talk about the nutrition part of the situation. I would love to understand in a practical way how to quantify this for a client. How do I create the deficit for her and ensures that she gets the amount that she needs to get?

We will call the lady Sarah 

Based on Sarah’s daily average expenditure she requires 2450 calories per day to maintain her weight. That is, she would eat 2450 calories a day and maintain the same activity level. 

Let’s say Sarah wants to lose 20 pounds in 20 weeks. This equals 1 lb per week of weight loss. Completing the Calorie deficit calculation, means she needs a calorie deficit each day of 500 calories.

20lb x 3500 (amount of calorie deficit to lose 1 lb of fat)

= 70,000 calories

70,000 ÷ 20 weeks = 3500 calories per week

3500 ÷ 7 days = 500 calorie deficit per day

Sarah needs to create a daily deficit of 500 calories. This is best worked out as a deficit of 250 calories from food (i.e. remove 250 calories from her diet) and 250 calories from exercise (burn 250 calories during exercise).

Because Sarah is not going to exercise every day, let’s use two different days as an example, as you said she wants to exercise only 3 days per week.

DAY 1 – reduce diet by 500 calories as no exercise on this day.

DAY 2 – reduce daily diet by 250 calories and burn 250 calories through exercise.

DAY 1 – 2450 – 500 calories = 1950.

Sarah must only eat 1950 calories per day on the day she does not exercise.

Then Sarah can create a diet for herself while “counting” the amount of calories up to the 1950 established amount.

DAY 2 – 2450 – 250 calories = 2200 of calories she can eat in a day

She must burn 250 calories to bring her down to the calorie total of 1950.

Diet – using above methods, Sarah creates a diet for herself allowing an intake of 2200 calories per day

You can use these calculators to estimate the calorie expenditure.

Physical Activity Calorie Counter http://www.acefitness.org/acefit/healthy_living_tools_content.aspx?id=9#sthash.sTxTS4sY.dpbs  

http://www.exrx.net/Calculators/Calories.html

http://calorielab.com/burned/

You will not be able to calculate an exact calorie expenditure for Sarah as this requires expensive lab equipment.

An example workout for Sarah to burn 250 calories:

(Let’s say Sarah is 150 lbs) http://www.acefitness.org/acefit/healthy_living_tools_content.aspx?id=9#sthash.sTxTS4sY.dpbs   

Running for 20 minutes at 6mph she will burn approx. 227 calories

+ 20 minutes of weight training = 68 calories.

Total calories burned = 295 calories.

Losing weight is a very simple math equation of the energy output needs to be greater than energy input. 

Let’s say Sarah has a 500 calorie coffee with whipped cream and eats a daily morning donuts. Instead of counting  all of her daily calories, she could simply implement holding the remainder of her daily foods stable and removing those two high calorie foods each day.

Or maybe she could change some of the foods she eats each day, instead of fried chicken, she could grill the chicken, instead of mashed potato with butter and cream, she could try a sweet potato. There are many ways you can help to make a diet more healthful and less calorie dense without counting calories.

But remember, not all calories are created equal. If you eat the right number of calories you need to lose weight but eat all junk, you will have less energy and motivation, leading to lower caloric expenditure and weight gain/maintenance. The key is to find balance. Eat foods that wont spike insulin levels, and aim for nutritious foods high in vitamins, rather than whatever hits your macro nutrient needs. You can use this calculator to find out what your macro breakdown should be.

tiffdoeslife:

Hey guys! So sweet miss Molly(wanderlust—suffering.tumblr.com) sent me this progress pic last week, but I’ve been so stressed and busy I haven’t had time to post it 😟 here it is now though! Just 2 weeks difference. Although I no longer offer a 2 week program, I do have online coaching, ebooks, and custom fitness or nutrition programs to help you see results, get on the right track, and learn healthy habits that will last a lifetime 👏 mytrainertiffany.com #fitness #healthy #eatclean #trainhard #exercise #wod #crossfit #hiit #before #absaremadeinthekitchen #weightloss #workout #testimonial #personal

tiffdoeslife:

How should you perform your warm up?

Stretching and warming up are not the same thing. People thinking that stretching is a warm up is a common mistake. But this is not the reality, and in fact, stretching before an activity is not doing much for you at all. Even worse, stretching before an activity can actually decrease your performance. Conversely, the goal of any warm up is to improve your performance and reduce risk of injury.

Studies have shown stretching before activity does nothing for the reduction of injuries. According to a study published in 2000 in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, injuries are believed to occur during the eccentric phase contraction. Eccentric contractions occur during a muscle’s normal range of motion due to heterogeneity of sarcomere lengths. If injuries occur during the normal range of motion, then why would increasing that range of motion prevent injuries? In addition, stretching even mildly can cause damage at the cytoskeleton level. So, it appears that stretching before activity is not going to help prevent injuries. So what is the answer?

The answer is simple. Warm up in a manner that is specific to the activity in which you plan to participate. Remember first that a warm up must actually make you warm and raise your heart rate. The goal is to slightly raise your body temperature, just enough so you break a sweat. The warm up must match the movements you will be doing during your more strenuous activity. If your workout calls for squats, then a good warm up would be bodyweight squats and monster walks using a resistance band. Both activate the muscles around the hip, knee, ankle, and trunk.

Some people are tempted to use the foam roller during their warm up, but the foam roller is best used after your workout. According to Dr. Kelly Starrett, foam rolling stimulates your nervous system to down regulate. Before you work out, you do not want your nervous system to down regulate. You actually want your flight or fight systems going. Save the foam rolling for after your training session. Better yet save your foam rolling for before bed to help you down regulate your nervous system and get to sleep.

By structuring your warm up and cool down in the ways described above, you will improve performance and reduce risk of injury.