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Diet Accompanied by exercise

8/17 9:11:57

QUESTION: Hey, my name is David. In the past two years I have really started looking at what I eat and what I should be eating in order to gain the results I want. What do I want? As a 17 year old senior who's tennis season is almost over, I want to bulk up a little and lose the fat. I weigh around 140 lbs. 5' 6". I actually don't look fat at all but my muscles aren't growing from weight training.  I was just wondering what I can do to get rid of some of the fat I do have and if there is way to do this while gaining muscle mass. I was kinda hoping to show off a six pack that is hiding under a layer of fat. But the other thing I wonder is how this will affect my muscle growth. Living in a home where the parentals don't understand the importance of a healthy diet is kinda hard. I try to clue them in but they like their eating habits just fine. At school I stick to skim milk and I lay off eating sweets and opt for fruits and veggies.
I am generally a pretty active person. I play tennis, I enjoy running, and I lift weights. What would you suggest to help me achieve the results I want? Thanks for your time!

P.S. One other quick question I had is about staying motivated. Sometimes it is really hard to say no to Dairy Queen and sometimes I like to put off exercising for "the next day." Is there any tips you have for overcoming these motivational hurdles?
ANSWER: Hey David,
Thanks for asking my advice.  I commend you on looking at what you are eating.  I played tennis in high school, but I had no idea that nutrition could be a factor in my performance on the court.  Your choice to avoid sweets, and opt for fruits and vegies is great.  Also make sure you are eating lean sources of protein such as chiken, fish, or turkey.  

You have mentioned 2 goals: lose body fat, and gain muscle mass.  In order to lose body fat you must perform cardiovascular exercise.  In order to gain muscle mass, weight training is needed.  You have asked if there is a way to lose the fat while gaining muscle.  Yes there is and I will tell you how.

First, perform your cardiovascular exercise on an empty stomach.  This exercise is not playing tennis.  If you try to play tennis without eating, you will eventually feel very weak and your swing will drop.  This is not a good idea for you mentally.  You want to feel strong each time you walk out onto the court.  Your 揷ardio?exercise will be something that you do specifically to burn fat.  It can be running, biking, an elliptical or stepper machine.  I would suggest running, as it will most directly translate to your tennis game.  Perform the cardio exercise for 30 minutes 3 to 5 times per week.  When you do this on an empty stomach your body will be utilizing body fat, as there will be no food for it to utilize.  This will take the fat off and begin to show the abdomen muscles.

Secondly, perform weight training intensely!  Most people in a gym never lift weights with enough intensity to gain muscle mass.  The intensity has to be enough to tear the muscle fibers and cause them to repair and grow stronger (and thus bigger).  Eat 30 minutes before you train with weights, and then eat again immediately after weight training.  You want your body to use the food to power your workout intensity, and then shuttle nutrients to the torn muscle fibers.  Work with weights 3 or 4 times per week.  I am guessing that you are currently breaking up the body parts into different workouts such as Back, Biceps, Triceps, and Shoulders, Chest, Abs, and Legs, or something to that effect.  This type of training ?intense ?with food before and after will build the muscle you desire.

Now, take a moment to review what I am asking you to do.  Ask yourself how important would it be for you to achieve the body you desire?  What would it mean to you?  How would it change the way your friends viewed you?  How would it change your self-confidence and self-esteem?  Would you be more outgoing?  Would you be more willing to talk to new people, and make new friends because you would have confidence in yourself?  For in the answer to these questions lies the solution to your final question on motivation.  Motivation comes from within oneself.  Many times people will say that they have come to me to 揼et?motivation.  I can抰 give motivation to anybody, because I do not have 揾is or her?motivation.  They have to create it themselves!  And thus you can create the motivation to achieve your goal.  You just need a REASON!  

Find the reason why you desire this change.  Write it out on paper and post it to your bathroom mirror.  Then take a photo of yourself as you are now and put it next to the reason.  Look at it each day and let it motivate you to do the hard work it takes to succeed!  If you get in touch with your reason to make a change, then when it becomes time to decide to exercise, or decide what to eat, you will make the right choice!  To sum it all up ?DESIRE!

And one last thing, it takes time.  Anything worth achieving takes time.  Give yourself a month of really dedicating yourself to this goal.  You should see results within 4 weeks if you try.   Well, I have given you a path to follow; now you must make the decision to do it.  If you so decide, then please let me know and I will also provide more details on exact calories, and foods to eat, as well as weight training programs for maximal muscle growth.

Best of luck,

Dr. Bret

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Wow. Thank you so much for giving me such a complete answer. I will definitely be using your advice. If you could provide more details on calories, foods, and weight training programs that would be excellent. Maybe it will help if I give you an idea of what I do now. I lift weights 3 days a week now. On those days I split up different sections of the body but I do abs every day that I lift. I am probably only getting in 10-15 minutes of running each day so I should probably increase that. (With the running, should it be fast paced or slow?) When I lift one day is set aside for chest, triceps, and abs. Another day is set aside for biceps, back, and abs. The last day is set aside for legs, shoulders, and abs. I actually just started this routine a couple weeks ago. Before then, I I worked an individual muscle each day. What I currently have to work with is a bench, dumbells, a "Schwinn Force" by the makers of bowflex, a barbell and an EZ bar. Your help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Hi David,
Thanks for providing me with your current routine.  As for the calories, foods, and weight training, here is what I would suggest:

First, train your abdomen as you would any other muscle group.  Train it hard and then give it rest so that it can build.  Many people over train the abs in the hopes that it will develop faster.  The abdomen muscles are the same as all the other muscles of the body.  They need to be worked intensely to create a stimulus to grow, and then they need rest in order to repair and develop.

Second, train the body parts you want the best results from first in your workout.  If abs are a top priority, then train them before going on to other body parts that workout.   Your breakdown of body parts is great.  Chest and Tris is a great combo, and so is Back and Biceps.  Legs and Shoulders is good, so you just have to decide which of those three workout you will continue to do abs with?  Any of the three is good.

Since I can抰 really show you exercise via e-mail, I am going to recommend a couple of books with great exercise ideas and photos.  Books I would recommend include Body-FOR-Life, by Bill Phillips (good photos of exercise to be done with minimal equipment), and Getting Stronger by Bill Pearl.   You may also want to go on the Internet and look at exercises.  Google exercise photos and you will get a whole host of sites with great ideas.  When it comes to weight training exercises they are all only as good as the intensity you put into them.  Find the ones that you feel work the best.  Those exercises that you can really feel the muscle working.

You have enough equipment to make up a lot of exercises for every body part.  As for the number of sets and reps ?try to do 3 to 4 sets of 8 to 12 reps for each exercise.  As for the number of exercise per body part ?do enough to fatigue the muscle, but do it with intensity.  Your overall workout should not take longer than 1 hour.  If it does then there is not enough intensity.  You should be pretty tired after about 45 minutes of weight training.

Now for the calories.   In order to build muscle the body needs calories.  30 minutes before you weight train eat about 300 calories.  Immediately after you weight train eat an additional 300 calories.  Throughout the rest of the day consume between 250 and 300 calories every 3 hours while awake.  This will mean you will be eating about 5 times per day.  But they are relatively small meals since they are only 300 calories max.  Also, make sure you are consuming enough fluid.  Water is the beverage of choice.  You need to be getting at least 60 ounces of water per day.

Below I have listed specific foods and have broken them into three categories, GREEN, YELLOW, and RED.  The green foods list is what most of your diet should consist of.  The yellow foods can be a part of your diet but not eaten too much.  The red foods are just bad for fat loss and muscle gain and should be avoided.  Many people will take one day per week and allow them selves to eat from the red foods list.  This is a good idea as it gives a mental break to the diet and will allow you to stay on track all the other days.

Beef, Maverick or Sirloin
Boars Head Cajun Style Roast Beef
Boars Head Canadian Style Bacon
Boars Head Chicken Breast
Boars Head Corned Beef Top Round
Boars Head Ham, Low Sodium
Boars Head Pastrami Turkey Breast
Boars Head Turkey Breast
Chicken, Breast, No Skin, Roasted
Pork, Tenderloin Only
Turkey, Breast, No Skin, Roasted

Fish, White
Lobster, No Butter

Cheese, Non-Fat/Low-Fat
Cottage Cheese, Low-Fat/Non-Fat

Boca Burgers
Egg Whites
Egg Beaters
Eggs, Hardboiled, No yolks
Frozen Dinners
Protein Powder

Apple Applesauce Banana Blackberries Blueberries  Cherries
Fruit Spread, 100% Fruit Grapes
Grapefruit, Pink Or White Kiwi Fruit Lemon Lime
Melon (Cantaloupe) Orange
Peach Pear
Pineapple Plum Strawberries

Cereal, All Bran Buds Cereal, Hi-Lo
Cheerios, Plain Couscous
Kashi Pilaf Oatmeal/Grits
Rice, Brown Quinoa
Wheat Bread/Pita Wheat Pasta Wheat Tortilla

Asparagus Broccoli
Brussels Sprouts Carrots
Cauliflower Celery
Cucumber Corn
Lettuce Onions
Salsa Snow Peas Squash Sweet Potato Tomato Zucchini

Black Beans Chickpeas Green Beans Kidney beans
Lentils Lima Beans
Navy Beans Peas
Pinto Beans Wax Beans White Beans

Milk, Non-Fat          Milk, Rice/Soy
Sour Cream, Non-Fat          Yogurt, Non-Fat          Yogurt, Silk Plain          Frozen Dinners          


1 Egg Yolk  (High in cholesterol & fat)
Cottage Cheese, 2% or Greater (high in fat)
Chicken, Dark Meat  (high in fat)
Turkey, Dark Meat  (high in fat)
Veal (high in fat)

Apricot  (high sugar content)
Bagels (high in carbs)
Mango  (high sugar content)
Cereals, Most "Adult" Types  (high in carbs and sugar content)
Figs  (high sugar content)
Fruit Cocktail (high sugar content)
Fruit Jelly  (high sugar content)
Pasta, White (high glycemic)
English Muffin  (high in carbs)
V8 Juice  (high sodium)
Kashi Cereal  (high in carbs)
Rice Cakes  (high in carbs)
Ice Cream, Diet  (non-nutritive)
Papaya  (high sugar content)
Sushi (high in carbs)
Watermelon (high sugar content)
Yogurt, Fruit Flavored (high sugar content)
Yogurt, Silk Soy, Fruit (high sugar content)

Chinese Food (high in fat and carbs)
Italian Food (high in carbs)
Mexican Food  (high in fat)
Milk, 2% (high in fat and calories)

揜ED FOODS?br> Alcohol
Bakery Items
Banana Bread
Battered/Breaded Foods
Bread Sticks
Cheese, regular fat
Children's Cereal
Chocolate Milk
Chicken Nuggets
Full Fat Cheese
Cool Whip
Corn Bread
Dairy Queen
Dried Fruit
Egg Yolks, More Than 1
Fig Newtons
French Fries
French Toast
French Bread
Fried Foods
Frozen Yogurt
Granola Cereal
Granola Bars
Grape Nuts
Hot Dog
Ice Cream

Below I have made an example meal plan.  It is a total of 6 meals of 300 calories each:
1 whole egg & 4 whites
1/2 cup oatmeal
cup All Bran Buds

3/4 cup 1% cottage cheese
1/2 cup low fat fruit yogurt

5 oz tuna canned in water
1 1/2 Tbsp light mayo
1/2 granny smith apple

PROTEIN BAR:          
(200-250 cal. & 20-30 gm protein)
1/2 granny smith apple

5 oz chicken breast
1 cup broccoli
1/3 cup brown rice

1 cup skim milk
Protein powder (20 gm protein)
1/2 cup berries

The running should be fast paced.  We call it High Intensity Training.  You may also want to do some intervals where you sprint for a minute and then jog slowly for a minute, and then sprint again for a minute, etc.  They are a killer!

I might want to add another day of weight training, especially, if after a few weeks you are not seeing any changes in the size or strength of your muscles.

I hope this helps to get you started.  I know it is a lot of information, so please do not hesitate to ask me any specifics if I was not clear on any part of it.  One last thing.  Take a photo of your self.  Then in 4 weeks take another.  Put the photos side by side any you will be able to see how you body is developing.

Keep me posted on your progress,

Dr. Bret

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