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Are You Intaking Enough Fiber per Day?

The amount of fiber you get per day is very important to living a healthy lifestyle and appropriate for a healthy digestive system. As you can imagine, it also helps you 💩.

If you read these posts, you’ll know I always talk about having too much of something or too little of something is never a good thing. You always need to find a balance. You can probably see where I’m going with this, but fiber is the same way. Too little fiber can cause issues and too much fiber can also lead to its own issues. You need to find the proper amount to eat per day.

Let’s go over why fiber is important, the different types of fiber and how much you need in your diet.

Why is Fiber Important

Dietary is a very important part of our diet. Without fiber in our diets it can lead to symptoms like constipation or even diarrhea.

Fiber has also shown that it can be protective against colorectal cancer as well (1). Including fiber has also been shown to help with improving blood sugar levels and improving cholesterol levels as well. If you want to learn more about this check out this article and how fiber can improve cholesterol.

Which Fiber Should I Get More Of?

There are different types of fiber, but the 2 you’ll probably see the most is Soluble and Insoluble fiber. 

Soluble fiber gets dissolved in water. It also can bind to cholesterol and sugar which slows down carbohydrate digestion.

Insoluble fiber absorbs fluid. This type of fiber makes stool larger and easier to pass as well. 

Having both fibers in your diet is important. As having too much of one and not the other will cause issues. Most sources of fiber will usually have a little bit of both in there, so this isn’t something you would need to map out. However, here is a picture of foods that are Insoluble and Soluble: 

Soluble vs insoluble fiber

 

How Much Fiber Do I Need?

Getting enough fiber is important but also consuming too much can be an issue too. So how much fiber should you get?

The general rule is to intake 10 grams of fiber per 1000 calories. For example, if you’re intaking 2000 calories a day, you should be getting at minimum 20 grams of fiber a day.  

However, eating more than 70grams a day is too much and usually not advised. 

If you’re concerned and about how much fiber you should be getting a day though, you should speak to your doctor.

Final Thoughts

Fiber is an extremely important part of our diet. Lack of it can cause minor issues like constipation and diarrhea but can potentially lead to other serious complications if it’s consistent enough. Including it can also help with some issues you may be currently facing like high cholesterol levels or blood sugar levels. 

Too much fiber can also cause it’s own problems as well, so consuming the right amount of fiber per day is important. 

You do need to intake an adequate amount of each fiber to get the overall benefits of it. Having a balanced and sustainable diet is important in achieving this. 

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References:

  1. Masrul M, Nindrea RD. Dietary Fibre Protective against Colorectal Cancer Patients in Asia: A Meta-Analysis. Open Access Maced J Med Sci. 2019;7(10):1723-1727. Published 2019 May 30. doi:10.3889/oamjms.2019.265

Should You Be Including More Fish in Your Diet?

The western diet specifically lacks fish. I’ve met so many people who don’t eat any fish by any means. If I ever travel to Europe or other places, fish is the main staple in their diet though. I personally grew to like fish more and more throughout my adulthood and now I try to have at least 1 meal that includes fish a day (usually a can of tuna, but it’s something!). 

It not being a staple in an ordinary western diet can cause issues, but also like anything too much of something good can be a bad thing as well. We’ll go into the benefits and dangers of fish and what might be the sweet spot for you.

Benefits of Fish in Your Diet

Great Source of Protein

It’s very easy to lack protein in an ordinary diet. Eating fish is a great source of protein and can also be a relatively cheap option for protein as well. 4oz of Salmon cooked has about 25g of protein. 1 can of Tuna Fish contains about 20g of protein. 

If you’re ever in need to get more protein in your diet, fish can be an easy option. 

Omega-3s 

Fish has many important factors too, this all comes from the macro and micronutrients the fish contains. Different fish will have different macro and micronutrients but one of the staples of fish is the fact that it has omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids can help with many risk factors in your life. This can include, lowering blood pressure, raise your HDL cholesterol level (good) inflammation, and even blood clots. 

I’ve had many issues with joint pain in the past and any time I’ve either started consuming more fish or taking omega-3 or krill oil supplements, the issues seem to have subsides and any joint-related injuries tend to have dissipated. Now, that’s just my account. This doesn’t mean the same will apply to you. However, if you’re having joint issues and don’t have any issues with eating fish or taking supplements, it doesn’t hurt to try. 

Cons of Too Much Fish

As we know, too much of a good thing can always be a bad thing. Even though most of us probably don’t intake enough fish, let’s also go over the detrimental factors of eating too much fish can have on us.  

Too Much Fish Oil

Too much fish oil / omega-3s is can have negative effects on your health. It can cause many things like acid reflux, hypotension (low blood pressure), diarrhea, nose bleeds, and even high blood sugar. 

Ideally, you would want to consume a maximum of 5,000mg of omega-3s per day. Anything over that (unless prescribed by a doctor) won’t really benefit you in many ways. 

Mercury Poisoning 

Depending on the type of fish you’re eating, you would need to look out for mercury poisoning. Some fish sources are high in mercury and others, not so much. Here is a chart that describes fishes and their mercury level

Mercury Levels in Fish and Suggested Servings

As you can see, some of the common fish most eat is on the medium to the low side. However, it’s still something to keep a note of.

Personal Story:

I personally eat canned tuna fish about 4-5 days a week. I’ve gotten my mercury levels tested and they were in the normal range.  

Final Thoughts on Fish in Your Diet:

Fish is not the most common food source in most people’s diets, especially in a western diet. Fish can have many benefits it that can overall improve your quality of life. I would highly recommend if you’re not eating fish to start doing so (unless you’re not eating for medical reasons). If you’re someone who doesn’t eat fish due to the ‘fishy’ taste, you can always find recipes and ways to cook fish that will make it taste much better. 

As mentioned above, I love canned tuna fish. My favorite brand of tuna is the Rio Mare brand (affiliated link). It’s a bit on the expensive side, but it’s so good and probably the best-canned tuna I ever had. I’ve even had people try it who hate tuna fish and still love this brand. Sardines are another cheap and great fish option that you can incorporate into your diet.

Of course, eating too much fish can cause issues too. So be cautious of how much you’re actually intaking.

If you’re still not interested in eating fish, I would recommend getting an Omega-3 supplement.  Supplementing may be worth it if you’re not eating the actual food itself

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Jocko GO – Review

In this review, we’ll be going over the Jocko GO energy drink and if it can help benefit you!

Like Jocko MOLK, this product is created by Origin Maine and Jocko Willink.

If you read my other review about Jocko MOLK (protein supplement) then you may already know about Origin Maine and Jocko Willink. If you don’t, here is a quick overview to get you familiar with the company and its mission.

Origin Maine is a company that sells multiple different and innovative items. From GI’s to fitness equipment and now nutritional supplements. Origin Maine is famously known for is that all items are made in America. It’s rare to find a company that makes all of its products in America. So if you’re looking to support this company, check out their site for other items especially if you’re into martial arts. 

In this review of Jocko GO, we’ll be going over the Sour Apple flavor and breaking it down into the following: About the Product, Nutrition Facts / Ingredients, taste, effectiveness, and price. 

About the Product

Jocko GO is an energy drink that is meant to help keep you focused on your tasks and to provide a pick-me-up/boost of energy. Whether your focused task is work, a workout, an exam, etc. this is supposed to help get the job done. The product boasts itself as being a nootropic as well to help with focus. Let’s go over what’s actually inside the product. 

Nutrition Facts / Ingredients

Calories 5
Carbs  <1 gram
Vitamin B6 0.5mg
Vitamin B12 100mcg
Choline 100mg
Magnesium 50mg
Sodium 20mg
Potassium 50mg
Acetyl L-Carnitine 500mg
Caffeine 95mg
Alpha-GPC 100mg
Theobromine 100mg
L-Thenanine 95mg
Bacopa Monnieri 50mg

 

Let’s start with the calories and macronutrients on this first. Very low calories and less than 1 gram of carbs. So if you’re on a keto diet, this is a perfect drink for you as it lacks a crazy amount of sugar like other energy drinks like a standard RedBull or Monster. 

Micronutrients

Moving on to the micronutrients, the first thing is that this drink is packed with vitamins B6 and B12. The b6 ranges at about  30% daily value and the B12 is at a 4100%+ daily value. You’ll notice plenty of energy drinks have a mixture of the vitamin B complex. This is no different as vitamin B complex has shown to help aid with promoting energy. 

Choline you’ll notice is usually paired with other vitamin B complex as they may serve similar functions.

Magnesium deficiency can lead to feeling fatigued overall, and to be honest, plenty of us don’t get enough of it in our diet. Even though it’s not much, a little something is better than nothing. 

There is a bit of sodium and potassium, both essential electrolytes that help your body and can promote energy in general. 

Acetyl L-Carnitine can help with improving your memory and other mental skills overall. 

The good ol caffeine is sure to give you a boost of energy overall as well. If you’re sensitive to caffeine though, you may want to stay away from this product. 

Alpha-GPC is also good for memory and other mental functions

Theobromine is also shown to help promote energy as well

L-Thenanine has been shown to help with increased focus and immunity. 

Bacopa Monnieri can help with staying focused and help with brain function overall

Overall, the nutrients in these products are great. There isn’t anything unnecessary in here or anything considered ‘unsafe’ that you would need to be worried about. This drink in terms of nutrients probably comes closer to Monster than it would to Redbull. However, Jocko GO packs more into it with overall fewer calories and other ingredients. 

jocko go ingredients 

Nutrition Facts / Ingredients: 5/5

Taste

The taste for Jocko GO’s Sour Apple flavor is nothing short of great! For a drink that doesn’t have any carbs and few calories, you think it would taste pretty bland. Most likely due to its Monk Fruit extract, it actually tastes pretty good. 

In comparison to other energy drinks like Redbull or Monster, they do taste better, but in comparison, those drinks do have more sugar and other ingredients in there to make them taste so good. 

I’ve personally tried almost all of the flavors, and I would have to say my favorite is probably the Dak Savage one. I haven’t had an experience with any flavor though where I felt I couldn’t drink it because it tasted bad. 

Overall, the product has a great taste especially considering its low calories and sugar. 

Taste: 4.5/5

Effectiveness

So Jocko GO is advertised to help increase energy and focus. Does it actually deliver on that though?  

After about 10 – 15 minutes of consuming Jocko GO, I definitely start to notice a bit of a mood uptick. As someone who actually has trouble concentrating and staying focused, this product helps a lot with staying focused on the task at hand. Granted, some it could be a placebo effect, but considering the ingredients in the drink itself, it doesn’t surprise me the drink at hand is helping with my focus.

I’ve also used Jocko GO as a pre-workout too, and it’s great! If you’re looking for something a bit milder but still packs a good punch, this is a great product to use before a workout. 

If you’re looking for another pre-workout, I highly recommend checking out my review on Outwork Nutrition’s pre-workout. 

Effectiveness: 4.5/5

Price

Jocko GO goes for 35.00 for a 12 pack of cans. This is close to about $3 for a 12oz can.   Compared to other products of similar stature, Jocko GO is definitely on the higher side of pricing. Whereas other products are around $20 for a 12 pack of cans (~$1.70 per can of 10oz).

This is probably the biggest downside to the product overall, but is it worth the price?  For what you’re getting out of it and considering its low calories and its effectiveness, I think it’s worth it but I would hope they still lower the price a bit in the future.

Price: 3/5

Jocko GO Review and Final Thoughts

Jocko GO is a great energy drink and has can be used in any scenario where you need a pick me up. You can easily buy it off Amazon (affiliated link) or on Origin Maine. You can’t really go wrong with any of the flavors as they’re all fairly good and low in calories which is perfect for anyone wanting to get a boost of energy without the cost of having extra calories. The main downside to this drink is mainly the price of it. Even though I think it’s justified due to its nutrition facts and ingredients, it’s still fairly pricey compared to its competition though. My final review score for Jocko GO is 4.25/5. 

 jocko go review score

 

Are There Any Benefits to Extreme Diets?

Extreme diets tend to seem like it’s a fairly dominant within the fitness community. You’ll find someone who looks ‘healthy’ or is in good shape and plenty of times, they’re on a fad/extreme diet.  Usually, this correlation makes it very easy to see if you need to get in shape or be ‘healthy’ then you need to follow an extreme diet. 

First, let me define what is an extreme diet in this context. How I define an extreme diet is a diet that usually tends to cut out major macronutrients or food groups to be healthy. 

Now, we know this is simply not the case overall. We know you can create a perfect diet for yourself without going crazy and cutting out macronutrients or food groups.

Even with this knowledge, can extreme diets provide any real benefits? Or are they usually more harmful than good?

Appealing to People Who Want to Get into Fitness

I don’t think I’ve ever encountered someone who when they first started to diet or get into shape, didn’t try some type of extreme/fad diet. When I first started to work out and bulk, it had to be all ‘clean food’ and when I was cutting, it had to be low carbs.  From trial and error and plenty of research, I realized I didn’t have to do this anymore. 

There is something about extreme diets that bring in new people to get into shape. This is probably because most may think that extreme diet = extreme results. Again, we know that’s not true. Plenty of extreme diets can actually cause other issues down the line due to a lack of micronutrients. Unless you’re properly supplementing, most extreme diets can start causing some sort of deficiency. 

I will give credit that extreme diets tend to bring in new people which is always great. I do think though that newcomers should be educated though that extreme diets aren’t necessarily needed though.

Sustainability

To me, this is probably where extreme diets can either be truly beneficial or can lag your results and only make you frustrated through the process. 

People who are educated about extreme diets, sometimes know that it’s not needed for them to be healthy. Why do they keep doing it though? Simply because it’s sustainable for them

There are plenty of people that having the choice/option to eat whatever they want as long as it fits into their macros, which actually causes them to not sustain their diet because they easily go off the rails.  Extreme diets, tend to cut out a majority of the items you may normally binge on, so people who do follow an extreme diet, may find it more sustainable to follow.

Now, this can also cause issues too. I’ve noticed others who go on extreme diets simply can’t keep up with it for a couple of weeks and then start to binge. They feel guilty, go back on the extreme diet, and then again can’t keep up with it. This process is unsustainable and will leave a person feeling defeated. In this case, a more flexible diet might be a better approach. 

If you have trouble sustaining your diet due to too many choices of food items and having it be overwhelming, then an extreme diet may be more beneficial to you.

However, if you feel like you keep yo-yo dieting from an extreme diet, maybe you need to have a more flexible diet. 

I wrote this article on how to create a sustainable diet for you that goes over these concepts more. If you ever have trouble sustaining your weight loss, check out this article. 

Can be Useful for Specific Underlying Conditions

First, I’m not a doctor. You should consult your doctor if you plan on changing up your diet in any regards that can impact your health.

From what I’ve witnessed, extreme diets can sometimes be beneficial for underlying conditions coupled with a healthy supplementation and being at a healthy weight. For example, someone who is type 2 diabetic may be better off going on a more low carb diet/ keto diet. I’ve heard other stories of people who use the carnivore diet for their underlying conditions. 

I don’t wish to dwell on this subject too much as again I’m not a doctor and this isn’t my place to say whether an extreme diet can benefit you and your underlying condition.  These are just situations i’ve witnessed or heard from others. Again, if you have any underlying condition and plan on trying a more extreme diet, please consult your doctor. 

A Tool to Meet Your Goals

Even though you can probably achieve your goals without an extreme diet, that doesn’t mean you won’t get results from an extreme diet. You can see some great results and lose weight (specifically not saying fat because at first, most water weight sheds off first) fast in some cases. It can be a great tool to utilize to meet your goals and potentially help with sustainability or lose those last extra pounds fast. 

Final Thoughts

Extreme diets can have some benefits that can help you. The main issue is that too many people preach that it’s the only way to get results, which isn’t true. I do think it can potentially benefit you depending on if you have issues sustaining a more flexible diet. It also can help bring more people into the fitness community in general, which is always a good thing. However, more people should be aware of the potential side effects of extreme diets and the fact they’re not needed. They can be used as a tool to meet your goals, but there is no one diet to cure-all. If you plan on changing your diet and want to go on a more extreme diet, I would highly advise you to consult with your doctor first before making any changes.  

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Jocko MOLK Protein – Review

This review will be covering the Jocko MOLK protein supplement created by Origin Maine and Jocko Willink.

Origin Maine is a company that sells multiple different and innovative items. From GI’s to fitness equipment and now nutritional supplements. One of the things Origin Maine is famously known for is that all items are made in America. Especially when it comes to clothing and accessories this is something very rare to see, but in this case, we’ll be mainly going over the protein supplement.

Jocko, who isn’t for the Sugar Coated lies, has a great supplement that is a bit different from others but has an amazing flavor and gives you a good bang for your buck. 

This review will specifically be going over the Chocolate Peanut Butter flavor.  This Jocko MOLK review will be breaking the protein down by Nutrition Facts / Ingredients, taste, mixture, and price. Let’s dig into it.

Nutrition Facts / Ingredients

From the image above you can see the Nutrition Facts as listed:

  • Calories: 110
  • Fat: 2
  • Carbohydrates: 1
  • Protein: 21

Serving Size = 1 scoop

Right off the bat, this a low carb protein drink like many others. Even though most protein drinks are low in carbs, this protein is a bit lower than most. Whereas something like Optimum Nutrition, for example, has about 4g of carbs. If you’re a fairly carb-conscious person, this is a great protein for you.

In terms of ingredients, there isn’t anything too crazy being done except for the inclusion of Monk Fruit Extract.  Monk Fruit Extract not only is safe and fine for you, it also contains zero calories and is fairly sweet. This is probably how the protein itself can contain such a low amount of carbs while also maintaining a fairly good taste. (more on that later)

Another great thing about this product is that it contains: No Soy, No rGBH. It does contain peanuts, milk, and eggs. Now unless you have a severe allergic reaction to milk and you’re just lactose intolerant, you may still be able to take this protein due to it containing digestive enzymes and specifically containing Lactase. It also contains other digestive enzymes like Lipase (used for indigestion), Amylases (helps for indigestion), Protease 1 and 2 (helps break down protein). It also contains a probiotic called L. acidophilus (good for gut health and helps produce lactic acid)

Overall, the nutritional content is pretty solid with this product. It also doesn’t include much useless junk in it which an always a positive! 

jocko molk nutrition facts

jocko molk nutrition facts jocko molk nutrition facts

Nutrition Facts / Ingredients : 5/5

Taste

This review is going to cover the Chocolate Peanut Butter flavor. However, I’ve also tried the Chocolate Mint, Vanilla, and Chocolate flavors. The Chocolate Peanut Butter flavor is phenomenal! (Especially when taken with milk). It’s up there with some other good flavored proteins like Legion and Optimum.  If you’re looking for a great tasting protein shake, you got one! 

Now, this won’t affect the review, but the Chocolate Mint is probably my 2nd favorite then being Vanilla and Chocolate. 

There isn’t too much to delve into the taste, but it’s awesome!

Taste: 4.5/5

Mixture

The mixture is always an important factor when it comes to protein. No one wants things big ol clumps of protein all over their bottle. 

It’s unfortunate that this has been one of the biggest falls of the protein to an extent. Now if you’re the sane person and you mix your protein in a protein bottle, then you’re good to go. No chunks and has is pretty easy to go down.

Now if you may have forgotten your protein bottle or it’s still sitting in the dishes dirty, you may need to mix it with a glass and spoon. If you’re going down this route, it’s still not that bad. There will be some clumps but overall it should be something still fairly easy to get down without much of an issue

Mixture: 4.5

Price

If ordering this on Amazon (affiliated link) this will cost you $45 for a container. Now how does this rank against other proteins? 

Let’s take Legion Protein. This protein comes in at $40 on Amazon (affiliated link). With one less serving size as Jocko MOLK (31 Serving Size). So you can assume that for Jocko MOLK it’s about $1.45 per scoop and Legion is $1.33 per scoop. So Legion is a bit less

If you look at Optimum Whey Protein, it ranks in at $30 on Amazon with a serving size of 29.  This would be about $1.03 a scoop.

Overall, the price is definitely more on the higher end of things, granted not by much but it makes a difference in the long term if you have a protein container a month would come out to $540.

Price: 3.5

Final Thoughts

My overall review of  Jocko MOLK is a great protein overall. With its awesome ingredients and great taste, it’s a great protein and you’re supporting a great company as well. It is a bit more on a higher scale overall in terms of price, but also, not by much. If you like Jocko and want to support the company, then you’re getting awesome and high-quality protein. If you’re trying to get something a bit cheaper, you may want to look for something else.

You can buy Jocko MOLK here from Amazon (affiliated link). You can also go to Origin Maine’s site and get it there as well. 

If you’re looking for a good pre-workout that will get you fired up, check out my review on Outwork Nutrition’s Preworkout.

Overall, I’m giving this protein a 4.4/5. (4.4/5 blobs?)jocko molk review score

How Much Protein Do I Need per Day?

The amount of protein you intake per day can alter your results whether your goal is to gain muscle or lose fat. Protein can play a vital part in both preserving muscle mass if you’re trying to lose fat. It can also help you build muscle if you’re in a caloric surplus.

Many people too often consume less protein then they really need. On the other hand, sometimes you have people who eat too much protein per day and it’s not really doing much for them. We’re going to go over just how much protein you need per day and how to properly allocate protein in your diet.

How Much Protein per Day?

Taking directly from my, Why are Macros Important article:

Protein is possibly one of the most important macronutrients. Protein is responsible for building, restoring, and maintaining muscle. It’s also responsible for creating healthy blood cells, enzymes, hormones, and much more. Protein is made up of amino acids.

There are 2 categories of amino acids, essential amino acids, and nonessential amino acids. Essential amino acids can’t be made by the human body. You can only get them from food. Non-essential amino acids can be made by the human body.

The recommended amount of protein to make sure you’re not in a deficient is 0.8 grams per kg or 0.36 grams per pound. For someone who works out regularly you want around 1.5-2.4 grams per kg or 0.65-1.1 gram per pound. Protein is broken into 4 calories per gram.

So if you’re let’s say 150lbs (68kg), you should be having around 130-140 grams per day. You can also always use the Macro Calculator to get your other Macro Nutrients

What Happens if I Don’t Eat Enough Protein

Intaking an adequate amount of protein is highly important. There are multiple things that can happen if you aren’t intaking enough protein per day:

  • Muscle Loss
  • Weakness
  • Potentially Weaker Immune System

What Happens if I Intake too Much Protein

On the other hand, taking too much protein can lead to some other issues. If you’re intaking too much protein, it can start to break down into sugar and can lead to weight gain. This can be an even bigger issue if you’re on the ketogetic diet considering this can throw you out of ketosis. 

Don’t Intake All Your Protein in One Meal

Having more then 20g of protein per meal can increase amino acid oxidation.(1)  This isn’t always the case, but it’s best to eat around 0.2g/lb/meal. Note: This may be more then 20g of protein per meal, but that’s okay. 

In my general opinion, as long as you’re not trying to get a majority of your daily protein in one meal and have it broken up into 3-4 meals a day is ideal for optimization.

Final Thoughts

Protein is essential to building and maintaining muscle as well as overall body functions. Try to intake around 1.5-2.0 grams per kg or 0.65-1 gram per pound. You should divide your daily intake of protein into about 3 -4 meal (or more) meals per day. 

Use the Macro Nutrients to figure out the rest of your macro nutrients

References:

  1. Schoenfeld BJ, Aragon AA. How much protein can the body use in a single meal for muscle-building? Implications for daily protein distribution. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2018;15:10. Published 2018 Feb 27. doi:10.1186/s12970-018-0215-1

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Do You Need to Track Macros and Calories Every Day?

One of the main issues I’ve heard from clients over the years is that they don’t want to track macros and calories every day.  I get it, it seems like a fairly daunting practice to do every day.

You’ll know, I always advise people to track their macros and calories. Especially if you’re trying to lose weight easily and effectively. I also talk about changing your mindset on food, and why tracking is an important part of that process. Just because it’s an important process though, does it mean you need to track macros and calories every day though? Let’s go over quickly why tracking your macros and calories are important and then we’ll dive further into that question.

Why is Tracking Macros and Calories Important?

Whether you’re gaining weight, losing weight, or even maintaining weight, tracking macros and calories is an important factor in all of these. We know that macros in general are something important to look out for. Calories are as well when it comes to weight management. 

When it comes to weight management, it mainly comes down to CICO (Calories in and calories out). This is true for gaining, losing, or maintaining weight. If you intake more calories than you’re burning, you’ll gain weight. Whereas if you’re burning more calories than you’re intaking, then you’ll lose weight. Intake just as much as you burn, and you’ll be maintaining weight. 

Why Tracking Calories is Important 

Tracking calories is important because depending on your goal, you’ll need to track to ensure you’re hitting your goals of calories and macros that will determine if you hit your goal weight. If you have a calorie range of 1700 and you just assume you’re eating 1700 calories a day and you gain weight, you’re going to think that you need to lessen your caloric amount. In reality, though, you might be eating more than you were expecting because you weren’t tracking your calories or macros.  Then you might really start eating way less than you need to and you’ll drop weight, but you also may start dropping lean body mass as well. 

Why Tracking Macros is Important

Macros are extremely important to track as well. When losing weight, the main goal should be to drop weight while limiting the amount of lean body mass being lost. Losing lean body mass is inevitable when losing weight but you would want to limit that. One of the main components of that is by eating enough protein throughout the day. Getting an adequate amount of protein throughout the day when cutting will help you preserve your lean body mass as much as possible.

Trying to calculate your macros? Check out the Macro Calculator here

Tracking when Starting Out is Extremely Important

If you’re just starting out, tracking macros and calories is extremely important to find out where you’re at and how your body is responding to the new calorie intake. Maybe you hit your target of 2000 calories a day for a week but it hasn’t made a difference. GOOD, now we know we can effectively cut some calories and try again the following week. We do know that 2000 calories weren’t getting the job done and losing at the pace you wanted to lose. You can cut down to 1900 calories and maybe your body starts dropping .25-.5 lbs by the end of the week.  

Only Eating What You Need to Eat

One of the main reasons I advocate to track macros and calories besides the reasons mentioned above is that you should only be eating what you need to be eating. If you’re on a cut, and you can lose a steady weight of 1900 calories a day, there is no need for you to eat less than that. Why would you eat at 1600 calories a day unless you wanted to really speed up the process but this will also leave you being cranky and potential to lose more lean body mass? The same goes for gaining weight and bulking, if you can gain a steady weight at 2400 calories a day, why jump up more then that? You can eat 2800 calories but you’ll only gain more fat in the process and not tack on that much more muscle. 

Trying to find out how much you need to eat? Check out the Calorie Calculator here.

Do I Need to Track Macros and Calories Every Day?

Ah yes, the question we’ve all been waiting for. So the question is, do you need to track macros every day? thinking-about-tracking-calories-and-macros

Short Answer: No

Long Answer: Well, it depends on your goals.

When You Don’t Need to Track Every Day

If you’re following the same diet and you eat the same things every day, it does become rather useless to keep on tracking the items you’re eating. If you intake something that you normally wouldn’t you can probably gauge if you’re going over and under pretty easily.

The more time you spend tracking calories, the better you get at gauging if you’re over or under for your maintenance. It honestly becomes second nature at some point.

When You Need to Track Every Day

I would say though if you’re planning on just dropping weight for a competition or for a very specific goal, it might be worth to track every day to keep yourself in check. This will also keep you prepared and if you won’t have any slip-ups.

Another reason to be tracking your calories every day is if you aren’t making progress towards your goal. You may need to reevaluate your caloric and macro goals then. After you reevaluate, you would need to start tracking your calories and macros again at least for a week to see if everything is matching up and you’re making progress towards your goal now. 

Final Thoughts

Tracking calories and macros is relatively important, especially when you’re first starting out with weight management. Whether if you’re trying to gain muscle, lose fat, or even maintain. If you’re starting with a new caloric/macro range it’s best to track everything to make sure the range is good for you and you’re meeting your goals. If you’re following the same diet and you’re eating the same thing every day, you can usually stop tracking until you hit a plateau.

However, if you’re someone who is doing a competition or trying to hit a specific weight goal, it might be best to track your weight every day to not have any slip-ups and stay on track. 

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Outwork Nutrition Pre-Workout – Review

The Outwork Nutrition pre-workout is a new supplement from the new brand by Dr. Layne Norton. Layne Norton is a highly respected Doctor in his field and is credible for his great coaching, workout programs, and new app Carbon Diet Coach.

Outwork Nutrition’s main focus is making science-based supplements. Already off the bat, this is something that intrigues me and should intrigue others. Many supplements have components in them that aren’t needed and are claimed to have renowned effects on you. From all I’ve seen on Layne, he’s always offered non BS advice. I’m glad to see his supplement brand follow the same motto. 

This review will specifically be going over the Tropical Candy flavored pre-workout.  We’ll be breaking it down by ingredients, taste, experience, and price. Let’s dig into it.

Ingredients

Here are the current ingredients inside of the Outwork Nutrition pre-workout:

  • Citrulline Malate
  • CarnoSyn Beta-Alanine
  • Caffeine Anhydrous
  • Rhodiola Extract (Rhodiola rosea)(root)
  • L-DOPA (From Mucuna pruriens)(seed)

Note: There aren’t calories labeled on this from what I can see, but if I had to make a guess, it would probably be about 10 calories.

outwork-nutrition-preworkout-ingredients

None of these ingredients listed is anything bad to take and what I like about it is that it’s pretty simple and straightforward. It’s not loaded with a whole bunch of nonsense that you don’t need. The blend in this isn’t anything too different then you may see from other pre-workouts, however, the Rhodiola Extract is probably the one thing that stuck out to me that I haven’t noticed in other pre-workouts. Rhodiola Extract has benefits that can help improve exercise performance and endurance exercise (1).

If you’re someone who doesn’t like caffeine or doesn’t take it, then maybe this isn’t the product for you as it contains 300mg of caffeine (a cup of coffee is about 95mg).

Outwork Nutrition’s main focus is on science-based supplements. I really enjoy this product foremost because of the lack of bloat it has. All of the ingredients it does have been proven to help with training and focus which is what a pre-workout should be.  

Ingredients: 5/5

Taste

Before we dive right into the taste, let’s go over the serving size. A serving of the Outwork Nutrition pre-workout is 2 scoops and it’s meant to be taken with 8-12oz of water 30 minutes before training. Anytime I take a pre-workout, I always do half the serving. This is only because of some bad experiences I’ve had in the past, so I usually go with 1 scoop and ramp it up to 2 throughout time, or once I feel like it’s not doing enough. 

Anyways, back to the taste! So my first experience is that I only used 1 scoop or half the recommended serving size. Immediately, it smelled great. Once I started to take my first sips, I was truly surprised this was a pre-workout, it tastes amazing! For only 1 serving, I was expecting it to be fairly watered down or just not taste great but even with the 1 serving, it was awesome. 

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Throughout the week, I progressed to the full serving and it still tastes just as great. Obviously, the taste is a bit stronger but it’s one of the better pre-workouts I’ve tasted. Just to state again, this was the Tropical Candy flavor. There is another flavor as well for Blue Raspberry that I haven’t tried yet, but I do plan on trying soon. 

If you’re looking for a great tasting pre-workout, you’ve found one! This is without a doubt one of the better tasting pre-workouts compared to others on the market. 

Taste: 5/5

Experience

As mentioned above, I’ve tried this pre-workout but a half serving and full serving. I’m going to base the rest of the review on the full serving as that is the way the product should be taken.

Prior Workout 

The first couple of times I took Outwork Nutrition, for some reason I didn’t get the full tingling effect that I normally get from a pre-workout (caused by the beta-alanine which is present in this product). Personally, I’m fine not feeling the tingles but I thought it was different to just not feel it. (More on this later). Prior to working out, I would say I felt how I normally do but I was a bit more focused and prepared to workout. I started to get myself worked up more than I normally would. 

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The Workout

Once the workout actually began, I was hyped! I was getting after every set and exercise and was overall really feeling good with the workout. Now I always have on and off days. Some days I feel amazing others, not so much so I thought to myself I’m just having a good workout today.

Throughout the week, the same trend continued. Every workout I did I was really into it once it started and my focus and energy level were great throughout the whole workout. By the time the workout was done, I was starting to burn out a bit but that didn’t feel like something from the pre-workout not lasting or anything but me just giving my workout a lot more and feeling the fatigue settle in 45 minutes in.  

Back on to the tingles, so throughout the week, I started noticing a bit more, but it was never anything crazy. I’ve taken pre-workouts where the tingling sensation is actually unbearable but this pre-workout I hardly felt it or didn’t feel it at all. 

The workout experience that the Outwork Nutrition pre-workout provides is substantial. I haven’t had a long string of workouts where I felt that great and hyped throughout each one in some time. Outwork Nutrition not only kept me focused on my workout but it kept me energized through it and had me pushing harder than before. 

Experience: 4.5/5

 

Price

Outwork Nutrition’s price goes for 40 USD. With shipping and so on, came out to close to 48.99 USD for me. (NYC area).

Now I do want to say this, the $40 mark is actually the same for a lot of pre-workouts with a similar serving of 20-25 scoops. I think the only issue is the shipping price that jacks it up almost another 10 dollars. Granted, this depends on where you live and isn’t something that the company is charging extra from you because they feel like it. However, I do think if Outwork Nutrition later branches out their products to sites like Amazon, it will get more consumers because it would probably be cheaper in terms of shipping. 

Update: Now available on Amazon! (Affiliated link)

Price: 4/5

Outwork Nutrition Pre-Workout Overview and Final Thoughts

Outwork Nutrition’s pre-workout is one of the better pre-workouts I’ve taken in a long time. Its flavor is incredible! There isn’t any bloat of ingredients with this product. The ingredients that are in there are super effective and will give you a great workout and experience. The price is only steep due to the shipping (Again depends on where you live). However, I’m sure Outwork Nutrition will eventually branch off and sell their products on other sites in the future.

If you’re looking for a new pre-workout, you have to give this a shot. I have no doubt you’ll have a great experience with it. The lack of bloat will keep your mind at ease knowing you are consuming stuff you don’t need. 

I took the Outwork Nutrition pre-workout both in the morning and afternoon. In the morning I feel like I had even better results because I was on an empty stomach. If you’re looking for a pre-workout to get you up in the morning, this is for you. If you want to read more about why you should workout early in the morning, check out this article

Note: I’m not affiliated with Outwork Nutrition or Layne Norton in any way. This product is amazing and the future is bright for Outwork Nutrition if they stay on this trend. You can check out their products here: https://outworknutrition.com/

You can also buy it now off Amazon as well for potentially cheaper shipping. (Affiliated link)

Overall: 4.8/5

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References:

  1. Noreen EE, Buckley JG, Lewis SL, Brandauer J, Stuempfle KJ. The effects of an acute dose of Rhodiola rosea on endurance exercise performance. J Strength Cond Res. 2013 Mar;27(3):839-47. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31825d9799. PMID: 23443221.

Tips to Creating a Sustainable Diet

A sustainable diet is one of the keys to having major success with your diet and overall health. If you’ve read my other articles on How to Sustain Weight Loss and  Principles to Create the Perfect Diet For You then you know I always preach about it and why it’s important. If you haven’t read those articles, I would suggest it as they both go into detail on why having a sustainable diet is so important. I go into some information on creating a sustainable diet, but not too much detail. This post will go into more detail about creating one and common issues people have with creating one.  

When your diet is sustainable, it means it is consistent and it’s also easy for you to follow. Many people fail to stay consistent with their diet because it isn’t easy. Why is that though? It’s easy to say that you’ve missed a couple of days of “eating right” and then now it’s hard to get back on. However, the point I want to make though is that your sustainable diet should be your day to day diet that’s not hard to get back on. 

It should be something that you just jump back on the next day instead of having to force yourself to get back on track. So how do you create a diet like this? Let’s go over some ways you can do so.

Calculate Your Calories and Macros

If you don’t know your calorie or macro intake, I would suggest you find that out. Depending on your goals, knowing your macros and calories can play a very important factor in achieving them.  Whether it be losing, gaining, or sustaining weight. Once you figure that out, you will easily find your baseline and can go from there. For example, you may want to lose weight, but for you to lose weight you need to eat 2000 calories a day.

You may not know it, but you may be eating well over that. So knowing your caloric range and keeping track of it for a period of time is important. I say a period of time because you don’t always need to track your calories and macros. It definitely plays an important part in the beginning but once you’re on a sustainable diet, you will easily be able to know if you’re overeating or undereating. I digress though, you need to find out your calorie and macro range to have a baseline to go off of.

Flexible Dieting, Extreme Diet, or Something in Between?

A sustainable diet is unique to you. Even though it is unique to you, you may be still following a base diet. Maybe you’re doing keto? Maybe you’re doing Paleo or flexible dieting? If you haven’t done though, you’re probably wondering what is best for you.

I’m a person that believes there is a dichotomy in everything. I believe that when it comes to dieting too.  You go on any extreme diet, you will most likely be lacking in something. Now that doesn’t mean you always will be. You can be a vegan and supplement properly and you’re good to go. I go into more detail about this in my article Supplements vs Whole Foods, Does it Make a Difference? 

However, I always think having a good balance of a diet is best. What does that mean though? A balanced diet, in my opinion, is something that properly distributes macros and calories over the whole day. As well, is packed with foods that have great sources of vitamins and minerals. Even though that’s my personal philosophy, a diet like that may not be sustainable for you.  You may find it easier to do intermediate fasting. You may find something like keto easier for you, which brings me to my next point.

Use Fad Diets to Create a Sustainable Diet

If you’ve had trouble sustaining your diet, I think the best thing for you to do is to do experiments. You most likely wouldn’t be reading this if you didn’t have a sustainable diet. 

All these fads diet out there are just tools for you to use. Bruce Lee has a quote that says, “Absorb what is useful, reject what is useless, add what is essentially your own”. I believe this is especially true when it comes to diets. You should look into fad diets and note what is sustainable for you and implement it. 

Using myself as an example, my main issue with my diet was actually not eating enough or not getting enough protein. I also had a problem getting certain micronutrients.  So I borrowed some elements of a Paleo diet into my own. I stopped taking so many multi-vitamins and tried to get more micronutrients from food. This also led to me getting more protein and eating more. It’s also the food I enjoy which is a huge plus. 

I want you to look a some of the most common fad diets:

  • Keto – Low carbs, high fat, and protein (Protein should be at an amount that benefits you. Use the Macro Calculator to find your correct protein intake.
  • Intermediate Fasting – Eating only in the morning and evening
  • Paleo – Eating whole foods and eliminating processed foods, grains, dairy products, etc. 
  • Flexible Dieting – Eating what you want as long as you consistently hit your macros.

Look into all these diets and see what you like out of each one. 

Maybe you like the idea of flexible dieting, but have trouble controlling how much you eat throughout the day. So doing something like intermediate fasting + Flexible Dieting is best.

You may want to implement some of the principles of a Paleo diet while also doing Keto at the same time. 

It’s up to you.

Look at the pros of each one and what’s easiest for you to follow on a day to day basis and implement it. If you must, implement it gradually. 

Note: You may have noticed I’m not naming things like a vegan diet or carnivore diet. The reason being is because I don’t believe those are healthy diets and I wouldn’t recommend them to people. I don’t have references for it as of now and will write more about it in the future. Nonetheless, it’s not something I would recommend unless you’re absolutely supplementing correctly.

I may be missing other diets, but they all follow fairly similar guidelines to the ones I mentioned above except for some minor changes.

Write Down What Makes You Feel Good

This is a big one for me.  Dieting is more sustainable if it makes you feel good and energetic. When you’re eating foods, I want you to write down how it makes you feel afterward.

Do you feel satisfied and a good full after you ate that piece of Salmon? Awesome, write it down. Maybe that donut made you feel bloated and lethargic, probably not best to keep incorporating them. 

This is kind of like an elimination diet but you’re mainly doing it for how it makes you feel on a day to day basis. With any new food I eat, I will always be mindful of how it makes me feel within the next hour. If I’m feeling tired or low on energy, it’s probably not something I’ll continue to eat. However, if I feel great and even have energy afterward, then I’ll incorporate it more. 

Write down what you eat for a couple of weeks. Even take note of how your body is digesting it. If all is good, keep it in your diet. If it makes you feel bad or your body can’t process it well, maybe it’s best to scrap it.

Final Thoughts

If you’ve followed some of the tips above, you should be able to create a sustainable diet for yourself.

If you’ve found your caloric and macro range. You’ve also found foods that you like to eat within that range and you’re eliminating foods that don’t make you feel great overall. 

Following those steps will allow you to have a sustainable diet overall and be consistent. You’ll notice that it won’t be hard for you to fall back on your diet after a crazy party you may have had on the weekend. 

Finding a balance is key to a sustainable diet. Note, anything to any extreme end may be more difficult to follow. 

 

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How to Sustain Your Weight Loss

The ability to sustain your weight loss is probably one of the most important things when it comes to weight management. The principles of losing weight isn’t something that’s too difficult to grasp, However, the problem most people face is that they go down in weight and jump back up in weight. Usually, this is accompanied by extreme diets. Sometimes it’s not though. Let’s go over how to sustain your weight loss and why it’s the key to success.

Why Sustain Your Weight Loss and Why it’s the Hardest Aspect

Many people at some point came to a realization that they’re overweight and they go on a diet and drop the weight and they look great! Maybe holidays come around or something happens when you kind of lose control a bit. That then bleeds over in time and months past by and then you’re back to where you started. Now you need to diet again. That alone is a pretty daunting task in and of itself, especially for people who drop 30+ pounds. This is also known as ‘yo-yo’ dieting.

The problem is, eventually if you keep going back and forth with losing weight and gaining and so on, you eventually may get burned out and discouraged and just say “I’m done with this!”

To be honest, it’s understandable. Even if the principles of losing weight can be easy, the process still takes patience, time, and discipline.  

Now, imagine if you dropped the weight and you were able to sustain it? You would be happy with yourself overall. Maybe you’ll do mini bulks or drop weight here and there sometimes, but it’s much better than having to try dropping a huge amount of weight gain. Keeping at a steady weight and maintaining it will make you healthier and happier. It will also make you feel in control of your diet and yourself.

So you want to sustain your weight loss, how do we go about that?

Identifying Why You’re Yo-Yo Dieting

Like all issues, you need to discover and identify why it’s happening.

There may be so many reasons for yo-yo dieting. Maybe you’re stressed at work. The holidays could be coming up and with all the family gatherings, you just don’t have time to train or eat correctly. It could be many things, but you need to identify what’s causing it. 

Once you identified the issue, you can now tackle it head-on.

Sustain Your Weight Loss by Changing Your Mindset on Your Health

Depending on what your issues are and why you’re yo-yo dieting, it’s most likely that your health is taking a back seat for a bit.

Let me ask you though, where would you be without your health? Whether it be physical or mental health, you don’t get too far without either of those things. 

I believe 85% of the week should be dedicated to doing at least something to keep yourself in shape or better your overall health. Whether this is eating at a caloric range that helps maintain weight or just to keep training normally. You should always make it a goal. I set this goal for myself and I do believe this is a reason why I never had an issue sustaining weight. 

So where’s that other 15%? Usually, this will probably be a day off of some sort. I’ll be honest, my Sunday’s (Especially during Football season) doesn’t consist of much except cooking and watching and screaming at my TV.  We all need a break here and there, so I think this ratio is personally good. 

Let me ask you though, have you done something today that has a positive impact on your physical or mental health? If not, will you be aiming for tomorrow? 

Setup something for tomorrow and make it a priority to do at least one positive thing to improve your health. If it helps, even mark it down in your calendar. Set it all day if you must. As long as it keeps you in check. 

If you’re stuck and just don’t even know where to start, start as simple as going for a quick run or even running in place or doing some jumping jacks. It ain’t much, but it’ll be something that benefits you. Sometimes starting off slow may be best to get into a rhythm.

Check out these articles if you’re looking more into changing your mindset on food or changing your mindset on training.

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Consistent Training and Programming Leads to Sustaining Your Weight Loss

Okay, so you identified why you’re yo-yo dieting. You’ve made a conscious decision to change your mindset on your health as well and that it should take priority. Now what?

Now we need to get into the training.

The definition of training is: is teaching, or developing in oneself or others, any skills and knowledge or fitness that relate to specific useful competencies.

Now I just want to point out, I’m saying training and not exercising. The reason being is because training has a goal you’re working towards. You can be training for a marathon. Maybe you’re training to reach a specific deadlift weight. The point being is you should start training and not exercising.

Training will keep you goal-oriented and focused. You’re more likely to keep up with a training regimen than to just exercise and call it a day. 

If you don’t know what you want to train for, take a look at what you think would be fun for you. For me, weight lifting and powerlifting are fun. For you maybe running is fun and something you can do consistently. Whatever works for you, look into a training regimen for it. Most importantly, look into a training regime that is sustainable and will make you consistent.

If you want, contact me and we can talk about creating a training program for you. 

Consistent Dieting and Finding out Your Calorie and Macro Intake 

I did an Instagram poll recently about what people have trouble with the most. Most people voted on dieting/nutrition vs training. Now dieting is a bit more difficult to be consistent with and it makes sense that this is probably why people struggle to sustain your weight loss. Especially if you’re doing something that you’re unhappy with. 

I believe a reason there is a struggle to sustain your weight loss is that the diet you’re following is not sustainable. A diet should be easy for you to follow and sustainable. I don’t like extreme diets for the main reason that it’s very restricting in what you eat and will tend to lead to you most likely falling off the bandwagon.

Now, this isn’t always the case. I also know plenty of people who do keto or vegan diets and they can easily sustain it and achieve their goals. In cases like this, the more restricting it is for some people, the better.

You need to choose a diet for you that makes you happy and you can follow easily. If you don’t know what diet that is, explore your options. Experiment and see what works for you.

I do want to mention though, with nutrition regardless of your diet, what it comes down to losing weight is calories in and out. If you intake more calories than your burn, you’ll most likely gain weight. Simply, if you’re intaking fewer calories than you’re burning you’ll lose weight.

If you’re a bit lost about calorie control I would recommend checking out this article. You should also look into macronutrients too to learn more about intaking the correct proportions of foods to optimize muscle gain and healthy habits.  

You can also check out the free calorie calculator to find out your caloric intake. 

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Final Thoughts

To sustain your weight loss is a difficult task. What happens is a lot of people succumb to yo-yo dieting. However, identifying what causes you to yo-yo diet is one of the main factors of stopping it. Once you identify the issue, you need to identify how to solve it. In most cases, things like work get too busy or you may have just too many stressors going on. Now, sometimes other things take all of our time in life and I get that.

A change of your mindset on your health might need to be made and realize that without your health, things will probably go downhill in the long run. 

Once you identified these issues and made a mindset shift, you can now go on finding a training regimen to stick with and figuring out your calorie/macro intake that works for you. If you feel like an extreme diet is best for you to sustain, more power to you.

Sustainability should be what is easy for you to follow and makes you happy. Whether it’s an extreme diet or something flexible, do something that makes you happy and is easy to follow. 

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