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ZODIAC

Found 40 results

  1. Fitness enthusiasts have always been crazy to discover a new supplement in the market that will help them with those 'magical' results that they are looking for. The same old supplement launches with a new name and a new tagline, these enthusiasts can then be seen rushing to the supplement stores and try these latest products in the market. However, this is where they are wrong. The real results will not come from supplements; they will come with some real nutrition and some real hardcore training in the gym. Thus, I am not going to propagate yet another new supplement launched in the market, but I am just going to tell you about the 3 supplements that can help you in your journey of fitness: 1. Creatine Monohydrate (c) Getty A well-researched supplement out there in the market for decades; creatine monohydrate works wonders for natural lifters. It wouldn't be wrong to say that it is the best alternative for steroids for natural lifters. Time and again studies have suggested that creatine monohydrate helps with strength as well as hypertrophy in trained athletes. You can either load it with a higher dose or just take a maintenance dose of 3 to 5 grams daily. I would recommend a maintenance dose as it is a little easy on your stomach. Loading creatine with high doses may give cramps and diarrhoea to a few people. The best thing about creatine is that it is one of the cheapest supplements available in the market and available in almost all the big brands. Another factor that makes it important to supplement creatine from an outside source is that it is very difficult to consume the desired level of creatine from natural food sources like chicken and fish. You will have to consume kilos of non-vegetarian food daily to fulfil the desired quantity of creatine from natural foods. Apart from the muscle building benefits, creatine monohydrate has shown well-documented research on brain function and memory. 2. Vitamin D (c) Getty Almost 80 per cent, if not less of the total population of India has a deficiency of vitamin D. In my own experience, I have never seen a blood report of my client whose vitamin D levels were sufficient or even at the margin. Almost all of them have extremely low levels of vitamin D when they come to me initially. Ideally, in India, we should be getting enough sun exposure as the whole country gets enough sunlight throughout the year. However, we deliberately avoid sun exposure worrying too much about the skin tanning issue. Low levels of vitamin D is associated with decreased athletic performance, lethargy, decrease testosterone production and various other issue that have an impact on your health and performance. Thus, it is smart to include a vitamin D supplement in your daily routine. If you think that the multi-vitamin that you are already consuming would do the needful, you are wrong. That multi-vitamin would not even have half the daily recommended dosage of vitamin d in total. Therefore, supplement a vitamin D pill separately from your multi-vitamin pills is a smart move. 3. Fatty Acids (c) Getty Majority of the cooking oils used to prepare food for human consumption is loaded with Omega 6's. The human body does need omega 6 as well but only in a limited quantity. High intake of omega 6's in the diet is the root cause of inflammation and consequently heart disease as well. Sufficient amount of omega 3's in the body will help in decreasing the omega 6 levels as well. Omega 3 helps your body with stronger joint as well as immunity. This will eventually lead to better performance as well. Though fatty fish is a good source of omega 3, it is good to include an omega-3 supplement to meet the desired quantity of daily intake of omega 3.
  2. The fitness industry has always been dominated by fads and myths. Whenever people hear something new, they themselves start adding their own beliefs to it and which ultimately becomes a trend. The latest to join this trend is a Gluten-free diet. I am sure 5 years back hardly anyone of us had even heard this name, 'gluten sensitivity'. However, today you will find people discussing that they have eliminated all the gluten from their diet. They would argue that gluten is bad for their body and they have seen drastic results since they left consuming gluten foods. However, the only gain that I can see is for the people who manufacture the gluten-free products. Read on to know more. However, the aggressive marketing campaign of companies that produce gluten-free products and the general misconception amongst people has led to a time that even a healthy and fit person is choosing a gluten-free product to stay on the safer side. Suddenly, gluten is being portrayed as some kind of an enemy and that you need to stay away from gluten in general. Gluten & Gluten Intolerance Gluten is nothing but a naturally occurring protein found in wheat and wheat products. It is also used in baking as it helps the dough to rise and adds to the viscosity. If you look at the above statement, you must be wondering that "it doesn't sound like something bad to me then why people are afraid of it?" Well, in general, you don't have to be. Not more than one per cent of the world's population suffers from Gluten intolerance or celiac disease. © Getty Images People who suffer from gluten sensitivity cannot digest gluten and can get symptoms like diarrhoea, skin rashes, fatigue, headache etc. Now before you diagnose yourself of having a celiac disease by yourself, let me inform you that there is a test available in the labs and you can get yourself tested before you claim to be gluten sensitive. It is not a mosquito bite that you can diagnose on your own by looking at it. I've seen people diagnosing themselves of having gluten sensitivity because they suffer from poor digestion and constipation. Though the reason could be lack of enough fibre in their diet they still leave gluten. Not because they are gluten sensitive but more because its in trend and sounds cool to be on a gluten-free diet. The Gluten-Free Campaign If you notice, there hasn't been any significant rise in the population that suffers from gluten sensitivity statistically. The only significant rise I can see is in the profit margins of the companies that produce these gluten-free products. Since people are demanding more gluten-free products, these manufacturers are offering various varieties to meet the demand. Well, at least the genuine one per cent who actually suffer from celiac disease have surely benefitted from this as they now have more choices available to them when they visit a grocery store. All thanks to the people who are self-diagnosing their gluten sensitivity. © Getty Images Gluten-Free Products Majority of the gluten-free products contain some form of additives to have the same level of viscosity and taste. They are loaded with synthetic sugars or fats making them a bag full of extra calories. You just buy a product when you see the words 'Gluten-Free' in the bold. However, what you don't see is the extra additives that these products contain. For example, when you choose a gluten-free biscuit from a store, it might contain more number of calories than a regular biscuit that has gluten. Now if you aren't really a gluten sensitive person, it doesn't make any sense to spend more for a product that has unnecessary loaded calories with no extra benefit to your health. Be Smart Don't just follow the fads and trends blindly, that's all I am asking you to do. If someone says that he has given up gluten and seen drastic changes, he might be genuinely suffering from celiac disease. It doesn't mean that you too have to give up gluten to experience the same changes in your body. Every individual is different and so is the solution for the individual problem. Anuj Tyagi, author of this article, is a Certified Sports Nutritionist and Therapeutic Exercise Specialist from American Council on Exercise (ACE). Now an Online Health Coach, he is also a Chartered Accountant by education. You can connect with him through Instagram on:- https://www.instagram.com/sixpacktummy_anuj/
  3. Protein is known as the king of macronutrients. You will see people ranging from the least informed to the most informed sections of the fitness community stressing on the importance of protein intake. Your gym guru will tell you to eat protein all day and consume boiled chicken and steamed fish for the thin skin whereas an informed coach will give you a particular intake to hit for the day. © Getty Images And there will be some misinformed sections still suggesting that it will make your liver and kidney health go bad. In this piece, I am going to cover some pointers established by the researches and findings by studies done on protein intake in strength athletes, bodybuilders, and healthy population: 1. You need to consume 1.2 to 1.6 grams of protein per kilo of your body weight to retain lean body mass in a normal healthy population and avoid the risk of sarcopenia due to old age. 2. To maximize adaptations to resistance training aka lifting weights, individuals need to consume protein in the range of 1.6 to 2.2 grams per kilo of body weight when not dieting, i.e. eating in a caloric deficit. 3. There is no anabolic window that requires you to run to the locker room and gulp down a protein shake right after your last set. As long as you are eating adequate protein for the day and evenly distributing it in meals, you need not worry about the anabolic window. © Getty Images 4. If your goal is maximal muscle gain, it is a good idea to split your protein intake into meals containing 0.4 to 0.55 grams of protein per kilo of body weight into 4 to 5 meals per day. That means, a daily protein intake of 1.6 to 2.2 grams per kilo of body weight. 5. When eating in a caloric deficit aka dieting, a higher protein intake of 2.3 to 3.1 grams per kilo of Fat-Free Mass (FFM) is suggested to retain maximal lean body tissue or muscle mass. Note that this is fat-free mass and not total body weight. 6. There is no maximum protein your body can digest in a meal. It is always better to split the protein intake into 4 to 5 meals for the day but this frequency can be lower or higher depending on other lifestyle factors. In the end, it comes down to what suits you better. © Getty Images 7. Long-term high-protein diets in the range of 2.4 to 3.3 grams per kilogram of body weight do not have detrimental effects on blood lipids, liver or kidney function in the healthy resistance training population. 8. Athletes on high-protein diets reported more dietary satisfaction, better mood, adherence, and higher muscle retention during a fat loss phase when compared to those on lower protein diets. To Sum It Up: - Protein is not harmful to your kidneys and liver if you are otherwise healthy. - It is better to split your protein intake throughout the day for maximum muscle building. - During a muscle building phase, protein intake of 1.6 to 2.2 grams per kilo of body weight is sufficient. - During a fat loss phase, higher protein intakes in the range of 1.8 to 2.4 grams per kilo of body weight is beneficial. - A higher protein diet is absolutely safe and may have certain benefits in certain situations. References: 1. Phillips SM, et al. Protein "requirements" beyond the RDA: implications for optimizing health. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2016 May;41(5):565-72. 2. Morton RW, et al. A systematic review, meta-analysis and meta-regression of the effect of protein supplementation on resistance-training-induced gains in muscle mass and strength in healthy adults. Br J Sports Med. 2018 Mar;52(6):376-384. 3. 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 Feb 27;15:10. 4. Helms E, et al. A systematic review of dietary protein during caloric restriction in resistance trained lean athletes: a case for higher intakes. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2014 Apr;24(2):127-38. 5. Aragon AA, et al. International society of sports nutrition position stand: diets and body composition. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2017 Jun 14;14:16. 6. Antonio J, et al. A High Protein Diet Has No Harmful Effects: A One-Year Crossover Study in Resistance-Trained Males. J Nutr Metabolism. 2016 Sep 20; 9104792. Author Bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company and the founder of Mars Nutrition, a nutrition supplement company. Both his companies are geared towards providing you with the right information and products without any false or fake claims. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram.
  4. Sleep is very important for human function. Not just from the bodybuilding perspective but also from the perspective of good health and performance. © Getty Images Poor sleeping habits can not only sabotage your fitness goals but it will also be harmful to your overall health in the long run. Now, there are various sleep boosting supplements available out there in the marking claiming to be effective sleep enhancers but I am going to discuss only the ones that actually work. Disclaimer: None of these supplements is a pure recommendation. They are just suggestions. Consult your doctor before taking any of these. 1. Magnesium Magnesium performs various essential biological functions including neurotransmitter synthesis. However, due to poor eating patterns people these days fail to take the recommended daily dosage of magnesium through diet. This eventually leads to various behavioural changes like stress and anxiety. Research conducted at the University of Geneva established a possible correlation between magnesium levels and sleep quality. In this research, subjects who supplemented with magnesium and whose magnesium levels were higher in the blood were able to have a more restful sleep as compared to people who were deficient. Thus, magnesium supplements can actually help you to enhance your quality of sleep. Start with a small dosage of 200mg to see the tolerance of your body and then increase the dosage according to your needs. 2. Ashwagandha According to research published in U.S national library of Medicine, Ashwagandha leaves contain 'triethylene glycol' which is a compound that has been found very useful in inducing sleep in humans. Another important finding of this study was that supplementing ashwagandha also increases the quality of sleep as subjects who took Ashwagandha supplements were able to go in the 'deep sleep' mode. Another advantage of Ashwagandha as a sleep supplement is that the body does not become addicted to it. You can stop taking Ashwagandha once you don't feel the need to take it anymore. © Getty Images 3. Valerian Valerian is a sleep-boosting herb that is more commonly used in the United States and Europe. However, these days you can find valerian herb supplements in the Indian online market too. According to a study published in the US National Library of Medicine, valerian has proven benefits to enhance the quality of sleep. These benefits come with no side effects like morning hangovers. Valerian is a potent herb thus you want to make sure that you start consuming it only in small amounts. 4. Melatonin Melatonin is a common over the counter drug that is generally prescribed to get rid of jet lag and to manage any kind of sleep disturbances. It is helpful in managing unbalanced circadian rhythms from jet lag. According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, evidence exists to prove that melatonin may reduce the time it takes for people to fall asleep. However, melatonin is not a supplement that you can play around with. If you are taking concentrated melatonin alone, make sure to start with a low dosage. Compound supplements that contain melatonin as one of the components contain melatonin in small doses only which you may not worry about. Though the above supplements can help you to increase the quality of your sleep, it is always better to let your body do its routine activities without any supplements. Use any of these supplements to manage your sleep and discontinue when you feel that your sleeping cycles have become better. Anuj Tyagi, author of this article, is a Certified Sports Nutritionist and Therapeutic Exercise Specialist from American Council on Exercise (ACE). Now an Online Health Coach, he is also a Chartered Accountant by education. You can connect with him through Instagram on:- https://www.instagram.com/sixpacktummy_anuj/
  5. I recently read an interesting comment on a Facebook post saying that every second person on the street is a fitness expert today. As absurd and ridiculous as it may sound, it is unfortunately true. Today, every person who hits the gym and manages to lose some fat or gain some muscle becomes a guru instantly. Add to that the influence some people may have due to the nature of their work, and you got a boiling hot disaster recipe. Here are some examples of these common disasters you may be following as a fitness enthusiast: 1. Actors As much as they would be in shape or transition with drastic transformations between movies, you've got to understand that they get paid to look a certain way and present a peculiar physique for a film. They might not always do it the right way or the safe way. 2. Fashion Models These are again that lot who get paid to look a certain way. And they take it to such an unhealthy extent that they sometimes starve, forcibly puke out food from their bodies or do hours and hours of cardio at a stretch to look skinny. Most of them even end up with eating disorders and looking like a hanger with clothes on the ramp. Fitness advise from them? No, thank you. 3. Bloggers These are the kind of people that companies, who want to push out useless products, reach out to. They will write a post or shoot a video or put an amazingly awesome visual and then insert a 'promo code' towards the end. You fall for it and pay for the product. The company pays these bloggers. And the vicious cycle continues. Most of the time these products are useless supplements like fat burners, herbal teas, meal replacement shakes. Read: The 'ONLY' supplements you will ever need. 4. The Bro At The Gym Signs to identify this bro: a. Sips on BCAAs at the gym b. Constantly talks about bodybuilders and compares his physique to their c. Carries five different recovery and intra-workout supplements with him (do not worry, he will show it to you) d. Preaches you should only eat clean and eat boiled chicken e. Wears a tank top all the time f. Wears a back supporting belt for doing bicep curls with 10-kilo dumbbells See this guy? Stay away from him. 5. Your Neighbor Your neighbour pretty much has an opinion and expertise on all the topics in the world, and fitness is at the very top of it. They claim that they have the knowledge of what to eat, how to control blood sugar, how you should go for a walk early in the morning for fat loss, and many more ignorant claims like these. Exchange a hello once in a while but never discuss your fitness regime with them. Unless they are a practitioner in the industry. Author Bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company and the founder of Mars Nutrition, a nutrition supplement company. Both his companies are geared towards providing you with the right information and products without any false or fake claims. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram.
  6. The financial year end is here and you would be stuck in the office for long hours neck deep in work. You would barely be getting enough sleep let alone the time to go to the gym. via GIPHY Here is what usually happens during such time, you end up gaining weight, your waistline increases horizontally and you lose the motivation to go to the gym altogether. Well, guess what? If you are gaining a lot of weight and getting fatter during this time, it is YOUR fault. via GIPHY Yes, you read that right. Now, I am not here to blame you. Rather, I am saying that it is you who has control over these things. If you are smart enough, you can manage your fitness just right at this time and get back to progress as soon as the workload drops. 1. Add Some Activity To Your Sedentary Routine via GIPHY Most jobs require you to sit all day long and this drops your activity all day long. You can include very simple things like taking the stairs in place of the elevator, getting up from your desk whenever you get a chance and get a 5-minute walk, and so on. Just increasing this activity can help you burn 100 - 200 extra calories a day. 2. Get In A Quick Workout Session via GIPHY Cannot get to the gym? No problem. Understand that during this stressful time, your goal is to maintain and do enough. Do simple things like having a quick 15-min workout in the morning by doing 50 push-ups and 50 body squats. It is not comparable to the gym but it is something. The extra benefit being you will feel fresh and have a great start to the day. 3. Stop Mindless Binging via GIPHY I have worked in a corporate structure and they do little things to make your life a bit more comfortable there. And yes, most of this comfort is adding to your waistline. I have seen pantries filled with biscuits and chips and most employees walking to the pantries and getting these things to the table and mindlessly eating them. One simple thing - Out of sight, out of mind. Do not stock your tables with these high-calorie foods as you never know you may end up eating a 1000 extra calories a day. 4. Use Low-Calorie Beverages via GIPHY At times when you are stressed out, you do feel the need to eat or drink something. Instead of going with the juices loaded with a lot of calories, you can pick low-calorie beverages like salted lemonades, lemon sodas with salt, diet coke, green tea, or black coffee. These little things will simply help you maintain your fitness during these stressful times and you would not go down that road where you start ignoring your health and pile on a ton of weight in the future and regret it. Author bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company and the founder of Mars Nutrition, a nutrition supplement company. Both his companies are geared towards providing you with the right information and products without any false or fake claims. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram.
  7. We humans always do things to move forward. Our technology gets better every passing year. Our daily essentials are better than what they were a few years ago, even our cars and bikes have gotten better, proving that we aim for betterment. In fitness, sadly, we tend to take two steps forward and three steps back. New data and hundreds of scientific studies emerge everyday disproving the old beliefs held by the bodybuilders of the past and present. Still, people do not want to use their brains and simply buy into the hype. © MensXP Spoiler alert: It is not those magic supplements or magic workouts making the bodybuilders huge and jacked. Here are some fitness trends that should have stopped in 2018 (at least, stop them in 2019): 1. Muscle Confusion Workouts Your muscles are smart. If you do the same workout, they won't respond. Switch your exercises every four weeks. Your muscles won't understand how to respond. They will grow then. This theory is as good as saying, study Chemistry for a Math test. Your brain will be confused and you top the class. Plain stupid. Muscles grow primarily through mechanical overload. To grow muscle, you have to become strong. © MensXP If you switch your exercises every 3-4 weeks, you are picking a new movement. You need time to adapt to the movement. After some time you will gain strength. When that time comes, you will do the same stupidity and switch exercises. 2. Stop Buying BCAAs & Fat Burners We all want results quickly. Just a couple of years before 2010, when Internet education was not much, this prominent scam was running rampantly. Someone from Nigeria was dying and of all the people they knew, wanted to give you the money they had in savings. Some even millions of dollars. The catch was that you needed to send them some $10,000 so they could pay the taxes and transfer fees. Funnily enough, many people willingly jumped into the scam. Why? Simply because they were promised to become rich very quickly. The same thing goes with these so-called magical supplements. They promise you overnight results. Burn fat overnight. Get jacked overnight. People shout back, 'Take my money.' Time and again, data has shown that these supplements do nothing at best. There is data suggesting BCAAs could actually lead to muscle loss. Still, people would want to buy it. © MensXP If you really want to invest in supplements, read this piece. 3. Cut Out Carbs From Your Diet Carbs raise insulin. Insulin makes you fat. Carbs are evil. Carbs are everything that's wrong with humanity. Carbs cause cancer, etc. All this stupidity is spewed by certain 'experts' who believe they know everything about nutrition based on articles published by a journalist who has a company thriving on lying to people. Suddenly, these people become gurus and have a herd of sheep worshipping them. What really matters for weight loss? A sustained calorie deficit. The laws of thermodynamics dictate changes in body stores and weight. Eat carbs or do keto, does not make any difference. Pick a diet that helps you adhere to a calorie deficit. There is no one-size-fits-all. So, if you think you need to stop eating carbs to lose weight and you actually enjoy eating carbs, do not go down the ketogenic rabbit hole. I hope this article speaks to you and calls you out on the bullshit you have been listening. Spreading bullshit is just one part of the problem. Accepting and following the bullshit blindly is a bigger problem. Author bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company and the founder of Mars Nutrition, a nutrition supplement company. Both his companies are geared towards providing you with the right information and products without any false or fake claims. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram.
  8. After taking a crucial 2-0 lead in the five-match series, the Indian cricket team appeared to have a gala time, as former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni hosted his teammates for dinner at his lavish seven-acre farmhouse, ahead of the 3rd One-Day International (ODI) in Ranchi. The Indian cricketers were seen enjoying food in a special area of the farmhouse that resembled nothing less than a grand event at a luxurious wedding. There were chandeliers, candles, huge curtains and a massive table to ensure Dhoni's teammates had a great time under the starry night. Great night with the boys at mahi bhais place last night. Good food, fun chats all around and great energy. Perfect team evening ð®ð³ðð. @msdhoni @imkuldeep18 @RishabPant777 @yuzi_chahal pic.twitter.com/6Xfc4rK7Xl — Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) March 7, 2019 And, the Team India stars, too, paid their gratitude to MSD and Sakshi Dhoni for hosting them for the great supper. Virat Kohli Skipper Virat Kohli shared an image from the evening on Instagram. He captioned it by saying: “Great night with the boys at mahi bhais place last night. Good food, fun chats all around and great energy. Perfect team evening”. Thank you for last night @msdhoni bhai and @SaakshiSRawat bhabhi âºï¸ð®ð³ pic.twitter.com/80BOroVvze — Yuzvendra Chahal (@yuzi_chahal) March 7, 2019 In another picture shared by Yuzvendra Chahal, the Indian leggie was seen in the company of the entire squad alongside their support staff. “Thank you for last night @msdhoni bhai and @SaakshiSRawat bhabhi,” Chahal captioned the image. Bhabhiji ruining our fitness levelsðð¥ð½ Super fun evening with fam-jam ! Thank you @msdhoni and @SaakshiSRawat for hosting us # goodtimes @imVkohli @imkuldeep18 @yuzi_chahal pic.twitter.com/ocQqDYdVQ6 — Rishabh Pant (@RishabPant777) March 7, 2019 Amongst the 'thank you' notes, Rishabh Pant was also seen thanking the Dhonis for their hospitality. But, Dhoni's so-called successor did it with pun and humour. In a light-hearted tweet, the 21-year-old joked that Dhoni's better-half Sakshi is ruining the Indian cricketers' fitness levels with great food. "Bhabhiji ruining our fitness levels. Super fun evening with fam-jam ! Thank you @msdhoni and @SaakshiSRawat for hosting us # goodtimes @imVkohli @imkuldeep18 @yuzi_chahal," Pant tweeted. When it comes to cricket, the Indian team found themselves running into a more focussed Australian brigade on 8th March during the 3rd ODI in Ranchi. Riding on brilliant knocks by Usman Khawaja (104) and Aaron Finch (93), Australia managed to post a formidable total of 313 runs. In reply, India stuttered early on, losing both openers Shikhar Dhawan (1) and Rohit Sharma (14) in the first five overs.
  9. You may have come across bodybuilding coaches who promote training styles to adjust one's hormones and propagate the concept that you have to train in a certain way to increase certain hormones. According to these coaches, if you increase these hormones, you will become the natural Ronnie Coleman or Phil Heath of the fitness industry. The most popular hormones discussed in this context are: 1. Testosterone 2. Human Growth Hormone 3. Cortisol © Unsplash Testosterone and Human Growth Hormone are desirable as they are anabolic aka they build your body, whereas Cortisol is bad and is something you should stay from as much as possible from. This belief has led to coaches developing shitty training plans and draw pathetic conclusions from it. To promote Human Growth Hormone, coaches or trainers tell their clients that they need to workout using heavy loads in a state of steady fasting. To increase testosterone, you need to work out in a particular rep range and you need to take very little rest between sets. Why is this idea stupid? From what you have yourself read, you may be wondering that if Testosterone and Human Growth Hormone are good, why not train for them? But the main point you need to understand is that there is a physiological range of hormones and then there is a supraphysiological or the enhanced range of hormones. The physiological range is the one you have naturally. When you train for certain hormones, two things will happen: 1. The hormone spike occurs for a short duration of time. 2. The hormone spike is in the physiological range. Whether the hormone levels are on the lower end or the upper end, as long as they are in the physiological or natural range, it won't make much difference. Talking about Human Growth Hormone, misinformed coaches suggest you should train in a state of fasting. The downsides of training while fasting are: 1. Increased muscle protein breakdown. 2. Poor strength levels. 3. Poor recovery. 4. Poor quality training sessions. You will lift lesser weights and suffer from fatigue. For Testosterone, rest very little between sets. © Unsplash The downsides of that are: 1. Poor recovery. 2. A lighter load lifted. 3. Reduced work capacity. 4. Increased risk of injury. Now let's discuss Cortisol or the stress hormone. Cortisol is the stress hormone and catabolic. Anabolic = good and Catabolic = bad. Here is where the knowledge of most of these coaches or trainers is limited. When you exercise, you are causing wear and tear in your muscle. That is catabolic too. And the funny part is, you are doing it consciously. Training is catabolic. So yeah, catabolic does not mean bad. Surprisingly, in a study done on athletes and cortisol levels with long-term training, the athletes who had more cortisol elevations over time were muscular and stronger than those who did not. Athletes with higher cortisol levels had a higher work capacity. That means, more volume and more loads lifted over time. To conclude, if you are planning your training to influence certain hormones, you are just wasting time. Instead, you should dedicate this time to build muscle productively. Author bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company and the founder of Mars Nutrition, a nutrition supplement company. Both his companies are geared towards providing you with the right information and products without any false or fake claims. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram.
  10. As last year marked the completion of a decade since the deadly attacks of 26/11, there still exists individuals who survived through this hell and are now living a normal life. One such individual is my client, RSK (name undisclosed), but is brave enough to narrate her story. A story that she now feels is just part of the past and has blown away like wind. Shot And Lying In A Pool Of Blood © RSK A then resident of California, RSK had come over to Mumbai to attend a wedding and decided to meet with her friends at a restaurant at the Oberoi Hotel at Nariman Point. Before even placing an order, RSK and her friends heard something that sounded like “firecrackers” and upon inquiring they were told by the hotel staff that it was the sound of the locals celebrating India's win during a cricket match. The next thing they heard was “duck! duck! This was followed by a shower of bullets and a hand grenade explosion. Two of her friends passed away on the spot, while one of her other friends managed to leave safely. RSK however wasn't able to leave, because she was shot with several bullets and also by shrapnel from the explosion. RSK shouted for help (in Hindi and English) for the next 18 hours lying immobile in her own blood; until a policeman heard her and carried her on a stretcher. It was this time when she realized that one of her arms was hanging loose, almost detached and that she was injured all over her body. Learning To Live Again With A Bullet Still In Her Body After being admitted to a nearby hospital on 27/11, RSK underwent multiple surgeries including bone grafting, a nerve implant and removal of about 7 bullets and shrapnel from her body. She was discharged officially from all medical treatment in February 2009. In fact, she still has a bullet in her body behind her pelvis which was too risky to be removed. After receiving rigorous physiotherapy for the first two years post her surgeries, she finally gained back most of her mobility and movement. 20 Kilos Overweight And The Trap Of Stupid Diets RSK lost a lot of lean body mass staying immobile in the hospital for 3 months and once she returned home, she put on around 20 kilos during the course of a few years. There arrived a time when her doctor suggested her to undergo a knee-surgery due to increased stress on her joints due to high bodyweight. She would lose weight, and gain it back due to an unsustainable approach towards her diet and exercise. She tried a variety of diets: the “liquid” diet suggested by a famous nutritionist, the GM diet and etc. And the result was weight loss and even more weight gain post the dieting phase due to eating out of proportion. © RSK Counting Calories And Weight Training = 22 Kilos Lost It was not until 2017 that she realized the importance of following something more sustainable and consistent. Since then, her nutritionist asked her to focus on her overall caloric intake and macro nutrients; she was also allowed to enjoy some unhealthy options. “I love junk food and I eat some everyday. But I keep the portion-size in mind”, said RSK. She, now, also makes sure to accumulate at least 150 minutes of exercise per week which includes kickboxing, weight training and suspension training. From the time she took this decision, she successfully lost 22 kilos (from 99 kilos to 77 kilos) and has kept it off. Today, she not only feels lighter but also finds it easy to perform activities of daily living due to regular exercise. © RSK As RSK's fitness specialist, I push her just enough without going overboard. Due to limited range of motion in both her arms, I make sure that she trains through the available range. Her workouts include squats, pushups, deadlifts, lunges, burpees, jumping jacks and almost all movements one can think of. The suspension trainer is assistive during movements that require her to deload some weight for pain-free movement. She calls exercising “the necessary evil” but she makes sure to take out the time to engage in it 5 times a week. RSK is one of my special clients because she is one of the very few individuals I know who has seen death so closely. “I'm not scared to die anymore. But I value life more than ever”, said RSK when I asked her about her almost-fatal encounter. Apart from her will power, RSK gives credit to her supportive family and friends for getting her back to normalcy.
  11. Have you ever wondered why despite following every tip and trick provided by your favourite bodybuilder on social media, you're still not achieving your goal of emulating their look? You're still buying supplements and cranking it out endlessly in the gym like they're asking you to, but you're getting nada. Could it be possible that among their oh, so many gems of wisdom, they are leaving out some really crucial advice? Listed below are 5 major muscle-building secrets that your favourite bodybuilder is probably not telling you: 1) Energy Balance This is hands down the most important factor when it comes to changing your body composition. Calories are king and they decide your body composition. If your goal is to lose fat, then you need to be in a negative energy balance aka calorie deficit. If your goal is to gain muscle, you need to be in a positive energy balance aka calorie surplus. © Pixabay 2) Flexible Dieting "Carbs from white rice is the same as the carbs from an ice-cream" You don't have to eat all your meals with rice, chicken and broccoli. You can have a wide variety of foods in your diet to complete your calories per day. Sustainable dieting can help you keep you happy mentally. 3) Meal Frequency You don't have to consume 7 meals per day to grow muscle. Muscle growth directly comes from training and nutrition augments it. In simple terms, you need to train hard and be in a calorie surplus. 4) Progressive Overload You must progress in the gym over time. This is done by adding a set or a rep or by adding load per muscle. Volume (sets x load x reps) is the main key to grow new muscle tissue. © Pixabay 5) Training Period Muscle growth takes a huge-ass time to grow, as you need to give years and years to achieve the look you've always wanted. Don't expect overnight changes. So, there you go. I'm sure you weren't expecting this but honestly, it's what matters the most. These are the very basics you need to keep in mind before putting your body through a significant change. And I am sorry, I did not tell you that BCAAs absolutely DON'T matter. Author bio: Yashovardhan Singh is an online fitness coach with www.getsetgo.fitness, an online fitness platform. Along with lifting weights and building his physique, he is also a motorbike enthusiast, an animal lover. You can connect with him on Instagram or drop him an email on yashovardhan@getsetgo.fitness.
  12. The one thing that every skinny dude at the gym wants is to gain muscle and look like a fitness model. When they ask their gym trainers on how they can achieve that look, most of these desi trainers say: "Eat more protein and train for hours." "Go heavy weight and low reps to gain muscle." "Take steroids." Sadly, that is what their advice is limited to. Take drugs. Instead, follow these five tips that will help you get that look you've always wanted: 1) Eat In A Calorie Surplus Eat more calories than you burn on a regular basis. When you consume more calories than your maintenance, it results in weight gain. The usual goal in a surplus is to make sure that weight gain is mostly muscle. Start with a moderate calorie surplus of 200 to 400 calories and eat adequate protein which is ~1.8 to 2.2g/kg of body weight. © YouTube 2) Start At A Low Body Fat A big-time myth which comes from desi gym trainers is - You can convert body fat into new muscle tissue. Well, you can't. It is utter nonsense. The ideal body fat range to start your bulking phase is at 8-10% and goes up to 15 to 18% 3) Get Stronger Resistance Training (RT) is the driver of muscle growth, nutrition simply augments the process. Resistance Training (RT) places the musculoskeletal system under stress of mechanical tension – biomechanical tension placed on muscle via resistance. This stress disrupts homeostasis and signals a host of adaptation processes to occur and intake the pathways for anabolic signalling. Training volume determines the magnitude of hypertrophic (more gains) adaptations. Training volume = total amount of work (sets x reps x load) More adapted volume= more gains. © Pixabay 4) Sleep Recovery is as important as food and training. Research studies have proved that testosterone, which is the prime hormonal driver to gain muscle is elevated by 15-35% with of proper sound sleep over time. Sleep at least 8 hours every day. 5) Do Short Fat Loss Phases Between Your Gaining Phase Implementing a short 3-6 weeks of fat loss phase between your gaining phase can be a helpful strategy to cut some body fat. I suggest implementing this strategy after 10-12 weeks of gaining if needed. So get on with this and see yourself making some gains in the gym. Author bio: Yashovardhan Singh is an online fitness coach with www.getsetgo.fitness, an online fitness platform. Along with lifting weights and building his physique, he is also a motorbike enthusiast, an animal lover. You can connect with him on Instagram or drop him an email on yashovardhan@getsetgo.fitness.
  13. Sometimes, we fool ourselves into believing that we something we are not. We define our own limits, just because we have always been a certain way. That was me a few years back. All that mattered to me was academics, and exercise and proper nutrition were just not a part of my world. I spent the first 20 years of my life being a kid who gave absolutely zero importance to fitness. Physics, Chemistry and Maths were my protein, carbs and fats. My Savior – Junk Food! Age 20, I find myself studying Computer Science in IIT-BHU. To be honest, at this point, I had nothing in my life that stirred an ounce of excitement in me. Around this time, I also got somewhat depressed. Needless to say, I had shitty eating habits. I'd eat anything that I felt like, whenever I felt like, and in whatever amounts I felt like. Motivation from Jacked Guys I really envied guys in my college with good physiques. They had abs and chiselled chests. I, on the other hand, was totally out of shape and had a belly, which I never really liked. Hell, I wanted a “good body” too! It was something I found myself getting excited to work for! So, I started going to the gym. I goofed around in and out of the gym for 18 months, just showing up fairly consistently and hoping to get “fit https://www.mensxp.com/health/body-building/48916-5-easy-ways-to-get-fit-without-going-to-the-gym.html ”. I had no knowledge of nutrition and training. My diet was totally random. I used to think that going to the gym and “working out hard”, alone was enough to build my dream physique. And no one around me told me any better. After all, they must call it “fat burning workouts” for a reason, right? Wrong. Sick and tired of getting nowhere, I started studying the work of top experts in the fitness field. The likes of Dr Eric Helms, Dr Brad Schoenfeld and Dr Alan Aragon. And it blew my mind! I spent endless hours researching information on the subject. I was loving it. It was all making sense now, and I wondered why there were so many misconstrued notions around fitness. I realized the irreplaceable role of diet and laughed at all the time I waste fooling around in the gym. Meal Preparation I started preparing my own meals instead of eating in the college mess. I applied whatever I learned into my own life, and I started seeing results in no time. I was so excited at this point in my life. I had never been more disciplined and bodybuilding had come to become my burning obsession. My life changed completely. I realised how important is it to read and study the work of successful people in whatever area you want to be successful in. Advice to Everyone Reading This If you can relate to my story, and have not started your fitness journey yet. Just start. Follow the right people who advocate science and not bro-science. Do the right things and you have my word that you'd be a totally different person 6 months from now.
  14. My name is Miten Kakaiya and I am a fitness coach. You might think it was easy for me, because it is my profession. The truth is that I was nowhere close to where I am now, physique wise. I tried and failed for many years before I learned what I was doing wrong and what I had to do right. This is a look into my journey. When Fitness Was A Dream Back in school, I was the 'fat', out-of-shape kid. I would still push myself to get through a workout routine (3 sets of 10 push-ups, 3 sets of 50 crunches, 3 sets of 10 squats) that I had fashioned for myself every night before bed. But those push-ups, crunches, and squats did absolutely nothing. Perhaps because I was doing it for the wrong reason, which was simply that I was frustrated. My first gym experience was a short, 3-month stint before I was to leave for the university to Manchester, UK. I thought it would do the trick since I clearly wasn't getting anywhere on my own. As part of my membership, I received a complimentary month-long diet plan, which was quite terrible. I also hired a personal trainer, who introduced me to the basics of weight training. The outcome was- I did manage to increase my arms by half a cm which gave me the false impression of having achieved an Arnie-like physique! Life Lesson 1 Stints don't stick. When starting any fitness journey, even if it's an 8-week Plan, the mindset should be to focus not just on a goal to be achieved by the end of the plan but to look ahead at making that planning part of a journey. When Fitness Was A Fad False impressions aside, my stint at the gym in India led me to join a gym as soon as I got to the UK in 2011 for keeping the momentum going. But the distractions of being in a new country, with new friends and a new life meant that I went to the gym not more than 6 times in a whole year. This plus my irregular eating habits resulted in a 'skinny fat' physique, which I had come to accept as my body shape. With very little motivation left in me, I didn't dare re-join the gym next year but occasionally played some football to keep my stamina up. When, in my third year, a gym opened up right under my student accommodation, my flatmate and best friend, who was also my first fitness motivator, persuaded me to join with him. We believed that thanks to the proximity, we'd be more regular than we'd ever been. What happened in reality though was that gymming became just a vanity trip – we'd go only on days we were planning to go out clubbing, so we could show-off the pump and feel good about ourselves. And although we were more consistent with gymming by the end of the year, my nutrition needs were severely lacking. Grabbing a burger from McDonald's or a £1 frozen pizza for our post-workout meals effectively meant our 'workout' sessions were nothing but a waste of time. The next year, an unexpected (albeit misguided) motivation came my way when my sister moved to the US, making it possible for me to attend my dream festival – the Ultra Music Festival in Miami in March 2014. Two months ahead of the festival, I was gymming 5 days a week, pushing myself to run that extra mile, and eating only home-cooked meals. At the end of 2 months, I achieved decent results (still no abs though!). But again it all came to naught, as after the festival I had lost all my motivation again. Life Lesson 2 Right reasons matter. Motivations come in many shapes and forms but the ones that truly last are those that are not limited by transient goals, such as a number of the weighing scale, a pair of jeans to fit into, or the number of abs that show. When Fitness Became A Reality In my final year at university, a new friend became possibly my biggest and most influential motivator till that point. He introduced me to the concept of a Balanced Diet (as opposed to just dieting), and Macros and how it all works. I came to realize the connection between food and exercise as I observed how eating healthier made working out easier, effective and enjoyable. It was during one month just before the summer of 2015, when I was on lockdown, studying for my exams that I went a clean-eating mission. Naturally, I had no distractions in the form of parties and what not. Instead, I was tied to my study table, with very little physical activity. My daily routine was cooking clean meals, eating them, studying, cooking again, eating again, studying and sleeping. To my shock and surprise, I saw the best results that I had ever seen in my entire life from those 4 weeks of no exercise but eating pristine clean. I had lost 7 kgs! I even observed the faint beginnings of my ab muscles showing through for the first time in my life. After years often pointless slogging at the gym, I realized that food was the real answer! Soon I couldn't wait to apply weight training with diet to see what wonders it would do for my body. And for once I was not disappointed! Two months later, I had a ripped physique with six-pack abs. Now I was the one with the physique I always admired on others. Life Lesson 3 Finding the right balance is crucial. Food is an essential part of the health and fitness equation. It literally is the fuel for our body and can change the outcome of your workout routines. Being on the fitness journey is also a constant process of learning about your body, how it works and what works. When Fitness Became A Lifestyle The results were so incredible and addictive that I just didn't feel like eating anything unhealthy. Eating clean and going to the gym became a natural part of my life, such that my day felt incomplete if I didn't eat clean through the day, and didn't manage to squeeze in at least one weight training session. What was also incredible was that I was seeing these results without having done a single mile of running or cardio. And I didn't even have to resort to bland foods and salads all the time. But I was willing to experiment, learn, and adopt a few things from my old lifestyle to fit my new one. By now, I knew what I was doing would continue to get me the results if I was consistent, and so I had no reason to stop. My goal, then, changed to PROGRESS. They say that it is good to have an end goal in mind. According to me, however, that's not the case for fitness. The aim shouldn't be just to reach a particular shape, size or number because you'll lose motivation the moment you get there – similar to what happened to me after Miami in 2014. But when the goal is to keep growing and progressing, one day at a time, to be the better version of yourself every single day - there is nothing that can stop you. My biggest victory was a mental one. I had long stopped comparing myself, my physique, my body with those around me. I was my only competition, and that was what motivated me to stay on track. Make this a lifestyle – do it to please no one but yourself. Life Lesson 4 The fitness journey never ends. Fitness becomes a lifestyle when it stops being something extra that you have to accommodate into your lives, instead becomes what directs how you live your life. Your fitness routine (diet and workout) also has to be your own. It has to seamlessly fit into your life so that it stops being a struggle but comes naturally to you.
  15. My tryst with fitness started when I was in college. I generally had a good physique, and at that time it was mostly about workouts- nothing to do with diet. I just wanted a fit body. Flash forward 10 years and work stress hit me hard. Work and family completely took away all of the time I had. My IT job demanded 9-10 hrs of sitting on the desk. Exercising went out of the window. I am a foodie, hence ordering in became a regular habit. I was into stress and binge-eating as well and without knowing, I piled on kilos of lard. Realization came in hard at a health camp at my office. That's when I decided to step on the gas. Getting back into routine was the major hurdle. I knew I had to make gym a daily routine. Anyhow, I started with waking up early to the hit gym first thing in the morning. In order to achieve at least 6-7 hrs of sleep, I tried to go to bed early. All this meant that I had to adjust everything else like spending time with my family, etc. It indeed was pretty difficult but I did it anyhow. Getting into healthy eating was the most difficult part of it all. I had to always be cautious of what I put into my mouth. But in due course of time, that came to me naturally and it got easier to avoid junk and high calorie eatables. The Mistakes I still remember having those stupid slimming tablets. It was when I was at my heaviest- 84kg. I bought few packets and started having them. Needless to say, I saw no change and it didn't take me much to understand that it's all false. With hard work, I dropped down from 84kgs to 76kgs. But then, I hit a plateau and did not understand why my body wasn't responding. That's when I talked to Rajiv Ambat, who had cofounded the online platform, GetSetGo Fitness. I decided to enroll under Coach Melvin and gave it a shot. Though I was having a 'healthy diet', I was still overlooking the macros in my diet and wasn't counting my calories https://www.mensxp.com/health/nutrition/45485-7-foods-that-contain-almost-zero-calories-are-a-good-addition-to-everyday-meals.html . Through Melvin's diet plan, I understood the importance of calories and macronutrients. That along with the exercise plan that he gave me, helped me achieve the desired body composition. He made me understand why it's important to see the energy balance, achieve the correct body fat percentage, and what changes to bring about it my diet. I could then see the plateau break.
  16. There have been numerous games that have proven to be extremely addictive. CS: GO and Dota were known to be among the most addictive multiplayer games out there and the gaming craze has now made its way to mobile phones. Mobile phones themselves have a record of being very addictive, whether it's for social networking or just killing time, these portable gadgets are a core part of our lives today. Since the launch of PUBG on Android and iOS, users have been known to get exceedingly attached to the game. Playing a multiplayer game with your friends takes this a level further. Addictions come from a lot of things and substance abuse has been leading the charts for centuries. Today, we have become victim to portable games like PUBG and Fornite. © Android Authority PUBG Mobile has been bringing out constant features and updates which can lead to anyone getting addicted to the game. New additions to the game include maps, guns, and even challenges. In an attempt to prove supremacy, we often forget that games are built to relieve stress, not add more. In a disturbing new development, a fitness trainer from Jammu has reportedly lost his mental balance after playing the game for 10 days. According to The Indian Express, the fitness trainer got addicted to the game and played it for nearly 10 days in a row. He had to be hospitalized after he started hitting himself with blows and caused significant injury. © BlueStacks "The patient is unstable at the moment and has partially lost his mental balance," a doctor (neurologist) treating him said in anonymity. The doctor further added that even though he was recognizing people, his mind was not very conscious and still under the influence of the game. The hospital sources claimed that it was the sixth similar case to be reported in the city. Doctors have appealed to the public to keep a close watch on children who are playing the game very intensively. There have been signs that those who are playing the game so intensively are often left ignored and not understood by their loved ones. © PUBG Corporation Jammu locals have appealed to the Jammu and Kashmir Governor, Satya Pal Malik to ban such “life-threatening” games in the state and the country as well. We all want to grab that Chicken Dinner but shouldn't forget that these are simply minor virtual pleasures of life and not worth being taken so seriously. Source: The Indian Express
  17. ADMIN

    Fitness Tips By Tiger Shroff

    Who better than one of the fittest actors in Bollywood to give us advice on how to stay fit? Here's what Tiger Shroff has to say about keeping fit.
  18. Take any discipline in the world and you'll have a lot of opinions and ideas about it. Different people have different ideas when it comes to different topics. Two disciplines in particular, nutrition and training are such that each and every individual in this world have different and conflicting views about them. In fact, it is so bad that every other individual's opinion is taken as fact, and science and facts are often discarded as boring. Let's face it, we have all grown up hearing a variety of fitness and nutrition “advice” from different sources in our lives, mostly gym bros and people who actually have no knowledge about either fitness or nutrition; and most of those tips are inaccurate. So, to clear some misconceptions, I have put together a list of tips we need to unlearn starting off in 2019. 1) You Have To Be A Gym Rat © Thinkstock No, you don't have to go to the gym 6 days a week, 2 hours a day to build a good looking physique. 3-4 days a week with adequate volume and frequency for each muscle group is good enough to build a drool-worthy physique. What builds muscle is progressive overload aka lifting more than what you used to, which in turn means getting stronger in the gym. You can work out 3-4-5-6 and get stronger with time. The amount of time or the number of days a week you spend in the gym is irrelevant if you cannot induce progressive overload. 2) Clean Eating To Lose Fat © Pixabay No, what dictates fat gain or loss is calories. When you are trying to lose body fat, how much you eat always supersedes what you eat. Having said that you should have a balanced diet comprising 80% of whole natural food sources and the rest of the 20% calories can come from foods that you like to relish like junk or fried food, ice cream etc, given that you are within your caloric limit and your macros in place. 3) Carbs Are Bad © Pixabay No, carbs are not only not bad, they are good and are necessary, especially if you are interested in athletic performance aka getting fit. Carbohydrates, being the primary and preferred source of energy for your body, help you train more explosively as compared to fat. Complex carbs such as beans and legumes are very good sources of protein and fiber especially for vegetarians. Coming to the myth about gaining weight from carbs, you gain weight if you eat in a caloric surplus, that is, eating more food than what your body needs to maintain its weight, not because of a macronutrient. 4) Food Timings What makes you store fat is eating more food than what your body needs to maintain its weight. In other words, eating in a caloric surplus. Each and everything you eat has calories in it (except water). Calories are the measuring unit for energy provided by the food you eat. Now, the amount of energy provided by any food is not going to change if you eat that food at a certain time. A calorie is a calorie and it will give you the same amount of energy no matter when you eat it and the only time you get fat is the when you intake more energy(food) than you need to sustain your day to day exercise and activities. 5) Muscle Confusion © YouTube Your muscles are not that stupid that they will get confused so easily, your gym trainer on the other hand, most certainly is. Moreover, the muscle confusion does not build muscle, progress overload aka getting stronger in the gym does. No matter how many variations you keep changing week in week out in the hopes of confusing your muscles to build more muscle, it won't make any difference. It can detrimental though as this practice does let you let practice a particular lift for a long time which in turn will be detrimental when it comes to gaining strength i.e. getting stronger which is what you need to lift more weight to build more muscle. Remember, strength is a skill which you acquire by practicing which you won't achieve by changing your exercise variations every 4-6 weeks. Nav Dhillon is an online coach with GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company that helps people with fitness goals right from losing weight to competing in bodybuilding shows. He has coached individuals from all forms of life, right from people looking to get in shape in general to national level bodybuilding and physique athletes. You can reach Nav on nav.dhillon@getsetgo.fitness or his Instagram handle if you are looking for professional help with your fitness goals.
  19. Do you struggle to manage your fitness goals (bulking or fat loss) and college simultaneously? Do you have to take off from the gym for days or weeks during exams? Pretty sure most of you just nodded your heads to the above questions, which is why today I am going to tell you the best way to manage a fitness routine during your exams. Before we get to the solution, let's first focus on a few reasons that make us deviate from our fitness routine during exams: 1. Lack Of Preparation/ Last Minute Study We all are guilty of this, aren't we? Chilling during the entire semester and starting to prepare for our exams as the deadline arises. 2. Increase In Stress Levels BOOM! As the exam approaches, we get more anxious, stressed and worried which results in a significant imbalance in our eating habits. 3. Poor Sleeping Patterns Late night study routine? Poor sleep = poor workouts & poor eating habits. 4. Our Environment This is a rare occurence but happens to many people I have coached along the years. People around us can increase or decrease the perception of pressure on us and it can have a significant impact on us adhering to our fitness routine. Eg: "Study" "Focus on exams now" "Keep everything else aside for this period." (Incomplete advice) 5. Priority Some people like to give out their maximum during exams, even if that maximum produces a 1-2% increase in CGPA or percentage. However, that is up to you and we certainly do not mean that going gym during exams is an absolute necessity. Despite what the circumstances are, at the end of exams most dudes are going to end up saying: “aaah I missed the gym for no reason” Below are a few tips which will allow you to train even during exams days: 1. Training © Thinkstock Images If your exam is a one-day exam (like an entrance test) then it would be harmless for you to take a couple of weeks off before the exam as a way to de-load. You can also do minimal training i.e. two full-body workout a week when possible. Studies have shown that short breaks of 1-2 weeks will not have a major impact on your fitness levels but can help you psychologically come back with more motivation and focus. If you are an engineering or medical student, who has month-long exams, then 3 full body workouts per week are optimal to conserve your strength and muscle mass. The intensity of your training can be reduced during the exam time depending upon your sleep levels from the previous day. If you are feeling of stressed and fatigued due to studying, then there is no use of trying to attempt a 5 rep max. Instead, train with 3-4 reps in your reserve. To get workouts done faster, you can superset exercises of the opposing muscle groups such as Quads & Hamstrings, Biceps & Triceps, Chest and Middle Back, Lats & Shoulders. Keep your rest period between 1-3 minutes at the most. Focus on doing the exercises which give you the most bang for the buck. Eg: Squats, Deadlifts, Bench press, Barbell Rows and Shoulder press which will target multiple muscle groups instead of focussing on isolating individual muscles Incorporate small 10 min walks whenever possible to keep your mood flowing and feeling fresh. Engage in 5-10 mins of deep breathing with your eyes closed. There is no specific pattern for inhaling and exhale, just whatever you decide, keep it same for the entire period. 2. Nutrition © Thinkstock Images Focus on preparing your meals in advance and storing them whenever you get free time to avoid loss of focus and energy preparing the food between studying Bulking? Create high-calorie smoothies with oats, banana, whey protein & nut butter to get the calories you require. Personally, I would suggest that you increase your calories during the exam phase to help manage stress and to feel better in general. Being in a caloric deficit, which is a state of stress for the body, coupled with an exam, which is additional stress, can have a negative effect on your body. © Pixabay Summing everything up: Get in the training room whenever possible, plan your meals in advance, add in small walks, meditation sessions and adjust your routine such that you can adhere to it easily and stay focused. Go, achieve the best in your exams without comprising on your fitness routine! Yash Sharma is a former national level Football player, now a Strength Coach, Nutritionist and Natural Bodybuilder. He also runs a YouTube Channel Yash Sharma Fitness via which he aims to educate all the fitness enthusiasts to maximize their gains by methods that are backed by science and applicable easily. Connect with him on YouTube, YashSharmaFitness@gmail.com, Facebook and Instagram.
  20. Every year, at least one Bollywood movie is released where an actor gets into tremendous shape for the role and people collectively lose their minds. There are multiple videos and posts that get made debating whether the actor got ripped while on steroids, what was his diet, what was his training, and so on. The debate goes on and then everyone forgets about it at some point. And then another movie comes in and the cycle continues. One interesting thing that happens is that multiple news and media outlets interview these actors and ask them for fitness tips for youngsters and other people to follow. This act of putting the actors on a pedestal and asking for fitness tips is outright ridiculous. Here are 5 reasons why they are not the right people to give out fitness information: 1. They Are Not Nutritionists Or Personal Trainers © YouTube It is not their job to know about these things. It is like asking an aeroplane passenger if they know how to operate a flight, as they have flown in an aeroplane. It is outright stupid. 2. They Do It In A Time Frame That Would Be Harmful To Others © YouTube Actors these days end up doing three to four movies a year. Gone are the days when they would just have a single blockbuster movie and reap the benefits of it for a year. The industry is flooded with talent and to stay relevant, they need to be in front of the audiences more. For the same, they need to transition between roles and their physique changes drastically. It is unhealthy and downright insanity for a normal 9-to-5 working guy to try to replicate that. 3. It Is Their Only Job If you have seen this interview of Aamir Khan regarding his transformation for 'Dangal', you know this is not possible with your day job. He would go on a trek for 3-3.5 hours daily, eat low-calorie foods, go to the gym, swim, do cycling or play tennis and then again go for a walk. That is 8-9 hours of daily exercise to shed weight fast. Why do they do that? They get paid to do that. Can you do it? I do not think so. Image 2 4. Their Theories Are Outdated There are multiple scientific studies that have proven time and again that it is the total amount of calories that you eat vs. expenditure that makes you gain weight or lose weight. Things like eating carbs after 6 pm do not really matter or do not go beyond the laws of thermodynamics. There are studies that have also shown that sugar is not linked to cancer and saying so is trying to simplify a very complex problem that is beyond the understanding of a layman. Still, these Bollywood actors think that their knowledge is superior to scientists who dedicate all their lives to studying and do these researches. Here are some absolute gems: "Sugar is poison"- Milind Soman "Do not eat carbs at night" - Varun Dhawan "Do not eat after 6:30 pm"- Akshay Kumar 5. They Do Steroids If you actually thought they all are natural, you must be living in a deluded world and I am happy to burst that bubble for you. Just watch this video where Ranbir Kapoor says that they take Clenbuterol (a banned drug) to have a body transformation and being shunned by Shahid Kapoor. Doing drugs to build a body (Ranbir Kapoor and Sushant Singh) – If you still want to put these guys on a pedestal and follow what they say, go ahead, even though I have just presented a strong case on why you should absolutely NOT. Author bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company. He is regarded as someone who will make it easy for you to understand the process by putting things in the right context and providing science-based recommendations for natural bodybuilding. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram and Facebook.
  21. If you have been serious about getting in shape and have not done anything yet, there is a good chance that you will take a New Year's resolution to get fit. Most likely, you are not new to this. You are a re-resolutioner. It has worked like this in the past: 1. You took a New Year's resolution. 2. You bought a gym membership. 3. You kept an alarm for 6 AM in the morning. 4. You exercised at the gym religiously for a couple of weeks. The 'no days off' crew. 5. Your resolution is over. Fitness resolution? What's that? You know why does this happen? It is ALL YOUR FAULT. You tend to take things to the extreme and burn out quick. Here is how you can stick to your resolution in 2019 and get in shape: 1. Set Smaller Goals Say you have 30 kilos to lose. And you start with that goal. You will feel disheartened at every step of the journey as you will check your weight every time and you won't be 30 kilos lighter. It is because you compare your progress to your goals too often. So set a goal of 1 kilo per time. Achieve it, move to the next one kilo. The eventual result can be of 30 kilos. But it should NOT be your goal right away. © Unsplash 2. One Step At A Time With The Gym Got a gym membership and you are a player of the team 'No Days Off' already? The funny part is that you have not even been to the gym seven times in the past month and now, all of a sudden, you want to be in the gym seven days a week? You will be sore. You will be tired. You will be exhausted. And you will give up. Start with 2-3 sessions per week. After a couple of weeks, move it to 4 sessions per week. If your goal is to get lean and get in good shape, 4 to 5 sessions per week are more than enough. 3. Diet Smart Clean eating is a major fail. You were gulping alcohol and hogging cake all through December. All of a sudden, you are #eatclean? Stop taking your diet to the extremes. What matters for weight loss is you being in a caloric deficit. Adequate protein intake and weight training if you would like to look muscular and lean! Focus on total calorie intake for the day and adequate protein. I am not saying food quality does not matter. It does. Eat majorly unprocessed foods and pick nutrient-dense options. Eat the things you like at times. Do not make it an on diet or off diet affair. It is plain stupid. © Unsplash 4. Work With A Professional If you wanted to be a professional cricketer, would you keep playing gully cricket or go to an academy and work with a coach? I am pretty sure you are smart enough to choose the latter. Do the same with your fitness goals. Instead of just doing trial and error all the time, work with a coach! Someone who has a track record of providing results and they talk sense. Some examples of nonsense: . You need drugs or certain fat loss pills. . You need to go on liquid or detox diets. . You should not eat carbs after 6 pm. . You need to confuse your muscles. . You need special supplements or BCAAs. . You need to do light weight more reps for fat loss and heavyweight fewer reps for muscle building. If they say any of the above, save your money. Author bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company. He is regarded as someone who will make it easy for you to understand the process by putting things in the right context and providing science-based recommendations for natural bodybuilding. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram and Facebook.
  22. If anyone asks me to list out the top three things a fitness influencer does these days, I would say: 1. Fake natty claims 2. Sells stupid supplements 3. Makes you believe in unicorns Point number one, I believe, is the most disastrous of the three. That is because these influencers, who have massive followings and impact on the behaviour of teenagers, need to tell them the truth. © Instagram These influencers portray impressive physiques and strength standards on their social media channels. When their young and gullible audience, who follow them, ask how can they attain the same, they get the same old repetitive overused shit in response: 1. Consistency 2. Hard work 3. These magic supplements And no, it is none of the three in 99 per cent of the cases. In that 99 per cent of the cases, it is anabolic steroids or performance-enhancing drugs. When the smarter audiences call these so-called idols out for it, they outright ignore the voices and keep selling their stuff to their followers. The Case Of Ryan Casey Very recently, a similar thing happened with a young 18-year-old fitness influencer called Ryan Casey. View this post on Instagram Right now my diet consists of like 2 chocolate muffins a day lmao. Not super concerned about my diet right now but when I get back into training I'll start eating more. I want to get shredded again. - - - - - #instafit #motivation #zyzz #aesthetics #fitness #shredded #calvinklein #fit #muscle #gym #GymShark #bodybuilding #jeffseid #flex #ripped #teenbodybuilding #bodybuilder #jenselterchallenge #Alphalete #lifestyle #mensphysique #physique #instafit #gainz #gains #fitfam #cardio #lifting #workout A post shared by Ryan Casey (@rc_aesthetics) on Dec 10, 2018 at 12:35pm PST If you do not know Ryan Casey, he was one of the youngest guys to have been sponsored by Gym Shark. He is just 18-years-old and runs a popular YouTube Channel and has a massive Instagram following. He also runs a digital media agency and has been very successful in doing so. In recent times, Ryan had been accused of using anabolic drugs, as people saw his social media posts where he has shown massive improvement in his physique and strength. Instead of flatly ignoring it, as most of these social media stars do, he actually came out and did a video on his YouTube channel where he admitted to the usage of SARMs. You can watch the video here SARMs are not anabolic steroids but they are PEDs aka performance-enhancing drugs and are banned substances under the laws of the anti-doping agencies and sports. By speaking out, I believe Ryan has done a massive service to the fitness industry. I think other fitness influencers should also come out and say the untold truth. Most importantly because young impressionable minds are getting into body image and strength issues due to the constant comparison and fake benchmarks being set out. The other side of the story, though, is that there is a strong reason for these influencers to lie to you. Because speaking the truth will cost them dearly! How So? The companies that sponsor these athletes know that they are on the gear and they know that they are enhanced. The sponsors are okay with this fact till the time it helps them push more sales. But... When the athletes speak out the truth, they cannot have that, as it damages the reputation of the company and can impact the sales. A pretty solid double standard there! Author bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company. He is regarded as someone who will make it easy for you to understand the process by putting things in the right context and providing science-based recommendations for natural bodybuilding. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram and Facebook.
  23. Fitness has become an in-trend profession nowadays, with every other kid in the street claiming to be a fitness expert. With fake YouTube subscribers, purchasable Instagram followers, and photoshop skills, a lot of these pseudo-experts easily get you trapped in their marketing gimmicks and steal your money. Taking away your money is one thing but harming your health is another. And when it comes to fitness, following wrong advice can easily land you in trouble related to your health. So here are some telltale signs that the fitness experts or gurus you are following maybe shit. 1. They Say Calories Do Not Count And It Is Old Science First things first, the rule of calories is derived from the laws of thermodynamics. There is a reason they are called laws and not the mythology of thermodynamics. It is the law, it holds universal truth. And there are enough and adequate studies and case studies that show that calorie restriction or energy balance is the primary component of weight loss. © Thinkstock 2. They Say Things Like Carbs Are Poison Carbohydrates are the primary source of fuel for the human body and though they may not be essential for survival, they do play a major role when it comes to performance. Saying things like they are poison and are killing you is outright retarded and stupid. This claim goes against the basic understanding of human metabolism. 3. They Are On Drugs And All Their Clients Are On Drugs When you do anabolic steroids, things become different. As a study had shown that the subjects who took steroids made 2x the gains without any training compared to a group who trained regularly for 10 weeks. So by injecting drugs into your body and building muscle do not have anything in relation with the knowledge you may have. There is actually a good chance that it will dumb you down as you will make progress irrespective of all the shit you do. Claiming you are an expert because you took a shortcut to grow muscle is like taking care of a sick person at home and saying that you are now a doctor. 4. They Make Bold Claims Without Backing It Up With Evidence A lot of these fake gurus at times make claims based on anecdotal evidence. Saying that so-and-so exists because I have experimented with on my clients and seen results are purely anecdotal. Especially if evidence suggests otherwise! For example, a fitness guru saying cut out carbs because it is making you fat. I cut out carbs from all my client's diets and they lost weight. The matter of the fact is that the clients lost weight because you cut out a food group altogether resulting in a caloric restriction. And there is evidence and studies done on weight-loss subjects that when calories and protein are matched, higher and lower carb diets provide similar weight loss results. Higher carb diets slightly outperforming the lower carb diets. But then if this 'guru' says that it is old science, maybe not a guru after all. © Unsplash 5. They Claim That They Know Some Secrets About Fat Loss Or Muscle Gain OH, COME ON! This is physiology and there are no secrets per se. They may have a secret. A secret concoction of drugs that they may be prescribing to their clients! But saying that their secrets go beyond science and are hidden gems is a pile of bullshit. Author bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company. He is regarded as someone who will make it easy for you to understand the process by putting things in the right context and providing science-based recommendations for natural bodybuilding. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram and Facebook.
  24. 2019 is almost here and so is the reason for a host of 'new year new me' fitness resolutions. But instead of really abiding by the process, people unfortunately succumb to the lure of taking shortcuts to get fit. Here's a list of what not to do in the name of fitness resolutions in 2019: 1) Running Marathons Or Running Long Distances Regularly In Hopes Of Getting 'Fit' Running mindlessly on a treadmill or weekly marathons will not get you anywhere. It definitely wouldn't help you build muscle and look lean, which is the aim for most. Yes, you might lose a bit of fat but believe me that would be a lot of water weight. This will come at the cost of elevated cortisol levels (stress hormone), poor joint health and at best, a new skinny fat you with 'problem fat areas'. Mindless running is often coupled with crash diets or some stupid 'detox diets' which makes the case even worse. © YouTube 2) Following A Fitness 'Guru' Who Propagates A Specific Diet As 'The Best Diet' Do this diet and see the magic. If your trainer/guru tells you this, best believe that you are in for failure. There's no best fat loss diet and never will be. That's the very basic of fat loss. One size doesn't fit all. So if your fitness guide tells you to do a detox cleanse or a 7 day fat busting diet, look for a better coach. 3) Doing Aqua Zumba, Dance Fitness Or Aerobic Dance Classes The trend of zumba is so dumb on so many levels that I can literally write another article on it. They make people dance like mad cows in these classes without taking into account any injury, activity levels or the diet. People sweat tins and think they burned many calories and are getting slimmer. Of course, that's not the case. Of course you will lose a couple of kilos because before this you were not doing anything this physically demanding. But soon the weight loss will halt and all the lost weight will come back. 4) Cutting Out Carbohydrates And Shifting To Salad Only Diets The lowly informed main stream media has demonized carbohydrates so much that everybody thinks it makes people fat. Well, it doesn't. Excess calories coming from food makes people fat. Your overeating is making you fat. Salad diets are the absolute worse and eventually, if done for long, can land you in a hospital. © Thinkstock 5) Ketogenic Diet If you have a job, a budding social life, friends or family, this diet will take a toll on your interaction with all of these. In short- it's extremely hard to follow, makes very little sense nutritionally and the results it offers can be replicated by a normal 'carbohydrate inclusive diet'. Hence, think a hundred times before doing this.
  25. The fitness industry, even today, is filled with myths and claims that are outright misinformed and misleading. These myths circulate quite easily and thus, make people believe in the baseless claims and follow them quite easily. In this piece, we will bust some of the top fitness myths you may have heard: 1. High Protein Diets Harm Your Kidneys © YouTube The general notion among people is that if you eat a lot of protein, it will hurt your kidneys. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for protein as a macronutrient is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight and if you look at the pie structure of a diet, it usually accounts for as little as 15% of total daily calories. But, a study was done by Dr. Jose Antonio, CEO of the ISSN taking male bodybuilders and they were kept on a very high protein diet of around 3.3 grams per kilogram of body weight. That is four times that of the RDA. The study found that the high protein diets had no harmful effects on the subjects' kidneys, liver, or even their blood lipids. 2. High Protein Diets Reduce Bone Density By Leeching Calcium From Bones © Thinkstock Another popular one is that higher protein intake is harmful to the bones. In another study by Dr. Jose Antonio, they took women who consumed a high protein diet of 2.5 to 3.0 grams of protein per body weight for a period of six months. Again, that was three to four times the RDA. The results showed that there was no decrease in bone mineral density. Quite contrasting, the data suggested that a higher protein diet in women may increase their lumbar bone mineral density. 3. Muscle Soreness Is Caused Due To Lactic Acid Build Up © Medium Delayed onset of muscle soreness or DOMS is the reason you are nearly in tears and cannot move your body the next day after an intense workout. The potential reasoning given for this is the build-up of lactate leading to soreness. Studies have found that it is not the build-up of lactate causing this and rather it is the micro tears in your muscle fibres that are induced by new stimulus or eccentric loading aka negatives. Lactate isn't a metabolic poison and it doesn't cause soreness. In fact, it's a fuel source used by your heart, brain, muscles, and kidneys. So, the next time a massage therapist says that they can help you deal with your DOMS by massaging out the lactate, that is clearly not the case. 4. There Is A 'Best' Diet For Fat Loss © Pixabay There is often a heated debate among sections. One suggesting that lower-carb and higher-fat diets are the best for fat loss. Another one suggesting lower-fat higher-carb diets being the best for fat loss. What is true? None of them is the best. When the diets are compared keeping the protein and the caloric deficit the same, both the diets match in terms of total fat loss. There is no single 'best' way to diet and it comes down to a caloric deficit. The best diet for fat loss is the one an individual can be consistent with. 5. Creatine Causes Dehydration & Cramps There is a notion that if you supplement creatine, it will lead to dehydration and cause cramps, thereby hurting your health. A study was done where there were two groups, one who did not supplement with creatine and another who did. They both ran long-distance in the sun and the group that supplemented creatine outperformed the one that did not thus putting an end to this notion. Author bio: Pratik Thakkar is the co-founder and director of GetSetGo Fitness, an online fitness company. He is regarded as someone who will make it easy for you to understand the process by putting things in the right context and providing science-based recommendations for natural bodybuilding. You can reach out to him at pratik@getsetgo.fitness and follow him on Instagram and Facebook.
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