Fitness Questions Answered

Have Any Fitness Questions?

Every so often, I like to post a different type of blog here. One that answers a lot of fitness questions, as opposed to a longer blog, or essay, which focuses solely on one topic. Fitness questions abound, as does bad information. Hopefully this can clarify some of the common, as well as the not so common fitness questions floating around. If you have a specific question, contact me, and I’ll be glad to answer it for you.

1) Are Nuts a Healthy Food? Yes, they are, however, too many nuts, can result in too much fat. Yes, they contain good fats, but remember that fats, both good and bad, store the same in the body when not used up as fuel. Another pitfall of eating nuts can be the sodium levels. While sodium levels in foods aren’t going to give you high blood pressure, they can lead to water retention, as well as dehydration. Enjoy some good nut snacks, but keep it in moderation.

2) Should Kids Lift Weights? Of course they can, and if you haven’t noticed, they do it constantly while at play. Climbing trees, climbing on jungle gyms, squatting, leaping, etc, are all bodyweight exercises that kids perform almost constantly at play. If you child is interested in lifting weights in a gym setting, that is a different story and the level of appropriateness will vary child to child. I’ve been a personal trainer in Austin for over 21 years now, as well as a gym owner for 9. I have seen many kids over the years working out with their parents, as well as with me and/or my staff. Nothing wrong with it, but please be sure to pick age safe exercises so as to minimize the risk of injury.

3) How Often Can I Have Cheat Days? The best answer to that age old question, is to ask yourself a different question. How badly do I want to get in shape? Cheat days are simply a rationalization we do in order to splurge. There’s nothing wrong with a little indulgence, but a whole day? Have a snack that’s off the menu on occasion, a cold beer, or whatever it is that appeals to you, but keep cheat days to a minimum if you want to see results. Besides, what are you cheating other than yourself?

4) Why is Proper Form So Important in the Gym? As a longtime Austin personal trainer, I can tell you that it is absolutely imperative to employ proper techniques suited for YOUR body when exercising. As I noted in my blog covering this matter, using poor form will not only yield less results, but doing so greatly increases your chance for injury. If you are in doubt, ask a qualified personal trainer. Don’r refer to some guy on YouTube, or ask what I refer to as an impersonal trainer, one with limited knowledge and a ton of cliches to throw your way. Rather seek out an experienced trainer who can truly help you.

5) How Important is Nutrition? In a nutshell, very important. People say it’s 80%, or it’s 70%. That’s all silly business. The exact level of vitality to you meeting your goals isn’t a blanket formula as so many fitness cliches have us believing. The bottom line is that you need to feed your muscles protein if they are to grow. You need to fuel your body, including your mind, with good fats, usually comprising approximately 10% of your daily caloric intake, and then we need to put some good carbohydrates in there as well to really fuel whatever it is we are doing.

6) How Much Weight Will I Lose Per Week? That depends upon a myriad of factors. Are you eating properly? Are you doing cardio, and on an empty stomach? How many times per week are you exercising? Are you stressed out and therefore suffering from a higher cortisol level, which inhibits weight loss? Are you consuming enough water? How much sodium are you consuming per day? What is your resting metabolic rate? As you can see, there are simply too many factors to accurately make any promises or predictions. Clients of mine, as long as I’ve been a personal trainer in Austin, have usually lost 1-3 pounds per week on average. Any more than that, with the exception of professional athletes cutting water weight, is simply too much and isn’t a healthy pursuit.

7) Can Elderly People Lift Weights? Absolutely they should. In my essay on the topic, I explained why offsetting muscular atrophy and releasing endorphins, as well as increasing bone density, are extremely important for the elderly. Muscles aren’t a guarantee for anyone. It’s a simple use it or lose it deal. If you don’t workout and remain sedentary, you will become permanently sedentary whether it be to your liking or not.

8) What Supplements Do I Need to be Taking?
None. You need to eat a healthy and balanced diet if you want to be a healthy person. That includes the consumption of an adequate amount of water, as well. This isn’t to say that some supplements aren’t effective for certain pursuits, but if your baseline nutritional needs for your goals aren’t being met, supplements aren’t going to get you any closer to achieving them. Creatine, in it’s many forms, has been shown to be moderately effective for strength training, and of course, protein powders have helped many a trainee build more muscle. If you choose to supplement your diet, just bear in mind the term supplement means to add to, as in to enhance, not substitute for good nutrition.

9) Why are my Muscles so Tight? Can I Just Stretch? You absolutely can, but in cases where a client is so tight that there’s a residual inflammatory response going on, you can’t substitute a lacrosse ball, or massage tool for me, or another qualified body worker releasing the fascia. This is because, for one thing, as an Austin personal trainer for 21 years, I’ve dealt with these issues thousands of times. I also have the anatomical knowledge that comes with doing my job for so long. The other factors to consider are that laying on a ball, or using an apparatus, isn’t going to generate the same amount of pressure upon the affected area. Lastly, when a body worker is releasing your fascia, one very important technique is to not only press down, which you can do with a massage tool, but also to press with or against the grain of the muscle fibers, which is impossible to do with tools with any effectiveness, especially a ball or roller, which will simply roll off the affected area.

10) How Long Does it Take to Build Muscle? Once again, there are a multitude of variables in play in order to answer these types of fitness questions truthfully. Are you eating properly for the goals? Are you consuming enough calories, and from the proper sources? What are your testosterone levels? Are your workouts appropriate and adequate for your goals? Etc, etc. There’s no easy answers to health and fitness. Steroids aren’t the easy, get you big and strong solution that so many people believe them to be. Nothing substitutes for consistent hard work done properly. You can’t buy and pills, powders, outfits, lifting belts, and so on, that will get you there any quicker if you’re not willing to put the work in.

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Complete Fitness Design
Complete Fitness Design
3100 W Slaughter Ln Austin, TX 78748

About Andy

My name is Andy Bruchey and I am a longtime Austin personal trainer having founded Complete Fitness Design over 20 years ago. I specialize in weight loss/gain, including the addition of quality, lean muscle mass, corrective flexibility, post injury rehabilitation, nutrition, and sports specific training for professionals. Contact me today to see how I can help you!
3100 W Slaughter Ln Austin , Texas 78748 512-484-2270