Monday, September 28, 2015

Fitness FAQ


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Steve Carroll


How long should I stick with my current program?

As long as it’s working.

Don’t give up on your program too quickly or you’ll probably miss a good part of the benefits that program was designed for. You’ll probably hit a few periods where you don’t feel like you are making progress but stick with the program if it was working for you in the beginning.

To get over those minor sticking points just make a few tweaks to combat Adaptation Response every few weeks. ( increased repetitions, weight, sets, time under tension, density (work completed in a set amount of time), range of motion, degree of exercise difficulty, or exercise order)

Programs are usually designed for a minimum of 12 weeks but for some people a program may continue to work for much longer. If you are still progressing after 12 weeks stick with it.

Just don’t stick with same program forever!

What is the difference between a drop set and a rest-pause set?

Both are means of increasing the intensity and/or volume of your sets. Neither should be performed (usually) except on the last set of any given exercise.

Drop Set:

To perform a drop set, immediately (without any rest period) decreases the weight you used on your set by a minimum of 20% to 50% and resume the lift until momentary muscle failure. Drop sets are usually easier to do on machines or a cable apparatus because all you have to do to drop the weight is move the pin in the weight stack.

Rest-Pause Set:

To perform a rest-pause set decrease the weight 20% to 50% then resume the set at the lower weight after a 10 to 20 second rest period and continue to momentary muscle failure. Rest-Pause works well with free weights because you have time to remove plates from the bar during your brief rest period.

Either drop sets or rest pause can be continued more than once on any given set if you like. You would simply continue to drop the weight each time then continue to failure again. Beginners and even intermediate trainees need to work up to multiple drop sets or rest- pause. They will kick your butt! (in a good way).

Should I take a multivitamin?

The answer is debatable. Your first choice should almost always be to get you vitamins and minerals from whole foods. Very few people eat enough fresh fruits and vegetables these days and I’m as guilty as many other people.

Canned fruits and vegetables are usually lacking in adequate vitamins and minerals and often have ingredients added that may sabotage your meal plan. Almost all have added sugar and copious amounts of salt, preservatives, artificial colors and other ingredients only a chemist could pronounce. Read the labels! Some brands may be better than others.

Getting you vitamins from a bottle are the only viable options for some people. But supplements have their own set of problems. Most are not considered drugs and are not routinely tested for purity or validated for their actual ingredients by the FDA. Recent testing by independent labs (not FDA) has disclosed large discrepancies in actual ingredients and their labels. These were brands sold by major retail outlets. They, at best, aren’t what they claim to be and, at worst, actually harmful.

In addition, many vitamin and mineral supplements, even if what they claim to be, are not as effective as vitamins and minerals from whole foods. According to some nutrition experts your body absorbs more vitamin C from eating one large apple (10.3 mg of vitamin C) than from a 1500 mg vitamin C tablet.

So, get your vitamins from whole foods as much as possible. If you do use those from a bottle, stick with the large name brands.


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