1) Not good/healthy haha. But now that I have a job I should be able to afford to eat healthier. 2) I used to run about a mile as a warm-up and then get on with my workouts. Not much a fan of running, and long-distance just bores me to death. Recently, I haven't done any, which I know is a problem. Cardio is still pretty decent though. 3) A lot of various push-ups and sit-ups: usually somewhere around 100+ push-ups with a set consisting of 10/10/10 of one kind of push-up and then I do (part two)
a different push-up with the same reps. Same with the sit-ups. Usually this lasts me around 15-20 minutes with a 30 second to a minute break between each set.
yikes! sorry that it took so long to reply, nick. i’ve been trying to catch up with private questions that people have been asking, causing me to be pretty MIA with updates and “public” Qs.
anyways, after reading your answer to my first question, your diet is definitely the problem that needs to be addressed. that wide range of weight fluctuation kinda proves how much diet is a factor in your weight.
and i know you said that you’re not interested in losing weight, but if you want to “lose some of the leftover fat,” you may have to— at least in terms of dropping some of that fat mass.
still, based off of your height-to-weight proportion, i’d say that you’re at a weight in which stubborn fat (that is, the last layer of belly fat that is such a challenge to lose) is what you have to target.
so the first thing that i’d suggest is to really take a look at what you’re eating (count your calories for at least three days to gain a perspective on your diet). then it’ll be time to make some changes.
regarding your cardio, i wholeheartedly believe that it’s necessary to get rid of fat. if long distance bores you to death, then i’d like to introduce you to HIIT (high intensity interval training)— which is actually better than regular old long distance.
…the subcutaneous fat loss was ninefold greater in the HIIT program than in the traditional long slow distance cardio program.
and finally, i’m not too sure about just doing push-ups and sit-ups. i mean, it’s still a workout, don’t get me wrong. but i always suggest a little diversity in workouts simply because certain muscle groups need to be isolated. in this regard, i’d recommend doing more than just push-ups and sit-ups (especially because sit-ups can be bad for your back).
if you could, i’d appreciate a little more detail on these “various push-ups and sit-ups.”
I've got a quick question: I'm not interested in losing weight, I'm comfortable where I am and with my size (5'8" and 143-152 lbs depending on the day and how much I ate the day before), but I do want to lose some of the leftover fat I have on me that I haven't been able to get rid of even when I used to work out hard 5-6 days a week. I mainly do bodyweight exercises at a quick pace but I've had little to no results losing the fat. Any advice? You can touch on anything you deem necessary :)
hey there, nick!
before i unleash all that i know, i have a few questions for you.
1) what does your diet look like? how many calories/give me a general idea of what kind of food you eat.
2) do you factor in aerobic exercise into your workouts? if so, how often/how much/how long?
3) describe your “bodyweight” workouts. give me a lil detail about how many sets/reps you do.
thanks in advance! :)
hi i have a question but it's kinda long and probably wont even fit on here T_T
hi! since this seems to have become an issue (people have had to send me 5+ messages at a time— darn the word limit!), i just set up an email for those whose questions are more on the lengthy side.
so don’t sweat it! you can also submit questions to email@example.com :)
Hi! I'm 15, male and i'd really like to start building up some muscle, since I'm pretty skinny by genes (REALLY skinny. There's almost no fat in my body. Not that I don't eat, I just... don't retain it lol) but have no much idea how to start, what kind of food i should eat and all that stuff. any ideas? my sister recommended me to ask you
hi there! i’m definitely gonna go to martin for this one, as he’s the expert on muscles and will help you get started. :)
You have my brother’s genes. First, you’ll have to find the rough number of daily calories you’d have to eat to gain a pound or so of body weight at the end of 1 week (it’s going to involve some force-feeding).
Second, we address the 3 macronutrients. For mass-gaining purposes, the lower daily limit for protein intake, which is considered a high number to most people (but a conservative one in bodybuilding circles) is 1 gram per pound of body weight.
If I weigh 165 lbs, I make sure to take in 165g of protein. You probably can get away with a little less; whether or not you should up your intake will depend on whether you are recovering from your workouts, getting stronger, and/or seemingly putting on more flab than muscle. This is all contingent upon the fact that you have no pre-existing liver or kidney conditions and drink enough water.
For carbohydrates, the range can be anywhere from 200-500 or so grams a day. If your weight training routine is high in volume (plenty of sets and reps), lean toward the higher end.
Fat intake should be incidental, for the most part. Don’t deliberately try to cut it out or overdo it. Also, you’d do well to invest in fish oil (if you had to pick one, pick the fish oil) if you don’t regularly derive a portion of your protein intake from fish.
Flaxseed oil is optional.
Regarding training, it doesn’t necessarily have to be comprehensive; you are the sculptor, so you get to decide which muscles you want growing. How you go about the training really doesn’t matter, as long as you are progressing in the amount of weight and reps you are handling over a long period of time.
Some initial guidelines would be to perform 1-3 exercises per body part, 1-3 sets per exercise, 6-20 reps per set, and use anywhere from 50-75% of your 1-repetition maximum on the “big” exercises (bench press, squat, deadlift, overhead press, rows). Best of luck.
Thank you :) I used to weigh myself quite often after seeing I was losing weight, but decided to not do it anymore and to look in the mirror instead. It seems better and more realistic to me. And again, thanks. Reading your response has helped me a lot, and I'll keep in mind messaging you if anything goes wrong or if I don't feel like I'm doing things right (which is doing it wrong, but whatever).
the mirror technique (as well as simply seeing how much better your clothes fit) is way better than obsessing over the scale. i think it’s unfair to have a bad day based on a number, so why not avoid that potential fiasco completely?
okay! in that case, i hope i never get a response from you— wait, no, that sounds bad hahaha. i mean, i’d love to get an update from you somewhere in the future, but i hope to be hearing about how well everything’s going. :)
oh, and in response to your other message:
Scared anon over here. I reached the 500 characters limit, oops;;; I wanted to add that I usually eat about from 900 to 1600 calories a day, and haven’t worked out much yet. Ah, and my BMI is 21. The thing is- I feel pretty guilty or afraid when I eat over 1100cal in one day, and more than the facts, what scares me about falling into an ED is the obsession I’m getting over this and how I can’t stop thinking about what I eat. thanks a lot for reading :)
from a health standpoint, i wouldn’t recommend eating anything below ~1200 calories (900’s way too low!), even for people who are trying to lose weight. anything lower than that number puts your body at risk, as
not getting enough calories can weaken your heart muscles and chambers, thereby increasing your risk for heart attacks— simply put: it’s not safe.
so please don’t ever feel guilty for eating over 1100 calories in a day— that’s what you should always be doing… and then some.
remember to be realistic with your goals. though i’m pretty wary of the whole BMI calculator, a BMI of 21 already falls under ‘normal weight.’ since i don’t know your specific measurements, all i can say is to shoot for a healthy amount of weight loss (or rather than aiming for weight loss, make your goal to simply be more active and eat more fruits and veggies).
it should never be about the number.
Hi!I love your blog, it makes me feel more secure about myself and you give some really helpful&healthy advice. Still, I'm afraid for myself. I have a really weak mind, and because of that, I always avoided trying to lose weight (I used to be a little bit overweight) out of fear of falling into an ED. Now I decided I wanted to be more fit and lose that belly fat that annoys me, but I think I might be getting to obsessed with the subject. I really don't want this to take over my mind nor get sick
hello there, and thank you very much! i’m really glad that it’s been able to help you out. :)
now, i can totally see what you’re getting at, as the fear of falling into an ED can be a pretty scary thought. i mean, no one would really want to willingly start obsessing over their weight.
but watching what you eat and trying to exercise properly doesn’t necessarily mean you have to obsess over your weight. it seems like it goes hand-in-hand, right? wrong! in fact, i haven’t stepped on the scale all summer, and i don’t see a problem with that.
you shouldn’t feel limited by your fear. continue educating yourself (read up on the effects of malnutrition as well as other health-related articles), and you might even scare yourself when you see what EDs can cause.
really though, don’t let feeling afraid keep you from wanting to achieve your goals. you’re allowed to become more fit!
and if you ever (and i mean, EVER) have a problem or feel like you’re getting off track, i am always here to talk. you can message me (if you go un-anon, obviously, i’ll be able to answer it 100% privately. likewise, i could always give you my email in a private message, but i’d have to get your actual username. whatever’s most comfortable for you!)
remember: becoming healthier is a lifestyle change, and you don’t have to change everything right this second. take it slow, and do things the right way. good luck! :)
what's a tricep dip?
hi! whoops, sorry! i’ll add an explanation right now.
well, actually, this video explains it really well— skip ahead to :37. no equipment necessary, aside from a sturdy bench/chair. personally, a desk chair works fine for me. :)
i just wanted to say thank you so so much for this blog. i've looked at this blog for probably 5 minutes, and already i've decided that i have come into this whole loosing weight thing wrong. i figured that eating 500 or less cal per day and exercising a ton was the way to loose weight, but your blog has seriously helped me look past that. so thank you so much for inspiring me to be healthy and eat right, and seeing that i can still loose weight and be happy with myself if i do that. :)
awww you’re very welcome!
thank YOU very much for this message. i’m so happy to have made a difference on someone else’s perspective regarding health. :)
good luck on your journey to good health— work hard!
What's a good work out for someone who is trying to get in shape for the upcoming school sports season?
hi! welll, since you didn’t exactly specify which sport you’re trying to prepare for, i’ll just have to suggest general exercise advice.
really though, aside from actually playing and practicing skills related to your specific sport, “getting in shape” typically consists of the same stuff.
first off, i suggest cardio, such as running, biking, and swimming (switch it up if you get bored with one), to help with your overall level of fitness. it’ll improve your lung capacity, and as it is with any sport, you’re gonna need endurance. but of course, it really does depends on your sport.
for example, swimmers/water polo players would wanna get a lot of their workouts in the water, whereas cross country runners would wanna focus on running on different inclines in order to properly prepare.
however, if you play volleyball/basketball/soccer, cardio is still extremely important. you wanna build up enough endurance to last matches/games as well as long tournaments. and if you haven’t been working out, build up slowly.
how? well, you get to decide! it’s up to you if you wanna increase your cardio by distance (an extra lap or two) or time (a few extra minutes). personally, i always add time, rather than distance.
in addition to whatever form of cardio you choose to do, add in some jump roping to your workout. it doesn’t have to be super long— 10 or 15 minutes will help make a difference.
i also recommend switching things up with interval training. :)
now regarding strength, hit up the machines + weights. honestly, wiki’s got a great list of weight training exercises that you can do. however, if you don’t have access to a gym, i’d definitely recommend looking into calisthenics (exercises using only your body weight).
if you ARE a swimmer, here’s a previous question i answered to build up endurance and strength (really though, the advice is so general that it could be incorporated for any sport).
wow, I love your views on health :) I feel the exact same way. Im pretty athletic myself, Im a varsity cross country runner, a varsity touch rugby player and a varsity track runner (Ive been running track for 8 years :D)
but what I came here to say is that I have the same views, I try my best to get my friends active - they arent all that into sports and they like going on diets. I know several people going through eating disorders right now and I wish more people just knew that with exercise comes health, starving yourself does the opposite and it can cause mental problems as well as physical ones. Thanks for spreading good healthy views on tumblr lol
Much respect :)
aww thanks, amirah— and oh, you’re so much more than just ‘pretty athletic.’ 4th fastest 100h in hawaii? i’m a varsity hurdler myself, and i gotta say, that’s so awesome!
i totally wish we had rugby at our school! but as for cross country… i’ve never been much of a competitive long distance runner haha.
but yeah, trying to educate people is definitely what i’m going for. i mean, honestly, not a lot of people actually do their research. sure, there are the few who really try to understand their health, but that’s such a small minority right now.
keep up the amazing work, especially with track (haha i love that sport so much, i’m definitely biased)! hurdling takes so much training and technique.
i’ve got mad respect for you. :)