Fitness Myths that NEED to Die: The Paleo Diet Edition

Fitness Myths that NEED to Die: The Paleo Diet Edition

First and foremost… I support the paleo diet. Emphasizing lot’s of veggies, fruit, and high quality protein…the paleo diet offers a great framework for people to live a healthy(er) lifestyle. It also helps that research has found paleo-esque diets to be more satiating (filling) than other popular diets. This speaks volumes considering people often fail with certain diets, not because they aren’t motivated, but because they’re constantly hungry. That being the case, finding a diet that helps to increase satiety on a per calorie basis is extraordinarily important and something I appreciate and recognize within the paleo diet guidelines. Having said that… I don’t agree with all of it. Like most things in the fitness industry, many key tenets of the paleo diet lack context. Not only that, much of the paleo diet is based on false assumptions and unrealistic expectations.  In order to help you create the best diet for your individual needs, in this piece I’ll examine several tenants of the paleo diet with which I most adamantly disagree. Through reading this piece you’ll not only learn why certain paleo diet principles are incomplete, but also how you can incorporate the best nutrition practices into your lifestyle regardless of whether or not they’re “paleo.” No Dairy Allowed The paleo diet doesn’t allow dairy. Leaders of the paleo movement assert dairy must be eliminated from our diet for several major reasons, including: Dairy was not available during the paleolithic era and, consequently, we as humans are not meant to consume it. Dairy, for a variety of reasons, is dangerous for human consumption. Dairy produces a large insulinemic response which promotes the...
1 Powerful Mind Trick to Help You Stay on Track with Your Diet…FOREVER!

1 Powerful Mind Trick to Help You Stay on Track with Your Diet…FOREVER!

What if I told you everything you’ve been told about dieting is a lie? What if I told you eating “healthy” doesn’t have to suck? And what if I told you I know 1 powerful mind trick that will help you stay on track with your diet…forever? You’d probably be skeptical…but hopefully curious and open-minded enough to hear me out. The Key to Successful Dieting is Flexibility No, not that that kind of flexibility. I’m talking about a flexible mindset. The ability to understand and appreciate that not every day is going to be (nor should it be) 100% nutritionally perfect…and that’s o.k.! Not only is it O.K., it’s probably even beneficial in the long-run. See, successful dieting isn’t a like sprint; it’s like a marathon. If you’re overly strict with your diet to the point where it controls nearly every aspect of your life you’ll either fail over and over again or live a truly miserable existence. On the other hand, if you can learn to become a flexible dieter, a dieter who incorporates nutrition into your life opposed to incorporating life into your nutrition, well…then you are truly setting yourself up for long-term success. How Do You Become a Flexible Dieter? Practice. Lot’s and lot’s of practice. Like anything worth being good at, getting your nutrition “right” can take a couple tries. But there’s more to it than just practice. It’s also about creating the right mindset. It’s about learning and understanding how to view your nutrition, choices, and habits in a manner that facilitates continual progress. This is where my powerful mind trick comes into play....
How to Create a Post-Workout Meal for Building Muscle

How to Create a Post-Workout Meal for Building Muscle

Today I’ve got a fantastic guest article for you courtesy of nutrition expert, Armi Legge. Owner and operator of EvidenceMag, Armi is a stand-up guy with truly phenomenal, science-based, practical information.  In this article he does a great job of breaking down exactly how design a post-workout meal ideal for building muscle. Enjoy! -J Nutrient timing is overrated. You already know that in most cases, you don’t need to eat immediately after your workouts to gain muscle. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a post-workout meal. In fact, there may be a few small benefits to eating right after your workouts, especially in certain situations. If you’re training fasted, or without a recent pre-workout meal, you might build more muscle if you eat soon after your training. If you’re closer to your genetic limit and you want to add every gram of muscle you can to your body, you might also want to eat a post-workout meal. You also know that your macronutrient and calorie intake are the most important components of building muscle. That being the case, below I’ve outlined exactly how to design a post-workout meal with the right macronutrient breakdown. 1. Set your macronutrient targets for your post-workout meal. Your post-workout meal should be mostly protein and carbohydrate. Protein helps decrease muscle breakdown and increase muscle protein synthesis (1). Carbohydrate helps re-stock your glycogen levels which may help promote muscle growth (1). Interestingly, despite common dogma, there’s no evidence that eating fat with your post-workout meal will make it less “anabolic,” or muscle building. You’ll get the same increase in insulin, glycogen levels, and muscle...
The Dirty Truth Behind Emphasizing Good Fats In Your Diet

The Dirty Truth Behind Emphasizing Good Fats In Your Diet

The fitness industry survives on extreme’s. Everything is either the best or the worst… Amazing or terrible… Healthy or unhealthy… It’s sexier, more appealing, and marketable to sell extremes.  Selling moderation…not so easy. People want insane results and they want them now. It’s easier to sell a magical elixir guaranteed to melt fat and pack on muscle than it is to sell an intelligent diet and consistent training program. Why train and eat right when I could take a pill with my morning mug o’ joe and get jackt in 14 days or less? See what I mean? Extreme sells. Moderation doesn’t. What’s Fat Got to Do With It? Fat is the quintessential victim of fitness extremism. Calorically dense and a waste of calories, fat is touted by some extremists as the Adolf Hitler of macronutrients. Too soon? Anyway… On the opposite end of the spectrum, other camps (like the hacks selling Bullet Proof Coffee) swear by high-fat diets and their limitless health benefits. I mean, shit, Dave Asprey, creator of Bullet Proof Coffee, recommends adding upwards of 400 calories worth of butter & MCT Oil into your morning coffee in order to, supposedly, improve a variety of health markers. Fitness extremism at it’s finest. Q: So What’s the Deal: Is Fat Good or Bad? Well…neither. Fat isn’t inherently good or bad, healthy or unhealthy. O.K…Then What Is It? What makes fat “good” or “bad” depends on 3 major factors. Listed in no particular order of importance, these factors are: 1) Total Daily Caloric Intake 2) Ratio of Fat Consumed in Relation to Protein & Carbohydrates 3) Quality of Fat Consumed To make...
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5 Essential Components of the Ultimate Pre-Workout Meal

Pre-workout nutrition has long been one of the most furiously debated topics in the fitness industry. I actually covered the most recent research regarding pre & post-workout nutrition in this lengthy and highly referenced article; if you’re interested in the science behind my recommendations, I encourage you to give it a read. Today’s article is going to be brief and to the point. Rather than dig into the science, I’m going make this as clear and concise as possible. No boring research reviews and minimal scientific jargon. Plain and simple, this article is going to outline the 5 essential components of the ultimate pre-workout meal. It might seem simple – probably even too simple – but the truth is optimal nutrition doesn’t need to be complicated; in fact…it isn’t complicated at all! If someone tries to make you think otherwise…odds are they have no idea what they’re talking about and/or they’re trying to sell you something. Watch the short video, follow my guidelines, and reap the benefits of basic, effective, and science-based nutrition. The 5 Essential Components of the Ultimate Pre-Workout Meal To Recap   1) Timing Q: When is the best time to eat your pre-workout meal? A: Roughly 1-3 hours prior to strength training 2) Protein Q: How much protein do you need in your pre-workout meal? A:  Generally speaking, 25-35g is sufficient Q: Which type of protein is most beneficial? A: Irrelevant. Any high-protein source will do so long as you meet your total daily requirements (~1g/lb of bodyweight). For a list of my favorite protein sources, watch the video above. 3) Carbs Q: How many carbs should be included in...
If Physical Ailments Were Treated Like Obesity…

If Physical Ailments Were Treated Like Obesity…

Obesity is not a choice. Contrary to popular creed, there are countless underlying factors associated with obesity – many of which fall outside of an individual’s control. Unfortunately, societal norms – particularly in the mainstream fitness culture – actually support and encourage over simplistic views of obesity. It’s not uncommon to hear overarching generalizations such as: “Fat people are just lazy.” or “They don’t want it badly enough.” or “They don’t care about their health.” Statements such as these – aside from being utterly false and based on pure ignorance – provide absolutely zero useful insight. They do nothing to support weight loss and, in fact, actually discourage people from attempting to lose weight. Imagine if physical ailments were treated like obesity… Photo Credit: IWasteSoMuchTime.com That would be ridiculous, right? Arguably insane. Well, losing weight is no different. Making an individual feel bad about their weight (commonly referred to as fat shaming) is the worst way to go about inspiring change.  If you truly want to help an individual lose weight, you will – first and foremost – understand that obesity is not a choice. Let me repeat that one more time. Obesity Is Not a Choice! Once that is understood, you will support the individual through the good times as well as the tough.  You will not only provide them with helpful advice but, more importantly, you will provide them with a comforting shoulder to lean on when things get challenging. You will never blame them or make them feel like a bad person. They will know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you love them no matter...
Eat to Perform Interview with Jordan Syatt

Eat to Perform Interview with Jordan Syatt

Hey there! Last night I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Paul Nobles of Eat to Perform and wanted to give you access to the video. The entire conversation lasted for just over an hour and we discussed a variety of topics including: The KEY to fat loss Why fasted cardio is a waste of time The reason I gave up Intermittent Fasting And much more! I hope you enjoy the video and, as always, if you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below. Never Minimal. Never Maximal. Always Optimal. -J Sign Up for Your FREE Syatt Fitness Newsletter! Name: Email: We respect your email privacy Powered by AWeber...
The Truth About Fattening Foods: They Don’t Exist!

The Truth About Fattening Foods: They Don’t Exist!

This article was originally featured on www.schwarzenegger.com It doesn’t matter what you eat regardless of whether it’s high in protein, carbohydrates, or fat; high glycemic, extremely processed, or conventionally labeled as an “unclean” food. Don’t believe me? The evidence is clear: No foods are inherently fattening!  Discover the truth behind fattening foods —> CLICK...
Interview with Jordan Syatt

Interview with Jordan Syatt

I recently had the pleasure of being interviewed by the crew over at WeightTraining.com and, I’ve gotta say, they asked some great questions. Among other topics, I spoke about: Three of the most common training and nutrition related myths  Three necessary components of a healthy diet And how I’ve been able to establish myself  within the fitness industry You can read the interview by clicking here ============> Interview with Jordan Syatt I hope you enjoy the interview and, as always, if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, feel free to leave them at the end of the article. Never Minimal. Never Maximal. Always Optimal. -J P.S. I currently have several huge projects underway so keep your eyes peeled for new and exciting material coming out in the near future 😉  ...

Video of the Week: My Typical Diet + 3 Quick & Easy Salads

  Good morning! I hope you had a wonderful weekend and are ready to get to work in what is already the second week of 2013… Damn that’s crazy how quickly time flies. Anywho, I’ve gotta hustle because I need to get a Max Effort Lower Body training session in and then head over to my Biomechanics of Human Motion lab so please excuse the lackadaisical introduction. I’m not going to leave you hanging, though, because this week I’ve recorded a video of me going into the deepest, darkest corners of my refrigerator and discuss what I tend to eat on a daily basis. Not only that, but at the end I’ve also included 3 quick and easy salads that I enjoy, are simple to prepare, and allow me to eat healthy even on-the-go. Keep in mind, I’m a poor college student so my diet isn’t necessarily the most extravagant one out there but it definitely gets the job done. I hope you enjoy the video and, as always, if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions feel free to leave them in the comments section below. Never Minimal. Never Maximal. Always Optimal. -J   My Typical Diet + 3 Quick & Easy Salads   I totally forgot to mention that, in order to reach my daily quota of protein (~150g), I supplement with Dymatize Elite XT. I’d note, there’s nothing special about this brand – or any brand for that matter – except for that it’s the cheapest and best tasting one I can find. In fact, I only use protein powders because they’re a convenient and cost-effective way for...