July 2015 - Mike Kneuer

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Magical Magnesium

Magnesium

If there is one mineral we have all been hearing a lot more these days, it’s Magnesium and there’s a reason for that. Magnesium is good for body builders. It plays a role in more than 300 biochemical reactions in human body, most of them relate with muscle developing and protein synthesis.

Americans don’t consume enough magnesium. The thing to worry is, you can’t find magnesium in modern diet. Modern Technologies in agriculture has literally made magnesium and others nutrients invisible from our food.

In this article, we will find out the magic of magnesium & how it benefits human body.

Parathyroid Hormone, Vitamin D…And Atherosclerosis?

Magnesium is closely associated with insulin sensitivity and because of this; it is popular as mineral of glucose control. Deficiency of magnesium can make you suffer with type-2 diabetes. Some Studies have shown that, in cases of rats, magnesium fount to be preventing diabetes.

Magnesium seems to affect blood glucose and insulin directly, as high blood glucose and insulin levels reduce magnesium status whereas low magnesium status will not control blood glucose effectively which in turn will also lowers magnesium status.

In some cases, where trails were taken on healthy volunteers, it is found that volunteers who were on a low-magnesium diet for only four weeks have 25% decrease in their insulin sensitivity. It means deficiency of magnesium can lead to insulin resistance.

Magnesium supplementation in some cases has resulted in increasing insulin sensitivity in insulin-resistant subjects.

Let’s have a look at a few of these studies and find out the hidden qualities of magnesium.

• “A study in which 16-week trial with type-2 diabetics concluded that magnesium supplementation improved body’s fasting glucose levels, insulin sensitivity, and HbA1c levels. HbA1c levels were improved by 22%, which is an incredible number. That would take a diabetic with an HbA1c level of 8% (not good) down to 6.2% (very good) in only four months.”

• “A study on magnesium supplementation in insulin resistant but non-diabetic volunteers who had low blood levels of magnesium showed incredible results after only 16 weeks. Participants reduced their insulin resistance by 43% and fasting insulin by 32%, suggesting that their magnesium deficiency may have been one of the main reasons why they were insulin resistant in the first place.”

Magnesium supplementation can help in decreasing total cholesterol, triglycerides & LDL. But it can improve subject’s blood lipid and can increase HDL as well.

What about Magnesium and Cardiovascular Disease?

Some recent studies have shown that deficiency of magnesium boosts LDL levels in human body. It also increases inflammation, endothelial dysfunction & oxidative stress, which is not good for human body at all.

Magnesium supplementation does exactly opposite to Deficiency of magnesium do.

Enough Already! Where Do I Get Me Some Magnesium?

The best natural sources of magnesium are fish, potatoes, nuts, seeds, banana, beans, leafy greens, whole grains, oats, and some fruits and vegetables.

      Source                                                                 Quantity

Dark leafy greens                                         (Spinach has 157 mg in 1 cup cooked)

Parsnips:                                                        45 mg per 1 cup

Squash                                                            43 mg/1 cup cooked summer squash

Potatoes                                                          57 mg per 1 baked potato

Tomatoes                                                        58 mg per 1 cup canned

Banana                                                            40 mg per 1 cup

Unrefined Whole Grains

Barley:                                                             158 mg per 1 cup uncooked

Bulgur:                                                             230 mg per 1 cup uncooked

Oats                                                                   63 mg per 1 cup cooked

Beans & Legumes

Black beans                                                      120 mg per 1 cup boiled

Chickpeas                                                         80 mg per 1 cup boiled

Lentils                                                               70 mg per 1 cup boiled

Peanuts                                                             50 mg per 1 ounce

Nuts & Seeds

Pumpkin seeds                                                  98 mg per 1 cup

Almonds:                                                            80 mg per 1 ounce

Cashews                                                              75 mg per 1 ounce

Animal Protein

Halibut                                                               90 mg per 3 oz cooked

Quantity & Quality of magnesium in a food is completely depends on soil quality. If you are looking for foods with enough magnesium then foods from organic or sustainable farm can end your search.

Now you know everything about magnesium & its qualities, it’s the time to start getting more of it!

Conclusion

Magnesium is necessary for proper bone metabolism, insulin sensitivity, vitamin D metabolism, parathyroid function, glucose tolerance and blood lipid levels. It helps in preventing atherosclerosis. It also takes you out of stress.

Consuming foods having magnesium along with proper supplementation will provide you with more health benefits.

Alcohol: Friend or Foe?

Man with beer mug

It’s hard to say. It kinda depends on what your goals are: Are you trying to ask that really hot chick out who’s surrounded by a gaggle of girlfriends at the bar?

Friend.

Are you trying to get shredded, gain muscle, increase your fat-burning potential and get the hot chick to ask you for your number instead?

Foe.

While it’s pretty common news that alcohol is not exactly the best post-workout supplement, believe it or not, there are some boozy-hacks that you can implement so that you don’t have to sacrifice good times in exchange for your health.

Here’s an A-Z guide on some of the science behind alcohol consumption and ways that you can make it work with your workout regime:

Alcohol doesn’t make you fat, it just doesn’t make you skinny.

When it comes to Ethanol, it’s like it was given the better ticket # at the DMV. It just has higher priority with your metabolism. Yet it’s undeserved, because it just converts terribly. 1 gram of alcohol is equivalent to 7 calories, but due to it’s very high “thermogenic effect”, most of that energy gets lost.

Pretty lame.

And contrary to popular belief, it doesn’t really convert to fat. It’s just too much work. Instead, all that acetate and acetyl-COA simply tells your body ‘no other fat burning needed’. If anything, it acts more like a fat burning suppressant.

Alcohol kicks the poop out of your muscles.

There’s no doubt that when you’re building your kick-ass health routine, you want to be managing calories AND hormones. The problem with alcohol is that it kind of messes with both, which can lead to less than ideal results.

Effects on muscle metabolism range from impairing insulin to decreasing post exercise inflammation….all BAD news for your muscles.

A study published in the June 2014 Issue of Sports Medicine made 2 groups of people workout together, except they had one group get wasted while doing it, while the other group got to drink orange juice instead.

Both groups immediately felt terrible, but the alcohol groups’ muscles felt substantially worse. No big surprise there. However, when the scientists changed the amount of alcohol being drunk, it yielded some interesting results.

When they pitted two groups against each other, with both drinking alcohol, the group that kept their consumption down to .5 grams vs 1 gram or more, felt hardly any effect on their muscles.

This can be the difference of 6 drinks after working out and crushing you, or limiting yourself to 3 drinks instead and feeling pretty good.

Alcohol can affect your post-performance based on your rest time.

Based on a study done on Rugby players, who are no doubt expert drinkers AND athletes, scientists found that as long as the players waited a few days before practice, they could drink as many as 20 drinks and still perform at peak levels. (NOTE: DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME)

In short, if you are going to binge drink (which I wouldn’t advise), at least take a few days off before engaging in any rigorous exercise.

Alcohol storage in your body is expensive and inconvenient.

As we already know, Alcohol has a very high thermogenic effect, kind of like protein. That being said, it’s costly energetically to store in your body, unlike protein.

When that same acetate and acetyl-coA that we mentioned earlier starts accumulating, it basically closes shop on the burning of carbs, fats and other fuels.

Shop closed

Yikes!

Not to mention that alcohol consumption is terrible at suppressing your cravings and appetite. It’s no coincidence that after a night at the bar, 2am hits and you find yourself faced with a massive case of the munchies and suddenly craving fried burritos and pizza slices.

Yum. Fried burritos. I digress.

Interestingly enough, there was a study published in Pharmacology, BioChemistry & Behavior that stated that the type of alcohol consumed determined how mad your munchies got.

Beer which lowers cortisol acted as a short term appetite suppressant. Red wine, known to increase cortisol, acted as an appetite stimulant.

So, beer made you less hungry and red wine made you more hungry. Either way, they both do raise cortisol, it just takes beer a little longer. That being said, you don’t want high rates of cortisol in your system since it doesn’t bode well for your workout recovery.

Alcohol Vs. Your Hormones: What You Need To Know

The effect of alcohol on testosterone and estrogen has a lot to do with how much you’re consuming.

When you’re talking .5 grams of alcohol (ie. 3 drinks), the effect on testosterone isn’t huge. More than amount, the effects are usually altered by what kind of exercise you’re doing. Exhaustive cardio and a few drinks will usually leave your testosterone levels pretty depleted. Drinking after weight lifting however, can actually elevate your testosterone levels.

While this can be good for dudes, this also applies to women, and for the ladies, raised testosterone usually means a muffin top.

The effects on estrogen are fairly negligible.

To sum up, here are a few rules of thumb:

1. Alcohol can be ok if you limit yourself to 3 drinks. If you’re going to drink more just make sure to rest a few days before engaging in intense physical activity.

2. Try to avoid mixed drinks because the sugar AND alcohol is just a terrible combination and will wreak havoc on your insides.

Hopefully this helps! Cheers!

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4 Supplements Everyone Needs by Mike Kneuer

Mike Kneuer

4 Supplements Everyone Needs by Mike Kneuer

Don’t take sub par supplements. You’re taking them to be healthy so does it make sense that there are artificial flavors, sweeteners, and unnecessary fillers and additives? Not so much. I’m happy to help point you in the right direction for your specific supplement needs, just ask me.

After years of research reading, clients results, and self experimentation with different supplements I’ve come to the conclusion that no matter what your goals, the following supplements WILL make a positive impact on your health and life. I’ve never recommended something that I don’t believe in 100% and have tried myself. I take each one of these supplements on a daily basis and so does my family. I can’t give much higher recommendation than that!

We carry each of these at Lifetime Athletic and I’m happy to extend my 10% trainer discount to any of my friends looking to get healthier.

Multi Vitamin – Mens/Womens Daily Multivitamin AM/PM are formulated to provide the male/female body with key nutrients needed for proper metabolism especially while maintaining a healthy workout routine. There are 2 separate formulas to support your body in exercise recovery and to help bring balance to your metabolism – one formulated for the morning (AM) and one formulated for the evening (PM).

VeganMax Protein – VeganMax is a great addition to any diet for those seeking dairy-free or alternative protein sources for their meals and snacks. VeganMaxis great tasting and sweetened only with natural sugars.Unlike other plant-based protein powders, it has an amino acid profile comparable to whey protein and isn’t high in carbohydrates. It is free of gluten,soy, dairy, artificial flavors, and artificial preservatives.

We also have a great variety of grass fed whey proteins,whey isolate, Fast Fuel, and Dairy Free Fast Fuel meal replacements.

Omega 3 Fish Oil – Balancing our Omega fatty acids is extremely important. Because of our current food supply and diet, we are getting too muchOmega 6 and not enough Omega 3. Supplementing with Omega 3 has become absolutely necessary. Omega-3 Fish Oil is made from a premier quality and high concentrated fish oil. Its guarantee to be mercury free and high doses of EPA and DHA per capsule makes it better quality then others out there. Dosages should include 2-4 capsules per day and split between meals.

Dynamic Greens-Dynamic Fruits & Greens with Super Fruits is an easy-to-mix, great tasting, nutrient-rich super food formula with whole food concentrates designed to provide synergistic phytonutrient nutrition. It provides a“super blend” of 100% natural fruit and vegetable extracts, vitamins, flaxlignans, ionic trace minerals, enzymes, antioxidants, phytonutrients, and symbiotic intestinal flora.This dynamic blend supplies your body with improvedenergy, metabolism, fat-burning, digestion, detoxification,immunity, repair, recovery, revitalization, and longevity!

Mike Kneuer, CPT, CES, FAS, FNS is a natural professional physique athlete, personal trainer, certified nutrition specialist, and functional aging specialist. He has a decade of experience helping people from all walks of life live healthier and better lives.

His #1 selling online program Project Shredded has changed the bodies of hundreds of guys seeking a shredded physique.

 

3 Tips to Get the Most Out of EVERY Rep by Mike Kneuer

Mike Kneuer
Mike Kneuer – Barbell

3 Tips to Get the Most Out of EVER Rep by Mike Kneuer

You’re in the gym repping away and not getting any measurable progress? It’s sad but true. Most people working out don’t get the results they could and should be getting. Here are 3 tips get the most benefit out of each rep.

Focus on the Contraction

Too many inexperienced lifters just lift the weight up and down and go through the motions. They do not actively engage each muscle and contract it with full force on each rep. By contracting the muscle as hard as you can on each rep it helps to recruit maximal muscle fibers, which leads to more strength and size gains.

Visualize                         

Visualization is key in many aspects of life to succeed. Many successful entrepreneurs, artists, and even bodybuilders use visualization to help them succeed. For our purposes, we are talking about 2 types of visualization.

First, by visualizing the body you desire, you put your subconscious mind to work. I’m not talking about having a general idea of what you want to look like…I’m saying burn a clear picture of what your perfect body looks like to you and revisit it daily. By visualizing your goals you have a 153% increase (ok I made that statistic up but it greatly increases your success rate) in the likelihood of attaining it.

Second, I want you to visualize the muscle you are training while you are performing the exercise. See the muscle turning red and filling up with blood while you contract it as hard as you can. The mind muscle connection is very real and will allow for maximal muscle fiber recruitment. Studies have shown that visualizing your muscles working increases strength.

Don’t Forget the Negative

I’m one of the most positive people you’ll ever meet. My glass is always half full and I can’t stand negative talk. But the one negative I embrace is the negative portion of the rep. Too many people push the weight up and then lower it with no control like an anchor slamming into the ocean. I usually go over to these poor souls, give them a hug, and explain the follow:

There are 2 types of muscle contractions on most lifts. You have the Concentric portion where the muscle shortens (eg. the curling part of a bicep curl) and the Eccentric portion where the muscle elongates (eg. the lowering of the bar in the bicep curl). Each portion of the rep is equally important and the latter is oftentimes forgotten. I accentuate the eccentric (negative) portion of the rep for at least a 2-1 or 3-1 ration. This means I will curl the bar up in 1 second and take 2-3 seconds to lower the bar under strict control to the original position. By only focusing on the concentric and ignoring the eccentric you are only getting ½ the benefit and doing ½ the work.And you’re definitely didn’t not reading this blog to get ½ the benefit. You want RESULTS!

 

Have a Clearly Defined Realistic Goal by Mike Kneuer

Mike Kneuer

Have a Clearly Defined Realistic Goal by Mike Kneuer

Know where you want to go. Ask almost any successful person in life, fitness, business, or anything else and they will tell you the importance of goal setting. By creating goals it not only creates motivation but also gives you a measuring stick to compare to. Most people are afraid of failure and therefore don’t set goals. They tend to have average bodies and live average lives. We aren’t here to be average..

It is important that before beginning you have a clearly defined and measurable goal. There is a big difference in your success toward reaching your goal if it is defined. Want to “lose a few pounds” isn’t quite the same as “lose 10lbs of fat and 2 inches off my waist.” It is also important to choose a goal that is realistic. If your goal is too big or unrealistic you will never hit it and give up feeling like a failure. Training with me will help you get to your goal but keep in mind this isn’t I’m not a miracle worker that will take you from 250lbs of fat to 185lbs with a 6-pack in 28 days, but EVERYONE that follows the program customized for them will be much better off after just 28 days then where they started.

Write your goal down. Tell your friends to hold you accountable. Put it somewhere you will see it daily. Keep it in your pocket. And relentlessly chase that goal down!

Author Bio

 Hi! I’m Mike Kneuer, a personal trainer, health coach, nutrition specialist, and professional physique athlete in Boca Raton, Florida. You can train with me at Life Time Athletic or, if you don’t live in South Florida, online at www.iPersonalTrainOnline.com.

If you’re a guy who is struggling to lose those last 15-20lbs keeping you from a shredded 6 pack check out my program Project Shredded. It is the same program I used to go from never doing a physique competition and deciding to jump in one to winning my Pro Card in just under 4 months. www.ProjectShredded.com

Fun Fact: I have taken a picture of everything he has eaten since 2012 and put it on Instagram and Twitter @WhatMikeEats and for those who don’t Tweet on www.WhatMikeEats.com to help my fitness family see you can eat healthy and still eat well. Check it out!