Tag Archive: fat-loss



Diet tricks for fat loss

I get many guys asking me about “intermittent fasting” and “carb cycling” and similar “tricks” in the search to drop body fat.

Let’s look at this objectively.

I am not going to shoot any of these methods down, I think there are enough counter-proof that at least for some it is working.

However the people contacting me is never advanced athletes but Joe average who plays around with bodybuilding and want to get a quick road to loosing fat.

This is where the problem comes in.

The advanced athletes employing these diet tricks are already at very low body fat and are preparing for a show or event. In their toolbox which they use constantly, are their fat-callipers, tape measure and weighing scale and caloric counter. They approach this very scientifically and got the whole process down to a tee. They hardly ever make a mistake. But even then some do make a mistake and the consequences are close to disastrous. The truth is that with these tricks they are walking a thin line and it is very easy to make a mistake. You really need to know what you are doing and monitor the body extremely closely. You need to be very scientific about it to the extreme!

But Joe average is not a guy who will put in the time and effort these guys do with these tricks. He will not daily pull out the fat calipers, the tape measurement and scale and double-check calories etc. He just wants a simple to follow solution that will allow him to shed fat. And this is NEVER a simple solution. This is a hardcore solution. And nearly 99% of Joe average who have tried these hardcore solutions have badly burned their fingers. By burned fingers I mean training derailed, getting sick (due to immune system dropping as a result of too much required from the body) or losing all the hard-earned muscle in the process.

If you want my complete training/diet/supps system customised specifically for your body and goals, have a look here: https://gertlouw.com/my-transformation-secrets/

The risks simply outweight the benefits for Joe average …by far.

It is not worth it.

For Joe average and most advanced athletes it makes sense to follow a proven sensible approach.

Such a sensible approach is to monitor the body every 14 days with fat calipers and a weighing scale. Then to interpret the results with wisdom and make the necessary caloric adjustments to reach your goal.

In the cutting phase you want to lose fat and keep muscles safe (not necessarily build muscle but definitely not losing muscle!).

In the building phase the goal is adding a little body fat (2%-4%) and built muscle. Whenever you have to adjust calories, never do it with more than 10% in 14 day period up or down. The body need time to adjust and by adjusting calories with more than 10% will throw the body’s normal responses off for up to 1 month which makes the 14 day monitoring very difficult to interpret correctly.

The type of diet to follow is simple.

For cutting: https://gertlouw.com/2014/08/16/cutting-diet-challenges/

For building: https://gertlouw.com/2014/10/27/muscle-building-phase-sample-diets/

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Now I hope this let’s you think twice about venturing these risky paths. If you want to use me as an example…I have never done these diet tricks, simply because they are too risky! I am not about to sacrifice my hard-worked by slipping up once.

Wish you all happy training!

Gert Louw

GUYS & GIRLS DREAM BODYc


Click here to view video “A guide to muscles for a teenage boy”

 

Had quite a few requests to do an article for youngsters who want to build muscle.

Few things are so healthy looking than a young guy with a good aesthetic looking physique!

So as a young guy…what must you do to grow and what must you avoid? (under 16 do preferably just body resistance exercises not weights.)

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I am going to give you a quick and easy guide.

The easiest way is to look at what to avoid since this will tell you by implication what to do. Things to avoid  is things that will limit muscle growth and even results in smaller muscles! Many guys into their 30’s and even 40’s never learn these basic muscle building errors and they can never understand why they do not put on size. LEARN! By cutting this out of your gym/lifestyle will ensure you create an optimal environment for growth and fat loss from a young age.

15 THINGS TO AVOID by a youngster (over 16) who want to grow muscles:

  1. Overtraining – you cannot train more than 6 days a week. Remember each of these sessions is going to be intense and very hard on the body. The body need at least 1 preferably 2 days a week to recover and build.
  2. Too long training sessions. Muscles do NOT grow in gym. They actually getting torn down and hurt and literally become smaller. In gym is only where you STIMULATE the muscle for growth. Healing and repair must first occur before growth sets in. Never train a muscle still sore from previous workout. Growth occurs outside while your rest and recover. So do not spend more than 60 minutes in gym!
  3. Junk food! What you eat is what you will be. Outside the gym your muscles need the right food to grow…junk food is NOT it!
  4. Too little food. The muscles cannot (!) grow if the body thinks it is in a famine environment…then your body will use the muscles for energy and go catabolic (equals smaller muscles) and only as a last resort use the fat storage. You must eat enough food to grow and to lose fat!
  5. Too little sleep! The most important ingredient to help muscles grow is getting in enough sleep. You cannot expect muscles to grow with just 2-3 hours sleep a night. At least 6-8 hours of solid sleep.
  6. Bad Form – bad form or technique will not stimulate growth and will open the door for serious injury. NEVER throw a weight! Slow controlled movements.
  7. Showing off in gym. The sooner you get the ego under control the sooner you will start growing. NEVER show off. Lift the weight that you can manage in a controlled fashion. You WILL hurt yourself showing off and you will make your name an ass!
  8. Listen to everything everyone says in gym and taking it for the gospel! Be carefull what you believe and to whom you listen. Verify the facts before following someone’s suggestion or trying something new. VERIFY! VERIFY! VERIFY!
  9. Training with the wrong partner. Having a training partner not focused will seriously hamper your success. The training partner you choose must add to your success not take away!
  10. Exercise technique/breathing. Learn to breathe correctly. Positive and negative moves of an exercise must be equal speed. Try and squeeze the muscle when reaching the top of the move.
  11. Good bodies are NEVER created through exercise machines. They are created by free weights. Why? Well very simple: free weights uses and activates all the stabilization muscles which are crucial for a balanced looking aesthetic physique. Machines bypass all these stabilization muscles and result in an unbalanced muscle development…full stop!
  12. Do not trust on supplements to be the answer. VERY FEW supplements actually work. Consider only the following: Creatine, Whey protein, BCAA’s, L-glutamine and maybe a caffeine pill while training. The rest is just money down and empty pit!
  13. Anabolics is not a good idea, especially for a youngster. You got more than enough testosterone and HGH in your veins. USE IT! Using anabolics WILL result in smaller balls and it WILL result in impotence and no desire for sex…just for starters. You really, REALLY need to know what you are doing venturing this road and if you MUST do it, only after you had your kids!
  14. Alcohol! Want a rippling 6-pack? Well this is NOT going to happen with regular consumption of alcohol. Keep it to one day a week and NOT more than 500ml of wine or the equivalent. Alcohol in males create a fat layer around the internal organs and result in a bloated looking tummy which is very difficult to get away. No good body is ever build on regular alcohol consumption no matter what the Hollywood perception is!
  15. Training too light. If you do not stimulate the muscle for growth, no growth will occur. Stimulation only happen when the muscle is challenged. One sure way to do this is to train regularly to absolute muscle failure! The muscle must have at the very least a slight ache the next day…that is a sign that you have done a good job!

I have a blueprint system developed for young guys to create the environment for growth and make optimal use of the high testosterone and HGH levels…have a look here:  https://gertlouw.com/my-transformation-secrets/

Wish you all happy training!

Gert Louw

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Click here to view video “Program for washboard abs in 90 days

 

How many times have you heard similar slogans and the only requirement was this or that supplement that will do the trick, or a simple exercise that is supposed to produce magic results.

In this article I will tell you how to get that coveted 6-pack in 90 days BUT one thing you need to understand, there is NO magic pill that will ever produce a 6-pack (not even anabolics can do it alone!) and there is no single exercise that on its’ own can give you a 6-pack.

You will see that I said, “90 days”. There is a very good reason why. 90 Days is a period in which the body can actually make a visible difference in muscle-building and fat loss with the necessary skill applied.

To get that coveted 6-pack you need to do two major things:

  1. Build the ab-muscles to increase in size (enlarge the peaks and valleys).
  2. Decrease the fat layer covering the abs while feeding the muscles for growth.

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So let’s get down to business…

How do you build the muscle of the 6-pack in a 90 day period?

  • The abs (and calves) are of a different muscle fibre type that get stimulated for growth with more frequent training than the other muscles groups and also at a higher rep range per set.
  • For just about all the other muscles you will perform (for muscle growth) about 8 reps per set. For abs we are talking closer to 25 reps per set.
  • Other muscles will generally be trained once a week intensely. Abs can and for the purpose of this discussion must be trained up to 3 times a week intensely, typically Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
  • Forget about fancy moves, stick to proven fundamental exercises that build muscles. One word here – CRUNCHES! There is NO other ab exercise that stimulates the 6-pack growth like the crunch. Various forms of crunches exist, ie: exercise ball crunches, legs in air crunches, crunch bench, etc…

 

About CRUNCHES 

The purpose of a crunch is to contract the muscles of the abs really intensely. When performing any type of crunch, you need to lift the shoulders and upper body just slightly and crunch with the abs. You need to focus the abs so hard at the crunch that you feel pain. If the abs do not start paining after a couple of reps you are NOT doing the crunch correctly. Very few exercises deliver the intense pain the crunch delivers and 99% of people do it wrong because they don’t like the pain. A saying from one of my favorite movies is: “Life is pain princess. Anyone tells you differently, well they are lying.” So suck it up and do it. If you really want that 6-pack you will learn to LOVE that pain!

Here follows your plan of attack for growing the ab muscles:

 

upper-body-crunchesimagesimages (1)exercise ball ab crunches

 

The above is all different versions of the crunch. The crunch focuses on the ab area but not the obliques.

To get the obliques to stand out it is usually just a matter of putting in a slight twist with the crunch, alternating between the two sides.

A dedicated oblique exercise is the following – RUSSIAN TWIST:

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This can be done with a medicine ball or holding a weight. However when this move is performed your technique must be perfect or you can hurt your back. Keep the abs contracted and stop the move with your abs and core and not the back or other muscles.

The last ab exercise of note that works the ab to the core and WILL make the abs ache for at least two days is LEG THROWS, yep, good old-fashioned leg throws. Your training partner must throw the legs straight down with force and to either side without you knowing where he is going to throw it.You are not allowed to touch the ground. (If you don’t have training partner, try and find someone to help you with this, I consider it an important aspect of developing impressive abs.)

leg throws

These are the three types of ab exercises to stimulate growth.

Your training must be as follows – Monday, Wednesday and Friday you must do an ab session consisting of:

  • 4 sets of 25 reps of CRUNCHES (any form of crunch)
  • 4 sets of 50 reps LEG THROWS.
  • 3 sets of 25 reps RUSSIAN TWIST with weight.
  • 3 sets of 25 reps of CRUNCHES (different variation)

 

You doing this consistently for a 90-day period and you WILL stimulate the abs for growth. But now come the even bigger part of the trick!

No matter how good you train and stimulate the abs for growth, if you do not feed the body now correctly NO GROWTH WILL OCCUR!

The Diet is critical for 2 reasons

  • To feed the muscles to grow (after they were stimulated for growth by the exercises).
  • To cut down the fat layer on the tummy. If the fat layer on the tummy is more than 12%, no matter how good those abs are, they will be covered by an invisible cloak!

 

Now, how do you cover the above two points? Well, I can refer you to a serious diet structure specialized for this kind of deliverable, but instead I am going to make it easy for you.

Stick to these basic simple diet rules and you WILL see results:

  1. You must eat 7 small meals per day – evenly spread out from point of waking to point of going to bed.
  2. Each meal must contain clean protein, low GI (Glycemic Index) carb and some veggies – generally fist size portions.
  3. You must drink a BCAA and L-Glutamine shake during training to prevent muscles going catabolic.
  4. You must drink a WHEY shake and L-glutamine with banana after training – immediately (replace one meal)
  5. You must get at least 3 tablespoons of salt free, sugar-free peanut butter in per day – this is critical to keep your hormone levels healthy!
  6. You must drink 4L (1.05 gallon) of water per day.
  7. Alcohol only once a week and not more than 500ml of wine (2/3 of a bottle). No carbs at meal when drinking alcohol.

 

As easy as that! 90 days later and that 6-pack will be rather impressive!

Regarding genetics – I’ve never met a person that was unable to increase muscle size by following growth principles (including right diet, etc…). The abs are like any muscle, when sufficiently stimulated they will grow if fed correctly!

Last point…

Although the above plan will deliver 6-pack results, that body is going to look all the more impressive with not just a 6-pack but broad strong shoulders, deep chest, muscled biceps, strong legs and a v-back. Make this an opportunity not just to get that 6-pack in 90 days but an impressive body from head to toe!

 

Interested in my online coaching? Here are the systems available: ONLINE COACHING

 

Wish you all happy training! Cheers

Gert Louw

www.gertlouw.com

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Before and after training – what to eat?

The period before training and for the first two hours after training is critical to stimulate, protect and feed the muscles for ideal growth.

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Now, I can already hear many women (and guys) crying out and say but I am only walking, jogging, cycling or doing cardio, I don’t need to eat for growth!

My answer is (and I mean this in the nicest possible way): you are only fooling yourself!

No matter what sport or exercise you do, be it jogging or be it weight lifting, one of your main goals is to look better. How do you think that is going to happen…just by loosing fat?

I am going to disappoint you here and say that the chances are very good if you only lose the fat and not grow and tighten up the muscles you might even look worse after you have lost the fat than before.

If you want to look better in the mirror that flabby small muscles need to grow and tighten up. Toning means growing no matter who tells you otherwise.

Those muscles underneath that fat has been unused for a loooong time and any muscle not being used get smaller and smaller every year and lose form. That “small” muscle is NOT going to look good when the round fat layer is gone. For many people the fat layer actually give an aesthetically pleasing roundness to the body that make it look much better with the fat than without it.

So, anyone telling me that they only want to lose fat not built muscles, I just smile because they do not know what they are talking about.

Not matter what exercise you do, you need to build up the muscles and feed them correctly to respond best. You want to train as little as possible and feed the muscles perfectly to respond the best they can.

Feeding the muscles and body for exercise is nearly exactly the same irrespect if you’re a bodybuilder or jogger.

I do admit, for those pushing the limits there will be slight changes to accommodate their specific sport requirements. But for 90% of us average people there will be almost no difference.

 

I have done my personal research for the past 8 years and had many trials and errors and devised my pre and post workout eating requirement to be very effective. This same basic structure can be used by men and women alike, especially initially. As time progress and you educate yourself, you can make small alterations to suite you better. BUT ALWAYS small steps, one change at a time and VERIFY that it works before you move on the next change.

 

PRE-WORKOUT

You need to prepare your body for the training. 30 to 45 minutes before training you take the following:

  • BCAA‘s 8g (Branched Chain Amino Acids – take the pill form, they taste very bad in powder form.)
  • Pre workout shake: containing caffeine. You can also take caffeine pills. I am using Shotgun by VPX. But there are MANY other brands and all contain roughly the same basic pre workout muscle feeding mix.

The BCAA’s is the most critical part of the pre workout feeding. It is a specific group of Amino Acids that protects the muscles from being broken down while training for energy. The last thing you want to do while training is loosing the muscle. Protect it!

The pre-workout shake gives you and energy boost and also a muscle volumizing effect. Many cardio only trainers may prefer to skip the pre-workout shake but for cross-trainers, swimmers, gymnasts or anyone doing any form of resistance training, this becomes increasingly important to give you energy to do your routine.

 

During training water is of critical important. Carry your water bottle with you throughout and sip often. I easily drink up to 2L during a 50 minute training session and do not visit the toilet once because I sweat it all out.

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IMMEDIATELY after training:

This is a critical time to feed the muscles as soon as possible.

  • Your muscle requires two things urgently: quick absorption fat-less protein and quick energy.
  • The ONLY protein you should consider is whey (preferably whey isolate). It is clean and is absorbed very quickly by your system to feed the muscles. (Some people use also BCAA’s 8g after training instead of the whey protein although you will find most people use the whey.)
  • No protein contain fat, no matter how small will suffice. No casein type protein will suffice because the get absorbed too slow by your body. I use one scoop of 50g in 500ml of water. For those who do cardio only, I would suggest not more than 25g in 500ml water. I do intense weight training.
  • The best quick energy source is something like a banana (or maybe apple – but apple bloat me). A banana’s energy is released very quickly to replenish your muscle energy to normal levels.
  • The whey protein and banana covers nearly everything your body needs for directly after training.
  • I prefer to also use a combination of strong vitamins and anti-oxidants after training. (I use: alpha lipoic acid, Saw Palmetto, Potent Multi-Vitamin, Co-Enzyme Q10, Potent slow release vit C and Ecklonia Cava Extract.)

During training your body is put under strain and your muscles underwent exercise induced damage which needs to be repaired. vitamins and anti-oxidants create the environment for your body to effectively repair these “damaged” muscles, tendons, etc…

I’ve done it for years and had great success by following this routine of pre and post workout feeding.

 

Another important point: You should consume another small meal within the next 2 hours after training containing whey protein and small fruit/veggies. These 2 hours is golden growth period for your muscles and is probably the most important two hours of the day for growth.

This is especially important for people who take part in resistance training type of sports. It is of less important for cardio orientated sports.

 

Point of Note: Recent research are pointing to the possibility that taking anti-oxidants before or after training might actually slow down the fat burning environment resulting from training. This is all due to IL-6 which increase in the post exercise window where it enhances insulin action and fat burning. Taking the anti-oxindants (especially Vit C and E) stop the releasing of IL-6 and thus slowing down the post exercise fat-loss environment.

My take on IL-6 and anti-oxidants? Well I am not in a position to dispute research but I am not yet convinced and will wait for further developments before I drop my post exercise antioxidants. I’ve used potent post exercise antioxidants for years and had great results in health and fat-loss. The other side of the coin is that if I did not took my post exercise anti-oxidants I might have even greater fat-loss success. Choose for yourself but watch this space, I will definitely report more on this in future again, meanwhile I will continue using my anti-oxidants after training…it just seem to make sense.

 

Wish you all MUCH success and happy training!

Gert Louw

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