Storm Fitness Newsletter – Super Size Me Diet – September 2004
The Shocking After-Effects of a Super Size Me Diet
Were any of you able to see the documentary super size me while it was out in theaters? If not, it releases to DVD on September 28th and I highly recommend you watch it right away! Just as a side note, make sure that you have eaten dinner well before hand – this Super Size Me Diet will literally gross you out!
For those of you that have not heard about the documentary “Supersize Me”, let me fill you in. It’s about a man named Morgan Spurlock who is the director and the subject of an experimental project that takes place in the film. Morgan goes on a 30 day diet of nothing but eating McDonalds! The rules: 1) He must eat everything on the McDonalds menu at least once during the 30 days 2) When asked if he would like to supersize he must say “yes” and eat it all. 3) His 3 meals a day must all come from McDonalds 4) No Exercise (this would make sense, since the average American does not do exercise); with the exception of a pedometer which he could wear to track steps and take the number of steps that the average American takes per day.
Now, you might be saying to yourself “well that’s a ridiculous diet, no one eats that much McDonalds in 30 days”. Although this might be true, people DO actually eat this amount of McDonalds in often times a period of just a few months. In fact, most Americans are “heavy users” of McDonald’s eating it more than 3 times a week! So his little experiment is not too far off from the way many Americans have been eating and running their lifestyle.
The results of his 30 day experiment were absolutely horrifying! Morgan had 3 different types of Doctors monitoring his health throughout. All of the Dr’s recorded his health before the McDonald’s diet and said it was excellent across the board, including cholesterol and all blood results. Here’s what happened…in 30 days Morgan managed to more than double and then triple his tri-glyceride and cholesterol levels. Not only that, but the Doctors practically begged him to end his experiment due to the severe damage that it was doing to his health.
Following the Super Size Me Diet, Morgan had managed to go from a being of excellent condition to one that was depressed, lethargic and downright killing himself. More than that, The doctors were stunned to see that he was actually doing to his liver what they had only seen alcoholics on extreme binges previously do. It was absolutely amazing to them…I mean it made sense, but these doctors never would have guessed you could get cirrhosis of the liver from FOOD! Excessive binge drinking is one thing – but doing it with food had never been seen before.
Morgan ended up making it through the 30 day experiment, but not without doing some permanent damage to his body. The one thing that absolutely floored me was that in 30 days Morgan managed to put an additional 20 lbs onto his previously lean frame. Now, here is the real shocker! Are you ready for this? Although it took Morgan only 30 days to gain 20 lbs, guess how long it took Morgan to get those 20 lbs off? Answer: He still hasn’t done it! It took him 5 months not weeks folks, to get 15.5 lbs off and he still has 4.5 left to go. This is why we need to always be conscious of what we are putting into our mouths. Not only that, but it’s important to have realistic expectations of ourselves as we work to get our bodies back in shape.
I always tell my clients who are striving to lose weight to most importantly be patient while your body is going through the changes of becoming more fit. It takes months and even years to reverse the damages which may have done to the body in only a few months or maybe even years. Regardless, don’t give up – the body is resilient and you can get it back to a place of health and happiness.
It is worth every workout that you put your body through and it feels great to sweat those toxins out. Exercise and diet will help you get back in the game. You have the power to do it just be realistic with yourself, be kind to yourself and give your body consistent exercise, positive thoughts and most of all patience. Your world will turn around and with every pound of fat that your replace with muscle you will become a stronger person for it both mentally and physically, inside and out!
Your Fitness Questions Answered!
Q: I have cellulite on my legs – how can I get rid of this? ~Andrea ~ Potomac Falls
A: First off, Cellulite is just another word for plain old fat. A large portion of the body’s fat is stored directly beneath the skin where strands of connective fiber separate fat cells into compartments. When fat cells increase in size also known as hypertrophy, they tend to protrude out of these compartments. This gives the skin a dimpled appearance especially in women.
Weather or not someone develops cellulite depends on a few things. 1) The amount of fat in their bodies, 2) the strength of the connective fibers and 3) the thickness of the skin. Unfortunately, women tend to have more of these items than men. In men, the connective fibers are usually more flexible and the skin is thinker – hence the fat is more evenly contained.
Be forewarned: Don’t fall for the old infomercials or late night TV talk – special creams, lotions and machines are nothing but hype and will not rid the body of cellulite. There are no magic formula’s here. However, there is an answer and it does work – it’s the true tested standard that has worked for millions including the Hollywood Stars!! That’s right, sensible eating and regular exercise both aerobic and strength!
Q: Lately there has been all this craze with the low carb and high protein diets, but I want to know if there are any risks associated with excess protein consumption?
A: The human body is actually unable to store extra protein! Protein consumed in excess of the body’s needs isn’t used to build muscle but is instead used for non-protein bodily functions. If individuals consume protein in excess of their caloric & protein needs, the extra protein will not be stored as protein. Unfortunately such extra protein is converted to and stored as fat….if you think about it, protein consists of calories just like carbs and fats so when not used it’s stored as fat. As a result, if individuals consume large amounts of extra protein, in addition to their regular dietary intake, any weight gain would likely be in the form of fat.
Potential for harm does exist if protein is consumed in excess amounts. Excess protein can lead to dehydration, because protein metabolism requires extra water for utilization and excretion of its by-products. Since individuals who exercise are already at an increased risk for dehydration, the additional strain of protein waste excretion can increase dehydration. Excess protein has also been shown to lead to an increase in the loss of urinary calcium. A chronic calcium loss would be of particular concern because it may increase the risk of osteoporosis, especially in women.
My advice, stay away from the latest diet crazes. Try not to get too caught up in the hype. Continue you on with a sensible diet and exercise plan. Eliminate excess carbs, but don’t eliminate all carbs especially if you are exercising – you will need them for energy. Healthy food including some carbs is the fuel for your body.
3 Heart Pumping & Calorie Burning Cardio Workouts
1. Time your Mile Splits
Run or walk ½ mile and take note of your time then beat that time for the next half mile you complete. Do not take any rest time in between. You can go as slow as you need to for the first ½ mile just make sure you complete the second half mile in a faster time. This will allow you to complete one mile total – record your time for each ½ mile leg at the end of the workout and then and then beat that time during your next workout for each ½ mile segment. The benefit is that your body will improve a little each workout since you are challenging it without pushing it beyond its capabilities
2. Hill Intervals
Set the treadmill to a 4% incline or higher or find a hill outdoors that would take you 30 seconds to go up at a decent clip. Run/walk hard up the hill 5 times and recover by walking slowly down the hill. Try working your way up to 8-10 thiry second intervals with a 2+ minute recovery down the hill. Running hills builds leg strength and specifically conditions your body for strength training – so you will see improvements in your ability to lift weights.
3. Dumbell Walk
Take a pair of dumbbells that you can carry while maintaining good posture – Start out with 8-10lbs and work your way up. Carry them across the room and back as they hang by your side. When you reach the other side of the room do a set of 10-15 pushups. Complete this for a total of 5 sets and work your way up 8-10 sets.
There is no such thing in anyone’s life as an unimportant day.
Personally, I find exercising outdoors to be very enjoyable. The visual stimulation (of a park, lake, or mountains) and fresh air and sunshine are benefits that can’t be had when working out indoors on a treadmill or stationary bike. I find that I am more cheerful and energetic when I do my cardio exercise outdoors.
Studies have compared indoor and outdoor workouts, and the results showed that trained runners feel less anxious, depressed, angry, and hostile, and more invigorated after an outdoor run than they do when they run the same distance indoors on a treadmill. So, take advantage of the beautiful fall weather and exercise outside before the winter arrives
Weight Training Tip
To build strong, toned calves, try the ‘step up’ exercise. Stand on a step or stairway on the balls of your feet, leaving the rest of your foot off. Use a wall to balance yourself so you don’t fall. Rise onto your toes slowly as high as you can and hold for the count of three. Lower your heels below the step. Using your calf muscles, push up onto your toes again and lower. Repeat 15-20 times. Add another set as you get stronger or hold weights your hands for more of a challenge.
Exposed! The #1 Misconception of the Month
Despite what doctors and some experts in the health field have been saying, everyday activities don’t necessarily build bone mass. According to a recent study in the Journal of Internal Medicine, mild activity does very little to make bones stronger. It seems that doctors and others in the health field have tried touting everyday activities like housework as having the capability to increase bone mass.
Unfortunately, these everyday tasks are simply not enough to contribute to increase bone mass nor are they enough to prevent osteoporosis. In order to really see a significant impact of bone mass a strength training program needs to be implemented into your life. This can be done very inexpensively by using free weights, resistance bands and even soup cans!
Want to Look 10 Years Younger?
Cut back on your sugar intake. Most people don’t realize the toll that sugar takes on their appearance. It inhibits the effectiveness of collagen within your skin cells.
Here’s how it happens: excess sugar in your system binds with collagen, causing a chemical change called glycosylation. Normally, collagen molecules would slide over each other easily which gives the skin its soft elastic look. However, after being attacked by sugar over the years, the collagen fibers become cross linked and stick to each other.
This results in sagging and wrinkled skin and can lead to one looking aged upon their years. Glycosylation can also cause age spots and discolored marks on the skin by overworking the cells that provide pigment to the skin. Source: Men’s Fitness; Sept ‘03
10,000 steps a day; What’s in it for you?
A study in the may issue of American College of Sports Medicine’s Journal reported that 40 -60 year old women who walked more than 10,000 steps a day (about 5 miles) averaged 18% less body fat and had slimmer waists than those who walked fewer than 6,000 steps. To calculate how many steps you take, you can buy a pedometer at your local fitness/sports store. Track the number of steps you take on an ordinary day and work up to your goal. Aim for a brisk pace of 150 steps per minute. If you walk slower it’s still okay – it’s better than sitting on the couch and watching TV.
Source: American College of Sports Medicine; May ’04.
Delayed Onset Muscular Soreness (DOMS)
There are two types of muscular soreness, acute and delayed-onset. Acute muscular soreness occurs during and immediately following an activity. DOMS Delayed Onset Muscular Soreness refers to the pain and discomfort that occurs 24 to 48 hours after an activity. The exact cause of DOMS is unknown.
The most popular theory is that cellular damage occurs to the muscle fibers and/or connective tissues. However this theory would seem to be flawed since performing physical activity when the muscles are sore tends to reduce some of the discomfort. If the soreness was due to cellular damage, than any subsequent training should exacerbate the pain, not alleviate it.
In the meantime, while doctors continue to debate, exercisers that experience soreness should initially perform a lower volume of exercises. Another thing exercisers can do is stretch after a workout. Stretching after a workout can relieve and or reduce muscles soreness. Source: Fitness Management; May 2004
Healthy &Tasty Treats
Soup: Zesty Minestrone
1/2 c onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
20 ozs chicken or vegetable broth
1 1/2 c water
6 ozs tomato paste
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp black pepper
15 ozs mixed vegetables, canned and drained
1/2 c elbow macaroni, uncooked
1. Put onions and garlic in a medium pot and cook until tender.
2. Add broth, water, tomato paste, seasoning, and black pepper to the onions and garlic. Stir and bring to a boil.
3. Reduce heat to low and cook for ten minutes.
4. Add mixed vegetables and macaroni. Bring to a boil.
5. Reduce heat to low and cook ten minutes, or until macaroni is done.
6 servings; (With chicken broth) 99 Calories, 2g Fat, 4g Protein, 18g Carbohydrate, 1mg Cholesterol, 1060mg Sodium
Follow these 7 tips to take off the last 10 lbs
1. Lift Weights
2. Focus on health, not pounds
3. Know your metabolic rate
4. Eat a bigger breakfast and smaller dinner
5. Eat five small meals a day
6. Think positive thoughts
7. Exercise 4-5 times a week
The Low Down on Walking
Yes, walking burns calories. But, more taxing activities such as lifting, running, sports or interval training are still the best ways to lose extra pounds of fat. Try increasing the intensity of your workout just once a week and start seeing the difference. Start letting your mind see what you are capable of.
The next time you notice that you’re feeling anxious or stressed out, do your next workout as soon as possible. Afterwards you’ll feel more calm, relaxed and confident.