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Archives for September 2014

Wondering how you should go about structuring your workout sessions? You know that you need to have two main types of exercise in your program – strength training and high-intensity cardio training.

But, how do you set them up? And more importantly, within those two types of workouts, how do you set up each exercise you’ll be doing?

Many people often find themselves confused when it comes to workout programming, so today we’re going to set the record straight.

How you structure the exercises you do in each session will influence the nature of the results you see, so it’s something to start paying closer attention to.

Let’s go over what you need to know.

And be sure to stick around after the video to learn:

  • The 60-Minute Time Block Is
  • How to Structure Your Strength Workouts
  • Why You Should Add HIIT Cardio to Your Routine
  • When You Should Focus on Abs

The ‘60’ Minute Time Block

So let’s say that you have 60 minutes to workout total. How much do you devote to strength and how much to cardio?

A good split that I would recommend is about 30-40 minutes to your strength work and the remaining 20-30 minutes to high-intensity interval cardio training.  Note that strength work must come first.

If you have a longer or shorter block of time, adjust these time frames respectively.  The key point to note is that strength training is the priority, gets the most time, and comes first in that session.

Structuring Your Strength Workouts

To best structure your strength workout, you’ll always want to do your multi-joint or complex exercises first.  These are your squats, your deadlifts, your bench presses, your bent over rows – if they utilize more than one muscle group, they are going to take more energy to perform.

As such, doing them first helps ensure you perform them without a problem.  After those exercises have been completed, then you can move into your isolated exercises such as bicep curls, triceps extensions, leg extensions, and so forth.

Adding Cardio Into The Mix to Increase Results

After your strength work is completed, now you need to add cardio to the mix. If you’re still doing that steady state cardio, going at it at one straight pace for 40-50 minutes at a time, you are missing out on results.

Those who participate in this form of training experience greater fat loss all over their body, as well as specifically from the trunk region, as was found in one study published in the International Journal of Obesity.

For instance, you can bike hard for 30 seconds and then rest for 30 seconds. Or you can run uphill and walk back down.

Do whatever mode of cardio you prefer as long as you can do it intensely. Or, if you want another option, try my HIIT MAX™ program, found at insanefitnessanywhere.com.  You’ll see noticeable improvements in just a few short weeks doing this type of cardio.

⚡ Related: Learn How HIIT Can Gets You To Your Goals Fast

What About Abs?

Now you might be wondering when you should do abs?  Because abs will help to support your core throughout all the main strength moves, you want to make sure you’re doing any intense weight lifting moves requiring core support before abdominal training.

This means squats, deadlifts, lunges, rows, shoulder presses, and of the like. If you were just going to do an arm workout and you want to blast through abs first, that’s fine, but anything more intense on the strength side, abs come last.

So keep these points in mind as you go about structuring your workout protocol and you can be confident that you are going to head toward results.

⚡ Related: Can You Get Abs in Just 30 Days?

Cut Out the Confusion…

Now, this was one of my more “science” blog posts.

And I know I didn’t give you any real specific guidelines. But that’s because this is a rather complex topic, and reality, there’s no “right” or “wrong” way to do things.

However, The way that I’ve found most effective?

The one that not only got me from 24% body fat to 8% body fat in a little over 3 months?

And the one that I’ve used with thousands of clients. (Over 60,000 to date, to be precise) is this one – HIIT MAX™

HIIT MAX™ takes the methodologies and guidelines we have here and lays everything out into one easily accessible, done-for-you training & nutrition program.

We give you a plan that’s easy to implement, takes no thought process, removes confusion, and guarantees to torch stubborn fat in record time.

Plus, you only need to commit 20 minutes, three times per week.

Reference:

Chisholm, D.J. et al. (2008). The effects of high-intensity intermittent exercise training on fat loss and fasting insulin levels of young women. International Journal of Obesity.  32, 684-691.

Confused over protein? You are not alone. The number of people who either don’t understand how much protein to take in each day or don’t know when the most optimal times to eat it is overwhelming.

In fact, many people don’t even realize that their diet is so low in protein, it’s the most significant factor preventing their success.

Protein is essential for everyone. Man, woman, young, old, training or not, you need protein. Women especially often don’t get enough because they think that eating more protein and particularly taking a protein supplement means they’ll get big and bulky quickly.

I want to assure you that’s not the case. Women simply don’t possess the hormones necessary to pack on lots of muscle mass, especially overnight. It would take years and years of hard work to gain appreciable muscle, and often a number of other supplements.

Back to the protein issue, you must take in protein with each and every meal during the day.  Ideally, you should be at around 1 gram per pound of body weight each day, based on your lean body mass (LBM) to fat ratio. Remember the more lean muscle you have, the higher in proportion to your body weight your protein intake will be. Want to learn more about how much protein you should be consuming?

This protein will help with muscle regeneration and synthesis as well as help you put in the maximum performance in each workout you do.

All of this said, there are three critical times that you really need to focus on getting more.  Let me show you these three times, so you can ensure you aren’t missing out.

Keep reading after the video to learn why you should consume protein…

  • During breakfast
  • In your Post-workout snack/meal
  • Before bed

Why You Should Consume Protein At Breakfast

Take a look at your usual morning meal.  Does it go a little something like this?

½ cup oatmeal with some cinnamon on top along with some fresh fruit and a couple slices of toast?

If so, this is a huge diet disaster.  There’s virtually no protein or healthy fat in this meal, so you’ll be in for a quick energy boost followed by an even quicker and more significant energy crash.

If you always feel horrible mid-morning, your breakfast is why.  Try changing it up.  The oatmeal and fruit are ok at best, but add some protein and healthy fats in there.

A few eggs or slices of lean turkey bacon along with some avocado or a small handful of nuts will do the trick.  Eat this and watch your energy level soar – all the way until lunch. Aim for 30 grams minimum at breakfast.

Post Workout for More Protein

You’ve likely heard of the ‘post workout window’ before. This basically means there’s a short time post workout when your body is prepared to take up any nutrients you feed it rapidly.  This means faster recovery and faster results – if you feed yourself properly (1, 2).

Aim for some protein along with carbohydrates within 30-60 minutes post workout. Keep fat out of the picture during this time as it’ll just slow down digestion, which is opposite of what you want here.

⚠️ Are you ready to enhance your performance, lose more fat, and build more muscle?

Eat Protein Before Bed

Finally, you need to prepare your body for the overnight fast. This means eating enough quality protein that your body feeds off those amino acids all night long. Plus, consuming protein before bed will help you recover while you are sleeping (3).

The easiest and most convenient way to make sure you are consuming enough protein at the right times is through a quality protein powder. Instead, I’d go for a quality whey isolate or even better, just like our Morellifit Nutrition Protein. This way you can feel good about what you’re putting into your body.

Mix that protein with some whole fat plain yogurt and a few berries and you’ll have the perfect pre-bed meal on your hands.

Remember, these are just the three most important times to eat protein, not the only times.  Eat protein with each meal and snack you consume and you’ll be feeling and looking better in no time.

Bonus: Pre-Workout Protein Consumption

I wanted to make this “The Four Most Critical Times to Consume Protein” but Three sounded a little catchier!

So here’s your bonus 4th time – Pre-Workout

You simply can’t function and perform at your best in a training session without protein in your system. Consuming protein will help you enhance your peak performance and endurance, recover from your workout faster, and it supports muscle development. It will help you burn calories throughout your workout and get you to your goals faster, whether you are trying to put on lean muscle or lose the extra fat (4, 56, 7).

Remember, no protein means no fuel for your muscles. And that means fewer calories burned (8).

This is one of my top tips, no matter what time of exercise you are going and my top tip to any of my clients.

All you have to do is consume one serving of protein every hour before every workout. Every single client I suggest it to reports back how amazing it makes them feel during and after their workouts are done.  

They tell me that they found that they had more energy, recovered better and were able to push harder in the session.

When searching for a protein, you want to make sure you go after the best. This means a clean, grass-fed whey that contains absolutely no artificial ingredients. The last thing you want to do is to sabotage your results because you are consuming a subpar protein. We want to make sure that we are only putting the very best into our body and so made our own grass-fed whey isolate, a pure protein that is sourced from New Zealand because of their strict standards. Morellifit Nutrition Protein is not only one of the cleanest proteins you will find on the market, it is also one of the tastiest!

⚡ Related: Learn Why You Should Switch to Grass-Fed

Cheat meals.  It’s something that everyone loves to talk about but not always something that leads to productive results.

Cheat wrongly and you’ll be packing on fat faster than ever. Cheat properly and it can actually enhance the results you see.

Stay tuned after the video to learn…

  • My 90/10 Rule
  • How to Use Carb Cycling to lose fat

First, cheat meals can help build resiliency.  Many people take for granted just how good healthy eating makes them feel.  By having the cheat meal, you may enjoy it while eating that cheat, but after, you’ll likely be wishing you were back eating your healthy food once again.  By doing this cheat, you’ll appreciate sticking to your healthy diet the remainder of the time.

And then, of course, cheat meals also calm those psychological food cravings we all have, making it easier to stay the course the rest of the time.

Let’s go over the details on how to cheat correctly so that you can not only enjoy those foods you crave but also still go on to see optimal fat burning results.

My 90/10 Rule 

The main principle I like to follow is what I call the 90/10 rule.  This basically means that for 90% of the time, you are on track, eating healthy, clean foods.

Lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, healthy fats, and small doses of natural carbohydrates are all part of your 90% diet plan.

Then 10% of the time, you divert.  This means you can virtually eat whatever it is you are craving, without worry.  Of course, you do need to keep it within reason.  Eat a whole tub of ice cream and a box of pizza and it won’t matter how ‘good’ you are the rest of the time, you’re still going to be doing damage.

Moderation is key.

If you are eating 3 meals a day, that means 21 meals a week, so for about 2 of these meals, you can have that cheat meal.

For those on a standard diet plan, this technique works very well.

The Carb Cycling Rule

Alternatively, another principle you can follow is the carb cycling principle. Carb cycling is a great way to burn fat and incorporate a weekly cheat meal into your plan all while providing more energy for intense workouts that you plan on doing.

With the carb cycling approach, once per week, you can have one meal that consists of an appetizer, a main meal, and a dessert – all foods that you crave.  This meal should fall on the highest carb day of the week, which ideally should fall on your most intense training day. For most people, this is leg day, however, for you, it could be something else.  Think about whichever day of the week you feel you are working the hardest and plan that for your high carb, cheat day. And, if you need help deciding what foods you should be eating and what you shouldn’t, check out our Custom Meal Plans and let us design a nutrition program around you.

⚡ Related: Learn Why Carb Cycling Is The Best Diet For Fat Loss

By planning it on your workout day, you’ll be able to utilize all that energy, recovering from the workout session you just had (or if you cheat a few hours beforehand), using the energy to fuel the session.

Either way, you’re more likely to put those excess calories to good use.

So consider this next time you’re craving your favorite foods. Plan a cheat day right into your program and it’ll work wonders to help you get the results you desire. What’s your favorite way to cheat?

Looking to shape up your diet plan? If you’ve been reading about nutrition, you’ve likely heard the term ‘macro’, along with the words proteins, carbohydrates, and dietary fats tossed around over and over again.

You have a good idea of what these mean, but when it comes to setting these up in your diet, you’re confused as ever.

Some sources say you should be eating 30% protein in your diet while others say 1 gram per pound is the right number to hit. And when it comes to carbohydrates, the advice is all over the map.

Don’t feel confused by this. In terms of structuring your macronutrient intake, it’s never a black and white picture.

Not only do you need to consider what your goals are – be it fat loss, muscle building, aerobic improvement, and so on, but you also need to consider the workouts you are doing.

An intense weight lifting program is going to require far different types of macros in a day than an easier going cardio workout will.

Customization is Key for Fat Loss

This said, let’s back up a moment.

The Real Secret To Beginner Fat Loss Success

Before you let all this confusion regarding macros overwhelm you, it’s time to forget about it.

That’s right. The biggest mistake I see beginners who are looking for fat loss, making is getting too wrapped up in the details.

It isn’t going to matter if you are consuming 100 grams of carbs or 150 grams of carbs per day if those carbs are coming from white bread, sugary cereals, and processed foods. In either scenario, you will not be seeing results.

Until you get the basics down first – that is, sound nutrition coming from wholesome foods, your macros simply don’t matter.

As a beginner, you can see dramatic success – a major transformation even – if you just focus on eating the right foods. Only once you’ve done this for 60 days and feel confident you can make wise food choices wherever you go, should you begin worrying about macros.

Perfecting Step 1 and Losing More Fat

So I challenge you, for 60 days, to eat a completely clean and natural diet. This means choosing lean protein sources, plenty of vegetables, small doses of nuts and seeds, along with moderate amounts of fruit. Opt for berries for the best results as these are rich in antioxidants and lowest on the GI scale.

Add small doses of complex carbohydrates from white rice, quinoa, and sweet potato around your workout periods to fuel your muscles and you will be all set.

This also means cutting out any forms of sugar and processed carbs, staying away from all deep-fried foods or those high in unhealthy saturated fat, as well as forgoing all alcohol for this 60-day time frame.

Once you have achieved this, then we’ll talk about macros. But for now, this is the bigger priority and should be your only focus as it pertains to nutrition.

If you need help knowing which foods are allowed and which aren’t, pick up one of my programs, such as HIIT MAX™ or Weights for Women, and follow the macro list & grocery guide included. If you eat all the foods on this list and that’s all you worry about, I promise you, you’ll be loving how you look and feel in no time.

 

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