Today’s post is from my friend James Gaida. I have gotten to know James well over the last year and he’s a WEALTH of knowledge on nutrition. It was actually on his recommendation I tried intermittent fasting to lose a few lbs and get ready for my RKC II cert a few months ago … I got some AWESOME and rapid results doing it, and since James is one of my go-to sources when I have questions about nutrition for myself or my training clients.
He’s got a great post for us today on the benefits of a supplement you may or may not have heard of, WHY it’s so great, and exactly how to use it to take your results to the next level.
Supplement Secret to the Athlete’s Body
by James Gaida, author, 4 Day Fat Loss
As a nutrition coach with more than a decade of experience helping people change their bodies through nutrition I have notice a commonality with what people are wanting to achieve. It’s no different than what I’m looking for. My clients want to look like athletes.
The athlete’s body is ideal for optimal performance and just as optimal for looking awesome on the beach. That’s a nice combo.
This obviously comes from a combination of working hard in the gym and making sure your nutrition is on-point. These 2 things need to be working together in order to get a killer finished product.
But beyond busting your butt in the gym (or your garage), and constantly saying “no” to garbage food, sometimes it’s great to have another edge. A simple technique that will move you quicker towards your goals.
You see, the athlete’s body is built from a combination of building muscle and burning fat. It’s what I refer to as “The Dream Scenario”.
The Dream Scenario is difficult to achieve from just a workout/ diet protocol. It’s difficult because your body tends to want to do one or the other, build muscle or burn fat, and rarely is willing to do both at the same time.
But you can get both done by taking advantage of one key nutrient. And in order to do it you need to supplement it in higher doses than you get from your regular diet.
Before I teach you how to achieve “The Dream Scenario” we need to agree on something that is best said by Mr. Miyagi:
Miyagi: We make sacred pact. I promise teach karate to you, you promise learn. I say, you do, no questions.
I will teach you the secret and you need to DO. Take action and thank me later.
The Secret Nutrient to Leave you Looking like an Athlete
I’ve been fascinated by supplements for the last 15 years. I even spent my college years working in the supplement industry to learn everything I could.
The truth is, eating plenty of whole real foods is a must for a healthy body. Whole foods also elevate your metabolism and are extremely effective at building the body of an athlete.
Supplements should not be relied on year round as your primary nutrition source but instead used to enhance an already awesome diet. There are times when you may be using more supplements to satisfy your goal and times when you are using very little supplementation. It’s all about strategy and you should always have a reason for your supplement strategy otherwise you’re just throwing money down the drain.
One of the BEST supplements I’ve ever come across is Branch Chain Amino Acids or BCAA’s. This is your secret weapon to losing fat and simultaneously gaining muscle.
Here’s what you need to know about BCAA’s. They are made up of 3 amino acids: Leucine, Isoleucine and Valine. These are essential amino acids meaning you need to get them from your diet because your body cannot synthesize BCAA’s. They can be found in every complete protein source such as beef, whey, eggs, chicken etc.
Research studies have shown BCAA’s to be effective to:
-Build muscle and prevent muscle loss
-Burn more fat
-Prevent belly fat accumulations
-Reduce muscle soreness after workouts
These are all amazing findings that suggest that if you’re not taking BCAA’s the obvious question is “Why Not?!?!”
Building and Preventing Muscle Loss
When it comes to muscle, BCAA’s are the most important of all amino acids. About one-third of your muscle is made up of the BCAA’s. They play the biggest role is whether your body is building muscle or eating away at muscle.
Branch Chain Amino Acids are known to activate muscle building through the mTor pathway. The mTor pathway plays a key role is muscle building. When BCAA’s, specifically leucine are ingested, the mTor pathway activates which leads to an increase in protein synthesis and thus an increase in lean muscle creation. As long as you are in this state with elevated protein synthesis you will not be losing muscle.
Burn More Fat
BCAA’s have been shown to enhance fat burning. A large study of over 4,000 individuals found that those with the highest BCAA intake had the lowest levels of body fat. Researchers think this lower body fat is a result of greater calorie expenditure and enhanced fat oxidation from consuming BCAA’s.
There is also research that has shown supplementing with BCAA’s before workouts can reduce cortisol levels after workouts. Cortisol is the stress hormone that is largely responsible for accumulations of belly fat. Any tools you have to reduce and control cortisol the easier time you will have seeing your six pack.
Better Recovery from Workouts
Recently, 2 studies have pointed to BCAA supplementation as a means to reduce muscle soreness after workouts.
This suggests that you can get enhanced recovery benefits from your workouts by supplementing with Branch Chains. Recovery is of course when you make the majority of your progress from your training. If you can enhance recovery you will enhance your results.
How Do you Take BCAA’s
I always take BCAA’s before and after every workout.
You can try taking 5-10 grams before each workout and 5-10 grams after each workout. As with most sports supplements, the bigger you are (weight) the more you need.
I have found in my experience that more is usually better. I take a minimum of 10 grams before and after every workout. If I am dieting to lose fat rapidly I will increase this to 15-20 grams before and after every workout. There will always be a point where your body can only absorb so much which is why I would say don’t bother with more than 20 grams at a time.
In closing, keep chasing the athlete’s body and do everything you can (legal of course) to give yourself an edge.
James Gaida bio:
I am a fat loss expert and certified Precision Nutrition Coach. I have spent more than 13 years coaching clients in both nutrition and fitness. In that time I have also became certified as a Specialist in Performance Nutrition and a Certified Fitness Trainer. I also own many leather bound books and yeah, I’m kind of a big deal!
My baby, 4 Day Fat Loss (4DFL) is dedicated to teaching simple techniques to rapidly burn fat, increase energy and live a healthier life. If you want to find out how to burn fat quickly and transform your body check out the 4DFL Method HERE.