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Exercise & Nutrition

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Cardiovascular exercise is extremely important during dieting. Running is a great exercise if your knees can handle it. You should aim for a target heart rate of 138-148 when you’re performing cardiovascular exercise. If your goal is to lose body fat, I suggest doing cardio first thing in the morning on an empty for at least a minimum of 30 minutes. Honestly you can not do anything in 5-10 minutes except warm up your muscles. I always do a 20 minute warm up cardio session prior to working on a particular muscle part. Whatever your goal may be, incorporating a good and consistent cardio program will not only keep your heart healthy but your bum nice and tight and your stomach flat!

Training Tips
The first thing I want to say is that I highly recommend weight training for all women & adolescent teens!!! Be sure to lift weights at least 3-4 times per week, and try to get your entire body done in 1 week.

SPECIAL NOTE TO WOMEN: PLEASE DO NOT BE AFRAID TO LIFT WEIGHTS THINKING THAT YOU WILL GET HUGE!!

If you are a woman trying to lose body fat, the best thing you can do is lift weights, along with a good cardio program.

Let me tell you a little secret: The more muscle you build, the better your body will burn fat. Muscle consumes calories just to maintain itself. Fat does not consume calories. It is the depot for all the calories your muscles did not require. How many times have you seen a cardio queen doing hours and hours on the stair climber, but she is still not fit? That is because she is not lifting weights!!

You can use any type of split, just be sure to place rest days in between workouts. Sample splits are as follows but again any combinations are good just as long as the muscles are getting adequate rest in between trainings:

3-Day Split
Day 1: Chest, Tri’s, Abs
Day 2: Back, Bi’s
Day 3: Legs, Shoulders, Calves

4-Day Split
Day 1: Chest, Shoulders
Day 2: Bi’s, Tri’s
Day 3: Back, Abs
Day 4: Legs, Calves

Chest
For chest training, my favorite exercises are the cable crossover, flys, decline & incline press. For my chest I use lighter weights and high reps between 15-20.

Back/Rear Delts
I tend to work this area about 2-3 times a week. I use heavier weights and keep the reps between 10-15. I like keeping these together because they all are working in the same area!

Shoulders
I love training shoulders and train them twice a week. A well defined shoulder is very sexy. Generally, my weights are low and I concentrate more on my form and high reps. Also, it is important to remember not to overload on your weight as your joints are delicate.

Arms
I usually train my biceps and triceps together/ alternating 3-4 exercises each. I train biceps heavier with reps around 8-12 and triceps I keep my reps around 15-20. I definitely do a variety of exercises, changing each session. It’s very important to always keep your muscles stimulated and guessing.

Legs
I train my legs once a week and do about 3-6 different exercises with very light weight, and high reps of about 20-30. I prefer to do as many one- legged exercises as possible, such as leg curls, lunges, leg press, squats, and leg extensions to build each leg equally.

Abs
I train my abs at least 4 times a week. The abs recover a lot quicker than other muscles in your body so it is okay to over train them and not take much of rests in between your sets. I personally love super-setting and work my abs to exhaustion.

REST
Sleep is extremely important! Your body needs a certain amount of rest in order to function and especially for your muscles to grow!

WATER
Make you continuously drink water and hydrate your body as well as muscles to keep them from cramping and skin looking clean, clear, youthful and beautiful!

I’ve been training since 1990 and during that time, I’ve tried many approaches to dieting. And during that time I’ve learned and realized a very important lesson: different diets work differently for different people. There is no such thing as a “one size fits all” diet. I know what works for me, not for anyone else. And this is true for everyone. One of the most important things you can learn is to know your body, understand what works for you as an individual. It’s basically a process of trial and error. It took me many years of experimenting before I found the right diet for me. I basically follow a modified 40:30:30 diet (protein:carbs:fat) with more protein than carbs. Everyday, these ratios changed slightly. I don’t like to follow a certain ratio too strictly. By keeping my diet variable, my body doesn’t have a chance to adjust. Understanding my genetic limits, I know what I can get by with what I can eat and what I can’t.

Mai Tran nutrition

Diet Plans
There’s definitely nothing wrong with trying out different diet plans. I actually encourage it. Just because one diet doesn’t work for you doesn’t mean you should quit trying to lose weight altogether. If nothing else, dieting teaches you discipline. Whenever you start a new diet plan, you should pay attention to how it makes you feel. Try to write everything down in a log book. For example, try the South Beach Diet for 6 weeks to see if it works. Then, switch to the Atkins Diet for six weeks and see how it compares. The main thing you need to remember is discipline and consistency. But you have to stick with a program for a minimum of six weeks if it works for you. Two or three weeks are not enough for your body to adjust to a new diet. You have to train your body to stay at a lower body fat level, especially if it’s a new level that it hasn’t been accustomed to before.

Bingeing
I definitely have a sweet tooth and have a soft spot for candy. My body craves sugar but I also know that sugar makes me “chunky”. Once again, consistency AND balance is the name of the game. I eat “clean” about 75% of the time. Since this can be really tough, I give myself little breaks here and there. DO NOT be afraid to splurge once a week, maybe on the weekend, and eat something sinful. It will help keep you honest for the rest of the week. Not only that, it will help prevent your body from falling into a regular pattern.

Water
In order to stay in tip top condition, proper hydration is definitely required. Water is an ABSOLUTE MUST! For me, I make sure I drink about a gallon of water a day. It does not matter where I am, I always have water handy and nearby—I keep it next to my bed so that I can drink from it in the middle of the night. I have bottles in my car, and in my gym bag. Basically wherever I am, I have water!

Protein
Make sure you eat protein with every meal, whether it’s chicken, turkey, tuna or a protein shake. My favorite is MET-Rx Ultramyosyn Whey cookies & cream protein. Instead of taking the whole container with me, what I do is spoon out measured amounts of protein into little plastic bags and takes the bags with me wherever I go. That way, I can be sure to get a lot and sufficient amount of protein in my body throughout the day. I want at least 1g of protein per pound of bodyweight. Women need more protein because without adequate amounts, their bodies will eat away lean mass, especially when they diet. And with less lean mass, your metabolism slows down.

Supplements
People who are serious about sticking to a weight-loss program, I always suggest adding supplements to your routine. It can definitely make a big difference in helping you to achieve your fitness goals a lot quicker. I believe that MET-Rx has the most effective fat burning formula on the market which is called Thermal Infusion X2 that I absolutely LOVE! With top ingredients such as Yohimbine, Green Tea Extract, Cayenne, Evodiamine and Bioperine combined to form a highly potent cocktail designed to ignite your metabolism and guarantee to burn off all the access fat your body doesn’t want or need.

But for the ones who can’t handle or is sensitive to the effects of caffeine, ephedra or other thermogenics and the jitteriness that companies any ephedra based products but wants to shed the fat, MET-Rx also have an alternative product to Thermal Infusion X2 called CLA 1000mg. Derived from all natural safflower oil and contains no natural or artificial stimulants of any kind, this product will definitely deliver the results you are seeking!

In conjunction to my Thermal Infusion X2, I also use MET-Rx pre workout formula Amped ECN NOS in fruit punch. Amped ECN NOS definitely gives me the power I need to lift heavier, the strength for additional sets that I’m not able to lift without Amped ECN NOS, and the mental focus to be diligent and focus on my exercises and especially with my forms.

After I’m done training, I’ll finish my workout with a scoop of MET-Rx’s post workout formula Ultramyosyn Whey. I take Ultramyosyn Whey because not only does it provide me more lean muscle mass but it also has a ton of branch chain amino acids for muscle recovery which is essential for my muscles to grow properly. Please don’t forget to stick to a program regimen for at least six weeks to see results and get the maximum benefits for your hard work, dedications and workouts as well as your supplements!

Bottom line. Do the cardio. Hit the weights. Be consistent and your supplements will work even faster!

Nutritional Habits
Below are a few basic principles I incorporate into my daily nutritional plan.
• Eat every 2-3 hours.
• Drink 1 gallon of water per day.
• Cheat Meal once a week.
• Limit intake of fats from butter/margarine, mayonnaise, cooking oils, lard, red meat, whole eggs, whole/low-fat milk, cheese, and nuts.
• Limit intake of refined carbohydrates like bread, bagels, rice, rice cakes, pasta, baked goods, etc.

Macronutrient Sources
Below is a listing of the kinds of foods I like to eat and that I incorporate into my daily nutritional plan.
• Protein Sources: egg whites, skinless chicken breast, skinless turkey breast, fresh fish, tuna in water.
• Carbohydrate Sources :
– Starchy Carb Sources: oatmeal (old-fashioned not instant), potatoes, sweet potatoes, brown rice, pasta, corn, lima beans, kidney beans, peas, lentils and other legumes.
– Fruit Sources: apples, apricots, bananas, cherries, grapes, grapefruits, plums, raisins.
– Vegetable Sources: asparagus, broccoli, celery, spinach, green beans, zucchini, and other salad vegetables.
•Fat Sources: flaxseed oil, olive oil, natural peanut butter, and almonds.

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