Frequently asked questions
If I am still sore? Should I train or take another rest day?
Training sore is fine unless it puts you at an increased risk of injury. If you’re having a difficult time getting into position or completing a full ROM due to pain, do not train. Otherwise, still train but be sure to perform a slightly longer warm up for each exercise. Use your own discretion to avoid injury but training sore will not impair gains in and of itself.
What if I can’t repeat the same exercise due to equipment limitations?
Do your best to find a movement pattern that is very similar. If you cannot find
a movement pattern that is similar to the exercise you want to perform, use the
exercise library as a reference to choose another exercise that trains the same muscle
group with a similar training load.
Should I wear a belt or knee sleeves or whatever when squatting / deadlifting / doing anything?
Belts and knee sleeves are great. Definitely use them if you have them. But don’t
use them for absolutely every exercise. They’re a bonus because you can lift more
weight. But don’t think you can’t squat because you forgot your belt or knee
sleeves at home. You can still squat. Just remember to brace your core and keep it tight!
What gym equipment should I use?
Gym equipment is optional as there are no required pieces of equipment to gain
muscle and increase strength. With that being said, investing in an 10mm prong or
lever belt, knee sleeves, squat shoes, and straps can be beneficial in allowing you to
lift more weight for certain exercises.
The warm-up isn’t enough for me! Can I add to it?
You can add warm-up exercises to the protocol but your warm-up shouldn’t take
any longer than 10-20 minutes. It is important to stay injury-free, so don’t rush into
I have a belt. When should I wear it?
Optionally use a lifting belt for working sets on exercises like squats, deadlifts and
overhead (military) presses. Strength is a specific skill, so practice every rep in exactly
the same way (meaning, if you’re going to use a belt at all, use it consistently and for
the same movements). I wouldn’t recommend wearing on a belt on light warm-up
Won’t I get weaker if I do a big compound movement like a deadlift after a more isolated exercise like a dumbbell row?
For the first few weeks, you may not be able to use
the same load on the explosive exercise. The prepump
exercise might fatigue you enough that you
won’t be able to do a major barbell exercise like a
deadlift, squat, or bench press with as much weight as
you could if you were completely fresh. However, your
body will adjust. You’ll be back up to your old poundages
shortly, and then you’ll surpass them. More importantly,
you’ll be able to handle those heavier weights
more safely because you’ll be much more thoroughly
warmed up when you get around to using them.
Will strength training, such as lifting weights, will result in a bulky appearance?
It is not true that lifting weights will result in a bulky appearance. According to Cedric Bryant, chief exercise physiologist for the American Council on Exercise, "This is a myth that deters a lot of women from strength training, when in fact, what determines the amount of muscle bulk a person has is largely dependent on genetic factors."
How and when do I need to use a foam roller?
Foam rolling acts as a deep tissue massage, which will help to improve mobility and flexibility. Rolling pre-workout will prepare your body for exercise and increase circulation to the muscles you are preparing to train. Post-workout, foam rolling is a great recovery tool, as it removes lactic acid (a waste product your body produces during exercise) from your muscles.
Are crunches and sit-ups are the best way to lose belly fat?
Forget doing hundreds of crunches and sit-ups in an effort to lose belly fat. The truth is that on their own, they are not likely to help the body lose that stubborn gut. Here is what works: a full-body exercise routine that builds lean muscle all over. The best plan for this is regular exercise, resistance training, and a healthy, calorie-controlled diet.
Should I eat in a caloric deficit, maintenance, or surplus while running this program?
Eating in a slight caloric surplus will yield the best results and best recovery,
however, if your main goal is fat loss, eating in a caloric deficit will be necessary.
As a beginner, you can continue to make strength and size progress while in a
moderate caloric deficit and achieve body recomposition (lose fat and build muscle
at the same time) if protein intake is sufficient (0.8-1g/lb bodyweight as a ballpark).
As an intermediate-advanced level trainee, the likelihood of achieving substantial
body recomposition is smaller, but still possible. So, in all, a caloric surplus is recommended for optimal progress, but some progress can still occur at caloricmaintenance and even in a caloric deficit.
Do I Need to Take Dietary Supplements?
Can caffeine be consumed safely?
How can diet affect arthritis?
Is there a psychological or biological cause for food addiction?
What are the health benefits of eating fish?
What is added sugar, and why is it not healthy in food?
Who is at risk for developing lactose intolerance?
What role does vitamin D play in my overall health?
Will working out at a gym will provide the best results?
Believe it or not, you can skip the gym. There are plenty of exercises you can do at home or outdoors using your own body weight and gravity. Examples of some easy at-home exercises are push-ups, planks, jumping jacks, squats, and lunges.
Does muscle weighs more than fat?
A pound is a pound regardless of whether the pound is fat or muscle. The truth about muscle is that it's denser than fat and takes up a smaller amount of space in the body. In fact, scientists estimate that 1 pound of muscle occupies about 22% less space than 1 pound of fat!
Does more sweating indicate, more fat the body is burning?
"This is false," says Cedric Bryant, chief exercise physiologist for the American Council on Exercise. "The amount you sweat is indicative of your body's ability to maintain its normal body temperature. You sweat when your body starts to store heat so you can experience cooling via evaporation of that sweat. So it doesn't correlate to how much energy, or calories, is being expended."
Should weight loss be the most important goal of fitness and exercise?
It's a fact that weight loss is the main reason people exercise at all, but losing weight is certainly not the only benefit of exercising and should therefore not be the main goal. If you're starting a fitness program, don't make weight loss your only goal! Strive to feel better or to have more energy. You'll get more out of your program if you notice the small payoffs that exercise provides in a very short amount of time.
What type of training do I need to get stronger?
Strength can mean different things to different people. For some it can mean being able to do one pull up, for others it might be reaching a deadlift PB, which is why it is important to train for your goals. In order to gain strength in a targeted area, you need to gradually increase your volume (times per week and reps) and the intensity of those sessions. Try setting yourself realistic targets each week so that you have something specific to aim for.
Do I need to work out every day?
A good workout week doesn’t necessarily mean training every day. Three to four gym or home workouts each week is enough if you work as hard as you can in each session. Try to balance the week with a mix of cardio, HIIT, strength and yoga or Pilates. However, when it comes to being active you should aim to move as much as you can every day – whether that’s with brisk walking, jogging, swimming, gardening or putting your all into the housework!
How long do I need to work out for?
When should I stretch and how often?
Start with some dynamic stretching (active muscular stretching such as walking lunges or jogging with high knees) before a workout. Then, do static stretches such as a standing thigh stretch or side lunge for post-workout recovery, focusing on the muscles you’ve worked. This will decrease your risk of injury, improve blood flow and circulation, increase your range of motion and improve muscle function. You can never stretch too much!
What's the biggest mistake people make at the gym?
Most people who start a fitness routine don't know how to use the equipment at the gym. They do exercises that are inappropriate and can end up getting hurt. Our advice: don't be afraid to ask a pro for help! Trainers are available at the gym and can help you get your programme off on the right foot, no matter what your goal is. Also, don't forget to warm up before your workout and to take the time to stretch afterwards. Finally, stay hydrated during your workout - your body needs water!
Can you turn fat into muscle?
No! Muscles burn fat for energy. Building muscle boosts your metabolism. When you increase your metabolism, you burn more energy, calories and fat. That's why a cardio programme that incorporates weight training will help you slim down even faster.
Does maintaining physical fitness requires major lifestyle changes?
Fitness can be achieved through small changes in what you eat and your level of activity. It's really that simple. Remember that you can start out slowly; work your way up to a higher level of activity, and implement more dietary changes over time. Patience is essential. Don't try to do too much too soon, and don't quit before you have a chance to experience the rewards of improved fitness and a healthy diet!
Will even moderate exercise reduces the risk of heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and obesity?
Research shows that exercise is the silver bullet for a better quality of life. Not only does regular exercise aid in weight loss, it reduces your risk for several chronic diseases and conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure (hypertension), stroke, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and osteoporosis.
Are older adults are least likely to benefit from physical activity?
The best thing about regular physical activity is that everyone can benefit from it. You are never too old to enjoy the benefits of regular physical activity! Being physically active can prevent and help treat many of the most common chronic medical conditions associated with aging. Physical activity is one of the most important steps older adults can take to maintain physical and mental health and quality of life.
How does exercise help mental health?
I’m feeling sick today, should I still workout?
If you’re having flu like symptoms like a fever, chills, and body aches, the best thing you can do is rest. These are signs your body is trying to fight something off and it needs all the help it can get. It can also be a good indication that you really do have some sort of bug and could be contagious. Stay home! Drink lots of water and rest. If you’re symptoms are above the neck like sore throat, stuffy nose or stuff like that, just decrease the intensity of your workout. Pay attention to how you feel while you’re working out. If you have plenty of energy that’s great, but if you feel a sudden drop in your energy you should stop. Always listen to your body.
How do I not let stress and worries weigh me down?
It’s so easy to get bogged down with stress and worries. This is something we all deal with. I believe there are two components of dealing with this. One is emotional and one is practical. First of all, part of loving yourself through this process is giving yourself some wiggle room and understanding that you are not perfect and you are not magic, you won’t always get everything done and some things are out of your control.