90 Fitness Answers 08 – “How Do I Set and Achieve My Fitness Goals?”

If you don’t know where you’re going, you might wind up someplace else
-Yogi Berra

Now, Yogi is famous for his quotes, which are often quirky, but there’s a lot of wisdom there, too.

One of the most important things in this whole fitness journey is to set a goal that you’re shooting for. If you don’t, then chances are it won’t be long before you wane from the path. New habits are hard. Adults don’t tend to create them easily and if it’s something that’s going to be a departure from your current life, as adopting a healthier, more fit lifestyle probably is, then it’s not always going to be easy.

So, the first thing we’d want to accomplish is figuring out basically where you want to go and WHY you want to do it. That why is up to you, of course, but if you don’t have a clear sense of that then it is going to be hard to be consistent once the new excitement wears off.

Step 1: Figure out a sense of where you want to go and really zero in on the WHY.

Now, once you’ve got those two basic points down, I like to firm up goals with clients with something called “backwards chaining”, which is a fancy way to say we start at the end and work our way back. Continue reading

90 Fitness Answers 03 – Should I Do Cardio Before or After Strength Training

90 fitness answers 03 - should i do cardio or strength training first

Long-time Relentless athlete Tara was a great example of building both strength AND endurance!

Let’s get into the training side of our 90 Days of Fitness Questions.  This is another one I get a lot:

Should I do my cardio before or after my strength training?

Well, let’s start by defining what we’re talking about.  Usually when I get this question people are defining “cardio” as long-duration, slow-to-moderate speed endurance work:  Going for a run, bike, etc.  They’re defining their “strength training” as a more traditional weight training session:  Squatting, benching, etc.

For the record, those are not totally opposing activities.  There are ways to develop strength WHILE improving one’s cardiovascular ability, which we do at Relentless, but for the sake of this discussion I’ll keep to those definitions to not muddy the waters too much.

When it comes to combining cardiovascular/endurance training with strength training, the common thought is often that if you do too much cardio you’ll lose all of your strength and muscle.  We’ll actually get deeper into this in a later question, but the answer there is yes and no.

Continue reading

90 Fitness Answers 02 – How Do I Eat More Protein?

90 days fitness answers - how much protein should i eatYesterday, to kick off our 90 Fitness Answers series I addressed a common question that I get which was “How Much Protein Do I Need?“.

After establishing that most people who strength train are looking at somewhere in the 0.8g to 1.0g of protein per pound of lean or goal weight, the next question I get from a lot of people is:

Holy cow! That’s a lot of protein! How am I going to eat that much?”

That’s a fair question, especially if you’re not used to it.
So here’s some basic strategies to up your protein intake:

1. Eat more frequently/add a snack. If you’re a three-meals-a-day (or less) person, and your target protein ends up being 120g/day or more, you may find that you struggle to cram down 40-50g at each sitting. Honestly, for those of us who’ve been doing it for a while that’s not that big a deal (so it gets better), but at first it can be a challenge. A great way to add some more is to sneak in a high protein snack like turkey roll-ups, Greek yogurt, or something similar. Often you can get in 15-30g in a snack and that’ll take a little pressure off of your big meals. Plus, you’ll feel a little less hungry during the day, so when meal time comes around it’s easier to make good decisions. Continue reading

90 Fitness Answers 01 – How Much Protein Should I Eat?

In honor of there being only 90 days left in the year, I thought it’d be fun (and useful) to answer 90 of the most common fitness questions I get here at Relentless… one per day.  So to kick it off:

Day 1: “How much protein should I eat?

This is one of the most common questions that I get in the gym and that’s why I chose to kick this series off with it.

When it comes to putting together a nutrition plan (or heck, even “just trying to eat better”), one of the first things that people almost always run into is the question of how much protein should they eat… or even what IS a high-protein food, which we’ll handle a little bit later.

When it comes to the amount of protein you’re expected to shovel in, youll find that there’s a couple ends of the opinion spectrum: Continue reading