Ask Davey

Every week, Davey Wavey answers fan questions about fitness, nutrition or general health. If you have a question, send it to Davey at davey@daveywaveyfitness.com

Lost 40 Pounds In One Month…

Dear Davey,

I’ve struggled with obesity since childhood. Now that I’m an adult, I’ve been paying more attention to my body.

In the last month, I’ve managed to lose 40 pounds by not eating. I know that you need to eat to survive, but I want to continue getting results. What advice do you have?

Thanks,
Jason

Smaller_Plate_Wont_Help_Your_Diet_Research_ShowsHey Jason,

Thanks for the email.

I have to say, you are playing a very dangerous game – and, it’s one that you’ll inevitably lose without a dramatic change in your habits and the guidance of professional help.

Despite all the science that demonstrates otherwise, many people resort to starvation as a weight loss technique. As you’ve discovered, it does yield initial results; if you stop eating, you’ll lose weight. But the problems with this approach are many.

For one, you’re slowing your metabolism. Your metabolism determines how many calories your body burns on a daily basis. Because your body is starving (generally 1,000 calories or less per day), it will do everything it can to reduce its calorie consumption. Eventually, you’ll need to start eating again – and, when you do, your metabolism will lag. With a reduced daily calorie burn, all those extra calories from food will be packed on as fat. The resulting weight gain, in many instances, exceeds the initial weight loss.

No to mention the dramatic impact of nutritional deficiencies.

We also know that diet AND exercise are required for best results. By just practicing one or the other, you’re selling yourself short. Though diet alone can result in weight loss, exercise is required to ensure that the lost weight is mostly fat and not muscle. It takes a lot of energy to maintain muscles – and our bodies are very efficient machines. If you’re not using your muscles during periods of calorie restriction and weight loss, you’ll be quick to lose them.

You mentioned that you’re paying more attention to your body. That’s important. But don’t just pay attention to how your body looks; pay attention to what your body is telling you. If your body is hungry or weak or tired, then listen to these crucial messages – and act on them. Feed your body with the foods it really craves, like a delicious, colorful salad or some lean meats and vegetables. As you fuel your body with nourishing foods, pay attention to how your body feels.

I’d also suggest giving yourself the gift of professional help. It is absolutely worth your time, money and effort to work with a nutritionist, weight loss specialist or healthcare professional. After all, you only get one body. Let’s keep it in a good, working condition.

Love,
Davey

How to Get Abs Like the Movie 300.

Dear Davey,

I’m a big fan of the movie 300 and I’m excited to see the new sequel. I’ve always been really envious of the actors’ bodies and especially their six pack abs, and I was wondering what their secret is?

From,
Ben

2r5ylrkHey Ben,

The chiseled, strong, oiled bodies of the men in 300 are a sight to behold – and can certainly serve as workout motivation and inspiration to the rest of us.

The secret to getting a highly defined body (like those showcased in 300) really isn’t a secret at all. It can be summed up in two steps:

  1. Train hard.
  2. Eat fewer calories than you burn.

The truth is, all of us have abdominal muscles. Training hard means strengthening and developing those muscles. But even highly developed abdominal muscles will remain hidden if they’re covered by a layer of body fat. Eating fewer calories than you burn (while continuing to train hard) is all about leaning down to a lower body fat percentage. As you become leaner, the coveted six pack becomes visible.

Exercise guru Mark Twight worked with the 300 actors to whip them into shape through months of intense training. At the end of the training, the actors were administered the following test. Based on their time, the actors were each given a score.

  • 25 pull-ups
  • 50 deadlifts at 135 pounds
  • 50 push-ups
  • 50 box jumps with a 24-inch box
  • 50 “floor wipers” at 135 pounds
  • 50 “clean and press” at 36 pounds
  • 25 more pull-ups

It’s a grand total of 300 reps (just like the name of the movie) and it’s meant to be performed without any rest. Keep in mind, the ability to punch through this workout test was the result of months of training. If it seems daunting, work up to it over time. Completing the test can be a great fitness goal.

If it all sounds like a lot of work, that’s because it is. Between training and massages and fight classes, many of the actors worked four hours per day to achieve their 300 look. For a lot of people, that might not be realistic – and that’s okay.

At the end of the day, 300 can – at the very least – inspire each of us to build stronger, healthier bodies that are fueled by delicious and nourishing foods. We might not end up looking like Greek gods, but we can certainly make progress toward our health and fitness goals.

Love,
Davey

 

Does Running and Walking Burn the Same Amount of Calories?

Dear Davey,

I’ve always been told that it doesn’t matter if you walk a mile or run a mile. Regardless, you burn the same amount of calories. After all, a mile is a mile. Is that really true?

From,Jon

running-shoes-male_650x366Dear Jon,

Your question actually points to a very common misconception! Yes, a mile is always a mile. That doesn’t change. But the energy required to move your body across the distance varies depending on your speed.

In fact, there have been numerous studies on the topic including this paper from California State University. For the study, 15 male and 15 female college students were recruited. One day, participants ran a mile in 10 minutes. On another day, they walked a mile in just over 18 minutes. Afterwards, they sat quietly for 30 minutes.

The data was very clear. While walking burned 88.9 calories, running burned 112.5. Moreover, after running, participants continued to burn calories at a higher rate compared to walking. After the mile walk, 21.7 calories were burned. After the mile run, on the other hand, 46.1 calories were burned. In total, the run resulted in 43% more calories burned.

But wait there’s more.

The mile run took less time. And with our busy schedules, efficiency is certainly something to consider. If you want to get a lot of workout bang in a short amount of time, running definitely comes out on top.

The bottom line is that it takes more energy to move our bodies at high rates of speed. A more intense workout simply burns more calories. While walking is a great form of exercise – and certainly less likely to result in injury – it won’t result in the same calorie burn as a run.

Love,Davey

Quick Answers to Your Top 5 Fitness Questions!

got-fitness-questionsReady for a lightening round in answering your top fitness questions? GO!

Question 1: Is it better to run before or after lighting weights?
Answer: It depends on what your goals are. Keep in mind that whatever you do first, you’ll have more energy for. If the benefits of cardio exercise are more important to you, then do cardio first. If bulking up with more muscle is your primary goal, lift weights first.

Question 2: Are carbs bad?
Answer: Complex carbs – such as those found in brown rice, whole wheat, beans, etc. – are good. Simple carbs – such as those found in soft drinks, juices and cakes – are bad. Your body needs carbohydrates for proper function; rather than cut carbs, focus on eating the healthy, complex carbs that your body needs.

Question 3: When is the best time of day to exercise?
Answer: Whenever you have the most energy. I’m a morning person. For me, the best time to exercise is around 6:30 in the morning as that’s when I have the most energy. If you’re a night owl, nighttime workouts could be better. Having more energy is the biggest and most important variable in determining the best time to exercise.

Question 4: Do I need to lift weights in addition to cardio if I’m just trying to lose weight?
Answer: Yup! When you lose weight, it means that you take in fewer calories than you use. To make up for the calorie deficit, your body will burn both fat and muscle. By including strength training in your workout, you signal to your body that you need your muscle – and more of the weight you lose will be fat.

Question 5: How much protein do I need?
Answer: Most Americans already get enough protein. For most people the formula is about 0.4 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight per day. Active people require 0.6 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight daily. Very active individuals, or people who engage in heavy lifting, need nearly a gram of protein per day. For individuals in this category, additional protein supplementation is often required (i.e., protein shakes, etc.).

Do you have any more fitness or nutrition questions? Send them to me at davey@daveywaveyfitness.com.

Is A Pescetarian Diet Healthy?

Hi Davey,

I am a 18 year old male and I’m being ridiculed by people for being a pescetarian. Everyone keeps telling me things like I’m not growing properly, you’re going to die sooner, you’re not getting enough protein, etc. Are any of those remarks true? Do you believe its healthy to be a pescetarian?

Love,
Lloyd

salmon-fillet-caloriesHey Lloyd,

Thanks for the email.

First things first, many of my readers are probably unfamiliar with the term pescetarian. It refers to a diet that includes seafood but not the flesh of other animals. It can include nuts, fruits, vegetables, grains beans and dairy. In fact, pescetarian is the correct characterization for individuals who identify as vegetarian – but who still eat fish.

There are a few things to keep in mind.

Vegetarian diets – even without the inclusion of fish – can be extremely healthy. In fact, most of us would be well served to eliminate much of the meat we consume. A recent study found that, over a six year period, vegetarians had a 12% lower risk of dying when compared to meat eaters. There have been numerous other studies linking vegetarianism to increased longevity.

In other words, when people tell you that you’ll die sooner for eliminating meat, they’re wrong; the science demonstrates otherwise.

It’s also entirely possible for vegetarians to get their required protein. Beans, for example, are a great protein source. If you add fish into the equation, getting enough protein becomes even easier. A fillet of salmon, for example, has a whopping 39 grams of protein. For most men, that’s nearly a full day’s worth. Keep in mind, protein requirements vary from individual to individual and are dependent on a number of factors. You can use this calculator to determine your daily protein requirement.

When we talk about fish consumption, mercury is always a concern. To minimize your risk, it’s possible to make fish selections that contain little to no mercury. These include salmon, oysters, herring, tilapia and others.

Of course, your pescetarian diet is only as healthy as you’ll make it to be. Eating ice cream and chocolate is technically pescetarian – but it will do nothing to help you achieve your health or fitness goals. Stick with plenty of vegetables, nuts, whole grains, fruits, berries and beans – and you’ll be great!

Love,
Davey