Now, I’m not sure what part of the world you are from, but if I go by this websites statistics and the relationships that I have with many of you, It’s safe to assume that the majority of you who read this will be from the west side of planet earth. Which means you are now living in the brutal winter months. Brrrrr (The chills).
Hopefully,this hasn’t put you off working out and I hope you are still training insane. After all, this is the season where the true gains are made, in order to get you ready for summer.
However, this is also the season that most of us will go wild with Christmas festivities.
Although I encourage both (Seeing as it’s the only time of year where we really get to have a break), we still have to keep it under control. As one string of wild nights really can cause havoc on your muscle building results. And yes, you hardgainer/ ectomorph types need to watch out too. Read this post to find out why.
With that being said, I thought it would be a good idea to remind you of what you should look out for when trying to keep that fat off of your waist, whether it’s Christmas or not. Re-introducing you to 3 of your familiar friends.
- The Tyre (Fatty waist)
- Mr. Insulin
- Mr. ‘I wanna be ripped’
- Mr victim
- Mr control
- Mr ultimate
OK, fat control is the game and Mr. Tyre is the name we will begin with.
Now, if there is one part of the body that everyone seems to struggle with, regardless of sex or body type, it will be the tyre aka that annoying layer of fat that sits around your waist and lower gut. Now, we all know about the rule…
- 30% gym
- 70% diet
Well, that is mostly true. What this means is that you could be working your ass off in the gym, training insane and the like. But all of it will be pointless unless you have a controlled diet. Controlled meaning, eating the right foods at the right time.
Now, they say that carbs are the enemy when it comes to building that ‘ripped‘ physique. And that you should avoid them at all costs (Because carbs in it’s basic form is just sugar).
Which of course is not true.
We need carbs to re-fuel and replenish our muscles. The key is to eating the right type of carbs at the right time of day. e.g fast digesting carbs right after your works to replenish your muscles from the nutrients it would lose from an intense workout.
Two types of carbs
Simple – Fast digesting – Explodes into your blood stream (literally… like fireworks)
Complex – Slow digesting – Moves into your blood stream like a mini earthquake that eternally erupts
Now, when people say carbs are bad, what they really should be saying is that simple carbs are bad. These are the type of carbs that will promote Mr. tyre around your waist.
Why… how, how… why?
Because these are the type of carbs that like to pick a fight with Mr. Insulin who is responsible for controlling the blood sugar levels in your body.
Mr. Tyre vs Mr. Insulin
Earlier I mentioned that simple carbs digest like an explosion into your body. This increases Mr. Insulin’s work load into overdrive, and what happens when you spread yourself to thin with extra tasks? You begin to fail, and that failure is the result of Mr. tyre… extra fat around your waist.
Now, I don’t want to bore you with some biology lesson. Instead, let me give you a real life example of this scenario. One that I know all of you will be familiar with.
This battle is kind of like a large queue to an event such as a concert, football match or even a night club. You have
- The boss and his men (Mr. Insulin)
- The guards (Muscle receptors)
- The people queuing up (The carbs – complex *good* or simple *bad*)
All it takes is for a few bad people to kick up a fuss (simple carbs) for a big fight break out. The boss and his men (Mr insulin) loses control and begins throwing all the bad people into one corner (In this case, into your muscles. Which is actually good). However, what we really want to do is keep the Boss under control and tame his temper. Then we have a good smooth process for the rest of the night. So they begin to only let good people in (complex carbs).
If too many people coming rushing in too fast, The Boss and his men then need to up their game and give the thumbs up to the guards to open up the doors wider (This is where Mr. Insulin spikes and where muscle receptors open up the doors for the carbs to be let in to the muscles more quickly).
Now, if we go back to where the Boss (Mr insulin) throws everyone into a corner. This would usually cause even more of a fight, more people trying to get in, causing even more havoc. The Boss say enough is enough and tells the guards to let no one else in, sending everyone else elsewhere.
(It is at this point where your muscle receptors say enough is enough. These insulin levels are spiking far too often. At which point they begin to shut the doors, letting no more sugar into your muscles. Where do the rest of the excess carbs go? They get stored as fat)
But even worse is that those guards won’t even consider letting those people back in. They beat them up and threw them out, almost for good. And the club stays empty for a while. They will just go for a different crowd. They still have to bring the money in after all.
(So Mr. Insulin switches off the fat burn, stores fat, and leaves nothing behind. That is no more carbs. Once that happens you are even worse off than before you ate, because your blood sugar levels would have dropped even lower. Which means you are still hungry. The body needs to then go somewhere else for energy. It can’t go to the stored fat, because Mr. Insulin has switched that off for the time being. So it goes for the next best thing. The protein in your muscles. But the part you really need to be careful about is the fact that too many high sugar rushes will cause your muscle receptors to stop letting sugar in entirely. Which is not good, and can lead to diabetes).
And that is why there needs to be some control in terms of managing insulin levels.
And this is also why you need carbs in your system. To prevent your body from going into a catabolic state (Muscle break down). But the right type of carbs at the right time.
Such as dextrose, post workout. You will cause an insulin spike yes. However, you will be filling up empty muscles, because you would have used up all of the carb storage that was in your muscles in your workout. Which is the only time of day when it’s a win, win to spike insulin levels high.
Such as pasta, rice, potatoes, and oatmeal. Because they spike moderately throughout the day.
The Mr. Insulin vs Fat storage fight is also the same reason why it’s impossible to build muscle putting on fat. Because you will never be able to maintain perfect insulin levels. Fat will always be stored. How long that fat get’s stored for depends on the level of the insulin spike.It’s all about balance.
So if you want to keep fat at bay, then ease off the candy bars (Unless you’re going for a quick run) and stack your system full of complex carbs. That way you can keep your system running, Mr. Insulin happy, which in turn prevents you from putting on unnecessary fat and burning that precious lean muscle mass.
Enter Mr. ‘I wanna be ripped’
Enter training insane
The best way to make this practice a reality is by creating habits.
- Get rid of all the simple carbs in your house. Buy them and consume them only when you need them. Don’t bring them home.
- Cook pasta, rice and potato meals, but leave some left overs that you can carry and pre-heat with you the next day while at work. That way your hunger strikes can be fed on the go with complex carbs.
- Add creatine to your post workout shake. It will latch on to the carbs you consume at this time, making for an even more effective absorption of creatine into your muscles (Which of course is energy).
- And last but not least. If you want a complete DONE-FOR-YOU no B.S guide on how you should be structuring your diet for maximum gains, then you need to look no further, as I have created a guide that does just that with The Guide to Necessary Supplementation
Any how, that’s how you win the fight between The Tyre (Fatty Waist) vs. Mr Insulin vs. Mr ‘I Wanna Ripped’.
Now get to work already.
Leave your thoughts in the comments below.