Second opinions wanted on personal trainer advice

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 29, 2009 7:21 PM GMT
    Hi
    I got a new personal trainer a couple of weeks ago. He's pretty hot, works me double as hard as I would work myself and most of all he's got me motivated again. So far so good.
    Few things I'm unsure of though
    (1) He's saying I need to eat 120g of protein per day in some shape or form. Now, I know protein is important but this sounds like a hell of a lot and seems like in addition to normal meals I'm going to be consuming 3 protein shakes a day which is maybe going to leave me with a gassy ass and mongoose breath.
    (2) He's telling me the best measure of success is working to failure and being sore the day after. This sounds good - is this common knowledge that no one told me? I just thought I had to do more weights every time.
    (3) We probably do three maybe four exercises each session but really intensively. So we spent maybe 20-30 minutes yesterday doing various forms of pullups. I am incredibly sore today but it's not the range of exercises I've been used to before.
    (4) In addition to the protein, he reckons I need glutamine tablets too. I found some literature endorsing their use to prevent muscle loss but does anyone agree they're good in addition to all the protein I'm supposed to be eating?

    Thanks guys - I love this site icon_biggrin.gif

    Christian
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    Mar 29, 2009 7:43 PM GMT
    (1) He's saying I need to eat 120g of protein per day in some shape or form. Now, I know protein is important but this sounds like a hell of a lot and seems like in addition to normal meals I'm going to be consuming 3 protein shakes a day which is maybe going to leave me with a gassy ass and mongoose breath.

    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/465047/ the thread went to hell after a while but the first point is relevant.

    (2) He's telling me the best measure of success is working to failure and being sore the day after. This sounds good - is this common knowledge that no one told me? I just thought I had to do more weights every time.

    You don´t have to hurt every time and working to failure is not necessarily the best thing. You grow by resting.

    (3) We probably do three maybe four exercises each session but really intensively. So we spent maybe 20-30 minutes yesterday doing various forms of pullups. I am incredibly sore today but it's not the range of exercises I've been used to before.

    Well I don´t see a huge problem with this - at least for a spell - as long as they are multiple joint exercises and you do different ones each time (20 minutes of bicep curls... not good).

    (4) In addition to the protein, he reckons I need glutamine tablets too. I found some literature endorsing their use to prevent muscle loss but does anyone agree they're good in addition to all the protein I'm supposed to be eating?

    erm.... i dn´t thnk I would bother.

    That´s all as a trainee, but interested to see what a different trainer would say.
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    Mar 29, 2009 8:28 PM GMT
    christiand said(1) He's saying I need to eat 120g of protein per day in some shape or form. Now, I know protein is important but this sounds like a hell of a lot and seems like in addition to normal meals I'm going to be consuming 3 protein shakes a day which is maybe going to leave me with a gassy ass and mongoose breath.
    Conventional wisdom dictates 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight, however I don't believe you need to be that high, the thread lost references recommends a percentage, which, I think is flawed at least towards those who have large calorie requirements.

    if you are wanting to gain muscle mass, then, you will need to up your protein intake (more so your calories in general though)

    christiand said(2) He's telling me the best measure of success is working to failure and being sore the day after. This sounds good - is this common knowledge that no one told me? I just thought I had to do more weights every time.
    No, its not, but its a common myth, soreness is not indication of hard work, I can change programs go work my arse off and be sore a little for a week and then, I wont be sore at all again on that program, I still make massive gains.. you can also research this pretty easily

    christiand said(3) We probably do three maybe four exercises each session but really intensively. So we spent maybe 20-30 minutes yesterday doing various forms of pullups. I am incredibly sore today but it's not the range of exercises I've been used to before.
    Ask him why he has you doing this, if he umms and arrs about it, beat his arse to shit.. but if he's got a philosophy behind it all good..

    christiand said(4) In addition to the protein, he reckons I need glutamine tablets too. I found some literature endorsing their use to prevent muscle loss but does anyone agree they're good in addition to all the protein I'm supposed to be eating?
    No, you don't... don't bother..
  • Webster666

    Posts: 9217

    Mar 29, 2009 8:28 PM GMT
    The #1 best thing that you're doing is working harder.
    That translates into faster and bigger muscle gains, as well as being more hungry more often. So, EAT.

    As long as you are preparing "real" food every day, you'll do fine.
    Try to get 5 meals a day to feed those muscles. Don't skip breakfast.
    For protein, chicken, beef, and beans seem to be the best.

    Stay away from sodas, frozen convenience meals, and anything from a vending machine. You don't need "designer" label bottles of water or anything like that.

    The ONLY supplement I ever recommend is Creatine (5000mg a day for the first week, then 2000-3000 a day after that). You can get it in capsules.
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    Mar 29, 2009 9:03 PM GMT
    I would make sure that what he is telling you to do is in line with what you want out of your workouts. For example if your goal is to build endurance as opposed to strength then maybe you need to adjust working to failure and the amount of protein needed. It is all about what you want. Being fit or healthy doesn't necessarily mean bulking up. Ask your trainer a lot of "why" questions. I had a great experience with my personal trainer. Lost 45 pounds, gained an education on fitness and health and look forward to exercising and eating right rather than it being a dreaded chore.

    Good luck to you.
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    Mar 29, 2009 9:23 PM GMT
    20-30 minutes of very intense work. This sends off huge red flags to me. Is this a personal trainer affiliated with your gym? I would check out his credentials. If I were ever to hire another trainer, I'd expect at the very least a bachelor's degree in a sports science related field (preferably kinesiology) at the very least plus multiple certifications from reputable institutions (trainers help me out here). If I'm going to pay $50-$100 a session I'd expect them to have a Masters, and be multi certified from reputable institutions. I may seem rigid, but I've experienced as well as heard tons of horror stories. There are good trainers out there, but you've really got to do a hiring process even though they act like they're doing you a huge favor by working with you. I do feel that most trainers intend no harm, but some of them let their egos get in the way of customizing a program best suited for their clients.

    Seriously, you wouldn't seek or take the advice of a doctor who hadn't been to medical school. Unqualified personal trainers can really do harm. I was at the gym one time and the paramedics were called because a woman who was being worked hard by a trainer was in obvious distress, and she went down. When it was determined that the woman was ok, and she didn't need to be taken to the hospital the trainer tried to finish the session so there wouldn't be any IOUs on his chart. Jerk.

    Beware, this guy sounds like he went out, got the easiest certification he could attain if he even did that, and now you're entrusting the health and well being of your body to him.
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    Mar 29, 2009 10:16 PM GMT
    Runninchlt said20-30 minutes of very intense work. This sends off huge red flags to me.
    Why does this concern you out of curiosity?
    I work out for an hour with my trainer and its intense.... usually..
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    Mar 29, 2009 10:37 PM GMT
    Are you trying to become a bodybuilder? too much protein can be really bad for your kidneys because if the body has excess protein, it has to get rid of it somehow, so the proteins in excess are used to supply energy or build reserves of glucose, glycogen(carbohydrate), or lipids(fat). For the protein to become a carbohydrate or even fat, the body has to rip the nitrogen molecule off the protein and send it to your Kidneys. Your kidneys have to work harder because of this, and over time, this could lead to kidney failure (not to mention dehydration because you're peeing so much). I really don't know how much protein your body needs because there's a lot of factors that are involved (BMR, Body Fat%, Height, Weight, etc) ask him where he came up with 120 grams of protein, or is it some number he just made up?

    As far as training goes, training to failure induces hypertrophy. Your body is saying "huh...that was kinda hard...now I need to make myself stronger for next time so it won't be so hard next time..."

    As far as supplementation goes, different trainers have different philosophies on this, and I prefer the natural approach. My philosophy is that you should be getting all your nutrients from whole foods; fruits, veggies, lean meats, etc.

    -Patrick NASM, NCEP CPT
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    Mar 29, 2009 10:38 PM GMT
    christiand saidHi
    I got a new personal trainer a couple of weeks ago. He's pretty hot, works me double as hard as I would work myself and most of all he's got me motivated again. So far so good.
    Few things I'm unsure of though
    (1) He's saying I need to eat 120g of protein per day in some shape or form. Now, I know protein is important but this sounds like a hell of a lot and seems like in addition to normal meals I'm going to be consuming 3 protein shakes a day which is maybe going to leave me with a gassy ass and mongoose breath.
    (2) He's telling me the best measure of success is working to failure and being sore the day after. This sounds good - is this common knowledge that no one told me? I just thought I had to do more weights every time.
    (3) We probably do three maybe four exercises each session but really intensively. So we spent maybe 20-30 minutes yesterday doing various forms of pullups. I am incredibly sore today but it's not the range of exercises I've been used to before.
    (4) In addition to the protein, he reckons I need glutamine tablets too. I found some literature endorsing their use to prevent muscle loss but does anyone agree they're good in addition to all the protein I'm supposed to be eating?

    Thanks guys - I love this site icon_biggrin.gif

    Christian


    1. Study after study has shown that more protein is better for building muscle. 120grams of protein isn't all that much. I'll often do up to 450 grams of protein, with about 40 to 60 grams per meal. Sometimes, I'll even go to 600grams if I'm eating enough times a day. Water is important. You'll won't find many very muscular guys who don't eat protein in abundance, and who don't have a wealth of calories.

    2a. Yes, and no. Microtears results in soreness. Some soreness is to be expected in a neophyte lifter, and, as your body gets used to loads, the soreness is less pronounced if at all. Being extremely sore day after day is often counter-productive. Weight lifting is extremely intense exercise. Recovery is when you make gains. Eating is when you make gains. The lifting is only the stimulus.

    2b. In just about anyone from about 12 to 85, there will be marked increases (up to 80%) in strength in the first 18 months of training. After that, gains are much slower. In advanced trainees, weights, may go down up, or stay the same. There are base points of achievement for a given person and body weight.

    3. Sounds about right. You should have several days to recover. As your adaptive response improves / you get into shape, it'll become much easier. Any high school, college, or even youth athlete can make testimony to support the view. You can ask him his rationale for just doing pullups, if that's the case. Some folks hold a belief that "blasting" a part helps advance that part. That is pretty common with some Eastern Bloc folks. The right method is the method that works for you.

    4. Some folks like glutamine, or {name_your_supplement}. If it works for you, great, if not, it's just expensive urine. Adequate, well-rounded, calories are probably the best thing you can do for gains.

    Study the different kinds of hypertrophy for the methods that suit your goals.
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    Mar 29, 2009 11:13 PM GMT
    chuckystud said
    1. Study after study has shown that more protein is better for building muscle. 120grams of protein isn't all that much. I'll often do up to 450 grams of protein, with about 40 to 60 grams per meal. Sometimes, I'll even go to 600grams if I'm eating enough times a day. Water is important. You'll won't find many very muscular guys who don't eat protein in abundance, and who don't have a wealth of calories.



    Could you cite the studies?
    My doctor says this is not at all true ( eating all of that protein.. you would have to seriously add to your workouts and up your calories so that the protein is not over 30%... otherwise you will just get fat) so I would be interested to see these studies you are referencing. I know body building sites recommend this but I am hoping for clinical studies.
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    Mar 29, 2009 11:51 PM GMT
    christiand saidHi
    I got a new personal trainer a couple of weeks ago. He's pretty hot, works me double as hard as I would work myself and most of all he's got me motivated again. So far so good.
    Few things I'm unsure of though
    (1) He's saying I need to eat 120g of protein per day in some shape or form. Now, I know protein is important but this sounds like a hell of a lot and seems like in addition to normal meals I'm going to be consuming 3 protein shakes a day which is maybe going to leave me with a gassy ass and mongoose breath.
    (2) He's telling me the best measure of success is working to failure and being sore the day after. This sounds good - is this common knowledge that no one told me? I just thought I had to do more weights every time.
    (3) We probably do three maybe four exercises each session but really intensively. So we spent maybe 20-30 minutes yesterday doing various forms of pullups. I am incredibly sore today but it's not the range of exercises I've been used to before.
    (4) In addition to the protein, he reckons I need glutamine tablets too. I found some literature endorsing their use to prevent muscle loss but does anyone agree they're good in addition to all the protein I'm supposed to be eating?

    Thanks guys - I love this site icon_biggrin.gif

    Christian

    Find a new trainer.

    1) There's no magic ratio of protein that you need to consume. Unless you're planning to compete or have to follow a strict diet for health reasons, you really don't need to calculate and measure the amount of protein. Just try to eat some form of protein+carb at every meal.

    2) Soreness is not a measure of success. Your trainer is a moron.

    3) Maybe you need to make it clear to your trainer on what your fitness goals are. Are you trying to lose weight? Are you trying to gain muscle? Building endurance? All of the above? If your trainer is not helping you accomplish your goals, then it's definitely time to get a new one.

    4) Hold off on unnecessary supplements. If you're just starting out, all you need is some protein powders and/or meal replacement powders. As you progress in your workouts, you will discover what additional supplements you might need to take.
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    Mar 30, 2009 12:17 AM GMT
    With regard to protein requirements, studies, and such, here's a link for anyone who would like to study. Clinical studies like those from Kent University and a number of good academic institutions are included. I'd encourage you to look for yourself.

    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=protein+requirements+bodybuilding&btnG=Google+Search

    Note than MANY doctors are HORRIBLE at sports medicine / sports science and have some pretty strange ideas. I've had a number of doctors ask ME over the years. Sometimes, it takes a while for the doctor to catch up to contemporary science.

    Requirements vary among individuals.

    A joint position paper from the American Dietetic Association (ADA) and the Canadian Dietetic Association (CDA) recommends: 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight each day, an amount somewhat higher then the 0.8 grams per kilogram recommended for sedentary people. (Divide weight in pounds by 2.2 to get weight in kilograms.) Other experts disagree with the ADA and recommend higher protein intakes. For example, one group of researchers found that 2 grams of protein per kilogram per day effectively maintained positive nitrogen balance during early training and prevented the drop in blood hemoglobin concentrations observed at lower protein intakes.

    You may draw your own conclusions from the wealth of information available online.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 30, 2009 12:27 AM GMT
    I have heard of the studies too but woudl like to read them. I currently eat around 240grams of protein a day on a 3600 calories diet so about 30% protein and I eat 500 grams of carbs a day and 90 grams of fat. I am gaining right now. my trainer had me on 380 protein a day but that made me feel ill.
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    Mar 30, 2009 12:49 AM GMT
    What the current research says about protein and bodybuilding

    Research has conclusively proven that exercise increases protein needs. Dr. Peter Lemon is the world's leading researcher on protein requirements and athletes. In the journal "Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise" (19:5, S179-S190,1986) Dr. Lemon writes;

    "Several types of evidence indicate that exercise causes substantial changes in protein metabolism. In fact, recent data suggests that the protein recommended dietary allowance might actually be 100% higher for individuals who exercise on a regular basis. Optimal intakes, although unknown, may be even higher, especially for individuals attempting to increase muscle mass and strength."

    Dr. Lemon's most recent research published in "Nutrition Reviews," (54:S169-175, 1996) indicates that strength athletes need up to 1.8g of protein per kg. of body weight to maintain positive nitrogen balance. That's .8 grams per lb. of body weight or almost 140 grams a day for someone who weighs 172 lbs. This is very close to the long-held belief of bodybuilders that 1 gram per pound of body weight is optimal. Some studies have shown that even higher protein intakes may be necessary in hard training strength athletes. In one study of Polish weightlifters (Nutr. Metabolism 12:259-274), 5 of 10 athletes were still in negative nitrogen balance even while consuming 250% of the RDA.

    So much research has been done on protein and athletes that it's amazing that so many conservative registered dietitians and medical professionals still cling to the outdated notion that the RDA for protein is sufficient for muscle growth. The biggest irony is the fact that many of these "RDA pushers" are overweight, flabby, out of shape professors, researchers or white lab coat types. I don't know about you, but I have a very hard time taking advice from "armchair experts" who don't walk the walk. After years of being criticized by the academic and scientific communities for their "excess" protein intakes, bodybuilders today have received their vindication; It is no longer a theory that protein intakes higher than the RDA are more effective for building muscle, it is now scientific fact.

    1) Lemon, Peter, "Protein and Exercise: update", Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, Vol 19, No. 5, Pgs S179 - S190, 1987

    2) Lemon, Peter, "Is increased dietary protein necessary or beneficial for individuals with a physically active lifestyle?" Nutrition reviews, Vol 54: pgs. S 169-175, 1996

    3) Lemon, Peter, "Do athletes need more dietary protein and amino acids?" International Journal of Sports Nutrition, S 39-61, 1995

    4) Lemon, Peter, "Effects of exercise on protein and Amino Acid Metabolism." Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, Vol.13,pgs.141-149, 1981

    5) Tarnopolsky, M, Evaluation of protein requirements for trained strength athletes." Journal of Applied Physiology, VOl 73, No 5, pgs 1986-1995, 1993

    6) Tarnopolsky, M., Dietary protein requirements for bodybuilders vs sedentary controls (abstract), Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 18:564, 1986

    7) Wagenmakers, AJM. "Muscle amino acid metabolism at rest and during exercise: role in human physiology and metabolism." Exercise and Sports Science reviews, Vol.26, pgs. 287-314, 1998

    icon_cool.gif Lemon, Peter and Tarnopolsky, M. "Protein Requirements and muscle mass/strength changes during intensive training in novice bodybuilders." Journal of Applied Physiology, 73: 767-775, 1992

    9) Ross, E., Rolfes, S., "Understanding Nutrition," West Wadsworth Publishing, 1999

    10) Butterfield, G., "Amino Acids and High Protein Diets." 'Perspectives in Exercise Science and Sports Medicine," Vol.4; Ergogenics, enhancement of performance in exercise and sport, pp87-122, 1991.

    11) Groff, James, et al, Advanced Nutrition and Human Metabolism, West Publishing company, 1995.

    12) Katch, Katch & McArdle, Exercise Physiology; Energy, Nutrition and Human Performance, Wiliams and Wilkins, 1996.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 30, 2009 12:55 AM GMT
    http://jap.physiology.org/cgi/content/abstract/73/2/767
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    Mar 30, 2009 12:58 AM GMT
    Hey Christian,

    There are a LOTS of books out there and they all seem to preach different, sometimes contradictory, philosophies on body building. This tells me that there is a wide range of things that work and optimum combinations may differ for different folks. I'll give you some reference from two authors whose recommendations work well for me:

    (1) Dietary Protein:
    Ultimate sports nutrition by Frederic Hatfield: 0.7 - 1.0 g protein/lb body mass
    Macrobolic Nutrition by Gerard Dente: 1.0 -1.5 g protein/ lb body mass (This is the one I use)

    (2) Almost all my books agree: Push hard, train to failure, and you have set the stage for growth. Soreness may or may not be a good indicator of growth as it can sometimes indicate connective tissue damage. Initially you will increase the weight you lift each time but this will eventually level out and progress will become more difficult. You will need to lift heavy to get big but that will come in time. Not only are you building muscle, but you are building tendon and bone too. I love this quote by Ronnie Coleman ""Everybody Wants To Be A Bodybuilder, But Ain't Nobody Wanna Lift No Heavy Ass Weight!"

    (3) There's nothing wrong with a training session done with a limited range of exercises that are done intensively, in fact, I think it's good. That said, if you do the same set of exercises next week then I see a problem. All my books agree that you should mix up your exercises otherwise your body will adapt and growth will slow or end.

    (4) In short, Glutamine: YES
    From Macrobolic Nutrition:
    P27: Glutamine neutralizes the catabolic effects of cortisol & should be taken after workout.
    P32: Five amino acids are the most often and rapidly depleted: Glutamine, arginine, leucine, isoleucine and valine
    P37: 4g of arginine pre workout and 2-4g glutamine post workout are recommended. A proper meal will supply the needed BCAAs (Branched chain amino acids) but supplementation won’t hurt.
    P126: Glutamine has a strong anticatabolic effect that neutralizes cortisol
    P127: Take glutamine in morning between 1st and 2nd meal, immediately post workout, early evening on non-workout days.
    P132: Glutamine and Arginine are natural growth hormone stimulants.
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    Mar 30, 2009 1:02 AM GMT
    chuckystud said
    "Several types of evidence indicate that exercise causes substantial changes in protein metabolism. In fact, recent data suggests that the protein recommended dietary allowance might actually be 100% higher for individuals who exercise on a regular basis. Optimal intakes, although unknown, may be even higher, especially for individuals attempting to increase muscle mass and strength."

    In one study of Polish weightlifters (Nutr. Metabolism 12:259-274), 5 of 10 athletes were still in negative nitrogen balance even while consuming 250% of the RDA.

    .



    So the RDA recommends for my age and weight (172) 62 grams of protein a day.
    250% would be around 160 grams. That is still a very conservative number compared to what most suggest.These studies are with athletes, not just the average guy going to the gym to get healthy and build muscle.
    Maintaining a healthy body is not always in sync with body building.
    (And I certainly don't mean to suggest that Chucky doesn't know what he is doing in regards to building his own body, but it is important to remember that he is a professional body builder)


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    Mar 30, 2009 2:02 AM GMT
    lilTanker said
    Runninchlt said20-30 minutes of very intense work. This sends off huge red flags to me.
    Why does this concern you out of curiosity?
    I work out for an hour with my trainer and its intense.... usually..


    Not what I'm saying...I was thinking 30 minute sessions typically = cookie cutter health club personal trainer session. My experience has been that health clubs will hire trainers who aren't even certified so they don't have to pay them as much. Hence the speech about making sure the trainer was well qualified.
  • MikemikeMike

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    Mar 30, 2009 5:00 AM GMT
    You should check his cred. Gyms sometimes hire trainers who take BS PT certification. Some are done online. wtf? Plus unless he has a degree in nutrition. I wouldn't listen to his generic info.

    Need to know more before I would give an opinion on this. Doesn't sound right so far from what you stated.
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    Mar 30, 2009 5:45 AM GMT
    I am so freakin greatful we haven't gotten that bad here.. at least they gotta spend some time studying and they have to at least know the basic crap to get through.. mind you.. that doesn't make'em great.. just less likely to hurt you
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    Apr 14, 2009 11:06 PM GMT
    MikemikeMike saidYou should check his cred. Gyms sometimes hire trainers who take BS PT certification. Some are done online. wtf? Plus unless he has a degree in nutrition. I wouldn't listen to his generic info.

    Need to know more before I would give an opinion on this. Doesn't sound right so far from what you stated.


    Thanks for all the advice guys. I'd have responded quicker but have been on holiday (/vacation). So by 30 mins intensive I meant that we spend 30 minutes doing, say, only pullups of various kinds, then another 30 minutes of doing various other stuff. It's just different to the other trainers I've had who worked on a steady programme for me.
    I asked his certification before signing up. I got the response from the gym that "all our trainers are at least level 3". I know I shouldn't have been satisfied with this since I don't know what this is but... I presumed it's a British PT certification of some sort and level 3 seems ok. I'll ask him next time properly (Saturday).
    I think it was the nutrition stuff I was more concerned about. I studied BSc Biochem and I understand that too much protein is not good for you. Plus those protein drinks taste like shit and stink to high heaven icon_smile.gif . So I'll have some but not the amount he's suggesting.
    Anyways, thanks for looking out for me - I'll monitor the situation and report back.
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    Apr 16, 2009 3:58 PM GMT
    I'm jealous that you have a trainer now! I'm too poor at the moment to afford to see one three times a week!

    His advice to you does not seem that far out there. It is in the mainstream of fitness and nutrition.

    What I would recommend is consuming two meal replacement shakes in between your breakfast, lunch and dinner. Isopure offers a really fantastic meal replacement shake packet that you can shake in a blender bottle. It offers you fifty grams of a high quality protein isolate, twenty five grams of carbs, half your vitamin needs and 4.6 grams of glutamine per serving.

    By adding these shakes you will easily add 100 grams of protein to your diet a day, you will also get all the vitamins, minerals and glutamine that you need. Also I am a strong believer in frequent eating (every two to three hours). By doing this you keep your body well fueled to build muscle and your metabolism kicked in over drive to burn fat.

    Using this way of eating which is from Bill Phillips' Body for Life I was able to drop my body fat down twelve percent from where it was and add 10 pounds of muscle in three months.