Rich’s Answers to your questions 7/16/12

Thank you all for all your questions and comments. Below are some answers to questions submitted on this website up to July 23rd. My answers are in bold/italic:

Ben Stubbs
When you were recovering from surgery did you train the other arm/shoulder in upper body workouts or did you rest it until your other was healed?  I have been doing lots of research on it and people seem to say the injured arm benefits from it also due to your body fighting to keep your strength balanced.  Then I have heard people say don’t train it.
I have never read any research on this topic. I did not do any training with my other arm until my injured arm was healed. During my recovery, I focused mainly on my cardio, and began doing some leg stuff when I was able to handle the strain. Legs can benefit the body as a whole! I am a big believer in keeping the body as balanced as I can. Often times when I was in rehab, I would perform the exercises with my uninjured arm as well.
Rick Bank
My question is actually about my wife. Please know that I lover her very much no matter what she weighs, but she has such a struggle with loising weight and gets down on herself. She is 34 and weighs in the 190s. She has been succesful with certain programs such as calorie counting and Atkins-type models, but she seems to always fall to her cravings. She simply loves food that tastes super-good (often high in calories, both proteins and carbs). She does eat a reasonable amount of vegetables, and some fruit. She is very intelligent and knows all about what to do to lose weight – still she falls for her cravings. I believe she is stressed out (work, children, household responsibilities) and finds confort in these tasty foods (I too am like that but have been lucky enough to limit my poor eating to only the weekends). Lastly, my wife exercises, but inconsistentl y. Last year she was part of a gym where she took zumba and yoga classes, but eventually discontinued due to lack of motivation mostly. She has tried to jog in the mornings – but this fluctuates. She does spend a lot of time infront of the computer being an online professor, as well as being a romance wirter. My wife is truly a lovely woman and a good person – I want her to be happier with her body/health (which she has desired for several years). I too also worry about diabetes and other ailments (recently she has been comlainig of pain in her knee, which may be due to some excessive weight?). I read your article on cravings and a person’s ideal image – I am going to show it to my wife. Any other advice or resources (books, articles) you may have would be greatly appreciated.
BTW I am a big fan – thanks for all of the great fights over the years. I look forward to more. Take care – Rick Bank
It sounds to me she has the motivation to get into shape, but lacks the motivation to continue a program. So I will ask you…what is the support system at home like? As someone who works independently, she needs to have clearly defined regiments. For example, I do strength and conditioning twice per week. As I do my computer work today, I will not let that work spill over into my workout. Granted working out is my job, but it is still easy to postpone things. As a unit, you need to have a defined routine. What time do you wake, eat, workout, break from work for meals, etc? Do you, as a couple or as a family, choose healthy past time activities? Is typical Saturday leisure time spent in front of the TV or do you walk at the park or play tennis.
Here is the real issue…she is trying to fit fitness into her current lifestyle, and unless the lifestyle changes, neither will her fitness.
graham summerscales
hi rich,im 45 and as i akready know it does take longer as you get older to maintain fitness abd muscle.i want to keep my size ie muscle but lose the fat,with out to much size loss if poss,i weigh 15 stone any advice training and diet would be very gratefully recieved.graham england haworth west yirkshire
Each nutrition/exercise program must be tailored to an individual. For example, I don’t know your height, weight, BMI, target weight, body fat percentage, etc. In general, you need protein to feed your muscle and it must be eaten every few hours on a consistent basis. As your metabolism slows or activity levels change, your carbohydrate requirements will as well. With the limited information I have, I would say to eliminate carbs (starches or sugars) in the evening within 4-6 hours of going to bed, but you will need those during the day…especially post workout.
Hi Rich…I’m a big fan!!!! i was wanting to get a leaner look. I run everyday and I’m starting to lift weights. Is it better to go light with more reps or heavy with less reps?  Thank you and God Bless !!
It is better to keep the body confused…mix it up a bit. Go through cycles where you do a certain routine for several weeks and switch to a different one for several. The goal with fitness is to keep the body guessing. Generally heavier weights are thought to bulk you, but you will only get as big as the fuel you give the muscles to grow on. Protein (Amino Acids) is necessary to help you grow. If you are running everyday, then you may need to evaluate your nutrition to get leaner.
Matthew Johnson
You seem to be always in tip top shape. I’ve read that you have one cheat day a week. I’ve started a regimen like that also taking one day off. Is it still detrimental to drink alcohol on that one day or should I completely avoid it?
I don’t drink alcohol, and never have. If you are going to drink, from a nutritional point of view, you want to do it on a “cheat day.” The premise to my cheat day is flawless nutrition during the remainder of the week. Avoid the, “just one isn’t a big deal,” way of thinking. On a basic level, alcohol is like any other junk you put into your body really. A few beers or a couple mixed drinks are not going to hurt you. I have a tendency to eat quite a bit during my cheat days. Don’t let that habit spill into binge drinking for you.
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