“HIIT” It up! 5 Cardio Secrets That Reduce Fat Fast!

NOTE: This is Part 1 of a 2-Part Series.

We all know that cardio can help you reduce body fat. But what kind of cardio works the fastest? How can you avoid throwing away lean muscle with the fat? What supplements should you use to get maximum results? In this two-part series, we’ll reveal the answers to these questions and more.

Secret #1: “HIIT” it up!

What is HIIT?

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) (pronounced “hit”) sounds technical, but it doesn’t have to be. If you add HIIT to your workout program, it can help you reduce body fat faster and hold on to more lean muscle than regular cardio.

Simply stated, HIIT involves 3 steps:

(1)  Briefly perform exercise at a high intensity.

(2)  Briefly exercise at a low intensity or rest.

(3)  Repeat several times.

The term “interval” is used because periods of high-intensity exercise are separated by intervals of low-intensity exercise or rest. The latter is sometimes called the “recovery” period.

Think of how little kids sometimes play. They dart across the grass at full speed. Then they slow down to a walk. Then they dart off again in another direction. And so on. They’re doing HIIT, and they don’t even realize it!

The rules of HIIT are pretty flexible. The high-intensity period may last anywhere from 15 to 60 seconds. The recovery period may last the same amount of time.


The opposite of HIIT is sometimes called “continuous moderate exercise” (CME), or “low intensity steady state” (LISS). If you walk for an hour at a steady pace on the treadmill, for instance, you are doing CME. Some doctors still prescribe CME for fat reduction. However, an increasing number are now telling their patients to “HIIT it up” instead. Why?

  • Clinical studies provide      compelling evidence that you can reduce body fat faster with HIIT than you      can with CME. This is true even when you burn more calories during CME. In      one study, subjects who performed CME for several weeks didn’t lose any      fat, whereas those who performed HIIT did. This occurred despite the fact      that those who performed CME burned 15,000 more calories than subjects in      the HIIT group.
  • Patient compliance may be higher      with HIIT, possibly because it isn’t as boring as CME.
  • The number-one excuse often made      for not exercising enough is “I don’t have time.” HIIT workouts      are much shorter than CME workouts. No more excuses!
  • HIIT is associated with improved      cardiovascular and metabolic function in people who are currently healthy      as well as “at risk” patients.
  • HIIT reduces both subcutaneous      (“under the skin”) and visceral fat. Subcutaneous fat is the fat      that you can see on your body. Visceral fat is stored deep inside your      body, around organs. It has been linked to diseases such as diabetes.
  • Because your muscles have to work      harder during HIIT, it can do a better job of preserving lean muscle than      CME. Too much CME can cause lean muscle to shrink (atrophy).

“How can HIIT help me lose fat faster, even if I burn more calories during CME?”

Good question. Scientists are still trying to figure this out. Several factors may be involved. For instance, HIIT workouts may boost your metabolism in the hours or days that follow. Also, there is some evidence that HIIT may suppress appetite.

HIIT isn’t a miracle maker. Keep in mind that the HIIT protocols used in clinical studies have often been pretty exhausting, more intense than you would likely do yourself. Also, individual results can vary, as is the case for any form of exercise.

Secret #2: Record it!

Whether it’s HIIT or regular cardio, if you want to reduce body fat as quickly as possible, then you need to record your workout accomplishments. Doing so will help you ensure that they are progressive, i.e., your body is challenged to work harder during each workout.

Make it easy for yourself! Duration and calories expended are two of the simplest things to record, and most modern cardio equipment displays both of them. During your next workout, try to burn more calories in the same amount of time. Or, try to burn the same amount of calories in less time. Record your accomplishments and try to beat them at the workout that follows.

Secret #3: Keep it fresh!

It happens to the best of us: We start using a piece of cardio equipment, we become comfortable with it, and then we continue to use it, over and over and over again.

Keep it fresh! Change your choice of cardio weekly, if not more often. This will make your workouts more fresh, fun and challenging. Changing things up may also help you avoid repetitive strain injuries.

A well-equipped gym should have multiple pieces of cardio equipment to choose from: treadmill, elliptical, stationary bike, Stairclimber, Stepmill, Jacob’s Ladder, etc. Use them all. Don’t limit yourself.

Secret #4: Try these sample workouts!

There are a ton of HIIT workouts on the Web. Below is just a small collection that you can use to get started.

  • Stationary cycle: You can use this      basic HIIT workout on a regular cycle or a spinning cycle.
    • Warm-up: 5       minutes at low intensity.
    • High-intensity       spinning: 1 minute.
    • Low-intensity       spinning: 1 minute.
    • Repeat 8 times.
    • Cool-down: 5       minutes with gradually decreasing intensity.
  • Stepmill workout #1:
    • Level 5: 2       minutes.
    • Level 12: 2       minutes.
    • Repeat 8 times.
  • Stepmill workout #2: This HIIT      workout comes from a female fitness competitor and cover model:
    • Level 8: 3       minutes.
    • Level 10: 1       minute.
    • Level 12: 1       minute.
    • Level 16: 1       minute (or as long as you can).
    • Go back to       Level 8 and repeat. Beginners can skip Level 16.
  • Jacob’s Ladder: Two HIIT workouts      are available at this link:


Secret #5: Don’t overdo it.
HIIT is intense. Start by doing it once a week. Increase it to twice a week as your stamina improves, and depending on your goals, up to three times a week. If you are doing both your weight workout and cardio in the same session, do weights first. If you find it difficult to recover, try doing cardio and weights on separate days. This may allow for better recovery and help you retain more lean muscle as you drop body fat.
Bonus Secret! #6: Ain’t no half steppin!

When you do cardio, use the full range of motion, just as you would when lifting weights. Or, as Big Daddy Kane rapped, “Ain’t no half steppin.”

It’s been said that partial reps build a partial muscle. It’s true. This becomes especially apparent when you resume using the full range of motion in your weight room exercises after a period of using partial reps. Within a matter of days, your muscles will appear fuller and more defined throughout their entire length. To the untrained eye (your grandmother, say), the difference may not be noticeable. To the experienced bodybuilder, however, it is like night and day.

The same rule applies to cardio. When you do “mini steps” on the Stairclimber, Stepmill or elliptical machine, for instance, it may feel easier, but you’re only cheating yourself. Using a longer, deeper step or stride will improve the appearance and performance of your muscles.

In the next issue…Part 2:  Supplements that can help you reduce fat faster with cardio! In the final part of this 2-part series, we’ll reveal which supplements you can use to maximize your fat-loss results with HIIT cardio!

Sports Nutrition for Beginners

If you are new to training and exercise, you undoubtedly have may questions.  Where do I start?  How do I train?  What supplements should I be taking?  How long will it take to reach my goals?  As you’ll learn along the way, the answers to these and other questions ultimately lie within.  Each athlete is unique, and therefore has completely unique likes, dislikes, needs, and potential.  What works for your training partner may have little effect on you, and vice versa.  Physical fitness is more than merely a pastime – it is a way of life that requires knowledge, discipline, and desire.

Set Goals for Success

Setting realistic goals is an effective way to stay consistent throughout training, while learning how your body responds to different types of training.  When setting goals, remember that nothing happens overnight.  The body responds gradually to physical training, and it can take years to realize one’s true potential.  Be honest and set goals that are both measurable and challenging.  They should be modest and attainable, though significant enough to reward you with feelings of true accomplishment.  For the first year, try tracking the results over a three, four, or six month period.  Taking before-and-after pictures, keeing a training journal, and charting your progress can serve as reminders of where you started, and where you want to be.

Respect Yourself, Physically

Injury is a very real part of training that often comes with little or no warning.  Failure to warm-up, cool-down, stretch, and listen to your body’s warning signs are among the most common causes of sport-related injury.  Every training session should include time to prepare physically and mentally for your workout.  This should include ample stretching, a light warm up movement (such as stationary bike, elliptical, or skipping rope), and a few moments of concentration to clear the mind of distractions.  At the conclusion of your workout, perform a cool-down movement to help return your heart rate to normal.  Never end a workout on a heavy set or high-intensity exercise.  Finally, always be mindful of what your body is telling you.  Intense cramps, nausea, dizziness, fatique, and chills are all signs that the body has been pushed beyond a safe threshold.  If this happens, take a few minutes to rest and replensih fluid levels.

Choose the Right Supplements

Diet and nutrition are vital to the success of any athlete.  The body uses the nutrients from the foods and supplements consumed to construct new muscle fibers, repair damaged tissues, and replenish your energy reserves.  One of the worst mistakes a new athlete can make is to begin taking dietary supplements without first developing a firm understanding of what they are.  They body is incredibly productive and self-sufficient at younger ages, provided that it is being fed a well-balanced diet.  Some of the most fundamental sports nutrition supplements include whey protein, amino acids, and glutamine. Used as directed, they may provide the natural sports nutritional edge needed to excel.

When Should I Take My Protein?


 WHEN IT COMES TO PROTEIN, it’s not just what you take; it’s when you take it.  Although the human body processes protein every time that you consume it, there are certain instances when your system is more receptive to protein.  More specifically, there are times when you should consume different kinds of proteins.  Don’t miss out on these five important occasions.

FIRST THING IN THE MORNING:  The period between when you go to bed and wake up in the morning is the longest that your body goes without food.  “Break the fast” with protein.  In addition to providing much needed amino acids for muscle maintenance and rebuilding, proteins provide more stable, sustained energy than that donut or bagel that you’re currently chowing on.  Opt for a faster-acting protein like whey first thing in the morning.

PRE-WORKOUT:  By drinking a protein shake about an hour before your workout, you’ll prime your body for growth with BCAAs and other essential amino acids.  Whey and egg proteins are a good choice, because they are easy to drink and quickly digested.

POST-WORKOUT:  The 30-60 minute timeframe following exercise is the single most important time of the day to get protein.  Enzymes and hormones are actively repairing and rebuilding exercise-induced damage as well as replenishing glycogen stores, so your muscles are especially receptive to nutrients.  By supplying a post-workout recovery protein containing whey, casein, egg, and simple carbohydrates during this window of opportunity, you’ll help ensure that you’re recharged and ready for your next training session.

BETWEEN MEALS:  Consuming a protein shake in between meals not only helps keep muscle synthesis maximized, it also helps keep body fat and body weight in check.  Proteins help stimulate the release of gut hormones that trigger a feeling of fullness or satiety.  Dairy proteins (whey, casein, and milk) are considered to be better appetite blunters than other protein sources – especially when combined with dietary fiber – so choose a product with one or more of these proteins if weight control is part of your goals.

BEFORE BED:  Prepare your body for the long fast ahead with a casein protein shake a half an hour before bed.  Unlike whey which is rapidly broken down in the gut, casein is digested at a much slower rate releasing its amino acid constituents over several hours throughout the night while you sleep.  For this reason, casein is commonly referred to as a time-released protein.  Casein is also considered anti-catabolic because it’s rich in glutamine and other amino acids that help protect against muscle breakdown.

How to Select a Protein


BUYING A PROTEIN ISN’T ROCKET SCIENCE, but don’t underestimate the process either.  Choose the wrong type and you’ll buy more than you need.  Worse yet, spend less than you should and you may not get satisfactory results – or any results at all.  The type (or types) of protein you select, the amount of protein per serving, and the absence or presence of carbs, fats, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, are other areas where you can wander astray.  Avoid these and other pitfalls by following these simple rules.

 FIGURE OUT HOW MUCH YOU NEED  For most individuals, 1 gram of protein pound of body weight per day is a good target.  Those who are looking to add size may need as much as 1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight per day.  You should also plan on eating some extra protein (1.25 – 1.5 g/lb/day) if you’re trying to lose weight on higher-protein, lower carbohydrate diets, as some of the amino acids will be burned for fuel.  These amounts include all of the protein consumed through foods, beverages, and supplements.  What’s  more, your daily protein allotment should be spread out over 4-6 smaller meals to enhance absorption and utilization.  If you’re a big meat, fish, poultry, egg, and dariy food eater, you can probably get by with a smaller “hit” of protein from your powdered mix.  Vegetarians and others who eat lots of starchy foods will benefit more from a higher-protein formula.

DETERMINE WHAT YOUR BUDGET AND SCHEDULE ALLOW  Single-source proteins offer more precise benefits.  Ideally, you might use a fast-acting whey protein first thing in the morning and 30 minutes before workouts, a recovery product containing protein plus carbohydrates immediately after workouts, a moderately-digested egg protein in beetween meals, and an all-micellar casein protein at bedtime for sustained amino acid delivery throughout the night while you sleep.  Now, here’s where you need to be realistic and honest with yourself.  Even if you can afford multiple products, are you the type of person who’s disciplined enough to follow such a regimen?  If you answered “no”, consider a protein blend.  While not as fast as the fastest or as slow as the slowest single-source proteins, blends offer many of the disirable qualities of a variety of different proteins.

MAKE YOUR SELECTION AND STICK WITH IT – AT LEAST FOR A WHILE  To do something positive for your physique, you need to take your protein(s) continually and consistently for at least 60 days.  After a couple months, evaluate and, if necessary, modify your program to add in other proteins, to increase or decrease the amounts used, or to change to a different type of protein altogether.


The girls guide to supplements: supplements can give you that extra edge to burn fat and gain lean muscle faster. Here’s a list of the 15 best

A good, hard, training regimen is the only way to get a perfectly lean body, and it releases all those endorphins that make you feel awesome afterward. But by all estimates, a sound nutritional program accounts for around 80 percent of your results. What those accounts don’t, er, account for, is the power of supplements. Add these 15 critical elements to your diet, and you’ll supercharge your lean muscle gains, accelerate fat loss and improve your overall health.


WHAT IT IS: One of milk’s two proteins.

WHAT IT DOES: Whey’s primary characteristic is its digestibility. Once in the body, it breaks down quickly, swiftly sending its aminos to muscle tissue. This is beneficial because there are certain times of day (first thing in the morning, before and after workouts) when the lean wholefood proteins we normally recommend (eggs, chicken breast, lean steak, fish) digest too slowly to be effective. But whey doesn’t deliver only protein. It contains peptides (protein fragments) that have been shown to increase blood flow to muscles, which is particularly helpful before workouts, so that muscles will receive more oxygen, nutrients and hormones right when they need them.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take 20 grams of whey protein (mixed in water) first thing upon waking, within 30 minutes before workouts and another 20 g within 30 minutes after training. And you can always have a scoop as a snack between meals.


WHAT IT IS: Any number of compounds that serve to increase levels of nitric oxidein the bloodstream.

WHAT IT DOES: NO relaxes the muscles that control blood vessels, which makes them increase in diameter, allowing more blood to flow through them and to muscles. Because blood carries oxygen and nutrients such as glucose, fat and amino acids, more of these getting to your muscles allows for better energy production–so you can train harder for longer–and better recovery from workouts, which means bigger muscles that can be trained more often. Blood also contains a high percentage of water, which gets pushed through those wider blood vessels into muscles to create the muscle pump you experience when you train. That pump stretches the membranes of muscle cells, signaling the cells to grow bigger. In addition, NO enhances lipolysis, which is the release of fat from the body’s fat cells, allowing it to be burned for fuel.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Look for products that include ingredients such as arginine, citrulline, GPLC (glycine propionyl-L-carnitine) or Pyenogenol. Take one dose of an NO-boosting supplement about 30-60 minutes before workouts.


WHAT IT IS: Only the world’s most popular (and legal) stimulant drug.

WHAT IT DOES: You already know it perks you up and improves focus, but it also has been found to boost muscle strength, intensity and fat loss during workouts. And it works especially well when taken with green tea extract. Caffeine increases the amount of fat that gets released from your fat cells. Meanwhile, green tea boosts metabolic rate, which is the way the body burns fat in the bloodstream. Taking these compounds together means that more of the fat that caffeine has released will get burned up for good, allowing your fat cells to shrink away.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take 200-400 milligrams of caffeine two or three times per day, with one dose 30-60 minutes before workouts.


What IT IS: Two essential omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) ekgife- and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).

WHAT IT DOES: What doesn’t fish oil do? It reduces inflammation; reduces muscle and joint recovery; reduces risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancers; and, a biggie, it also has been found to turn on genes that stimulate fat burning and turn off genes that increase fat storage.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take 2 g of fish oil three times daily, with breakfast, lunch and dinner.


WHAT IT IS: The other of milk’s two proteins.

WHAT IT DOES: Though they come from the same place, whey and casein couldn’t be more different. Casein is extremely slow to digest which means it provides a steady stream of aminos over a span of several hours. That makes it ideal for certain time periods, like right before bed, when your body is about to go without food for seven to eight hours. In fact, one study performed by the Weider Research Group found that when subjects took casein protein before bed, they gained more muscle than those who took casein in the morning. Another study found that when subjects consumed a mix of whey and casein after workouts, they had improved muscle growth as compared to subjects who took just whey.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take 20 g of casein right before bed. Also consider combining 10 grams of casein with 10 g of whey in your postworkout shake.


WHAT IT IS: Three aminos (isoleucine, leucine and valine) that share a branched molecular structure.

WHAT IT DOES: The unique structure of BCAAs gives them certain unique properties, all of which have physique benefits. BCAAs can increase the length of your workouts–they can be burned as fuel by muscle tissue and they actually blunt fatigue in the brain. The BCAAs are also intimately involved in the creation of new muscle tissue, both as the building blocks and as the builder. Leucine, in particular, promotes protein synthesis, which is the process by which muscle grows. BCAAs also boost growth-hormone levels, reduce Cortisol and increase levels of insulin, the anabolic hormone that’s critical to replenishing muscle tissue with nutrients after workouts.

HOWTOTAKEIT: Take5-10g of BCAAs with preworkout and postworkout shakes.


WHAT IT IS: An amino-acid-like compound that occurs naturally in muscle tissue.

WHAT IT DOES: Creatine’s most basic function is to help muscles create fast energy during exercise. Taking supplemental creatine increases the amount of energy the body has to draw upon, increasing endurance and strength. The compound also draws water into muscle cells, increasing their size and causing a stretch that can yield permanent growth.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take 2-5 g of creatine (depending on the form you use) before and after workouts with pre- and postworkout shakes.


WHAT IT IS: A nonessential amino acid.

WHAT IT DOES: When beta-alanine meets another amino acid, histidine, a beautiful thing happens; They get together and form a compound called carnosine. Carnosine has been shown to improve muscle size, strength and endurance and increase fat loss. Since the amount of carnosine the body can produce is directly dependent on how much beta-alanine is present, it makes sense to supplement with beta-alanine.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take 1-3 g of beta-alanine immediately before and immediately after workouts.


WHAT IT IS: A healthy fat that just happens to be an omega-6 fatty acid.

WHAT IT DOES: Although other omega-6 fats are not so healthy, primarily because Americans tend to get too much of them in their diet, CLA is different. Numerous studies confirm that it enhances fat loss while simultaneously boosting muscle growth and strength. It works by two mechanisms: decreasing the amount of fat that is stored in fat cells and boosting metabolism. It also appears to burn more fat during sleep, thereby sparing muscle tissue.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take about 2 g of CLA three times daily, with breakfast, lunch and dinner.


WHAT IT IS: An essential mineral.

WHAT IT DOES: Just about everyone knows that calcium is intrinsically linked to bone health, but did you know that it’s also required for muscle contraction? Without adequate calcium, muscles won’t contract properly. And research shows that this unassuming mineral can also help spur fat loss, particularly the fat around your midsection. This may be because calcium decreases the amount of dietary fat that’s absorbed by the intestines and suppresses a hormone called calcitriol, which is responsible for fat production and reducing fat burning.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take 500-600 mg of calcium twice a day.


WHAT IT IS: The sunshine vitamin

WHAT IT DOES: New research keeps coming, all of it demonstrating D’s ample health benefits, from protecting against cancer and other diseases to improving bone integrity, which it does by assisting with calcium absorption. Vitamin D is also associated with greater muscle strength–interacting with receptors on muscle fibers to activate genes that increase muscle strength and growth. As a plus, D can aid fat loss, especially when taken in conjunction with calcium.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take about 2,000 international units of vitamin D twice a day at the same time you take calcium.


WHAT IT IS: The active ingredients in green tea, particularly the polyphenol epigallocatechin gallate.

WHAT IT does: EGCG blocks an enzyme that normally breaks down norepinephrine, a neurotransmitter/hormone related to adrenaline that increases metabolic rate and fat burning, keeping norepinephrine levels higher. Green tea extract also has been found to enhance muscle recovery after intense workouts, as well as aid joint recovery.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take about 500 mg of green tea extract standardized for EGCG three times daily before meals, with one dose about 30-60 minutes before workouts.

13/B COMPLEX 100

WHAT IT IS: A series of essential vitamins.

What It Does: Think of it this way: B makes you buzz. The suite of B vitamins are critically involved in helping your body derive energy from the nutrients you eat and helping get oxygen to muscle tissue. Feeling rundown and lacking energy? It’s likely because you’re deficient in B vitamins, a common trait of hard-training individuals. Certain B vitamins have additional benefits–riboflavin can help the body digest and use the protein you’re eating to make sure you’re building muscle properly, and folic acid, in addition to being essential to fetal health, is involved in NO production in the body.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Look for a B complex 100, which will provide 100 mg of most of the B vitamins, including thiamin ([B.sub.1]), riboflavin ([B.sub.2]), niacin ([B.sub.3])s pantothenic acid ([B.sub.5]) and pyridoxine ([B.sub.6]), as well as at least 100 micrograms of cobalamin ([B.sub.12]), folic acid ([B.sub.9]) andbiotin([B.sub.7]).


WHAT IT IS: An essential vitamin.

WHAT IT DOES: At the first sign of a tickle in your throat you probably start mainlining the C That’s good, because the vitamin has been shown to boost immune function. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that is also involved in the synthesis of hormones, amino acids and collagen and, on top of all that, it destroys free radicals, created from exercise and other stressors, that break down nitric oxide. Sparing NO from free-radical damage means you’ll have higher NO levels, and higher NO levels lead to increases in muscle endurance, a reduction in fatigue and an increase lean muscle growth and strength.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Take 1,000 mg twice a day with meals.


WHAT IT IS: A blend of adequate amounts of major micronutrients.

WHAT IT DOES: Put simply, a multivitamin/multimineral complex fills in all the nutritional gaps in your diet. And, although we suggest you supplement separately with calcium and vitamins B, C and D, you should still take a standard multi. It will help eliminate the possibility of deficiencies in some of the other vitamins and minerals that can result from reduced food variety or calorie intake (read: dieting) and increased vitamin loss from exercise. Being deficient in many of these micronutrients can lead to low energy levels and restrict muscle growth, strength gains and fat loss.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Look for a multi that provides a minimum of 100% of the daily value of C, D, E and most of the B-complex vitamins and at least 100% of zinc, copper and chromium. Take it once per day with a meal, such as breakfast, hers

Article written by Jim Stoppani, Muscle & Fitness/Hers / July-August, 2011

Protein and light weights prevent muscle loss

 Older adults typically lose muscle mass as they age. Muscle loss increases the risk of falls, decreases mobility and reduces tissue area critical for normal blood sugar metabolism. Japanese researchers showed that consuming a protein snack containing 15 grams of protein plus daily light weight training increased lean body mass and muscle cross-sectional area, while reducing body fat in older adults. Combining light exercise with regular protein intake can prevent muscle deterioration during aging. (Journal Nutritional Science Vitaminology, 57: 233-238, 2011)

Protein Promotes Rehydration and Recovery

Thirty years ago, scientists thought water was the best fluid replacement. While that’s still largely correct, sports beverages are sometimes superior because they provide water, energy, and electrolytes. Milk might be even better, because it sustains water balance longer and provides a protein source that can promote tissue adaptation and repair after exercise.

British researchers found that low-fat milk restored and sustained body water levels in dehydrated people better than water or a sports drink. Because of urinary fluid losses, subjects were again dehydrated one hour after consuming milk or milk plus sodium.

A review of literature by British researcher Suzane Leser concluded that consuming proteins in a post-exercise rehydration beverage increases absorption of electrolytes and boosts levels of plasma proteins, which promote long term hydration after exercise. (Nutrition Bulletin, 36: 224-234, 2011)

Quercetin Boosts Endurance


Quercetin is an antioxidant found in apple skins, cranberries, blueberries, onions, tea, and red wine. It might be an effective supplement for active bodybuilders, because it prevents illness and improves cell aerobic capacity.  A study from Appalachian State University showed that supplementing quercetin for two weeks caused small increases in endurance performance, compared to a placebo.  They noted a trend toward increased muscle cell mitochondria (the cell energy centers).


Other studies concluded that quercetin reduced inflammation, boosted the immune system, stimulated mental performance, protected the heart from coronary artery disease, and prevented protein breakdown. Quercetin supplements prevented colds, improved exercise performance and increased mitochondria.  It also has caffeine-like effects, which might promote mental and physical performance.  Quercetin supplements might prevent overtraining, strengthen the immune system, and improve general health.  (Medicine Science Sports Exercise, 42: 338-345, 2010)




Versa Gripps – Train Hard! Train Like the Pros!



Ingeniously Designed to Optimize Any Fitness Routine. The patented Versa Gripps are a staple for weightlifters and personal trainers all over the world. Recognized by “Mens Fitness”, “Flex”, “Muscular Development”, “Iron Man”, “Oxygen”, “Musclemag” (they made their top “2010 Wish List” for gear) and “Muscle & Fitness” magazines as the essential fitness products for any workout routine, as well as bodybuilding, Olympic lifting, power lifting and strength training. This self-supporting grip is the most effective way to increase strength, muscle mass and stamina by eliminating grip fatigue and enhancing muscle isolation. Ergonomically developed for any pulling or pushing workout, Versa Gripps replaces gloves, hooks, and lifting straps.


Begin by inserting the end of the wrist strap through the rectangular metal ring so it creates a large loop, than slide your hand into the wrist strap. Once in, grasp the palm piece securely, lining your thumb up with the cutout (indicating a right and left grip) and tighten the strap with the other hand. The Versa Gripp should fit comfortably around the wrist with the palm piece in front of your hand.

If you have a large hand, and find it difficult to maneuver your hand through the loop (as described above), there is an optional way of putting Versa Gripps on. First, securely hold the palm piece in your hand making sure the thumb cutout matches. Then, use your other hand to weave the long wrist strap through the metal ring. Tighten the wrist strap by gently pulling the strap back onto itself. Perform the same steps with your other hand.

To Perform a PULLING Exercise:

When performing a pulling exercise as in a dead lift, shrug or chin-up, Versa Gripps are designed to fit securely (not tightly) around the base of the weightlifters hand. When properly fit, the user is able to easily turn them to the back of their hand when they are not being used. They are not designed to fit tightly around the wrist while doing a pulling exercise. Versa Gripps will not strangle nor damage the hands or wrists. They will not restrict blood flow, movement or damage nerves. Versa Gripps provide a secure hold onto the weightlifting bar.

With Versa Gripps standing in front of the palm of your hand, position the lifting bar between your palm and the gripping portion of the Versa Gripp (Versa Gripps should be on the outside of the bar). Using the tips of the fingers of the hand that is wearing the Versa Gripps, fold the thicker end of the grip over the top of the weightlifting bar, between the bar and against the palm of your hand. Grasp the weightlifting bar as you would normally grasp the bar. At this point you are locked on and ready to pull.

If you have large hands, the length of the gripping portion is adjustable. Simply loosen the strap around your wrist and allow the end of the palm piece to move farther toward the tips of your fingers. This will provide more gripping length to wrap around the bar for weightlifters with larger hands. It is not necessary to wrap and wrap the Versa Gripps around the weight bar to achieve a solid grip. Over the top of the bar will do it. Locking on to the lifting bar should take only a split second

To Perform a PUSHING Exercise (such as bench pressing):

The human hand and foot are anatomically symmetrical. Your feet have arches, so do your hands. Arch supports are important for your feet. They are also necessary for your hands when doing a pushing exercise, or press. You should support the arch of your hand and your wrist during weight training.

Versa Gripps provide a hand arch support. Built into each grip, is an arch support that works like a bridge over the arch of your hand. The arch support is firm and stiffer, yet flexible enough to wrap over the weightlifting bar when performing pushing exercises.

When performing a pushing exercise, it is important to have wrist support. The padded wrist closure that attaches the Versa Gripps to the users wrists is designed for ease of operation, comfort, safety and support. Position the Versa Gripps farther up on the wrist, than pull the strap tightly around the wrist. This gives excellent support as well as protection from calluses.

With the palm piece of the Versa Gripps lying against the palm of your hand and the weightlifting bar resting on top of the grip, grasp the weightlifting bar as you normally would to perform a pushing exercise.


Best Time to Train


Research details a variety of reasons why training in the late afternoon or early evening, before 6pm, will afford you this benefit.  According to Exercise Physiologist Dr. Gordon Sleivert, a single degree increase in body temperature at this time loosens up muscles and promotes the swelling of blood vessels.  Cortisol levels are also lower allowing the body to take full advantage of testosterone to build muscle.  If morning training is more of your style, the key is keeping the time consistent.  Find a way to be alert, eat breakfast and add an extra five minute warm-up to help maximize your performance.