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Proven, Effective Fitness and Nutrition Advice Without All of the Hype and Pseudo-Science

This website is about one thing... giving people access to the proper fitness and nutrition habits that lead to living a fit and healthy lifestyle. You'll find articles on dieting myths, proper training techniques, developing a successful mindset, custom workouts, and even video how-tos and tips from yours truly and other experts in the industry.

If you're frustrated with the lack of progress you've been making towards your fitness goals, whether it's because of a lack of direction or a lack of motivation, then look around this site, come back often and apply the fitness and nutrition concepts you discover in your own efforts.

Balance is Crucial: Bulking and Cutting

Do you ever feel like you’re on a “perma-bulk” or always seem to be in a cutting phase?

Most of us are genetically predisposed to either carrying more body fat than we’d prefer, or less muscle mass than we’d like. Only the lucky few are naturally inclined towards those lean bodies packed with muscle.

While there’s a greater proportion  of the lucky individuals in the world of competition compared to the general population, plenty of competitors still land on either side of the spectrum.

As such, we tend to gravitate towards the eating/training style that matches our natural struggle–those of us who struggle to lose weight are always eating at a calorie deficit and doing a lot of cardio, while the “hardgainers” among us pack away calories day after day and spend a lot of time pumping iron. Continue Reading Balance is Crucial: Bulking and Cutting »

Putting on the Brakes: Why Your Prep Needs a Reverse Diet!

Competitors–have you ever felt like you’re on a permanent prep diet? Do you have trouble remembering the last time you consciously increased your calories for an extended period of time, outside of a post-show binge?

Do you also feel like your energy levels, strength and stamina have decreased while your stress levels have increased over time?

Is getting lean and staying there becoming more and more difficult, requiring you to drop calories further and further and/or increase cardio more and more each time you cut?

Bikini athletes in particular tend to suffer this scenario due to the fact that high levels of muscle are not as emphasized of a requirement as other divisions of fitness competition, and thus many women never go into a “bulking” stage that is foundational to programs for bodybuilding, physique and figure divisions. Continue Reading Putting on the Brakes: Why Your Prep Needs a Reverse Diet! »

Why the IIFYM Approach to Dieting Isn’t Enough

It’s human nature to appeal to labels and neat packaging of ideas. In the fitness and nutrition industry, this is readily apparent.

If you look at most workout programs, they have a name, a brand: Body Pump. Jazzercize. CrossFit. P90x.

The same thing is true with nutrition: the Paleo Diet. Atkins Diet. Clean Eating. IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros).

Labels are convenient because we can wrap said labels around a bunch of ideas and make the ideas appear more cohesive than if we had to track each idea individually. It allows us to understand relatively complex concepts more easily.

In competition prep, nutrition has primarily focused around two pre-packaged ideas: clean eating and IIFYM.

Let’s take a historical trip together down competition prep’s “memory lane.” Continue Reading Why the IIFYM Approach to Dieting Isn’t Enough »

4 Elements of Basic Nutrition

Before you can run, you must walk. Likewise, before you can optimize and perfect your diet, you must fully understand the basic elements of nutrition and how they affect your health and results.

The good news is that basic nutrition is both simple and effective. It’s true that the fitness industry has hopelessly over-complicated nutrition in an effort to justify product differentiation (e.g. “my nutrition system is SO effective because it covers these 3 ‘secret tricks’ that nobody else knows!!!”) that many people feel like they need a master’s degree just to take care of themselves at a basic level.

This is not the case. The fact is I can teach you everything you need to know to cover basic nutrition in about 10 minutes, which I am going to do with this very article. Continue Reading 4 Elements of Basic Nutrition »

4 Ways You’re Approaching Competition Prep Dieting All Wrong

“Eat clean, train mean, get lean!” Seems so simple, right?

Of course, as anyone who’s gone through the process of prepping for a competition (successfully or otherwise) can tell you, there’s a lot more to it.

Unfortunately, misinformation and bro-science have permeated the bodybuilding subculture of the fitness industry more than perhaps any other niche–which is saying something. Approaches to dieting and training have been handed down from one generation of competitors to another–without critical analysis–so many times now that most of what is taken as “common sense” is actually myth.

Here are the top four mistakes I see many competitors make when prepping for a fitness competition. Continue Reading 4 Ways You’re Approaching Competition Prep Dieting All Wrong »

Three Tips for Getting Back on the Horse

Falling off track is understandable–it happens to the best of us. The truth is, being 100% perfect at all times isn’t a reasonable expectation.

We’re all human, and to expect yourself to never slip up is an exercise in futility.

So the question becomes not how you can avoid ever giving in to temptation, but how you can get back on track as quickly as possible and minimize the damage of said slip.

The truth is, a mistake in your nutrition or training made in isolation has almost no impact whatsoever on your long term results.

On the other hand, allowing a momentary lapse of motivation to become a whole day, week or month’s worth of poor decision making can absolutely undo a great amount of hard work.

Let’s take a look at some tried-and-true tips for ending the downward spiral before it starts. Continue Reading Three Tips for Getting Back on the Horse »

Think You can Starve Your Way to Weight Loss Goals? Think Again!

Eating for weight loss can be tricky. Everywhere you look, there’s different advice being given. Some articles/authority figures say eat more to lose more, others tell you to go on a juice fast, yet others recommend eating nothing but specialized meal replacements, or to eat low carb/high fat, go Paleo… the list goes on and on.

Frustratingly, every piece of advice seems to directly contradict that which came before it. So who is right?

In this article I’m going to break down one of the main claims–that eating as little as possible (whether in terms of calories, carbohydrates, fats or otherwise) is the best way to lose weight–and I’ll give you a better method that will help you get vastly superior results. Continue Reading Think You can Starve Your Way to Weight Loss Goals? Think Again! »

The Three Pillars of Body Transformation Success

When it comes to getting into amazing shape, there are three crucial factors that come into play.

Missing any of these three results in failure to achieve your goal 99 times out of 100.

And yet, take a look at nearly any effort you or anyone you know has made in the past to get into shape, and chances are that you were missing at least one of these important components.

The three factors are: fitness, nutrition and accountability. Let’s take a look at each individually, and what makes them so important. Continue Reading The Three Pillars of Body Transformation Success »

Featured #TGTNFamily Athlete: Patty Hart

Patty is a busy mom who made a commitment to herself when she came to us to get in the best shape of her life. Like most people who set an ambitious fitness goal, at first she would at times question her ability to reach her goal, but with the help of the team here at TGTN, she gradually proved to herself what a strong, capable woman she is and that she can accomplish any goal she puts her mind to.

Patty is an amazing addition to the fitness family here and we are so proud of her dedication to herself and the amazing transformation she has seen. Not just on the outside, but the inside too, particularly with her ability to hold herself accountable to her nutrition and her belief in herself! Continue Reading Featured #TGTNFamily Athlete: Patty Hart »

3 Reasons You’re Not Losing Weight With Your Training Program

Starting your own weight loss journey can be daunting–particularly when it’s not the first time you’ve (unsuccessfully) made the attempt.

Between signing up for that expensive gym membership, to getting yourself out of bed and to the gym each morning (or on the way home after a long day at work), to the boring, long sessions on the treadmill, it only adds insult to injury when all that effort is seemingly for nothing–when after days and days of hard work, you step on the scale and… nada.

Luckily, it doesn’t have to be this way. With a few smart tweaks to your training, you can go from disappointed to delighted as you see the weight melt off your body. Continue Reading 3 Reasons You’re Not Losing Weight With Your Training Program »