The Spartan Warrior

The truth about fitness and nutrition.

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217 posts tagged health

What is gluten?

Some people can’t eat gluten for medical reasons, but a lot of people in Los Angeles don’t eat gluten because someone in their yoga class told them not to. Jimmy Kimmel wondered how many of these people even know what gluten is, so we sent a camera crew out to a popular exercise spot here in LA and asked people who are gluten-free a simple question: “What is gluten?” 

Shut up and Squat

This is my squat. There are many others like it, but this one is mine. My squat is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life. Without me, my squat is useless. Without my squat, I am useless. I must squat deep. I must squat heavier than my enemy, who is trying to out squat me. I must squat him before he squats me. I will. Before God I swear this creed: my squat and myself are defenders of my country, we are the masters of our enemy, we are the saviors of my life. So be it, until there is no enemy, but peace. Amen.

Compilation of squat clips from the gym and recent meet featuring myself and team. 

Weight Loss Really Is Simple

I will say the word “weight” a lot in this post, but I want you to understand that you can lose weight by cutting off your head. The primary goal should be fat loss and not just “weight” as this could mean anything. I’ve been over the finer details concerning the difference in the two and how we achieve the desired fat loss over just weight loss already, but if needed I will expand on it again in future posts.

No specific macronutrient is going to make you gain weight unless you eat an overabundance of calories (being from whatever source) in comparison to your energy expenditure.

This means if your energy intake is HIGHER than your energy output you will GAIN weight. If your energy intake is LOWER than your energy output then you will LOSE weight.

This can be achieved through a variety of ways from increasing your activity (more energy output) to eating smaller portions (less energy intake) or you could combine both methods. The road you take is up to you, but I suggest that you find the activities you enjoy for more energy output or you’re going to hate increasing your activity level.

Like to dance? Shake your money maker. Like to be strong? Lift some heavy ass weights. Like the water? Swim, row, kayak. Like to swing back and forth and do pull-ups? Try crossfit. (Please don’t throw paleo creampuffs at me. Srs.) It doesn’t matter what you do to increase your energy output as long as it’s more than what you’re doing now. 

This is how I became a powerlifter. I started as a runner then became a marathon runner. I hate running. I loathe it. I found out I loved lifting weights and then I was bit by the iron bug and never looked back.

If you think you can’t lose weight and you don’t track your calories and/or macronutrients and you haven’t tried to increase your activity level then you’ve never tried to lose weight appropriately.

I want you to be healthy. I want you to be successful. I want you to achieve your goals. I want you to have the knowledge to be and do these things.

The fitness industry is famous for being chock-full of quacks and charlatans. There are heaps of people running their mouths online and off, pontificating about this nutrient or that, this way of training or that — without having learned the physiological basis for such recommendations or protocols. The fact that this field has so many wackos makes it difficult for the consumer to discern whose material is scientifically based, and whose material is a lot of hot air. This is the unfortunate side of the picture, but it’s also part of my point — you can be devoid of scientific knowledge (or you can create your own brand of pseudoscience), and still become successful in the fitness industry.

Alan Aragon
A restrictive diet will do more harm than good in the long run. Cheat meals are more of an indicator of a poor relationship with food or possible early signs of eating disorders. Moderation and balance in your dieting efforts is the key to long term success and making dieting a normal, healthy part of your lifestyle. There is no such thing as clean/dirty or good/bad foods. If you speak in such ways then it’s a dead giveaway that your knowledge of the bare basics and fundamentals of nutrition science is lacking. Being healthy isn’t just about your physical well being, but also how you are mentally and emotionally which when dieting improperly can take a significant blow.
A balanced approach does not require cheat meals or days. You’ll feel like you’re cheating the system when you learn to practice moderation and flexibility in your diet and you’ll be at a healthier state.

"Few things are more pretentious, hypocritical, and downright annoying to me than people who act morally superior about eating ‘clean’ but then have massive binges that they try to justify as ‘cheat’ meals. Let me tell you something, severe caloric restriction followed by massive uncontrolled binging is NOT an effective long term diet solution for your health… mentally or physically. It’s a recipe for an eating disorder. FIND BALANCE! Stop attaching ‘good’ or ‘bad’ labels to food. A small amount of ‘unclean’ food isn’t going to ruin your diet if you account for it in your macronutrient intake and consume it in moderation. What kills your diet is when you consume the entire pizza followed by a carton of ice cream because you cannot stop once you start due to the way your diet has programmed you. Find balance, over time your mental health, and your physique will thank you!" -Layne Norton

A restrictive diet will do more harm than good in the long run. Cheat meals are more of an indicator of a poor relationship with food or possible early signs of eating disorders. Moderation and balance in your dieting efforts is the key to long term success and making dieting a normal, healthy part of your lifestyle. 

There is no such thing as clean/dirty or good/bad foods. If you speak in such ways then it’s a dead giveaway that your knowledge of the bare basics and fundamentals of nutrition science is lacking. Being healthy isn’t just about your physical well being, but also how you are mentally and emotionally which when dieting improperly can take a significant blow.

A balanced approach does not require cheat meals or days. You’ll feel like you’re cheating the system when you learn to practice moderation and flexibility in your diet and you’ll be at a healthier state.

"Few things are more pretentious, hypocritical, and downright annoying to me than people who act morally superior about eating ‘clean’ but then have massive binges that they try to justify as ‘cheat’ meals. Let me tell you something, severe caloric restriction followed by massive uncontrolled binging is NOT an effective long term diet solution for your health… mentally or physically. It’s a recipe for an eating disorder. FIND BALANCE! Stop attaching ‘good’ or ‘bad’ labels to food. A small amount of ‘unclean’ food isn’t going to ruin your diet if you account for it in your macronutrient intake and consume it in moderation. What kills your diet is when you consume the entire pizza followed by a carton of ice cream because you cannot stop once you start due to the way your diet has programmed you. Find balance, over time your mental health, and your physique will thank you!" -Layne Norton