I don’t know about you, but I love myself a good, juicy steak. But it’s hard to find a healthy way to prepare it without taking away all the delicious flavor.

You can find a few different recipes online that accomplish this goal, but my favorite has been the Southwestern Pepper Steak. With this recipe you can have a full meal (or 4) while maintaining your healthy eating habits.

Here’s how it’s done:

Southwestern Pepper Steak
340 calories
39g protien
15g fat
12g carbs

Ingredients:
-1 lb. Flank steak cut into 1/2 inch slices
-1 serving of taco seasoning
-1 sliced onion and assorted peppers
-1 package frozen stir-fry
-14.5oz can undrained Mexican tomatoes

Directions:
1. Season your steak slices with the taco seasoning of your choice
2. Add your seasoned steak and stir-fry to a skillet cooking on medium heat until browned
3. Remove your steak from the skillet
4. Add peppers and onions to the skillet with your stir-fry until peppers and onions are tender
5. Add tomatoes and bring the skillet to a boil for two minutes, stir well
6. Return meat to skillet and cook until thoroughly heated
7. Enjoy your delicious meal!

Getting healthy and in shape doesn’t have to be a terrible or grueling experience. First off, it doesn’t take six hours at the gym or running twenty miles everyday to get in shape, however, it does take a little bit of discipline and some effort.

If you want to get in shape then the best thing you can do is get in to a routine- make time in the day to get healthy, go for a walk or jog, spend some time at the gym, even something as little as half an hour a day can really make a difference.

Another thing you should keep in mind is your diet. You really can’t expect to get in shape or lose weight if you’re stuffing your face with cheeseburgers and pizza all the time. I’m not saying you have to give up every indulgence you have, but it would definitely help to cut back on the candy and junk food. A healthy diet can also be a tasty one, there are tons recipes out there for healthy alternatives to some of your favorite dishes.

My advice- cut out most foods with high fat content and that are rich in sodium, you’ll be surprised to see how much you’ll benefit from leaner meats that are high in protein. It can be difficult at first but it all goes back to getting in to a routine and showing some discipline to reach your goal, whether that’s slimming down or just feeling healthier a diet is the one of the easiest things you can do to shed some pounds.

To help, here are Seven Foods That are Great For Building Muscle

Getting in shape can also be a fun experience! Try getting together with friends to help motivate you and if you’ve got pets use them. Dogs are just furry little exercise machines and they just love the attention. As for working out or dieting with a partner or group, it’s one of the best things that you can do- it helps to have other people keep you on track and accountable plus it’s a great way to bond and build a healthier relationship with people.

Healthy living is easier than you think, I know it can seem like a lot of sacrifice but it’s really not. Once you find a routine that works for you and you cut back on some of those things that are bad for you, you are going to notice some great and healthy changes to your lifestyle and you’re going to feel it too.

Get motivated. Get excited. Get off your butt and get to work!

Aside from the recent article I wrote on how to count calories and macros

I highly recommend intermittent fasting. Autophagy occurs after around 12 hours of fasting. Your body detoxifies, your cells regenerate creating huge amounts of HGH, and increases your T levels at the same time. I actually work out after 20 hours of NO FOOD! It works…

This is also called the fountain of youth. I know you are thinking, “What? Fasting?”. Yes, I am serious. Terry Crews explains intermittent fasting. This “giant of a man” has been doing this for over 5 years now.

YOU WILL GET HERE EVENTUALLY!! (IF YOU WANT TOO)

Find a feeding window that works well for your life. You need 12 hours of your day dedicated to eating at the same time every day. If you eat 5 meals, squeeze them in from 7am-7pm or 9am-9pm, it doesn’t matter as long as you stick with it. Don’t forget to lift heavy!!

After 5 days, you will push back your first meal and adjust everything else accordingly to 4 meals a day in 9-hour window. If you started eating at 7 am last week, start your first meal at 10 am and stop at 7 pm.

5 days later, do the same thing. Push your feeding window back to 1 pm ending at 7 pm (6-hour feeding window). You should be down to 3 meals at this point and keep a similar calorie and macro content.

5 days later, the feeding window now needs to be shrunken and moved back all together. The first meal should be at 4 pm (4-hour feeding window). As my first meal, I would be ingesting a protein shake to kill the hunger pains and give me the strength to lift heavy. Then, go home and blast through 1800-2000 calories after the gym. Keep this up until you feel ready to push your feeding window to after the gym. That’s right, no food until AFTER the gym.

If you lift fully fasted after 18-20 hours of no food, your HGH levels are in the 7000% range. What this does for your T levels, is miraculous. Not to mention, the amount of weight you can lift while fully fasted is mind-blowing. Fasting is truly the fountain of youth.

Today, I don’t eat until the day is done, around 11 pm. I drink coffee until noon, half a gallon of water from noon to 6 pm and more coffee or espresso right before the gym. I lift heavy after work from 7 pm until 9 pm, drinking water after every set. Then, I make my way home and GRUB!

Public Service Announcement: I go to bed after eating about 2500-3000 calories a night. Just sayin’…

You do not have to fast to get results. You can easily get down to 12% body fat and look great this summer just by focusing on good nutrition and heavy lifting in a 12-hour feeding window. Fasting simply blows open the door to get to the 6% body fat range where you turn some serious heads. Plus, not worrying about food all day is a blessing.

Whatever you do, do it for you. Find a place you want to be at fitness wise and tattoo it in your mind. Use fitness profiles on Instagram to motivate you daily. Every time you drop a deuce or are bored in class or at work, look at shredded people on IG.

Keep your goals in mind. GET SHREDDED!

When it comes to working out and staying in shape, Chris Hemsworth is a prime example of work ethic and keeping routine.

Yet, even he says he can get bored in workouts that focus on just one singular group alone.

“My workouts are also about being diverse and mixing things up. It’s easy to get bored. If I’m doing arm day, I’ll work box jumps in between sets. By working in more cardio, you keep shocking your body and you prevent having problems in certain areas.”

It’s obvious that not everyone has the same genetics and physique as the 6’3” 210 pound God of Thunder, but that doesn’t mean we can’t strive to look and feel the best we can. Lifting and staying in shape shouldn’t be this constant routine of Back and Bicep or Chest and Traps, mix things up and keep your body on its edge. It takes a certain amount of discipline to play the role of the witty and cunning Thor, but to look the part is a whole other universe in itself.

Alongside intense workouts, Muay Thai, and surfing, Hemsworth continually eats right. For example, Luke Zocchi, a professional trainer and Hemsworth’s personal trainer says that he eats six times a day with “meals consisting of clean proteins, vegetables, and brown rice.” Diet is the main benefactor with working out, eating healthy and eating in a beneficial style towards your goal is what its all about.

If you’re looking for that first start towards the weight gain Hemsworth saw, here are a few tips for a person on a diet such as his: Sustain a high protein style of eating, for every pound of weight you should be eating 1 gram of protein (ex. 178 pounds = 178 grams of protein per day) and stick to things that sit well. Things such as brown rice and noodles are heavy in carbohydrates and calorie count, in addition throughout the day eat snacks such as nuts and peanut butter. If you’re really trying to gain weight, look into using a mass gainer style protein shake, a great one to use is GNC’s Bulk 1340. Continue those workouts and watch what you eat, results will be evident with the right kind of discipline and plan put in place.

The mere thought of looking like that is intriguing, but there has to be work and effort behind it, so stop making the excuse of “I can’t” and start doing what you’re fully capable of. Start small and short if need be, but in order to make headway you have to start somewhere. So in regard to starting your way towards God-like physique, Thor says it best:

“Do a workout in your living room. It’s really easy to jump online to find nutritional plans and workout routines and more. Ultimately, being fit is about motivation and action creates motivation.”

Mix up your workouts, keep your body in action mode, eat right and stop making excuses.

We all know that working out consistently is a crucial part of staying in shape, but having healthy eating habits is equally important.

While there are plenty of diets out there promising amazing results, the fact is maintaining a healthy diet is something that everyone can do.

All you have to do is make the decision to eat well, and stay committed to it. Here are some tips to get you going!

1. Forget the fads
Diet fads come and go without offering a permanent solution. When you hear about the latest diet, always ask yourself: Can I eat this way for the rest of my life?

2. Be realistic
Any eating plan needs to work for your family and your situation. It needs to fit with your schedule, your food budget and your cooking skills.

3. Make a commitment
Write down some important reasons for changing your eating habits. Share a written or verbal promise to make healthy food choices with your friends or family.

4. Start slow
Making drastic changes can be a recipe for failure. Small changes can make a big difference, if they last. Pick one change, like eating breakfast, and make it a habit. 5. Be consistent: The human body responds well to consistency. For example, if you decide to want to start eating breakfast, have at least a small breakfast every day.

6. Stick with it
Research suggests that it takes about 21 days for a behavior to become a habit. If you want to start eating breakfast, plan ahead what you will eat in the morning

7. Be flexible
Life is full of surprises, and sometimes plans need to change. If you have to leave early and don’t have time for breakfast at home, pack something to take with you.

8. Be creative
Make a list of all the possible foods – like all the breakfast options that you enjoy at home, in the car, on the bus or at work.

9. Have items on hand
Once you have a list of possible foods, keep them around at home, at work, or anywhere you might eat breakfast.

10. Plan ahead
Plan ahead of time to have healthy foods available so that you don’t have to eat whatever is handy when you get hungry

11. Forgive yourself
Healthy eating does not have to be perfect eating. If you make a mistake or miss a few days of healthy eating, no problem. Just get back on track as soon as possible.

12. Congratulate yourself
Changing your eating habits can be tough. Just think how long you’ve had your current habits. Give yourself a pat on the back for any healthy changes.

What I am about to tell you is my discovery in getting in shape and staying shredded. I am 33 years old but have been in the game since I was 18. I have always lifted weights but my nutrition has been horrible until now. I am a huge skeptic when it comes to what people tell me until I research it for myself. After chasing my dream of being shredded for years and not getting anywhere, I started to pay for advice. I kept getting closer to the shred but would always seem to come down with a cold, or my cravings would overcome me, and in 2 weeks all my progress would be gone. That has completely changed now. This is the secret to getting in shape that only a few personal trainers know. The body needs a certain amount of carbs, proteins, and fats to maintain a hormonal balance. This is called calorie and macro/micro counting. Three separate things, but intertwined. Calories are heat energy units measured by whether it is a fat, carb, or protein. Fats have 9 calories per gram of fat, carbs and proteins have 4 calories per gram. Depending on your body type, you want to have a ratio of healthy proportions. Skipping carbs is a thing of the past. Ectomorph(skinny/High metabolism) 25% protein, 55% carbs and 20% fat. Endomorph(broad and thick) 35% protein, 25% carbs and 40% fat. Mesomorph(naturally muscular and athletic) will have a ratio of 40% carbs, 30% fats, and 30% protein for proper hormonal balance. The body recognizes a deficient caloric intake when you do the math of 12 cal x your body weight(15 cal per lb for maintenance weight). Example, 12 x 171 = 2052 calories. This amount of calories would allow the loss of weight at about .5 lbs per week with no real activity for a person at 171 lbs. When you stack on heavy weight lifting into your daily routine, you will cut the fat fast and put on muscle like a beast. I am a mesomorph, so we will calculate based on this: Find the protein intake of your calories at 30%. Example: 2050 x .30 = 615 calories from protein a day. There are 4 calories per 1 gram of protein. 615 / 4 = 153.75 grams of protein a day. Then to find the carbs, which are the same caloric amount of 4 calories per gram of carb, you will find 40% of the total caloric amount of 2052 by multiplying by .40 = 820.8 calories which need to be divided by 4 calories per gram of carb = 205.2 grams of carbs. This is the same for the fats but at 9 calories per gram of fat(fat weighs more). Same formula but different numbers. You will find 30% of 2052 by multiplying by .30 = 615.6(same number as above) and then dividing by 9 to = 68.4 grams of fats. This is the secret on how to calculate calories and macros. Use the MyFitnessPal app to keep track of everything. Knowing how to do this will give you the exact understanding of what you need to put in your body at all times. This should have been taught in schools in the 1st grade. Science is based on weight, mass, volume… it’s basically food science for your body. These formulas have proven the body works best in this state. They just keep all of this secret from everyone. Thanks to the internet, I found it… [/av_textblock]

We’ve all heard that your diet is just as important (if not more so) as a regular workout schedule. Whether you’re trying to cut weight or bulk up, good nutrition is the key to realizing your ideal results, but many people struggle with how to eat before and after workouts.

You will hear people talk about fasting before the gym, however this can be counterproductive and even dangerous at times. Little to no food an hour before working is not necessarily a cause for concern, however you will begin to feel fatigued quicker than normal.

That being said, if you have irregular eating habits and tend to skip meals, working out on an empty stomach can lead to loss of muscle mass, dizziness, and irregular heartbeat. As well, some people attempting to lose weight tend to eat much less and work out much more, but again this is counterproductive and dangerous. Your body begins to burn muscle tissue and even organ tissue, which can obviously lead to long-term health issues.

Chris Pratt, who made his dramatic transformation from Andy Dwyer to Star-Lord, can attest to this statement as well, saying “I actually lost weight by eating more food, but eating the right food, eating healthy foods, and so when I was done with the movie my body hadn’t been in starvation mode.”

The best way to avoid these eating problems is to plan out meals. Eat four (small to medium sized) meals a day with frequent snacks throughout, making sure to take in a good mix of protein, unsaturated fat, and carbohydrates.

A good diet, eating a nutritious meal/snack about an hour before a workout, and consistency in your routine will lead to those killer results you’re looking for!

Still struggling with what to eat? Check out these foods made for building muscle!

Working out is important for building muscle, but eating the right foods might be even more important.

Whether you are an athlete looking to add muscle, or just want to look good in a bathing suit, it’s important to make sure that your body is getting heavy servings of protein.

These seven foods are perfect if you’re wanting to get the most out of your workouts:

1. Eggs
Whether you like them hard-boiled, scrambled, or over-easy, eggs are an amazing source of protein. Just one egg has as much as 6g! Go to your local grocery store and pick yourself up some, and add them to your meals.

2. Steak

Steak, especially leaner cuts, is one of the most protein-packed food you can have. With nearly 23g per 3 oz., steak is considered one of the more economical cuts of meat. Steak: it’s what’s for dinner.

3. Halibut

Low in fat, and high in protein, halibut is the king of all white fish when it comes to bodybuilding. At 23 grams of protein, and just 2 grams of fat per 3-ounce serving, you need to make halibut a regur meal during the week.

4. Chicken Breast

This item should be a regular in your shopping cart. Without a doubt, chicken breast is the top cut of poultry if you’re trying to get ripped. The best part is you can find chicken breasts marked down all the time at your local grocer, so be sure to stock up!

5. Pork Chops

Packed with amino acids, you really can’t have enough pork chops. At almost 26 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving, chops are a must have if you really want to see some serious gains.

6. Smoothies

Take your protein shakes to the next level by adding in some peanut butter, and whatever fruits you like. You can never go wrong with the classic protein drink, but try to mix it up a little! A banana, some strawberries, and a sliced apple make for a great treat.

7. Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is a great late-night snack if you’re trying to pack on some mass. Being high in casein, a dairy protein that breaks down slowly, cottage cheese keeps feeding your muscles all night long, so you don’t wake up hungry in the middle of the night.

What are some of your favorite protein-filled foods?

You’ve clicked this article because you are still probably mystified about the amount of supplements you have available to you.

Where on earth do you begin?

Supplementation is a huge part of the fitness industry. Athletes and gym-goers alike swear by certain supplements to help with growth, recovery and repair. There are supplements to take before, during and after a workout to enhance every aspect of your training.

With so much stuff available how do you know where to even begin? Below we have compiled the most essential and beneficial supplements you can consume in and around your training.

Protein Powder

Having a good quality protein powder supplement should of course, be at the top of your supplement list. Protein powder is easily and rapidly absorbed by your body and is extremely convenient to take before and after your workout. You can mix it with milk, water or a dairy-free milk such as almond or coconut for a delicious shake. Your muscles will require a quick hit of protein before and after your workout so they can grow and repair at an accelerated rate.

BCAA’s

Branch chain amino acids are essentially the building blocks of protein. Branch chain aminos consist of three key amino acids which are: leucine, isoleucine, and valine. BCAA supplementation, can promote muscle protein synthesis and increase your muscle growth over time. It can also be used to prevent fatigue and delayed onset of muscle soreness. BCAA’s are ideal to take during your workout because they keep your muscles supplied with amino acids constantly which can help to decrease the chance of your body going catabolic. You can sup on amino acids all day long to enhance your muscular gains and recovery.

L-Glutamine

L-Glutamine is an essential amino acid which most athletes and avid gym goers simply can’t live without. If you currently put your body through intense workouts, it becomes stressed and your muscles and tendons will require more glutamine than the amount supplied by a normal diet. Your levels of cellular glutamine can drop by 50 percent and your plasma levels by 30 percent after a tough gym workout! L-Glutamine promotes muscle growth and can help to decrease muscle wastage while improving athletic performance and recovery from tough endurance exercise. The amino acid also helps to improve metabolism and cellular detoxification.

Creatine

Creatine is a natural component that is found in your muscle cells.  Primarily it’s located around the skeletal muscle tissue where around 95 percent of your body’s creatine supply is stored. The remainder is evenly stored throughout the rest of your body. Creatine is a naturally occurring metabolite has been reproduced as a supplement called creatine monohydrate for bodybuilding and athletic purposes due to its benefits. Supplementing with creatine can provide you with extra cellular energy production and modulation, increased glycogen storage, increased muscle cell volume, and faster recovery. Take creatine before and after your workouts to reap the full rewards.

Vitamin C and a Multi-Vit

You might be surprised to see this on here but it’s vital for keeping your body functioning properly. When you train a lot and hammer the gym, your immune system can take a bit of a battering and become weak. Taking vitamin C will help to strengthen your immune system and help it to repair effectively. Often, high protein diets focused around excessive training can end up lacking in other areas such as essential vitamins.  Vitamin C can also help to lowering hypertension, and aid in the treatment of lead toxicity

There you have it! 5 of the best supplements to enhance your workout experience.

Have you already been taking any of these? What other supplements do you swear by?

This is a question that plays on the minds of many athletes. Some believe it’s not possible to have too much while others believe you have to consume a certain amount every single day in order to achieve optimal muscle growth. From bodybuilders to competitive athletes everyone needs protein to repair their muscles, help them heal and to grow stronger.

Protein is also needed for a number of different reactions in the body from enzyme activity to, cell renewal, and your hair skin and nails need it to grow healthy and strong for life.

Is there really such a thing as too much protein? Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty!

How much protein does an athlete need?

If you are a keen gym enthusiast, bodybuilder or athlete you can benefit from consuming a plentiful supply of protein, matched to your bodies requirements.

The standard formula to work out out how much you need is 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight (2.2 g/kg of BW) each day and this has been a staple rule of bodybuilding for decades. Slightly higher levels of protein intake, usually in the range of 1.2 – 1.5 grams per pound of body weight (2.6 – 3.3 g/kg BW) per day, are commonly recommended when you are undergoing a cut to lose fat.

The ultimate goal of consuming protein should be to optimize protein synthesis by consuming the correct amount of protein at the right times of the day.

It’s common knowledge that there is a protein threshold and a rather specific timing component to protein’s ability to build muscle.

It has been widely believed that your body can only digest 30 grams of protein at any given time – and the rest is somewhat pointless.

This is something of a fabrication because your body can certainly digest much more than 30 grams of protein in one sitting – everyone is a different size, has a different metabolism and has different energy expenditure.

Potential side effects of too much protein

Kidney problems – Eating too much protein has been linked to your kidneys becoming a little unhappy. Too much protein can contribute to pre-existing kidney problems, elevated levels of protein in your urine, and even kidney stones – ouch!

Low calcium – Another problematic issue from the consumption of too much protein is the stealing of calcium from your bones. When your body digests protein, acids are absorbed from it with the help of calcium. If you aren’t getting enough calcium, your body will take calcium from your bones to help out which can eventually leave you with a deficiency.

Cancer – Some cancers have even been linked to the high consumption of too much protein. Diets high in red meat protein such as beef may lead to higher incidences of cancer.

GI issues and bloat – High protein diets can more than often be deficient in other areas such as fiber. Chicken, salmon and eggs are all great, healthy sources of protein but if you aren’t drinking enough water and getting enough fiber in then you are likely to get uncomfortable stomach issues such as bloating and cramps.

These aren’t the only symptoms of consuming too much protein they are just a select few. Reduced ketosis, gout and dehydration are also other side effects.

With protein, it is like everything – keep it in moderation and ensure your diet also contains all the other healthy components it needs to function such as a healthy array of carbohydrates, fruit, fiber and vegetables! All of which play their own important roles in any muscle-building diet.

Depending on your fitness goals, there are actually ideal ranges for each macronutrient. Too much of any single thing is always bad for you!