are some questions that have been sent to Phil via e-mail.
If you have a question feel free to submit
it. The volume of e-mail Phil receives is far too
extensive for him to provide an individualized answer to everyone,
but he will periodically post new Q&A at this site.
covered on this page currently include:
Eating to Boost Metabolism
2. Getting back into "college" shape
3. Exercises for the "six pack"
4. 68-year-old desires strength
5. Working forearms, abs, and legs every day
6. Are running and Tae Bo equal?
7. Will creatine stunt fat burning?
8. The Zone and Atkins - what's legit?
9. Different types of
10. Confused regarding protein drink timing
11. Rotating exercise routines to avoid plateaus
to Boost Metabolism
I am a 22 year old male. I am about 5-10, weigh approximately
200lbs..and work full time. What kind of foods should
I be eating to speed up my metabolism..I currently work out
in the gym for about an hour...But for example, Chicken??
I heard you on Zeta on Friday talking about simple Sugars
. . .but doesn't almost everthing have Simple sugars in it
. . . Please HELP ME!!!!!
OK. Help is here! Metabolism is the result of
several components, namely production of throid hormones,
body composition (muscle vs. fat), and rate of oxidation or
the speed with which your body burns through food. Let's
assume your thyroid function is normal. Your workouts
should stimulate increases in muscle and decreases in fat.
Since muscle is the part of your body that actually burns
calories, that in itself will offer a metabolic advantage.
The food part . . . that's the tricky part! I'll summarize
some metabolism boosting nutritional concepts here.
If you truly want to master this, consider investing in my
sugars are the sugars you'd find in cakes, ice cream, candy,
etc. They are called simple sugars because they are
single molecules of sugar, all absorbed into the bloodstream
at once. Complex carbohydrates, such as potatoes, rice,
and whole grains, are called "complex" because they
are actually chains of sugar linked together. When you
consume a simple sugar, the sudden spike in blood sugar limits
fat release and messes with your energy levels. You
want to avoid those foods. While many foods contain
simple sugars, not ALL of them do! Begin to read ingredient
labels and you'll find words such as glucose, sucrose, fructose,
corn syrup, molasses, barley malt, honey which all indicate
the presence of simple sugars. In order to speed rate
of oxidation, try to get a supportive meal frequently.
Chicken breast is an example of a lean protein. In each
meal you should attempt to get a lean protein, a starchy carbohydrate,
and a fibrous carbohydrate every time you eat. You should
try to consume such a meal every 3 - 3 1/2 hours. Lean
proteins also include turkey breast, fish, egg whites. Starchy
carbs include those complex carbs I mentioned earlier plus
sweet potato, corn, peas, tomato, whole grain pasta, cream
of rice, and oatmeal. Fibrous carbs include broccoli, cauliflower,
carrots, mushrooms, spinach, asparagus, peppers, etc.
supportive meal therefore would be a nice grilled piece of
mahi-mahi, a baked potato, and a nice green salad with a mix
of veggies. You might opt for a ground turkey breast
burger on a whole grain bun with spinach and sprouts.
Tuna mixed into a salad containing corn or brown rice.
Once you develop a sense for what a supportive meal is, supportive
nutrition becomes relatively simple.
is an ever-growing recipe resource which details supportive
meals in my members area. Membership is only $9.99 a
month and will pay for itself in value hundreds of times over.
Another resource for supportive eating is my EAT! recipe book
available for $24.95 at my on-line store.
look forward to hearing of your nutritional shifts....and
your new metabolism!
Getting back into "college" shape
a recent graduate who has just started in the work force.
In college I had the time to make sure that I ate correctly
and had the time to work out. Since I graduated I have
had to eat out quite a bit and I having a hard time finding
time to work out. In college I was 6'0" tall and I weighed
about 215-215 lbs., with a 32-34 inch waist. Since I
graduated I have gained weight, I now weigh 240 lbs.(and believe
me it is not muscle!)and a 40 inch waist. Can your program
get me back to where I was in college even though I'm in the
office 40-60 hrs. a week? Also, is it the fact that
I'm not working out as intensely or as often the reason I'm
gaining so much weight?
Of course it can!
program comes with a recipe book called EAT! which is a tremendous
aid in teaching you how to make supportive nutrition work
in the real world! It covers everything from "Quickie
Meals" to ordering in restaurants. As far as working
hard, I'm on the road 3 out of every 7 days and when I'm in
town my workdays begin at 7 and run often until 7 PM.
I certainly understand the challenges that come with being
busy. The good thing about my programs....you don't
have to do it perfectly. You just do it to the best
of your ability and you'll see progress.
The reason you're
gaining weight is a shift in the caloric balance. You're
likely eating as much, or if you're not eating as cleanly,
more calories, and by laying off the exercise, you're burning
few calories. Your body thinks it's doing you a favor
by storing the surplus as stored fuel. Unfortunately,
without a few lifestyle shifts, it's hard to access that stored
fuel. My TRANSFORM! program will definitely get you
moving back in the right direction. The first week you'll
have to find a way to develop some new nutritional habits.
You'll only have to exercise for 12 minutes a day! The
exercise sessions do of course increase. If you invest
in a few pairs of dumbbells, you can perform all of the exercise
To order, call
my office (305) 824-5044 or go to my on-line
store, accessible through http://www.philkaplan.com
for the "six pack"
Q: I am
about 5'11" and weigh about 190. I would like to
lose weight and get more of a "six pack."
Please tell me some at home exercises I can do.
Also please send me some information on the cons of steroids.
To get more of a "six pack," you must have a concern
for three components, supportive nutrition, moderate aerobic
exercise, and resistance training. Nutritionally you'll
want to eat balanced protein/carb meals frequently throughout
the day. As far as the resistance training, if you have
a few pairs of dumbbells at home, you can combine squats,
bent over rows, chest presses (more effective if you have
a bench), shoulder presses, curls, and tricep extensions to
stimulate muscle growth. While I know you said you want
to focus on the abs, when you increase overall muscle mass,
your body has the capacity to burn more fat. The way
to get a six pack is to have your fat low enough so those
abs become visible. Working the major muscle groups
will help you to develop an overall lean look, including the
"six pack." You might also want to do an ab
routine daily combining crunches, and variations of leg raises.
The ab work will not help reduce fat, but will develop the
rectus abdominus (the primary abdominal muscle) so when fat
levels are low enough, those abs will have definition and
It's also important
to note that the rectus abdominus, while it does form the
"shape" and "look" of the "six pack"
(due to bands of connective tissue), it is actually the transversus,
a deep abdominal muscle, that assists in developing and supporting
a "flat tummy." The "core" abs are
worked by including leg raise movements where the hips are
raised and leg raise movements performed in a suspended position
(hanging leg raises).
As far as the
cons of steroids, I'd suggest you go back to my site MENU
and follow the link for "Steroids." There
are several steroid related questions to which I offer some
pretty complete answers.
book or program will detail the specific path, exercises,
nutrition program, etc. to bring you the body you want.
It does cover the drug issue as well.
I am a male 68 years old weight 170 lb. I would like
to lose 10 lbs. My muscles have lost strength.
I have had back surgery - lower back - five vertebrae for
decompression. Would to like to strengthen leg muscles
and arm muscles. What can I do?
There is plenty you can do! The challenge lies in finding
a series of weight training movements (you can do them at
home with dumbbells) that allow you to target the various
muscles of your body without affecting your lower back.
To begin, you can perform squats, 20 repetitions, 3 times
per week, holding on to something sturdy, such as the back
of a heavy chair, and squatting down until your thighs are
parallel with the ground, then returning to a standing position.
Be certain to maintain the natural arch of the lower back
during the movement. You should be moving only from
the hips and the knees.
For the arms
a combination of bicep curls with dumbbells and tricep extensions
should do the trick. You can find a complete weight
training regimen in either of my books, The Answer ($24.95)
and the very complete and detailed TRANSFORM! ($39.95).
They both show pictures and instructions for a series of movements
that can be performed at home. You should also develop
a concern for highly nutritious low-fat, low-sugar meals and
begin a walking program starting at only 10-12 minutes and
I'd suggest making
an appointment with a fitness professional at least once so
they can set up some parameters for your personal program.
It wouldn't hurt to have the trainer speak with your physician.
If you would like additional assistance in any of these areas,
call my office (305) 824-5044 or in Broward (954) 389-0280.
forearms, abs, and legs every day
Q: I have
heard as many theories on weights as I have hairs on my head.
I trust your opinion. A buddy of mine said it is ok to work
the forearms, abs & legs everyday. That they, unlike other
body parts, do not need the rest...true????
Somewhat true. The amount of use your calf muscles,
abdominal muscles, and forearms get throughout the course
of a day, with walking, twisting, reaching, and using your
hands to grip things being "active" stimulation,
acquaints those muscles with frequent use. Is it OK?
Yes. Necessary? No. Notice also that I referred
to "calf muscles" where you referred to "legs."
Quadricep and hamstring muscles need at least 48 hours to
effectively recuperate from progressive weight training.
As a matter of fact, the quadricep is the largest muscle group
in the body, thus will likely require the greatest stimulation
and the greatest recuperation
Are running and Tae Bo equal?
may seem silly but I find it is easy to think I know something
when I may not so here goes.....Is running (jogging really)
equal to aerobics or Tae Bo or whatever? I am running 4-5
miles a week now and really enjoying it! I usually do between
1-2 miles every other day. The in between days I do resistance
Your heart will respond in an aerobic state to extended movement
that utilizes large muscle groups. Running is fine.
Aerobics as in aerobic classes can be equal, less, or more
beneficial depending on many factors including frequency,
duration, intensity, and specific movements. The key
indicator is your heart rate. If you are entering your
Target Heart Zone during aerobic exercise, and are able to
maintain it for 15-20 minutes, your heart won't care very
much whether you are running, aerobicizing, or jumping up
and down on your bed. I find that most people stick
to aerobic programs they enjoy, so think of your enjoyment
of the exercise and the number one factor as to whether or
not it's "the best" one for you.
Will creatine stunt fat burning?
a guy my size (I have plenty of excess around my waist though
I do my sit ups, including side sit ups, regularly) I am interested
in the Creatine. A friend of mine has been using it for 4
months now and results are terrific. If creatine feeds my
muscle therefore allowing me to lift more therefore working
the muscle deeper.....will this have an adverse affect on
my body? I understand that I will gain muscle weight and don't
have a problem with 220lbs of muscle but do not want to stunt
my fat burning (and fat weight losing) ability. Your thoughts?
Creatine will not stunt your fat burning, however, it will
lead to retention of water which is in great part the reason
for creatine's cell "volumizing" effect. It
is one of the few supplements I place in the "valid"
category, however, for you right now, there isn't any need.
Down the road, if you are leaning out and hit a plateau in
muscle development, creatine can act as an aid.
The Zone and Atkins - what's legit?
do I decipher which of the information in The Zone or Atkin's
New Diet Revolution regarding the "bad" nature of
carb eating is legitimate. I've heard you speak against
low carb diets, yet I've also heard you express some of the
virtues of avoiding certain carbs. Help!!!
Avoid simple sugars and the refined and processed carbs such
as bleached or processed flours. Easy on the fruit.
Complex starchy and fibrous carbs are very supportive and
valuable if consumed as part of complete meals. The
recipes in my EAT! book as well as the recipes offered to
members in the "members only" area will give you
a great amount of direction. If you really want to understand
the whole Atkins thing, the truth about diets, the differences
between carbs, etc., order the Body Transformation videos
for $39.95. It's a 3-hour seminar I conducted in which
I cover "all of it!" As far as the Zone, while
much of what Dr. Sears writes about is valid, he relies too
heavily on the concept of glycemic index, a concept correlating
foods with their tendency to elevate blood sugar. In
order to know the glycemic index of foods, you'll always need
a reference book handy. If you are going to eat supportively,
you would have meals that combine carbs, proteins, and some
essential fats which pretty much renders glycemic index meaningless.
Potatoes? Great! Spinach, mushrooms, green beans?
Fantastic! Unsweetened un-buttered grits? Wonderful!
A power bar, Nestle's crunch or a very ripe banana?
Different types of exercise machines
my gym you can workout on 3 different types of equipment,
Keiser, Nautilus or free weights. What is the benefit
or difference between working out on the different equipment
or is there a difference at all?
Nautilus equipment got its name because of the shape of the
"cam," a component of each machine which resembles
a Nautilus shell. Arthur Jones, the founder of Nautilus,
developed the cam resistance mechanism to keep resistance
consistent throughout the range of motion in correlation with
the muscles natural predisposition for strength. In
other words, conceptually, where, in its range of motion,
the muscle is strongest, the Nautilus machine will offer the
greatest amount of resistance. This was a revolutionary
concept in the 70's and Nautilus has stood the test of time.
Interestingly enough, as we enter the 21st century, Nautilus'
newer contributions to the marketplace are quite similar to
Body Masters, Cybex, and other leading manufacturers.
The original Nautilus concepts asked exercisers to perform
8-12 repetitions to failure on each machine achieving a full
body workout in a short period of time. I find that
today those advanced exercisers who use Nautilus use it more
for personal machine preference than for it's unique cam or
for adherence to the original Nautilus concepts.
was another innovation in that it uses air pressure rather
than weight. In theory, your bicep does not know or
care whether it is resisting 25 pounds of iron or 25 pounds
of air. The absence of weights made Keiser a bit less
intimidating to seniors and women who felt weight training
might be too strenuous or difficult. Some unique advantages
of Keiser machines include the ability to modify the weight
in the middle of a set and the ability to alter resistance
to perform "negative repetitions" or "forced
reps" with the absence of a spotter. While these
are interesting and sometimes beneficial ideas, I have never
met an athlete who developed his or her body exclusively with
Keiser equipment. While the air pressure theory of muscle
development works, I'm not certain it translates into reality
if optimal muscle development is a goal.
weights are going to be the best for optimal muscle stimulation.
When you use a machine, Keiser, Nautilus, or any other, the
"path" through which you move the machine is pre-determined
and guided. You don't use any "stabilizer"
muscles. Most machines don't allow you to isolate specific
muscles bi-laterally, for example, if one side of your body
is stronger than the other, the muscles on that side will
wind up doing most of the work on a pre-guided unilateral
machine. With dumbbells it's "every muscle for
itself!" That doesn't mean the machines aren't
good. As I've illustrated, Nautilus machines certainly
have their value as do Keiser. If you want optimal results
however, don't neglect free weight training.
Confused regarding protein drink timing
following your Answer program and seeing fantastic results
in only days. I've been reading some of the GNC ads
and have become a bit confused. Should I have some kind
of protein drink before I exercise, or after I exercise?
Simply follow the supportive eating plan outlined in the program.
Far more important than what you eat before or after a workout
is what you do consistently throughout the day. With
that said, if muscle gain is a goal, you might consider using
a post-workout drink that contains a mix of predigested proteins
and glucose and fructose within the 45 minute period just
after you complete your training. You can either buy
Twinlab's Amino fuel (which sort of tastes like transmission
fluid) and also Ultra Fuel and mix the two together in a dilute
post workout drink. The sugars in Ultra Fuel mask the
nasty taste of the Amino Fuel. Or . . . one of the best
post-workout products I've seen is Metaform Hyperdrive 360
available in any health food store. Never have a protein
drink immediately before a workout. The exercise will
interrupt digestion so you will not efficiently use what you
Rotating exercise routines to avoid plateaus
On your radio show I have heard you recommend rotating
exercise routines to avoid plateau and muscle loss problems.
I've been following your advice for several weeks and am already
noticing great improvement. Is this rotation of exercises
an important issue for a "beginner" like me?
Yup! For everyone!
Muscle increase and fat loss are responses to stimulus asking
the body to "adapt." Once your body adapts
to a specific stimulus, without a modification in training,
you'll "plateau." While this is
a much neglected concept among advanced exercisers frustrated
with their lack of progress, I believe it's best to develop
the complete technology right from the beginning. Even
for beginners, variations in routines and methodologies will
prevent plateaus and keep improvement consistent and ongoing.
This concept is built in to my 17-week TRANSFORM program which
actually makes it a "Lifetime" Program. You
begin by spending four weeks boosting metabolism using a combination
of basic exercise moves with dumbbells designed to stimulate
each and every major muscle group. While this is result
oriented for beginners, it's quite challenging for those who
have already developed some impressive muscle strength.
Throughout the first four weeks, you modify the training routine
every week! This is followed by a two week regimen of
Strength & Growth training. Before you run the risk
of over training or hitting a plateau, you move to another
methodology that asks you to combine isolation movements (exercises
that target a single muscle) and compound movements (exercise
that utilize combinations of muscle groups) in a set and rep
range targeting the "slow twitch muscle fibers,"
those muscle fibers most prone to develop endurance.
This is followed by a fat liberation phase. By developing
such a regimen, you avoid ever hitting the point where your
body adapts to a routine and becomes stale. An abbreviated
version of this concept is inherent in my 17 Day Program!
Visit the on-line store
Frequently Asked Questions
Exclusive to the TRANSFORM! program
You Haven't Been There Yet:
on [ Fitness Superstore
] to get any of Phil's Proven products.
additional info on TRANSFORM!
on the [ MENU ] to explore other topics
and fitness truths.
Pages to Explore:
[ Feedback ]
designed and operated by
Phil Kaplan's Fitness Associates
1304 SW 160th Ave., #337
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33326
(305) 824-5044 (954) 389-0280
Fax (954) 742-3173