Back!

It’s been two years!

I’ve only worked out off and on in this timeframe. I definitely haven’t been blogging a lot. I had the domain maxedoutmuscles.co for a while through bluehost.

Once my domain expired I opted to go .com through WordPress and start the blog back up. I am missing a few posts I made on the bluehost site, but that’s ok. As I said, these things were few and far between.

I would like to introduce myself to anyone new to maxedoutmuscles. My name is Christian Boyles, I am 23 years old. I work at a factory as a supervisor, and in my off time I love to work out. My goal is to ultimately own my own gym, a MaxedOutMuscles fitness center(or maybe named something else), and dedicate my life to fitness.

I will be making an effort to post here at least three times a week. Lots of site changes are going to be made for a better viewing experience. Welcome to my page and feel free to read from any of the hundreds of posts that I have available from 2015.

Not All Calories Are Created Equal

You want to get lean?

That’s great!  You are a part of a great club of people who all want to better themselves, and making the decision to start trying is the biggest step to take in your fitness journey.

If you’ve been following this blog for long, then you know that I’ve been writing up a series on health, wellness, and nutrition this week.

In my first post, I talked about how I wanted to find a Subjective Diet Format (SDF), a diet tailored for me specifically.  I factored in my weight, my current eating habits, the amount of ambition I have along with my goals, and my Crohn’s Disease(to read that post, click here).

In my second post, I talked about finding the amount of calories you should be eating by using your Basal Metabolic Rate.  I left a link to a Basal Metabolic Rate Calculator, but you could also find one with a quick Google search.  To read that post, click here.

In the last post, I talked about the obvious but oftentimes overlooked..

Eating clean!  The best first step you can make is not cutting your calories or upping the cardio, although those things are both important.  The best first step is cleaning up your eating choices so that you know, despite any extra pounds, that you have a healthier body.  To read that post, click here.

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image courtesy of SimpleReminders.com

..and today’s post naturally picks up where yesterday’s post left off.

I want to drive home a point!  Not all calories are created equal.  Let’s compare Carl to Jimmy:

Carl eats two pounds of macaroni and cheese, and a pound of boneless chicken chunks from Walmart’s deli.  This adds up to about 3,000 calories!  For an active male who works out, this is probably within his basal metabolic rate.  For the sake of this post, let’s say Carl DOES in fact work out.  Carl is possibly eating under his active Basal Metabolic Rate and will lose weight….but is he as healthy as Jimmy?

Jimmy eats five meals.  These five meals are each an eight ounce chicken breast with a serving of broccoli, a serving of green beans, a serving of carrots, and a serving of fruit.  Jimmy MAY indulge once in a while with a starchy white potato.  Overall, Jimmy may be consuming close to the same amount of calories as Carl but I would bet his left arm his diet is going to make him a LOT healthier.  Before you ask…NO, I would not bet my own left arm even if I’m guaranteed a win!  Screw that!

..but my point is this!  Carl’s meal had literally no vegetables and was full of fat and carbs.  He easily got his protein requirement but he didn’t get crap for heart health.

It is important to track protein, carbs, and fat!  However, there’s also factors that most people overlook like sodium and cholesterol.  According to the National Institute of Health, cholesterol plays a MAJOR role in heart disease.  In layman’s terms, lower your bad LDL cholestrol and increase your good HDL cholestrol.  You can do this by avoiding foods that are high in saturated fat and eating more unsaturated fat through walnuts and almonds.

In conclusion to this week’s discussion on diet, I say “BE LIKE JIMMY!  AND DON’T LISTEN TO CARL’S NUTRITIONAL ADVICE!”  I would yell that on every rooftop in town if I thought….you know…people wouldn’t think I’m crazy.

While we know that Carl and Jimmy will both lose weight by eating less calories, we should all agree that Jimmy has the better strategy.  So be like Jimmy, or vegan-paleo-pescatarian Jimmy, and eat healthy.  Not only will you look great, but your body will thank you!

Know Your Body And Know What Works

This is part 3 of this weeks series on diet and nutrition.  As I’ve been writing these posts, I’ve been researching the content therein on websites such as the National Institute of Health.  Not all articles will post a source but if I dive deeper into the nutritional aspect of things, then I will also leave some source material.

As I said earlier, diet is more subjective than objective.  There are certain rules that apply to everyone such as dropping calories to lose fat.  Yet, there are also things that are very dependent upon genetics.

Genetics and illness play a huge role in how we should shape our lifestyle and our choices in food.  If you have Crohn’s Disease, like me, then you should cut out the processed garbage and learn to eat more naturally.

I noticed that I went into complete remission when I went on the Paleo Diet.  That is in huge part due to a switch from fast food over to foods that I cook at home.  Anyone can do the same thing and will notice an overall improvement in their physical well being.  I think a step further than that would be cutting out the meat and dairy entirely and eating my protein from plant based foods.

So when I break this down, at least in my own mind, it seems that eating more naturally would be better for anyone and not just someone with a serious illness.  Not to make this completely objective and say that everyone should eat the same way, but this particular point is fairly obvious:

Cut out the processed junk food!

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In general, eating cleaner and eating around your Basal Metabolic Rate will help you achieve whatever goal you are hoping to achieve.  Also, remember to eat 500 calories under your BMR for cutting fat and 500 calories over your BMR for bulking season.

But you also DO have to keep in mind your medical conditions.  When I found the paleolithic diet for my Crohn’s disease, it was after weeks of research and having finally said “Enough is enough!”  You have to really dig deep into studying the possibilities of what may be causing illnesses for you and also keep in mind any medical advice you have received.  So in finding a proper way to handle your medical conditions with an effective diet, I’d list the steps like this:

  1. See a doctor.  Although no one likes a doctors office visit, it is better safe than sorry.  If you can be diagnosed and know what your bill of health is like, then you have made positive steps in knowing your body and can begin treatment.
  2. Study nutrition so that you can prevent any illnesses from becoming worse and to prevent others from cropping up.  For example, a study on The National Institute of Health had some evidence showing a link between certain cancers and sugar intake.  If you were to know this in advance, then you’d be able to eat less sugar and processed junk thus lowering your cancer risk.
  3. Set your heart to seeing out the diet you choose, and stick to it!  There are plenty of diets out there that all claim to do the same thing, which is helping you become the healthiest version of yourself.  Your best bet is to go with a diet that reduces inflammation so that you can live your life with less pain and more activity.  Going vegan(added bonus of preventing animal cruelty) or paleo is a great idea, but make sure that what you do is something you can maintain.

In conclusion it is always going to be your choice what you do for your diet.  However, I hope I helped in giving you testimony and information today.  Stay tuned the rest of this week for more information on diet and health/wellness!

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To read part 1, click here.

To read part 2, click here.

Lastly, here is the link to the National Institute of Health study that I found:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21328345

To Bulk Or Cut First

Should I cut or bulk first?

Almost everyone asks this question when they are starting out and the answer is quite simple..

it’s all subjective!

Do you want to bench three plates and you don’t care about being lean?  Then go ahead and do a sloppy bulk my friend!  Lift hard and in a few years you will be insanely strong!

Do you want to be strong but you care a lot more about having a six pack?  Then cut out the hot dogs, the twinkies, and the bullcrap! 😉  You need to restrict your calories to about 500 below your basal metabolic rate(BMR) and go somewhat light when you lift weights.

Now how about all of you in the middle ground who want to be somewhat lean but also strong?

Welcome to my world.  We can do this together!  However, this is still somewhat subjective and ultimately weighs down on the body type you have already.

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I had just gotten out of the hospital and I had a little extra fat but absolutely zero muscle to cut into, so I went straight to a bulk and I am almost content!  It’s almost time for me to cut down my calories.  My strategy is to attempt about 15-20 reps of my 70% max lifts until I am done cutting.  That way I stay strong and quickly lean out.

As for you, if you have a lot of extra fat and some muscle then go ahead and cut.

If you are lean but you’re weak, go ahead and bulk.

All of us can get stronger and max out our muscles!

What I Am Thankful For This November

It is November, and if you are living in the United States or Canada it is a month of Thanksgiving!  I got to thinking that it was so strange that we celebrate this here and not everywhere, and that we don’t practice our attitude of gratitude every day.  So, no matter where you’re from and no matter what day it is I think you and I should practice our gratefulness all the time!  So, I want to list Five Things I Am Thankful For Every Day!

  • I am so thankful for my grandmother who is my biggest supporter.  I always know that no matter what I am going through, that she always will love me and support me.  She always listens to me and helps me through all of my problems.  Since my grandfather died, her and I have always had each other and she has pushed me to be an overachiever.  When I was younger, she used to make me study all the time and now I’m hoping to be successful with the values that she instilled in me.
  • I am incredibly grateful for my health.  I made my blog, Maxed Out Muscles, after having a Crohn’s Disease flareup in April.  I recovered in May, and it has officially been six months since I was sick!  I am hoping to go for a year, and eventually succeed in being symptom free for the rest of my life.
  • I am thankful for the feedback from all of my friends on this site.  All of you who I didn’t know, I am so grateful that you have lent your support and commentary on my posts.  I am so thankful that we have had discussions and interviews.  I hope to give you good content, and I hope to read more great replies! 🙂
  • I am happy for my weight lifting results.  They are modest but they add up over time.  I know that when I look back to my starting point, it is a day and night difference.  So without a doubt, I say to you time after time that consistency is the number one thing involved in seeing weight lifting results.  ..and perhaps results in any field.
  • I’m thankful for how this year has gone!  This is the number one thing, and possibly the most basic.  It isn’t possible for me to be thankful for this year without all of the things I mentioned above, but this year has been so important to me.  Without seeing the long term results and consequences of my choices this year, I am so grateful for all of the experience I’ve gained.  I would say that in this year alone, I have made more decisions and stuck to them than in any other year of my life.  I have grounded myself in some core values, and chose a direction for my life and have so far, consistently, stuck to it!

I can only hope that every thing I am going through leads me to more results and success.  However, whether I’m successful or not I am thankful for who I am becoming because of these things.

I hope you have too many blessings too count and that you have a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving!

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A Thanksgiving Turkey!

Also, Feel free to comment below what you are thankful for this year!  Or, if you would like to, reblog this post and write 5 Things You Are Thankful For This Year!  I am really excited to read all of your great responses.

How Stress Can Make You Fat

Yesterday I was working a DJ shift at the radio station where I work part time.  I wanted to read some interesting health news articles and I stumbled upon two that were really relevant to what I talk about on here.

So, I decided to share them with you:

Clearing The Clutter Could Help You Lose Weight

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To read the story, click here.  According to Dr. Jennifer Ashton, an ABC News Senior Medical Contributor, making a lot of messes and being overweight are linked.  This would be on account of you having the mess due to a stressful life, and the stress affecting your metabolism and causing eating disorders.  She says “Clutter usually represents chaos and confusion.”

In response to this information, I’d say it’s a great idea to clean up your messy desk and your car.  Clean up those messes and relax!  Maybe then you can avoid unnecessary stress and live a happy, healthy life.

Studies Probe Whether Sleep Deprivation Can Affect Your Weight

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To read the story, click here.  According to a study shared by ABC News, sleep deprivation and weight gain may have a definite link.  They noticed that overnight shift workers had worse metabolisms and tended to burn more muscle than fat.  The people who slept less than 5 hours a night and were sleep deprived burned more muscle than fat.  Those who were not sleep deprived burned twice as much fat.  Those who sleep less tend to be more stressed, and have less control over their weight.

The article says a lot about the weight gain and how working over night and doing shift work is the problem.  The article suggests that these things are “all in a night’s work.”

In conclusion,

I read these and determined that there is one huge underlying factor:  STRESS!  Keep the stress low and be mindful of your body’s well being, and you can be more fit!  Other than just mental and emotional stress, there is physical stress which you are bound to have if you aren’t getting enough sleep.  Limit all of these forms of stress and pursue a lifetime of health and wellness.

I would like to add that maybe it’s sometimes necessary to work long hours, eat unhealthy because you don’t have time to cook, and sleep less….

but is it worth your health?  Is it worth dying at a younger age?  Count the costs and value yourself!

When Life Hands You Lemons You Train

Have you ever been sad? Go work out.

Have you been stressed? Go work out.

Need to better yourself? Go work out.

Are you happy, content and lazy? Go work out.

Life will always be hard, but Arnold Schwarzenegger says “The resistance that you fight physically in the gym and the resistance that you fight in life can only build a strong character.”

  
..image courtesy of lifehack quotes

Keep that in mind. No matter where you are and what you choose to do, life will always be hard. It’s how you choose to deal with that ‘resistance’ that defines you and your strength.

I was thinking earlier..

About all the struggles that brought me into the gym. Before I hit the gym, I was constantly letting life beat me down and I had a bad attitude. I tended to be whiny and felt weak. I was weak.

Sure, a lot had happened and I was sick.

..but everyone has problems. I can’t let life’s resistance define me as a loser and neither can you.

So don’t hope things will be easy! Don’t look for a comfortable life. I’m sure that something comfortable could exist, but it can be taken at any moment. Instead you should live like you are beating all the odds, and eventually you just might.

No matter what anyone says to you, and no matter what life has handed you fight the resistance. You can start by actually training and working out, and allow that persistence and hard work to show in all of your character.

  
..image courtesy of Fortune

Join The Conversation on DIETING

JTC

Join The Conversation!

I want to know how you diet.

I have tried many diets on my own and experimented with my calories and macros to see what works for me, and I believe I found what works!  I, personally, can eat about 2300 to 2500 calories a day and still lose fat as long as I am slightly active.  I eat a high amount of protein in my diet with fat as a byproduct and I strategically place my carbs at the beginning of my day and after workouts.

When I border on eating too many calories or when I decide to take a cheat day, I simply add more cardio to burn the calories that I added.

Please let me know in the comment section down below what you do!  I want to hear everyone’s view on diet and exercise, and how you have found what works best for you!

Thanks,

Christian!

Adding Cardio To Help Cut Down

Sometimes you may cheat on your diet or you may be struggling to lose some extra weight, so cardio is a great method to burn off extra calories and burn fat!

A lot of people in the fitness industry have fear mongered and made people fear that they would lose muscle if they did a lot of cardio.

and that just isn’t true!  Here is a video by Elliott Hulse explaining why cardio burning muscle is a complete myth!

Progress To The SMART physique

A week ago I introduced you to SMART goals and how to get ripped implementing smart strategies. To read up on how to cut down your body fat and achieve your perfect physique in a timely and attainable manner, click here.

I’ve been using SMART goals along with intermittent fasting to cut down the body fat, and cut out the excuses.

..cut down the body fat, and cut out the excuses.

I have been intermittent fasting for a few weeks and my results aren’t incredibly impressive. Here are some pictures I took today:

   

I have a decent amount of size and a wide back so I assumed that intermittent fasting may help me achieve my goals. While it does help with portioning due to a small eating window, it didn’t necessarily help me lose any fat. It actually became hard to retain muscle mass and I overate to compensate.

    
So for this past week I have decided intermittent fasting will just not work for me. Now, with SMART goals in mind, I am taking more calculation into my fat loss. 

In the past week I have already lost two pounds and I am feeling better than I was before. I am drinking lots of water to stay hydrated, taking a multivitamin along with my fish oil and vegetables, and eating high quantities of lean meat.

My training is consistent and now, with my diet on point, I am more than confident that you will be seeing a completely transformed Christian Boyles over the course of the next few months.

This confidence is because I set SMART goals for myself and I’ve built the character through trial and error.

Just remember, no matter how many times you fall down…

..continue to get back up and keep trying. You know deep down that you have a lot of potential and you can, and will, be victorious.