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All-in-1 Supplements

Question: I would like a supplement that has everything in it to gain muscle-protein, creatine, branch chain amino acids, andro etc. Is there a supplement that is loaded like this? Thanks.

Justin Leonard: You don't want a "combo" supplement. The main reason is because some should be taken at different times for best results. For example, some work best when taken before bed. Some work best after you workout. It's best to consider a separate whey protein, creatine, and L-glutamine supplement.


Atkins Diet Article, No Proof?

Question: I note that you offer absolutely no evidence to support your claims about the Atkins diet. Why? Because there is no scientific evidence to support your claims.

Justin Leonard: Occasionally, I receive emails from pro-Atkins supporters who disagree with my increasingly popular Atkins Diet article. Most are sent anonymously.

Absolutely no sources were needed to form an opinion about the Atkins Diet. I say in my article that the Atkins Diet is "extremely effective" but it is bad. Before I published Atkins Diet: Hidden Dangers, I received literally hundreds of emails from people who suffered from each symptom mentioned in the article. Several of the victims had to be medically treated. From experience and dealings with thousands of athletes worldwide, I have a perfectly accurate understanding of how various fad-like diets effect physical performance. Many of the Atkins Diet drawbacks are supported at the following URLs:

Fitness Infomercial Review

http://www.fitnessinfomercialreview.com/reviews/atkinsanswer

American Heart Association

http://216.185.112.5/presenter.jhtml?identifier=11234

American Dietetic Association

http://www.eatright.org


Layer Of Fat Covering Abs

Question: I play basketball at the collegiate level so I workout everyday because of practice. I am in good shape and fairly muscular. I feel that I work my abs enough to see them. I also feel that I have a layer of fat that is covering my abs. What can I do to get rid of that layer of fat so my abs will show?

Justin Leonard: It's nutrition that should be your main focus, then total body training, then ab training. As an athlete, what you have to be cautious of is overtraining or dieting in such a way that can adversely effect your physical performance. Consider our sister site for more in-depth information on abdominal training:

http://www.absecrets.com


C-section Hang

Question: I'm doing Bill Phillips Body for Life program. I was on their website today and I asked a question about exercises to help flatten your abs after a C-Section. This is a member website so my question was directed to other BFL'ers. I didn't get much response to my question but I got tons of responses from people who wanted to know that answer also. So far I have about 20 emails from ladies who've had C-Sections and can't get rid of what I call "The C-Section Hang." Is it possible to get a flat stomach after a C-Section and if so, what exercises can I do that won't injure my weak back?

Justin Leonard: It is possible to flatten the abs. As for the excess skin or "hang", it's impossible to remove, even with a good diet and exercise regimen. Since the loose portion of the skin doesn't necessarily consist of high amounts of fat, it will more than likely have to be surgically removed (skin fold or "tummy tuck"). Beware of exercise programs and get fit quick systems that say they can fix this problem!


Back Help

Question: Since I had CD rods placed in my back for scoliosis (practical runs down my whole spine), I cannot do sit ups. I'm not fat but my abs are flabby from having 2 kids. What's your recommendation for tightening my abs? I was looking into an EMS system.

Justin Leonard: Unfortunately I am in no position to make a recommendation based on your current condition. Your question should only be answered by a medical professional.


Tone, But No Weight Loss

Question: I have been walking and/or jogging 3 to 5 miles almost every day for 2 months now. I have noticed some toning up but no weight loss on the scales. I have tried to follow good nutritional habits. Is there something else that I could do to help boost the loss a little? I seem to be in a lull and I am have to try really hard not to get discouraged. Please help.

Justin Leonard: This is perfectly normal. You are actually burning fat and building lean muscle mass at the same time. This is what you want to happen!


Which Supplements Work?

Question: I've been working out on and off since I've been 14. Now I'm 22, and have been serious for about a year and a half. I'm about 180lbs, and would like to get to 200lbs, while still being cut. I tried proteins, creatine, and even 1-AD. I would like to know if you have personally experienced a good gain while talking a product, and if so, which one? Also, do you really think that the products are necessary?

Justin Leonard: Of the supplements you mentioned, only whey protein and creatine are the only worth taking. There's one more of note that I want you to check out: L-glutamine.

Are supplements necessary? I don't view them as an overwhelming factor for success. But if you're an athlete and you want people to know who you are, yes. I had to ask myself the same question. I realized that as a 100% lifetime drug-free bodybuilder competing in a steroid- and diuretic-infested sport, the only edge I could give myself was with natural performance foods. So it really depends on how serious you are about what you do because they may be needed to help you achieve peak physical condition.


Forearm Strength

Question: Dear Justin, if somebody is able to squeeze hard with his hands i.e. (strong handshake) and has strong wrists, what does this mean. Where is this strength really coming from? Can't be muscles in the fingers or hand itself?

Justin Leonard: The strength is mainly coming from the upper portion of the forearm. Additionally, supporting synergists such as the muscles in your hand contribute to overall forearm strength. There are also muscles in each finger that help to facilitate mobility and strength in the hand.


Ab Exercises Everyday?

Question: Is it OK to do ab exercises every day, or do these muscles need a rest between workouts like the others? Also, do isometric exercises for the abs do any good? Thanks.

Justin Leonard: If you're not training for a sport that requires a high level of abdominal resistance (i.e. boxing), then you DO NOT want to train abs everyday. They should get rest just as any other muscle group would. Isometric training is effective but is usually not recommended because it takes too much motivation to do.


Help, Can't Gain Weight

Question: I am a female who has currently been heavy weight training for 5 months, and can see no difference. My goal is to bulk up in mass. I have currently put my calorie intake up to 2,500 per day - still no difference, and I am finding it difficult to eat anymore cals than this. I also take whey protein after every workout, which is 3 times per week. What do you suggest? Thanks

Justin Leonard: There are several questions I'd have to ask you to determine what's causing the delay. How old are you? How much do you currently weight? Are you doing cardio every workout? Are you taking in carbs and protein after your workouts? Are you eating too much protein and not enough carbs? Are you utilizing the added benefits of supplements? Do you play any sports or do any other type of physical activity that would prevent you from increasing mass? Again, there isn't a simple answer to your question. Each of the aforementioned questions should be answered so that can give you a scientifically formulated response.


Uneven Chest Muscles

Question: Hi. Hope you can help me. I have a big problem mainly with my pecs. The left one has more definition and the right one is softer. Basically the muscle is proportioned differently on each one. I made an unwise mistake a few years ago and used one of those electronic toner things and that didn't help. Can you please offer me some advice on training them to the same shape. I can't figure out what to do here. Thanks a lot.

Justin Leonard: This is quite common among athletes. It may not be the electronic toner that caused the problem. Genetically, your pectoral muscles may not be symmetrical. Imbalances become more prominent when there is an increase in muscular development. Many athletes have one better or stronger side than the other. There are several possible causes for this: a few that immediately come to mind are genetics, unequal arm strength (usually the triceps of one arm is larger than the other causing more strength to be in that particular arm), or concentration on only one side of the chest during exercises (i.e. bench press). There are several priority training techniques you can use to improve the imbalance. The following article will be of great benefit:

http://www.leonardfitness.com/article/prioritytraining


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