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Please help me look better :)

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Is it possible to cut fat/weight and build tone/muscle at the same time? I am only slightly overweight but want to lose some flab, not to be skinny but to add definition and tone. If I hit the weight room twice a week and spend another three days a week doing cario or swimming, would this work? Also dietary advice would be appreciated for both weight loss & building muscle. I am also a bit curious whether creatine or any supplements would help me. Thanks, I appreciate any advice you can give.
post #2 of 27
Work on the muscles right away and the fat will pretty much take care of itself. I would say weights plus swimming is your best bet. Avoid sugar.
post #3 of 27
Yes - but I might suggest switching it up so that you are hitting the weights three days a week and cardio/swimming twice a week.

The extra muscle you build will burn a lot more fat than the extra day of cardio.

For more information about diet and exercise, I recommend the forums at http://www.bodybuilding.com and check out this book The Abs Diet.
post #4 of 27
Have to reiterate the work on muscles part of this. Take a look at

http://www.jorgecruise.com/
post #5 of 27
Thread Starter 
thanks for the advice so far - much appreciated! i must admit i stupidly bought a bottle of creatine capsules and don't know what to do with them now. do they help or should i just toss them away?
post #6 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by sloaney
thanks for the advice so far - much appreciated! i must admit i stupidly bought a bottle of creatine capsules and don't know what to do with them now. do they help or should i just toss them away?

Creatine can't hurt - as long as you have them, you may as well use them. You do want to drink lots of water with them, but you should be doing that anyway as part of your goal to lose the fat and gain muscle.
post #7 of 27
Creatine only gives you temporary gain. You'll start losing definition once you get off of creatine. I agree with Bradford, that is to do weights 3 days a week and cardio 2 a week. In my experience, and contrary to what stach said, the fat will not take care of itself if you're only concerned about the muscles. It is true that when you build up more muscles, your body will automatically burn more calories. However, if you continue to take in more calories per day then what your body needs, then your fat will stay put as your body never actually gets to burn it. So, below is an over simplified plan: 1. Work out with weights 3 days a week. 2. Do cardio 2 days a week. (I normally work in the cardio stuff at the end of my weight workout so I don't have to be in the gym everyday. If you can handle this, go for it). 3. Watch your caloric intake. Skew your diet toward more protein and less carbs. Don't cut out the carbs completely because you will not have enough energy to do vigorous activities. 4. Vary your weight exercises every few weeks so you don't plateau out. 5. Keep at it. You will see results. And yeah, check out bodybuilding.com, but keep in mind that when you're just starting out, simpler is better.
post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkNWorn
In my experience, and contrary to what stach said, the fat will not take care of itself if you're only concerned about the muscles.
I think the most convicing evidence for this comes by looking at Olympic lifters.
post #9 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkNWorn
Creatine only gives you temporary gain. You'll start losing definition once you get off of creatine. I agree with Bradford, that is to do weights 3 days a week and cardio 2 a week. In my experience, and contrary to what stach said, the fat will not take care of itself if you're only concerned about the muscles. It is true that when you build up more muscles, your body will automatically burn more calories. However, if you continue to take in more calories per day then what your body needs, then your fat will stay put as your body never actually gets to burn it. So, below is an over simplified plan:

1. Work out with weights 3 days a week.
2. Do cardio 2 days a week. (I normally work in the cardio stuff at the end of my weight workout so I don't have to be in the gym everyday. If you can handle this, go for it).
3. Watch your caloric intake. Skew your diet toward more protein and less carbs. Don't cut out the carbs completely because you will not have enough energy to do vigorous activities.
4. Vary your weight exercises every few weeks so you don't plateau out.
5. Keep at it. You will see results.

And yeah, check out bodybuilding.com, but keep in mind that when you're just starting out, simpler is better.

--- Actually:

Myth: Creatine only gives you temporary gain. You'll start losing definition once you get off of creatine.

===Not true, creatine increases endurance and strength. IT HAS NOTHING TO do with definition other than it might increase muscular size via lifting heavier weight; which when assuming a lower body fat (which is the key to definition). Definition is the result of lower body fat which displays 'definition' of muscle groups.
Definition is the result of multiple factors:
1. Predisposition of fat cells
2. Diet
3. Weight lifting that is geared toward hypertrophy of type II muscle twitch
4. genetic structure of muscle cells, length, type, and the natural shape you are born with, to be simple: meso, endo, ecto
5. various hormonal factors
---and a few other things

You focus on what you can control which is:
1. Diet
2. type of exercise
3. supplementation
I'll link to another thread

Here is a picture of my results: also Bradford is very knowledgeable and bodybuilding.com does have some very accurate, detailed workouts, advice and great information for physique enhancement.

http://www.styleforum.net/showthread.php?t=13720
post #10 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soph
--- Actually: Myth: Creatine only gives you temporary gain. You'll start losing definition once you get off of creatine. ===Not true, creatine increases endurance and strength. IT HAS NOTHING TO do with definition. Definition is the result of lower body fat which displays 'definition' of muscle groups.
Check your facts.
Quote:
This occurs because creatine has the awesome effect of super-hydrating muscle cells with water. - bodybuilding.com
Although not entirely, some of the gains you get from creatine will start to decrease the moment you get off of it. For example, if your muscles are enhanced from water retention, this definition will go away when your body can no longer retain that much water. I'm not saying that you shouldn't take creatine, just beware that its effects are mostly temporary.
post #11 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkNWorn
Check your facts.



Although not entirely, some of the gains you get from creatine will start to decrease the moment you get off of it. For example, if your muscles are enhanced from water retention, this definition will go away when your body can no longer retain that much water.

I'm not saying that you shouldn't take creatine, just beware that its effects are mostly temporary.

Fact: I have as proof is in the pudding.

You don't need creatine nor do you use it for 'definition'. Creatine is NOT a definition compound. It is a strength, endurance and performance supplement.

Again, definition is the result of lower bodyfat, eliminating water (but this diurectics -but this is strictly competition and probably not the healthiest behavior, and lastly have some muscle to display.
post #12 of 27
Guys - I'm not saying he needs to take the creatine. I'm just saying if the choice is between taking it or throwing it away, he might as well take it. While the results may not be permanent, it's not going to hurt him either.

Sloaney - if you don't want the creatine, mail it to me.
post #13 of 27
Creatine and Athletic Performance


Creatine is often taken by humans as a supplement for those wishing to gain muscle mass (bodybuilding). There are a number of forms but the most common are creatine monohydrate - creatine bonded with a molecule of water, and Creatine Ethyl Ester (CEE) - which is creatine monohydrate with an ester attached. A number of methods for ingestion exist - as a powder mixed into a drink, or as a pill.

There is scientific evidence that taking creatine supplements can marginally increase athletic performance in high-intensity anaerobic repetitive cycling sprints, but studies in swimmers and runners have been less than promising, possibly due to the weight gain. Ingesting creatine can increase the level of phosphocreatine in the muscles up to 20%. It must be noted creatine has no significant effect on aerobic exercise (Engelhardt et al, 1998).

Some studies have shown that creatine supplementation increases both total and fat-free body mass, though it is difficult to say how much of this is due to the training effect. Since body mass gains of about 1 kg (about 2.2 pounds) can occur in a week's time, several studies suggest that the gain is simply due to greater water retention inside the muscle cells. However, studies into the long-term effect of creatine supplementation suggest that body mass gains cannot be explained by increases in intracellular water alone. In the longer term, the increase in total body water is reported to be proportional to the weight gains, which means that the percentage of total body water is not significantly changed. The magnitude of the weight gains during training over a period of several weeks argue against the water-retention theory.

It is possible that the initial increase in intracellular water increases osmotic pressure, which in turn stimulates protein synthesis. A few studies have reported changes in the nitrogen balance during creatine supplementation, suggesting that creatine increases protein synthesis and/or decreases protein breakdown. Again, while hypothesized, this remains unproven.

Also, research has shown that creatine increases the activity of myogenic cells. These cells, sometimes called satellite cells, are myogenic stem cells that make hypertrophy (increase in size of cells) of adult skeletal muscle possible. These stem cells are simply generic or non-specific cells that have the ability to form new muscle cells following damage to the muscle tissue, or to fuse with the existing muscle fibres in the case of exercise to permit growth of the muscle fibre. Following proliferation (reproduction) and subsequent differentiation (to become a specific type of cell), these satellite cells will fuse with one another or with the adjacent damaged muscle fiber, thereby increasing myonuclei numbers necessary for fiber growth and repair. The study, published in the International Journal of Sports Medicine was able to show that creatine supplementation increased the number of myonuclei donated from satellite cells. This increases the potential for growth of those fibers. This increase in myonuclei probably stems from creatine's ability to increase levels of the myogenic transcription factor MRF4 (Hespel, 2001).

Current studies indicate that short-term creatine supplementation in healthy individuals is safe (Robinson et al., 2000). Longer term studies have occasionally been done, but have been small. One such study that is often cited involved a minimum length of 3 months, but only had 10 creatine subjects (Mayhew et al 2002). However, there is still controversy over the use of creatine, and many experts believe that creatine should not be used by individuals under the age of 18. [citation needed]

There has been controversy over the incidence of muscle cramping with the use of creatine. A study done at the University of Memphis showed no reports of muscle cramping in subjects taking creatine-containing supplements during various exercise training conditions in trained and untrained endurance athletes (Kreider R. et al, 1998).

Creatine use is not considered doping and is not banned by sport-governing bodies. In some countries however, creatine is banned.
post #14 of 27
Also it is a myth persay to say you can train for definition as muscles only do 3 things:

1. get larger (hypertrophy)
2. stay the same
3. get smaller (hypo)

Bodyfat lowering is the key to definition/tone as they say. Simply bringing out the muscle for visual display is what most people want when they say, 'definition/tone'

Creatine is really another issue for the most part. Creatine is great if you are really into it and looking to excel at a very high level of performance based on the type of performance you desire it definitly can be beneficial.
post #15 of 27
My advice would be to take a multivitamin and a multi-oil pill (omega 3-6-9 pills - usually a combo of borage, flaxseed and fish oils), cut out the junk food, and drink water all day long. While getting into the exercise routines and streamlining the diet, body composition should be changing noticeably.

Sloaney should hold on to the creatine and use it later. I think it would be a waste to use it in the beginning. When he does use it, it'll most likely give him better workout sessions. Honestly you don't need any bodybuilding supplements, but it's fun to play with them off and on. You'll usually get a massive energy boost when you add something new to your regimen.

My take on creatine, or any other bodybuilding-specific supplement is that it's too costly in the long run to take anything regularly if you're just a casual lifter. Besides, who wants to be big and thick like the Hulk? Ladies sure don't care if a guy has a neck that's thicker than their waist

Diet and exercise and I think Sloaney will get there!
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