alcohol consumption and training

The Many Ways Alcohol Can Cause Weight Gain

Going out and drinking with your friends can be a blast. Staying at home and having a few drinks during dinner can also be a good time. There is nothing wrong with drinking when it’s done responsibly, but if you’re trying to lose fat there could be a problem.

Alcoholic drinks are usually high in carbs, especially beer and mixed drinks that are high in sugar. Alcohol can also make you gain weight through over-eating or unhealthy eating. Alcohol impairs your judgment, so that willpower you had that was keeping you away from the local pizza place might not be as strong.

Also, when you have a hangover, you tend to crave greasy, unhealthy foods, because it can coat your stomach lining. The greasy food is actually counterproductive to your hangover because it will increase the gastrointestinal malaise by causing stomach irritation.

Alcohol’s Dirty Little Secret

Another way alcohol can cause weight gain is a relatively unknown one. When you have even just a small drink of alcohol, in any form, it completely shuts down your metabolism.

So that glass of wine with dinner or that beer while your out with your friends will completely shut down your metabolism, which means whatever you ate at dinner or lunch will be stored as fat.

Think of your body as a fat burning machine and when alcohol hits that machine, everything shuts down and your body will only focus on breaking down the alcohol, while everything else is stored.

The worst part is that alcohol is mainly empty calories, which are calories with pretty much no nutritional benefit to you. It also means that even when that alcohol is broken down, it is broken down into sugars.

There isn’t a “good time” to drink alcohol, because there will always be negative affects on your weight. The best advice we can give you is to drink on your off days if you workout. This is the best time because on the days you workout your metabolism is kicked into high gear, so to just shut that down with some liquor will make your workout a huge waste of time.

We don’t expect anyone to go into full sobriety mode. So, try to drink on those days where you’ve been lazy and at least you’re not wasting a workout.

If you live in St. Petersburg, Florida and you’d like to know more nutrtional facts, contact Max Muscle St. Pete here.

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Don’t Diet, Have a Plan… A Meal Plan

Eat more and lose weight. It sounds crazy, right? It’s not. Actually, it’s pretty simple. For this meal plan to work you need to understand three components: portion sizes, timing and food choices.

How This Meal Plan Works

The way the meal plan works is that when you eat smaller meals divided up throughout the day, you keep the feeling of hunger to a minimum. Your body tells you it’s hungry when you’re low on blood sugar, and this won’t happen if you correctly space the calories you consume throughout the day.

You should eat 6 small meals throughout the day. Here is how the meals should be spaced:

  • Small Breakfast
  • Snack
  • Small Lunch
  • Snack
  • Small Dinner
  • Snack

The ultimate goal of eating more small meals in the day is to use it as a tool to lower your calorie intake. Think of it this way, when you wait to eat dinner and your hunger builds, you tend to overeat. If you’ve eaten a snack before lunch, a small lunch and then another snack, you’re more likely to be content with a small dinner. Especially knowing in your mind that you can have one more snack before bed. Ultimately, all of these small meals and snacks will lead you to lowering your caloric intake .

Six Small Meals of What?

When you eat less it is even more important to eat the right things. You should consume protein, healthy fats and fiber throughout the day.

Lean meats, fruits, veggies, fish, low-fat dairy, whole-grain breads, beans and nuts are some of the foods that can provide you with the nutrients you need.

Here is an example of what your six small meals should look like.

  • Two scrambled egg whites with a single piece of whole-grain toast
  • A half cup of low-fat frozen yogurt with berries sprinkled at the top
  • One cup of black bean stew
  • One banana
  • Seared lean and skinless chicken breast with a half cup of steamed broccoli.
  • A half cup of almonds

Sticking to this meal plan you will help you eat healthier and smarter, which is the prefect recipe for weight loss.

Ready to Learn More?

If you live in the St. Petersburg, Florida area, and you’re interested in learning more about health and nutrition come by and visit us at Max Muscle St. Pete where one of our Certified Nutritional Coaches would be happy to answer any questions you have.

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Vitamins: What Works and What Doesn’t

When your mom use to tell you that you need to take your vitamins, she wasn’t lying. Getting your daily vitamins is extremely important. Why? Because they provide your body with antioxidants.

When your body lacks antioxidants it causes early aging and certain diseases. This happens because you need antioxidants to prevent an oxidation of your cells, which means oxygen gets into your electrons and may cause your cells to die.

The best way to provide your body the antioxidants it needs is by delivering it a consistent supply of vitamin A, C and E. Taking the right daily multivitamin is a great way to make sure you get all of the vitamins you need.


So Which Vitamins Work Best?

Although it may be surprising, a solid pill-form vitamin isn’t the way to go. Liquid vitamins are actually much more effective than the pill-formed ones, because studies have shown that your body only absorbs 3-to-20 percent of a pill-formed vitamin, while 98 percent of liquid vitamins are absorbed by your body.

If you’d like to know more about the benefits of liquid vitamins and you live in the St. Petersburg, FL area, contact Max Muscle St. Pete and one of our Certified Nutritional Coaches will be happy to help you determine the best liquid vitamin for your lifestyle.


Other Problems

Your body gets calcium from the nutrients in the food you eat and liquids you drink. If your body is not getting enough calcium, because you are not consuming enough of the right nutrients, your body will eat the calcium reserves that are stored in your bones, which will cause your bones to weaken and you could get the disease known as osteoporosis. If you’re taking the proper vitamins it will insure that you are getting enough calcium and you won’t be in danger of osteoporosis.


What Vitamins Are Awesome?

First and foremost, consult with your doctor before taking a new supplement or vitamin.

At Max Muscle, one of our favorite liquid vitamins is Max Vit-Acell Antioxidant, because it delivers a high dose of your needed daily vitamins.

Max Vit-Acell Antioxidant provides 13 necessary vitamins, over 60 key ultra-trace minerals, vital antioxidants and major nutraceuticals. This mix will provide muscle growth and recovery, upkeep athletic performance and fight off that premature aging and those diseases we talked about earlier.

If you live in the St. Petersburg, FL area and are interested in learning more about vitamins, nutritional facts or purchasing Max Vit-Acell you should check out Max Muscle St. Pete by clicking here.

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Tips for Picking Your 2014 March Madness Bracket

It’s that time of the year again where basketball fans are filling out brackets all over the country hoping to either win their office pool or some other March Madness bracket contest. So, we here at Max Muscle St. Pete wanted to throw out some tips we’ve learned over the years that should help you when you’re picking out your bracket.

Don’t Pick All Number Ones for the Final Four

As temping as it is to pick all of the best teams to be in the final four, it is not a smart idea. Four number one seeds have made it to the Final Four only one time in the 70-plus year history of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. The only time it happened was in 2008 so odds are we might have to wait another 69 years for it to happen again.

Make Sure You Include a Cinderella Team

It seems like every year there is a team that comes out of nowhere to make into the elite eight or sweet 16. It is nearly impossible to predict, but it is a must that you throw in a Cinderella team on your bracket. Last year it was Florida Gulf Coast University who was a 15th seed and made it to the sweet 16.

North Dakota State, a #12 seed, has been a hot pick to upset number five San Diego State. Taylor Braun is a tough guard and has been a good scorer for NDSU all year at 18.3 points per game. Along with Braun, NDSU has an experienced team with a lot of seniors and they were in big dance last year.

Don’t Pick Against the University of Florida

Florida has been dominate all season and is coming into the tournament with a lot of momentum after winning the SEC Conference Tournament. They haven’t lost since December and hold wins over powerhouses Kansas and Memphis to go along with three wins over a Kentucky team that features 8 potential NBA first round picks.

Follow these three tips and you’ll have an edge over the rest of the competition. Make sure to check back to Max Muscle St. Pete for more blogs covering topics including workout routines, supplement information, sports and much more.

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When Should I Take My Supplements?

With all these workout supplements floating around it is hard to keep track on when to take what.

“Is it protein after and creatine before? Or is it the other way around?”

It is completely understandable to forget when to take what, but we’ve got your back. This will be your guide to know when to take what supplements.


The most important time to drink your protein shake is directly after your workout. If you need to bring your powder with you to the gym then do it.  In the 20-30 minutes after working out, you’ve depleted all your glycogen. Your muscle and liver are very susceptible to nutrition. It is important to provide a good mix of carbs and protein to replenish your body. This will help you build more lean muscle and burn fat in the time following your workout.

If you’re looking for something that will give you both the protein and good carbs you need post-workout, there are supplements that can do both.  Arm is a good one, because it is a sort of all-in-one post-recovery supplement that will give you all the necessary nutrients you need.

You can pretty much drink a protein shake at any point of the day and it’ll be beneficial one way or another, but it is most important and helpful to drink it directly after your workout.


Creatine can be beneficial to building strength and muscle mass when taking it before or after your workout, but if you wanted to choose one, studies have actually shown that taking creatine after your workout has better results. So, if you had to choose, go with post-workout, but you can’t go wrong either way really.


It is best to take your glutamine supplement right before you go to sleep, no question. Studies show that taking glutamine before bed will help build muscle mass. You can find glutamine in other things, such as certain meats and vegetables, but if you’re looking for that extra boost, glutamine supplements are the way to go to online casino.

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Delicious Protein-Packed Recipes (Part Two)

In part one of Delicious, Protein-Packed Recipes we mentioned how you might be looking for some healthy protein-packed meals to eat after your workout with your protein shake or in-replacement of it. We got another recipe that is delicious and will get you the essentials you need post-workout.

Turkey Meatballs with Whole-Wheat Pasta

This meal will get you the carbs and protein you need without the extra calories you’d get from the usual spaghetti and meatball meal, which is filled with grease and unhealthy fats.


½ Pound of Ground Lean Turkey

½ Medium-Sized Red Onion (Diced)

½ Medium-Sized Green Pepper (Diced)

Two Egg Whites

¼ Cup of Crushed Cornflakes

¾ Cup of Cherry Tomatoes

1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil

½ Box of Whole-Wheat Pasta

Cooking Directions:

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, reduce heat and place pasta into the pot. Cook pasta until soften, but not to the point of mush. Make sure to check on the pasta every few minutes. Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees. Place the ground turkey, egg whites, green peppers, red onions and cornflakes into a mixing bowl. Mix with your hands until everything is fully incorporated. Start taking small, handful amounts of the mixture and form them into an sphere/meatball. Place the meatballs onto a baking sheet, spaced apart and cook for 20-25 minutes.

Heat a large skillet to medium heat. Put your tablespoon of olive oil into the skillet. Throw your whole-wheat pasta into the skillet, followed by your cherry tomatoes. Stir the pasta, olive oil and cherry tomatoes as the flavors marinate together. Throw in your meatballs hot out of the oven and continue to stir. It should take 10-15 minutes to incorporate all of the flavors and get a nice cook on the cherry tomatoes.

Then, it is ready to serve.

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How to Look Like a Spartan Warrior: The 300 Workout Plan

With the premier of 300: Rise of an Empire right around the corner we wanted to look back at the 300 workout. When the first 300 movie came out women went crazy over the shredded bodies of the Spartans, which got men wanting to know what workouts the men were doing. Shortly there after it was reveled that many of the men acting as the Spartans were doing a workout plan that was eventually dubbed “the 300 workout.”

The workout is very organic. You’ll need little equipment to complete the routine, but I assure you that you’ll be feeling the burn after this one. I guess if you want to look like Gerard Butler you got to put the effort in.

Without further ado, the workout:

25 Pull-ups

Pull-ups are one of the best ways to workout your back, if you are someone who does a lot of pull-ups you’ll eventually need to add weights to make yourself heavier, but for this particular workout it is a good start.

50 Barbell Deadlifts (135lbs.)

Yeah, that is right, 50 deadlifts. Deadlifts workout your legs, back and core, which is a theme you’ll see in this workout. You are going to hit a lot of different muscle groups, some in the same specific workout.

50 Pushups

Similar to pull-ups, you might need to add weight eventually as you can only do your own body weight for push-ups. Push-ups work out your chest, triceps and core. The closer your arms are together the more you’re hitting your triceps, the further your arms are apart the more you’re working out your chest.

50 Box Jumps (24 Inches High)

Box jumps are one of the most common plyometric workouts. All you need is a sturdy box to jump on. Box jumps workout your legs, particularly your quads and calves. They will also really improve your explosion, so you won’t just look like a Spartan, you’ll also be as  powerful as one.

50 Floor Wipers (135lbs.)

The most difficult workout of the bunch in our opinion, floor wipers are a true test of strength and endurance. You workout all of your core and it’ll strengthen your chest. It is ok to drop the weight from 135lbs if you are not accustomed to floor wipers.

50 One-Arm Clean-and-Press (36lb Kettle-bells)

This is one of the few workouts that gets your biceps and your legs, but the primary muscle here are your shoulders.

25 Pull-ups

Finish off with another 25 pull-ups to bring everything together. You’ll be running on fumes by this point.

Remember to keep a good pace throughout this entire workout routine and you will see some serious changes to your body.

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Fat Loss, Macronutrient

Delicious Protein-Packed Recipes (Part One)

Sometimes a protein shake is just not enough to satisfy that post-workout hunger. Sometimes you are just tired of that artificial chocolate taste and don’t want a protein shake at all. So, we have put together a few recipes that will give you the protein you need and that are healthy.

Steak and Eggs (Scrambled)

Steak and eggs is always a great way to start the day, but it can also be a great way to end the day. This recipe is a little different than the unhealthy morning version, because it uses egg whites and lean meat. This recipe also features the carbs you need after your workout.


4 Egg Whites

Teaspoon of Skim Milk

2 Teaspoons of Olive Oil

½ Pound of Cubed Lean Sirloin Steak

¼ Cup Diced Potatoes

¼ Cup Diced Green Peppers

¼ Cup Chopped Onions

¾ Teaspoon of Oregano

¼ Teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper

Cooking Directions:

Bring a small pot of water to a boil, reduce the heat, add the potatoes and cook for 5-8 minutes. Heat a skillet to medium heat. Add a splash of olive oil to the skillet. Throw all vegetables into the skillet (including potatoes), add the oregano and cook until browned (10-15 minutes). Make sure you stir the veggies well while cooking. Beat egg whites and skim milk. Once veggies are cooked, add the steak, egg white mixture and the cayenne pepper. Turn the heat up to medium-to-high heat. Cook steak, eggs and veggies until steak is browned and eggs are scrambled (5-8 minutes). Once again, make sure to stir well while cooking.

This meal will be a hefty plate with all the essentials you need post-workout and it’ll be tasty.

Chicken with Spicy Peanut Butter Sauce

You won’t find this recipe at any fancy Asian cuisine joints. This is simple to make and will get you the protein you need after your workout.


½ Pound of Cubed Chicken Breast

2 Teaspoons of Olive Oil

3 Tablespoons of Chunky Peanut Butter

¼ Cup of Skim Milk

¼ Teaspoon of Red Pepper Flakes

Cooking Directions:

Heat skillet to medium heat and then add a splash of olive oil. Cook cubed chicken breast halfway through (7-8 minutes). Once chicken is slightly browned, add the tablespoons of chunky peanut butter and cook it down for a couple minutes. Slowly stir in the ¼ cup of skim milk and then add the red pepper flakes. Cook the chicken and other ingredients until it reaches a sauce-consistency, stirring every couple of minutes (8-10 minutes).

Feel free to add vegetables to this recipe. Broccoli and red peppers go great with the sauce.

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