Kelly Ryan's Corner - July 2002!

Kelly Ryan's personal area to answer your questions about getting into fitness.

July, 2002 Issue

"Sum-mer, Sum-mer, summertime," as Will Smith and Jazzy Jeff would say. We are right in the middle of summer and it's hot, hot, hot out here in Vegas baby! The questions just keep pouring in and so this column is on it's fifth edition - YEAH! With competition season hot and heavy right now, these questions should be motivational for everyone. Till next month's edition of Kelly's Corner - those of you readers competing right now - KB&TN! Kick Butt and Take Names! I will be thinking of you all.

Q. I want to start by saying that I think you are amazing (like everyone tells you I'm sure)! I don't know how to make myself stand out different but I will not know if I don't try. I am 27, 5'2", and about 110 pounds. I have what it takes to compete, except for the gymnastics part. I am willing to do what it takes though to get there, believe me. I have thought about doing some of the new Galaxy contests that are just physique and interview to start, just to get used to the stage, the questions and the atmosphere. I am looking for some direction from someone I feel is at the top so any guidance you can provide me will be taken to heart, and with great gratitude. Thanks so much for your time.

A. Thanks so much for the support and I hope this information will help you to achieve your dream. My best advice is to first become familiar with the local shows in your area - Minnesota. This will cut out travel expenses and extra costs in the beginning of your quest. Second, the NPC (National Physique Committee) (412) 276-5027 has a new division called the Figure division where just the one piece and two piece swimsuits are judged, no gymnastics routine. The figure shows are always held in your local area by the NPC with Bodybuilding and Fitness competitions. This would be absolutely perfect for you to get your feet wet in the competitive scene and to prepare you for what to expect from a fitness show as well. The reason why I am advising you to go this route is because the NPC allows women to be able to get exposure in the best magazines and has a Pro division in both Figure, next year, and fitness. Then next year you can start entering Fitness shows. Try not to let the gymnastics stop you from competing in fitness shows. Any local studio or coach can teach you basic tumbling, jumps and strength moves to prepare you for the routine requirements. It is your dream, so dream big, and shoot for the sky! Good luck.

Q. Dear Kelly, I am currently supplementing with flaxseed oil, natural peanut butter, and fish oil/flaxseed tablets. I usually take a total of 2 tablespoons of flax per day. Is it better to say, break up one tablespoon into 3 teaspoons, and take them at each meal, or would it be better to take one whole tablespoon at once with a meal replacement, or protein shake? I really don't get any animal fat in my diet besides eating fish occasionally, and eat very lean cuts of meat and cut off all the saturated fat before cooking. Presently I consume around 250-300 grams of carbs on training days, 250-300 grams of protein, and around 40 grams of fat. I'd greatly appreciate any information you could provide.

A. Well Alex, it seems as though your have done your homework about fat consumption and the importance of fats in the diet. You are doing a great job so far and I would recommend that you break up your fat intake throughout the day. I use Biochem Omega Burn Caplets, which contain all of your omega fatty acids, flaxseed oil, safflower oil, GLA, CLA, and virgin Olive oil. The gel caps make it easy to take them with meals (3 X's a day) and will keep your metabolism stimulated for fat loss and muscle protection. If you follow your own program, break up the one whole tablespoon into three teaspoons and consume them with your three main meals, breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I feel that with dinner especially, the fats at night replace the calories from complex carbs in your meal and compliment the protein intake very nicely. Your breakdown of calories sounds great, as I don't know how much you weigh. No problem though. Glutamine, BCAA's, thermogenics, multivitamin, multimineral, and a good whey protein is what I supplement with year round, except for the thermos (only pre-contest). Hope this helps and keep up the great job!

Q. I am a huge fan of yours and I am in dire need of your help. I am a 29 year old female and I feel that I am extremely overweight. I had a baby boy 2 years ago and since I had him I feel that I haven't lost hardly any weight. I am 5'6" and 175 pounds. I was stationed in Germany with my husband and was able to workout five days a week. I did cardio Monday through Friday, and weights, Monday - Wednesday - Friday. I ate six small meals a day (one being a shake) but after losing a little weight, I hit a stand still. I am not sure on what I should be eating, the time of day to eat, and how to calculate the number of calories, protein, carbs and fat I should be taking in a day. I also need to know what kind of workout schedule I should e following and when the best time to do cardio and weight training. I would really appreciate the help and advice. I get more depressed by the day and feel like giving up.

A. Hey hot mama, you've come to the right place so let's see how I can help you. First, it sounded like you were on the right track. The body can hit plateaus sometimes because your body gets into a routine too much, or maybe you're not taking a cheat day and your metabolism slowed a bit. No worries! My suggestion is this: try eating one serving of complex carbs and one serving of protein for each of your two morning meals. From lunch on, your last three meals will be one serving of protein and veggies. With the veggies, go for green leafy types and you can be a bit more generous than one serving - the calories are less than complex. Train back and biceps on Monday, legs on Tuesday, and chest, shoulders, and triceps on Friday. After training hit your cardio for at least 45 minutes to an hour. Then add one or two more days of just cardio on an empty stomach in the morning. This should kick-start your body again and get you rockin' and rolling sister. Pick one day a week for a cheat piece of pizza, or cake. This will also shock your system and stimulate the metabolism. Don't give up - this should really help. Good luck and keep us posted!

Q. I am a 37-year-old woman who has basically been active forever. I suffered a knee injury a few years ago while training for a marathon. While recovering from two knee surgeries, I put on 75 lbs. I went vegetarian two months ago and am having a hard time finding any resources that deal with weight training and vegetarianism. With all this weight I am obviously not agile at all right now, and all I want is to get into the best shape of my life. Since you look so awesome and are a pro, I thought you would have some advice. What supplements could you recommend that would really work and what can I do with my diet? I appreciate your time and would be grateful for any help you could offer.

A. Wow marathons - now that is some serious cardio! I am very sorry to hear about the knee injuries and I have some great ideas for supplements to get you started again. First being a vegetarian makes things more tricky when it comes to a training-type diet. I found a great product called Genisoy protein powders. This is a protein powder that gets its protein from soy, just like the name Genisoy. These may have a bit more sugar than whey, but will do nicely for you. Soy protein has been known to have great results in absorption in women. I know, I use this myself from time to time and love it. Your diet schedule should be five small meals and eating every three hours. Keep your complex carbs in the early part of the day (breakfast till lunch), then veggies as your carbs with your meals. Try to get a serving of protein with each meal, from whatever source you will eat. I do not know if you eat egg whites at all. They are a great source of protein as well. Supplements like Glutamine, BCAA's, a thermogenic (metabolism stimulant), and soy protein can be used to get you on your way. Glutamine - before and after training, thermogenic - two in the morning for cardio on an empty stomach, BCAA's - morning and night with meals, and soy protein powder for shakes, or to cook with throughout the day.

These supplements will not only burn fat, but help in muscle recovery as well. Weight training, cardio (walking on an incline), and these products are perfect to lose the weight. Go for it girl, I know you can do it! You'll be smoking' in your New Year's Eve dress.