Kelly Ryan's Corner - September 2002!

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

September, 2002 Issue

The Jan Tana Classic was once again a success this year with 22 of the top fitness pros battling it out in Lynchburg, Virginia for their Fitness Olympia Qualifications. Here's the top five breakdown: Kelly Ryan-first place, Writer Tanji Johnson-second place, Tracey Greenwood-third place, Jen Hendershott-fourth place, and Alti Bautista-fifth place. I had pulled my calf the week of the show and thanks to my husband and all the support from competitors (Heather Foster, who worked on my leg) and IFBB staff backstage, I was able to make it through the show and win it for a third time. I cannot thank everyone enough for helping me make this great achievement happen. I am truly blessed.

I would also like to wish safe travels to everyone during this time of remembering Sept. 11th. When we pull together as one, we can overcome all obstacles. Here are this month's questions:

Q. I am a 15-year-old male that has been working out for 1 1/2 years now. I need advice on becoming more ripped, and supplementing. I have never used supplements before because I always thought I was too young. I am lean, but just one step away from a six-pack.

A. Well, Scott you have come to the right place. Supplements are a great way to get all of your daily food and vitamin requirements in. For you being fifteen, I would only recommend a good protein powder and a multivitamin. A thermogenic is probably not necessary for you because your young metabolism doesn't need any help at this point. Protein powders will help you to build muscle fiber in your body along with a good training regiment. Lean muscle is what stimulates the body's metabolism and keeps the body working and burning calories at all times of the day. You have also been training only a short time period so give your body time to develop and with consistency and intensity, you will begin to see the results you desire. P.S. My husband, IFBB Pro bodybuilder Craig Titus, has many training articles in Flex and Muscle and Fitness Magazines for you to follow and learn from. Good Luck and keep training hard!

Q. My name is Jacqi and we met when you guest posed in my hometown, Edmonton, Alberta. Well, I finally did what we had talked about and competed in a Figure and Fitness Model Search. I won both of the divisions! My problem now is that my weight after the show went from 112 lbs. to 143 lbs. I have been getting this "weak" feeling and I eat when I get this feeling because my body feels deprived from the diet I did for the show. Do you have any advice on how to get back to a comfortable 135 lbs again?

A. I am so happy to hear about your great accomplishments and that you will continue to compete despite this minor setback. I use the word minor because that is what this is. The "weak" feeling is your body trying to tell you to let it rest in order to recover from the preparation you put it through. Your weight has increased a total of 31 lbs. from the contest. This increase in weight is what is making you so tired. I recommend getting back into some sort of eating regiment (5-6 small meals daily) so your body can get back on schedule. Maintain your weight training but try to do more circuit training instead. This will help keep your body temperature up and burn more calories. Besides teaching aerobics, throw in a different type of cardio to shock your system. Your body might have adjusted to the cardio program you have been doing. Try to drink a lot of water to help your body flush the excess water you are retaining. Lastly, do not get discouraged. Jacqi, if you can win your first competitions, you can do anything you put your mind to.

Q. I am writing to you because I have been doing the Body for Life program for a year now, and I would like to lose more body fat off of the top of my thighs. I have two kids and live very far away from any gym, so I do everything at home. I do three days of weight training. Mondays and Fridays I do my arms, and on Wednesdays I work my legs. I do step or high impact aerobics for my three days of cardio. Please help me. Thanks!

A. Wow, sounds to me like you are on your way, but I have some great ideas that will really enhance your program. In order to change your legs, two things must happen: you have to increase the amount of lean muscle tissue in your legs, and isolate the areas that need the most work in your training. Great exercises for your butt and hamstrings are pile squats, stiff legged deadlifts, walking lunges, and table work. Table work is where you are on all fours and place a dumbbell behind one knee and raise and lower that leg for repetitions. All of these exercises can be done at home without machines, and they all isolate the upper thigh area. Get training girl and keep me posted on the results.

Q. I have been working out for five years and eating clean, and supplementing for two years. I take Vanadyl, Glutamine, CLA, and multivitamins. Do you take supplements, and do you think it is a health risk for a woman to take too many? You inspire me to get my butt in gear and go to the gym. Thanks.

A. Thanks so much, I love to hear that I have inspired someone to train hard. Fitness is a great way to improve the quality of your life. As far as supplements go, I feel they are just as important as your training. Supplements help balance out what we do not get from food and enhance our chances of improvement overall. The supplements you are taking are great for you, and they do not overlap each other in your program. Keep track of the progress you make with this particular stack and after 4-6 weeks, change it. I would replace the Vanadyl with HMB, keep the Glutamine, and multivitamins. Try Biochem's Omega Burn instead of the CLA because it has CLA in it plus every other fatty acid necessary for the body's fat consumption, and try Biochem's Ultimate Metabo Power for your thermogenic, instead of Hydroxadrine. A subtle change every now and then in your program will really rev your body up and cause changes to happen. To answer your second question, I think it is a health risk to take too much of anything. Moderation is key, and knowledge is power. If you educate yourself about supplementation, then you have added another method of improving the quality of your life.

Q. I just found your Q & A online and I think it is really interesting. I am a 32 year old male and I have two questions for you. Am I too old to get into bodybuilding? How do you keep working out without getting bored? I lift, but seem to get burned out. What can I do to change this? Thanks and keep up the great site.

A. Well Bob I am happy to hear that you like and here are your answers. No, you are not too old to get into bodybuilding. Bodybuilding is a sport for people of all ages, and you are only in your thirties. If you are asking about making a career out of bodybuilding, then it all depends on your genetics, how long you have been training, and your work ethic. A lot of the pros today have been training for over ten years, and competing for just as long. It takes a lot of hard work and strict dieting to become a competitive bodybuilder, and amazing genetics and years of experience to become a professional. My parents have taken up bodybuilding, but they do not compete. They just enjoy the healthy lifestyle and looking their best. To answer your second question, I change up my training a lot in the gym to prevent boredom and stimulate motivation. I read every magazine I could get my hands on when I first started to get involved with fitness, to learn as much as possible about weight training routines. The more you know about training and diet, the more variations you have to choose from. Lastly, try to set small goals for yourself in the gym. Keep track of your progress with a journal, or training log. Seeing yourself accomplish each small goal will motivate you to keep training hard. I sure hope this helps you out and check back each month to learn more about training, diet, supplements, and more.

That's it folks for this month's column, see ya next time and keep those great questions coming to! Thanks everyone.