Kelly Ryan's Corner - November 2004!

How did this year's Olympia weekend go, a free workout program from Kelly, how to add quality muscle without getting fat and more...

Well the Olympia Weekend has come and gone and I hope all of you had the time of your lives while in Sin City! Thank you to all of you who came to the show and especially those of you that stopped by the Pinnacle and Cytodyne booth to say hi.

Congratulations to all the top five finishers and to Adela Garcia-Friedmansky who is now the 2004 Miss Fitness Olympia winner! Great job chica and thanks to you and Jenny Lynn, and Starling Steele for being such great hosts at the Olympia After Party Craig and put together at Club Seven.

We had an amazing turn out and all of it was made possible by our super generous sponsors;

  • Pinnacle
  • GNC
  • Muscular Development
  • as our premier sponsors.
  • Supplement Authority
  • D&A Nutrition
  • - Learn More
  • Gerstner & Associates
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  • Lana's Egg whites
  • Dr. Julio Garcia
  • Max Muscle
  • and Phatmuscle Clothing.

Without all of your support, the event just would not have been the same!

Now onto this month's questions and answers.

[ Q ] Dear Kelly, I am trying to look somewhat like you and I just had a baby which has caused some extra skin to hang from my lower stomach region. I have been training for a while now and am wondering if you have had any surgeries done on any part of your body to look like that? I am also wondering how many times a day do you work out?

Thank you very much.

    A. Congratulations on your baby and I am sure you feel great getting back on your feet. To answer your question honestly, I have only had breast augmentation done to my body. Everything else has been accomplished through years of intense and consistent training in the gym.

    Unfortunately that is the only way to get the results you desire. What seems to happen to pregnant women is the skin loses its elasticity after having a baby but, training and a healthy nutrition program will help you get your body back post delivery. Talk to your aesthetician about topical creams which help rebuild the collagen in the skin and also help restore the elasticity. Without being a doctor, this is about as much advice I can give, so stay positive and hit the gym hard!

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[ Q ] My question to you is how did you get that body you have? I am overweight and want to have the body you have! Have you ever been overweight? What do you eat to stay thin?


    A. Wow this month is just full of great compliments and I really appreciate hearing them. Thanks so much! I have been training with weights since I was in college at the University of South Carolina - Go Cocks! We had to weight train for cheerleading and the dance team to stay in shape.

    I began competing in fitness competitions in 1995, so I began my bodybuilding-type of training in 1994. This was when I really became serious about getting in shape and putting some muscle on. I would say that it has taken me a while to look the way I do today because of my genetics from competing in gymnastics for so long as a child.

    When I first began competing, I was in great condition, but my proportions were all wrong for fitness. If I can change my body anyone can, you just need to have a plan and the determination to get there. I train very aggressively and always view my workouts as my chance to get better every show I compete in.

    Pre-contest I do cardio twice a day for an hour each session and workout with weights by doing split body part training for an hour four to five days a week. During my down time between shows, I do cardio 3-4 times a week for 40 minutes and weight train for 45 minutes to an hour following the split body part formula. This allows me to maximize my results without over training at all.

    Here is my split workout regiment:


    Here is a basic meal plan formula to follow:

      1 protein = 30 gms 1 complex carb = 30gms
      * follow this for the first 2-3 meals of the day
      1 protein = 30gms 1 fibrous carb = 30gms
      * switch your source of carbs after lunch

    Both the meal plan and training program should help guide you to make the best choices for your time and effort.

[ Q ] I really hate the taste of canned tuna. It reminds me of cat food, so I am wondering if it would ruin my diet if I went for fresh fish (I have been eating Yellowtail) instead of the canned?

Thanks so much.

    A. I think you are not the only one who feels like this. Most of the time when I am speaking to people about nutrition and what types of protein I eat, the mere mention of canned tuna turns people off right away. I personally don't mind the taste of canned tuna but it has to be the solid white albacore.

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    Light tuna is very much like cat food to me. LOL. To answer your question, no, you will not ruin your diet if you make this switch to fresh fish, you will actually increase the amount of essential fatty acids you get from that type of protein.

    Cold water fish are high in essential fatty acids. EFA's help keep your hair, skin and nails healthy while maintaining a reduced calorie meal plan. EFA's also help keep your body's metabolism stimulated which is extremely important to do while eating clean.

    Eating clean and getting your fats from only animal proteins usually means you are taking in less than the recommended amounts, so adding fresh fish to your program will just aid in meeting your daily nutritional requirements. The most common reason why people choose canned tuna over fresh is not because of the taste or nutritional value, fresh fish can be very costly and for a 200 plus pound bodybuilder that consumes 10-12 ounces of protein per meal, that can be extremely expensive.

    You are doing the right thing, and if it helps you get all of your meals in, then I definitely suggest you make the switch. It is better to find a healthy substitute that you enjoy rather than skip meals. Keep up the great work.

[ Q ] I am 22 years old and competed in my very first competition this past April and took 4th place. My diet is right on almost all of the time, I do not eat fast food, but I do allow myself to eat a cheat meal now and then.

I usually eat a couple of foot longs from Subway a couple times a week. My problem is that I think my metabolism is too fast for me to gain the appropriate weight I want. I am 5'11". Weigh 210 lbs with between 8-10% body fat. My buddy says that I need to stuff myself with as much food as possible including fast food, but I do not want to do this.

What could I possibly do to put on at least 5-7 more pounds of quality muscle without gaining too much body fat? I am competing in May. I was thinking maybe I should add another protein shake into my meals.


    A. Rich, it is hard to be patient when your expectation level goes up after you have seen what your body can look like when you train for a competition. I must tell you that the positive part of being so young is that your body will continue to get better every year from this very point in time. You will notice your body's ability to get hard and shredded will become easier as it matures through the aging process.

    Most of the top pro's are in their mid to late thirties in age and if you ask any one of them, they will all tell you the same thing: that heir bodies didn't begin to hit their peak until then. If you look at Ronnie Coleman, he is in his late thirties and quickly approaching his forties. You must remember the positive aspects of getting in shape and that all of your hard work and consistent training in the gym will pay off, I promise.

    Ronnie at the 2004 Mr. Olympia.

    It just seems frustrating right now because you want to see changes immediately. I would definitely suggest increasing your calories per day. You have to eat to get big, especially if you have a fast metabolism. You did not mention how many meals per day you are currently eating but, you need to be taking in about 7-8 meals a day if you are not already doing so.

    Eating clean is fine but it will not allow you to put on a lot of muscle in a short period of time. The rule of thumb for protein consumption is to eat 1-1 1/2 grams per pound of body weight.

Calculate Your Protein Needs:

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    Try to incorporate quality cuts of red meat like filet mignon every now and then for its higher fat content, slow digestion rate and high amounts of creatine. Without knowing your exact amounts of carbohydrates, both complex and fibrous, just know that it is okay to keep a lot of complex (whole grains, rice, and potatoes) in your program as long as you are still doing your cardio.

    Your body will just burn what you are eating, and by doing cardio regularly each week, this will stimulate your appetite to eat all of your meals per day. Cheat meals are also a necessity for a person like you in order to grow. Wednesdays and Sundays are the two days a week I have cheat meals on and this formula keeps me sane from the monotony of my meal plans sometimes, and helps keep me motivated to stay on track.

    Keep training hard and try my suggestion for adding more meals per day. Hopefully you will see a difference; my clients seem to when they hit a plateau and have a really fast metabolism like you do. Good luck in May!

[ Q ] I saw you on and thought I would write to you for some advice. I had lost 140 pounds and 90 inches total off my body by following a plan I received from my gym and wanted to get certified to help others do the same thing. I have now gained almost all of it back and I am so depressed, I sleep a lot and cry every day.

I am trying to get back into the swing of things but it is hard, since I am not going to that gym anymore. I have it in my head that I can't do it but I know the plan like the back of my hand. I will be joining a different gym within a few weeks but until then I have a treadmill and every FIRM workout tape you can imagine.

I am just really bummed that I cannot get motivated. So many plans to choose from but then again everyone keeps telling me to do what worked the first time. What would you do if you were me? If you have any advice or encouraging words I would greatly appreciate it.


    A. Sandy, please do not give up hope. There are so many people who have gone through the exact same thing you are experiencing right now. Listen, you have already done this task once before and had great success, so my suggestion is to follow the same plan since you are also so familiar with it.

    The hardest part of getting in shape is making the first step in the right direction. You already know what choices to make so the hardest part is over. Go and get yourself a journal so that you can keep track of your schedule everyday. 12 Week Daily Workout Log
Are you having troubles remembering how much weight you lifted, or how many reps you did yesterday? Maybe you can't remember whether or not you have done enough cardio this week, or if you are making any progress.

    When you have to write something down, it makes you accountable for your actions and will also keep you motivated by seeing the progress you made the day before. I like to write down my thoughts or emotions I am feeling each day when I am dieting and preparing for a contest and it really seems to put my mind at ease. It is a great release besides training hard in the gym.

    Start slow, and begin just by walking on the treadmill first thing in the morning to start your day off right! Put on some great music that is upbeat and will keep you moving at a heart pumping pace. You will not only be more energized when you have finished, but just by doing your cardio first thing in the morning, you'll feel very proud and self disciplined about your actions the entire day.

    Success only can happen if you do not overwhelm yourself. Take things one day at a time and praise yourself for each task you accomplish be it big or small. Positive thinking is very important so forget about the c-a-n-'t word right now. Continue following this a.m. cardio (before breakfast) program until you join your new gym, and then once you sign up - just do it!

    Even if it takes buying yourself a new pair of sneakers to motivate you to get to the gym - just do it! I have complete confidence in you because I can hear you saying all the right things in your e-mail. You've lost weight before, you know your program like the back of your hand, you own a treadmill, and you are joining a new gym. You have all the right pieces to the puzzle and I know you CAN do it! Keep me posted on your success and I can't wait to hear the good news!

Okay folks, this is all for this month, I hope all of you enjoy your Thanksgiving Holiday and remember to be safe when traveling. I hope to get lots of positive e-mails next month so we can all continue our journey towards good health!

Yours in Fitness.
Kelly Ryan
IFBB Pro Fitness Representative