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Kelly Ryan's Corner - December 2002!

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

December, 2002 Issue

I would like to begin this month's column by saying "Congratulations" to the Show of Strength folks for putting on such a first rate show. The athletes were treated like royalty and the whole production was so well done. I won a huge championship belt as seen in Professional Boxing for first place in the women's fitness and for the first time ever, the girls got better trophies than the boys! Sorry to sound like a brat but, "YEAH BABY". Ha-Ha-Ha. Well enough celebrating in the end zone. I look forward to their show next year and wait to hear the city in which it will be held in. The Physique After Parties Craig and I held in New Orleans and at the Nationals (sponsored by Bodybuilding.Com) were a huge and total success. Stay tuned right here on for details concerning our Physique After Party at the Arnold Classic. Don't miss the festivities after the competition and banquet are over. See ya in Columbus!!

Now here are the questions.

Q. I am writing to ask you about supplements for women. I have competed 3 times over the last year and need to put on a lot of size for the upcoming year. I am currently taking Methoxy and a multi-vitamin.

A. I am glad you have asked this question because I have come out with my own product line called PureForm. This line of supplements is top quality and all pharmaceutical grades. The whey protein powder had Methoxyisoflavone in it and absolutely no aspartame! Along with my protein whey shakes, I use PureForm's Calcium Pyruvate, which contains a powerful antioxidant and increases your body's metabolism and fat utilization. The other supplements I use and developed are an advanced MRP with Glutamine, and a Kreb's Cycle of mineral complex which maximizes energy production, increases muscle stamina, and reduces recovery times. My liquid vitamin is the bomb because it covers all your major vitamin and mineral needs as well as ginseng, ginkgo, CO-Q10, antioxidants, enzymes, grape seed extract, and has superior absorption to capsules. A great supplement for size would be my Tes-Sublingual Booster which contains 4-Androstenedione and 4-Androstenediol, coleus forskoli (a natural fat burner) and gingko biloba. Even though this is a pro hormone type product, the half life of the testosterone booster allows the increase of muscle building properties, without the side effects of real testosterone. All these products will be available on within a few days!

Q. I am writing to you because I am trying to lose weight. I am 5'4" and weigh 200 lbs. My current program consists of push-ups, walking and a lot of stretching, but I am having trouble losing any weight. I only eat one complete meal a day and usually start my day with a woman's ultra megavitamin and an energy drink. Any suggestions you could offer would be very much appreciated.

A. Well you have come to the right place. First I would like to suggest that you begin by increasing the amount times you eat per day. Eating five to six small meals a day will not only increase your metabolism, but improve your overall health. Try combining one serving of protein and one serving of complex carbohydrates for your first meal. Then combine veggies and one serving of protein for the remaining five meals. Continue the multivitamins and energy drink but use the energy drink to motivate you before your workouts. Walking at an incline on the treadmill or riding the bike for at least 30 minutes a day 4-5 times a week would be a great start. Allow your body to adjust to this and then write me back. Baby steps are still drastic improvements without harming or traumatizing your body. I will wait to hear your progress.

Picture By Bill Dobbins. Click to enlarge.

Q. I was wondering Kelly, if swimming for my cardiovascular exercise will elongate my muscles?

A. I do not know if this is medically true. Swimming is however, a non-impact, exercise that is very aerobic. From the appearance of Olympic type swimmers, their muscles do appear to be more elongated then other sports, such as bodybuilding. What I do know is that stretching is extremely important, and will help prevent injuries, and increase the range of motion while training. Activities such as swimming, that require a lot of stretching, might enhance the length of one's muscles. Comparatively speaking, in bodybuilding, or weight training, the muscles are constantly being contracted, and over time, without stretching, might make the muscles appear shorter in length. Sorry, hope this still helps you out.

Q. First I would like to say what a great role model you are for women. I have your picture up on my wall for motivation. I am 44 years old, 5'5" and weigh 128 lbs. My body fat is 23% and I have been working out for six months now. I do 22 minutes of interval cardio three times a week, and train with weights on a three day split. My workouts consist of three supersets: chest/back/abs, legs/abs, and shoulders/bi/tri/abs. What would you suggest I do to improve my workouts, and burn more fat without losing any muscle?

A. First, I would like to congratulate you on the job well done so far. You are not too far off with the program you are following; it just needs a few adjustments. I would increase the time limit of your cardio sessions to at least 45 minutes, and do this 4-5 times a week instead of just three. You are not even burning fat yet at the 22 minute point, and more frequency produces better results in the gym. Your training split is great, but super setting everything might not be the way to go. If you are looking to speed up your metabolism and burn more fat, then increase the amount of sets and reps you're doing for each body part. The more lean muscle you have, the faster your body's metabolism runs and the more fat you will lose. My last adjustment would be to take Glutamine before and after you train, as well as, before bedtime. This will prevent you from losing muscle (going catabolic) and aiding in your muscles' recovery. Keep up the great work!

Click to enlarge.

Q. Dear Kelly, how do I increase my weights? When I watch my Firm Videos and I pyramid my weights, I am only using 8, 10, and 12 lbs. When I watch my other tapes, I use weights up to 12 lbs as well, but how do I go heavier without killing myself? I need to gain some muscle. Sometimes I feel that the 12 lb weights are too heavy. I read that you need to go heavier to get bigger, is this true? Thanks for the help, you have made my day!

A. You have run into a situation that is quite common among people who are working out. This is common because a person's strength will tend to plateau at times, and things need to be adjusted in order to break through those plateaus. Gaining size is not just about going heavier because form and technique also have to be considered. Using a weight that you can control, and not swinging or using momentum is actually a great way to building dense muscle fibers. Over time these dense muscle fibers are what become bigger muscles.

The point is to just make sure there is enough resistance on the muscle to make it work hard. Start off the set, after warming up of course, with the heavier weights (12 lbs.) and if you become fatigued, it is okay to drop down to a lower weight to finish that set. This is a great technique because it utilizes your energy to go heavier without sacrificing form. Here is an example: Let's say you start off your military presses with the 12 lb weights. They are heavy for you but you complete at least 10 out of the 15 desired repetitions. Then you drop down to the 10 lb weights to finish the set. You have now gone heavier than usual, but completed the set without hurting yourself. It will stimulate muscle fibers and over time, you will not have to drop down to a lower weight anymore.

I also use my PureForm Creatine in the off-season to help with muscle stamina and to build muscle strength and size. Drink it with 8 ounces of pure grape juice, or a sugary transport, right after your workout. This will spike your insulin levels and put your body into an anabolic state. Anabolic means to be able to build muscle and insulin is the most anabolic substance in the body. Try to use the Creatine for a controlled period of time (6-8 weeks) to record your results, and then come off of it to allow your body a rest.

Till' next time keep those great questions coming to and keep training hard!