Q & A with Mike Furci
Q: Hi. My name is Yadira Saldana, and I’m sending you a message about things concerning my health.
I’m going to be 16 in two weeks. I’m about 5-foot-3 and weigh about 155 pounds. I do not know if it is fat or muscle. I am a little strong from my legs because I can run the school mile in under eight minutes, and am usually like the fourth or fifth person, usually second girl, to finish, so I think I’m a little healthy. What kind of diet would you recommend me to use in a way that I still have energy? I’m asking because I ate less than what I usually eat, but feel lazy and tired. Please help with my “I can’t live with food, I can't live without food” problem.
Thanks a lot.
A: A mile in less than eight minutes is great!
My advice for a diet would be to eat as much whole natural food as possible. Stay away from processed foods. A diet low in carbohydrates, high in quality protein, vegetables and some fruit is essential for health. Eating correctly is the number one way to lose body fat. The biggest roadblock to being healthy is carbs. Carbohydrates are by far the leading cause of obesity and diabetes. Throughout the world there is no correlation between protein or fat consumption and obesity. However, there is a very strong correlation between sugar consumption and obesity and diabetes.
Around the world, we are the heaviest we’ve ever been. And obesity among our children is reaching epidemic proportions. Being overweight is entirely due to excessive carbohydrate consumption. Foods are not created equal. They are metabolized, assimilated, utilized and stored in different ways. Carbohydrates are a fuel source for the body. It is important to understand, however, that even though carbs can be a good fuel source, they are a nonessential nutrient. Meaning unlike protein and fat, we do not have to ingest them to live and be healthy. On the contrary, carbs in excessive quantities can, and will, lead to a very unhealthy existence.
Yadira responded back few days later. Being 15 years old, her email impressed me so much I had to include it in this column.
You are the first person whom I’ve contacted who has replied with an answer. You don't know how grateful I am.
I will be applying your suggestions starting tomorrow. I didn’t know that carbs were nonessential nutrients; now I will try to cut down on them as much as I can. I will also advise my parents on cautiously choosing the kind of foods they buy. I don’t think they have been watching these details even though my mother has high cholesterol and my father has diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure.
About the obesity in children, is there any foundation that I may contribute a little help? (Not that much though, because, remember, I’m still young.) But if I can help, please inform me. I’m already helping by using my little brother. I teach him that he should not be playing Nintendo all the time, and he should be doing other stuff like playing soccer (which he loves!). I also remind him that he needs to drink at least eight glasses of water every day. Even though he is still in kindergarten, you see him walking around with a water bottle.I have another question: how many times a day should I probably be eating? Keep in mind that I do go to school and we only have two breaks. Thank you once more for taking your time and answering these questions. – Yadira
How mature you are for 15! Your parents must be very proud.
Inquiring about how you can help other children by donating money is very touching. Unfortunately, at your age I don’t think the best choice is to contribute to a foundation. However, there is something you can do, that is worth much more than giving money. I would like you to educate others, especially children, as you do your family. Teach other kids to eat healthy by staying away from processed foods and sugar. Encourage them to be active by playing outside and getting involved with sports. Being an educator for other children will be very rewarding for you and is worth much more than giving money.
How many times a day should you eat? Try to eat at least four meals a day. These don't have to be big meals. Eating the proper foods multiple times per day will keep your insulin levels lower and will help build muscle and lose body fat.
To help you along, read through my lists of Banned Foods, Authorized Foods and Nutritional Principles.
My best wishes to you and your family,
Q: Hi Mike,
I just read your article from 2004 regarding training myths. First, I want to say I was laughing so hard at some of your comments. My favorite: “A man who would say ‘I want to look more toned’ is also taking a Pilate’s class with a guy named Bruce who has track lighting and wears eye liner.” Oh my god, that was funny.
So I may have been a little distracted with laughter to understand completely one area that you touched on, and I’m still not quite sure of the answer. I’ll just get right to my question: When I work out with weights, should I work on only a specific muscle group then give it a rest, or can I work out my overall body five to six days a week? I’m sure you answered that question, but again, I am still not fully “getting it.” You talked about the intensity and progress. I do feel I’m making progress as far as increasing weight. I hear so many conflicting theories: “only work your arms and back one day” or “only work your legs and butt one day.” Then others say working every muscle group every day is okay. Would love to hear it from you. If this address is still active, a shout back would make my day.
I am interested in the answer, but I also just had to write and tell you that I love your writing style. Smart, informative, to the point and so damn funny.
Wow! Thanks so much for the kind words. I want you to know I appreciate your taking the time to visit Bullz-Eye.com and reading my articles.
Can you work out your entire body every day? Yes you can. Is it the most advantageous way to train? Absolutely not. If you enjoy full body workouts, two to three days a week is plenty. You need two days off in between full body sessions, especially if you’re training with 100 percent intensity, which is how you should be training.
Here is a great example of a full body workout: The Big Ten.
The following is an example of a four-day split routine that allows you to hit each body part once every six days. You can make it a once every seven days by adding another day off.
Day 1: Chest and Biceps
EXERCISE SETS REPS Flat Dumbbell Press 2 8 to 10 Incline Hammer Press 2 8 to 10 Flat Dumbbell Fly 2 8 to 10 Standing Dumbbell Curl 2 8 to 10 Inclined Dumbbell Curls 2 8 to 10
Day 2: Quads and calves
EXERCISE SETS REPS Leg Press 2 8 to 10 Step-ups (with dumbbells) 2 12 to 15 Leg Extension 2 8 to 10 Seated Calf Raise 2 8 to 10 Toe Press on Leg Press Machine 2 6 to 8
Day 3: Off
Day 4: Back and triceps
EXERCISE SETS REPS Close Grip Pull Down (w/ V-bar) 2 10 to 12 Seated Cable Low Row 2 8 to 10 One-Arm Cable Pull Down 2 10 to 12 Hammer D.Y. Row 2 8 to 10 Tricep Pushdowns (w/ straight bar) 2 10 to 12 Lying Dumbbell Extensions 2 10 to 12
Day 5: Hamstrings, traps and shoulders
EXERCISE SETS REPS Lying Leg Curls 2 8 to 10 Stiff Leg Deadlift 2 8 to 10 Leg Curl (single leg) 2 8 to 10 Barbell Shrugs 2 12 to 15 Dumbbell Shrugs 2 12 to 15 Dumbbell Lateral Raises 2 10 to 12
The advanced program above is one of many combinations you can use.
Something you might want to consider adding under your FAQ’s “Are there any negative side effects?” (from "More muscle and more sex, Part 1").
Increased levels of testosterone have been shown to increase baldness. I can’t remember if it’s frontal or male pattern, but whatever it is, it isn’t good. Sure more muscles are great, bigger muscles faster are even better, and more boners are the best things in the world. However, if you can’t get a woman to talk to you because you have no hair, what’s the point of having to masturbate four times a night? Maybe some chicks like beefy guys with no hair, and I'm sure there are just as many who like average guys with hair. Isn’t it all kind of a wash anyway?
Just my two cents.
Higher testosterone levels do not coincide with an increased incidence of baldness in the average male. You are either going to go bald or not. If you have the propensity toward baldness, then yes taking steroids like testosterone will hasten the inevitable. Taking a supplement like Tribex, however, doesn't increase your endogenous testosterone to super-physiological levels like taking drugs.
Do you really think somebody who’s bald has a lesser chance of meeting women? I have several bald or balding friends who have no problem meeting women and would be offended by your remarks.
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