NEW PAGE | You Ask, I Answer | FAQ

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I’ve opened a new section to the website called “You Ask, I Answer“, it’s simply a FAQ page. I will start adding to this page weekly or bi weekly with questions that I receive from emails and/or social media accounts. For the most part will stick to training, nutrition, and recovery. 

How often should I work out?

It really depends on an infinite amount of factors.

You need to train enough to see results, but at some point too much will yield less than stellar improvements. Overshooting what you’re capable of may lead to fatigue, decreased motivation, and/or even injuries. 

Proper diet and sleep are commonly overlooked but play a pivotal role in recovery and overall fatigue management. When food, training, and rest are all aligned efficiently it should allow the individual to train longer, hard, and yield better results. 

Other factors in determining exercise frequency may include training history, age, recent lifting history, and desire. If you don’t want to train 5 days per week, you likely won’t. There is a most efficient way to do things but it ultimately circles back to adherence and what you’re willing to put into it.

How often should I mix things up?


If results and efficiency are two of your primary goals then the answer would be…not very often. Maybe ever 4-8 weeks or so. 

If you don’t really like working out and you need to do something new every day to get your foot in the door then by all means mix things up. It won’t yield as great a return as a well structured personal training program but if you manage to skip all your training sessions because they’re redundant, that too will not deliver.

Progressive overload is a term to describe slow and steady progress. Depending on ones goal a tried and true method to consistent improvements is either adding weight and/or volume (sets+reps) to your movements. One way to really improve on both is to get efficient at doing specific movements. If you squat three times per week but each time you squat to a different depth, use significantly different weights, use different bars, different stances, etc…You’re never going to get very good at any specific lift or get yourself in a mechanical groove. 

Progressive overload for maximum results, mixture for adherence.

What accessories do I need? (gloves, belts, lifting shoes, etc)


You probably don’t need much to start. Your hands will get calloused and your grip will get stronger, I wouldn’t recommend gloves unless you’re a palm model. You should probably invest in a decent cross training type shoe with solid support.

Once you have a few years of experience underneath you, you may graduate to a lifting belt, lifting straps, wrist wraps, and lifting shoes (if you have poor ankle mobility).

I’m also a fan of knee and elbow sleeves to keep your joints warm. SBD and Rehband are the “Nike” brands. They’ll provide a little minor extra support but in my experience I feel like warm joints move better than cold ones. 

If interested, contact me and I can give you my recommendations on the above products. I’ve tested many.

How many calories should I eat?


First you need to prioritize what your goal is. Do you want to lose, maintain, or gain weight? Is body composition a higher priority than your strength gains? Those are the initial questions you need to ask yourself.

I HIGHLY recommend the Renaissance Periodization diet templates. It involves meal prepping, it involves reading an extensive FAQ pdf file, it involves using a food scale but it tells you exactly what to eat, when to eat, and when to adjust your calories. If you’re willing to put a little effort into learning the process I don’t think anything really works better. Really does all the thinking for you.

Alternatively, you can estimate your caloric goal with the Mifflin St. Jeor formula and use a free program like MyFitnessPal to track your calories. Even with this option there is a little learning curve and you’ll definitely need to take the time to study like you did in school to get a grip on it.

These are the only two options I recommend if you want to see results. You can “portion control” or “watch what you eat”, have no data to refer to and just hope for the best….but that’s not something I would recommend if you have set out specific goals for yourself.

To learn more about your workout routine, nutrition and exercise contact Taylor Carpenter at (704) 618-5853.



About the Author:

Taylor Carpenter is a nationally Certified Personal Trainer, Corrective Exercise Specialist, and Fitness Nutrition Specialist through the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Taylor was featured as a fitness expert in the first publication of NASM's "The Fitness Edge".
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