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Archive for the ‘Featured’ Category

Why Your Morning Coffee is Making You FAT

Posted by Joel Marion on January 25, 2011

If you’ve been following my advice of including a good portion of your daily carbohydrate intake at breakfast, you might want to skip your morning coffee, unless it’s decaf, that is.


Well, the recommendation to consume ample carbohydrates at breakfast is due to the fact that glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity are at their peak in the morning – basically, your body is primed to “deal” with carbohydrates quite well during the first few hours of the day, and that ability continues to wane as the day goes on.

So where does coffee come in?

Well, quite a few studies have shown that caffeine intake acutely decreases glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, sabbotaging your generally “good” ability to process carbohydrates in the morning.

Here’s just one of many studies:

Caffeinated coffee consumption impairs blood glucose homeostasis in response to high and low glycemic index meals in healthy men.
Moisey LL, Kacker S, Bickerton AC, Robinson LE, Graham TE. Am J Clin Nutr. 2008 May;87(5):1254-61.

Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada.

DESIGN: Ten healthy men underwent 4 trials in a randomized order. They ingested caffeinated (5 mg/kg) coffee (CC) or the same volume of decaffeinated coffee (DC) followed by either a high or low glycemic index (GI) cereal (providing 75 g of carbohydrate) mixed meal tolerance test.

CONCLUSION: The ingestion of caffeinated coffee with either a high or low GI meal significantly impairs acute blood glucose management and insulin sensitivity compared with ingestion of decaffeinated coffee.

In the end, decreased insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance = more insulin, less fat burning, and more fat storage; three things you DON’T want if you’re looking to shed those unwanted pounds.

Suggestions:  If you’re going to consume coffee or caffeine in general, it’s best consumed at times in which you are not consuming substantial carbohydrate.  This means ditching caffeinated coffee with breakfast in favor of decaf, and also avoiding energy drinks and other caffeine boosters during workouts in which a carbohydrate recovery beverage is being consumed.

Speaking of workout nutrition, my buddy Jayson Hunter just wrote a killer report about what you should NEVER eat after a workout – and you can download it for free here:

What to NEVER eat after a workout <——- Free Download

Question/Comment?  Drop it below!

Talk to you in the comments section!


Five DIRT CHEAP Protein Sources

Posted by Joel Marion on January 20, 2011

If you’re looking to transform your body, then protein is perhaps the most important macronutrient you could ever have on your side.  It’s the macro with the highest thermic effect of feeding (i.e. you burn calories by eating it), it helps you regulate insulin by causing the secretion of insulin’s antagonist, glucagon, and it provides the vital building blocks for building muscle and recovery.

BUT, it’s also typically the most expensive macronutrient, and THAT’S the problem I’m here to solve today with the below 5 DIRT CHEAP protein sources:

#1 – Eggs.  A dozen eggs provides 72 grams of protein for about $1.69.  At that rate you can even go Organic and have an extremely inexpensive meal.

#2 – Whey.  At anywhere from 50 cents to $1 for 20 grams you just can’t go wrong.  One of the purest, most bioavailable protein sources available.

#3 – Beans and Lentils.  A can of beans or lentils packs about 45 grams of protein (and fiber!) for about a buck!

#4 – Cottage Cheese.  48 grams of protein ready to eat out of the container for $1.69 – not too bad!

#5 – Tuna.  Perhaps the cheapest of all lean protein sources, a can of tuna yields approximately 42 grams of protein for just under $1.

Getting your daily protein requirements (I recommend about 1 gram per pound of lean body mass daily) doesn’t have to be cost prohibitive by any means; in fact, it can be DIRT CHEAP by getting a good portion of your daily protein from the above sources.

Feel like I saved you at least 5 bucks on your next daily grocery run?  If so, we’ve got something really cool going on today – yep, in fact you can try my entire Xtreme Fat Loss Diet program where you can lose up to 25 lbs in just 25 days for just 5 measly bucks until the end of today:

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Don’t believe you can really lose up to 25 pounds in 25 days?  Plenty of before and after pictures on that page to PROVE it:

==> Xtreme Fat Loss Diet is $5 to try until the end of today

Keep rockin’!


Twinkie Diet EXPOSED (A Calorie STILL is NOT a calorie)

Posted by Joel Marion on January 18, 2011

In response to my Calorie is NOT a Calorie post the other day, several readers posed questions about the “Twinkie Diet”, a dietary experiment whose results seemed to suggest otherwise (that indeed all calories were equal for fat loss).  Here’s one such question:

But what about the Twinkie Diet? A guy lost something like 40 pounds [Note: the actual amount was 27 lbs] eating only Twinkies (and a few multivitamins)… If they were only Twinkie calories, shouldn’t he have gained weight? He set out to prove that a calorie is a calorie, even if it is not unprosessed or proteinful food. Why didn’t he get fat?

I responded in the comments sectoin of that post, but let me go in to a bit more detail here:

First, just to clarify, the actual amount of weight lost was 27 lbs, or an average of 2.7 lbs a week over a 10 week period.

Having said that, the test subject only reduced his calorie intake by 800 calories daily, which equates to a deficit of 56,000 calories.  A pound of fat is 3,500 calories, so even if the entire caloric deficit resulted in pure fat loss (which it never does) this would only equate to 16 lb loss of body fat.

In reality, of the 27 pounds lost, the dieter would be lucky if 50% of it was actually fat — absolutely terrible if you enjoy your muscle and give a rip about your metabolism.

The important distinction here is that between “weight loss” and “fat loss”.  

If this particular dieter made much more appropriate food choices and his calories were derived from different (i.e. better) foods, he would have lost much, much less lean body mass.

And let me ask you this:  Which do you think LOOKS better in the end?  27 pounds of “weight loss” in which half is lean body mass?  Or a lesser amount of pure fat loss?  Here’s the truth:  no one truly cares about the numbers on the scale…they care about how they look.  If they lose 40 lbs and are still ashamed to take their shirt off, it’s likely not the outcome they were looking for.

And you be the judge on if you’d like to look like Mark Haub, the infamous Twinkie dieter.

The other point to consider is what type of deficit needs to be achieved in order to lose fat in a situation in which calories are being derived from crappy sources (such as snack cakes).

Of course if you eat 1800 calories of twinkies (when you maintain at 2600 cals) you’ll lose fat, but you could lose just as much fat (and much less lean body mass) eating a higher calorie level of wholesome, natural foods.

To sum it up, if someone has all 5 of the factors that I shared in my previous article working against them vs. someone having all 5 factors above working for them — and calories are equal — the person having all factors working for them will lose more fat, less muscle, and at a higher calorie intake.  All in all a much more desireable situation.

To recap, the 5 factors are:

1.  Eating foods with a high thermic effect of feeding (i.e. protein)

2.  Eating higher fiber foods with indigestible calories

3.  Choosing low glycemic index foods to control insulin

4.  Avoiding the combination of carbs and fats in the same meal

5.  Eating small, appropriately timed meals

And of course, there are a million other inherent problems with the Twinkie Diet, including ridiculously small portion sizes, etc, but today I just wanted to tackle it from calorie perspective.

If you missed the first part of this series, click here for full details on each of the above.

For Five Foods that Fight Abdominal Fat, Click HERE.

Questions/Comments?  Post ’em below and I’ll talk to you in the comments section!

Keep rockin’,


A Calorie is NOT a Calorie

Posted by Joel Marion on January 16, 2011

Eat less than you burn and you’ll lose weight – it’s preached as the “be all, end all” of weight loss and it’s completely WRONG.

Truth is, the numeric value of an individual’s caloric intake is not the only factor that affects body composition.  In fact, there are at least 5 other factors that need to be considered, including:

  • The thermic effect of the food ingested.  The thermic effect of food (TEF) measures the amount of energy that is required to support the processes of digesting, absorbing, and assimilating food nutrients as well as the energy expended as a result of the central nervous system’s stimulatory effect on metabolism when food is ingested.  Of the three macronutrients, protein carries the highest thermic effect.
  • The fiber content of the food ingested.  Due to its chemical makeup, fiber is classified as a carbohydrate; however, it is unlike other carbohydrates in that it is a mostly indigestible nutrient.  Even though each gram of fiber contains four calories, these calories will remain undigested and will not be absorbed.  Therefore, if one were to consume 300 calories of red beans (a food in which nearly 1/3 of the caloric content is from fiber), approximately 100 of these calories would pass through the intestinal tract undigested.
  • The glycemic and insulin indices of the food ingested.  The glycemic and insulin indices are scaled numbers that refer to how quickly a particular carbohydrate source enters the bloodstream as sugar and how much insulin is needed to rid that sugar from the bloodstream, respectively.  Generally speaking, there is a positive relationship between the two; that is, the quicker sugar enters the bloodstream, the more insulin is needed to rid that sugar from the bloodstream.  When high levels of insulin are present within the blood, fat burning is brought to a screeching halt, which is anything but desirable for those whose goal is just that.
  • The macronutrients present in the food ingested.  Although insulin’s primary function is to shuttle glucose (sugar) into skeletal muscle, it also carries many other nutrients to their respective storage sites; this includes fat.  Since carbohydrate ingestion stimulates a large insulin response and fat ingestion gives rise to blood lipid levels, the two, when consumed together, promote the greatest fat storage.
  • The size, frequency, and time of ingested meals.  Large, infrequent meals tend to promote storage of the ingested nutrients as the body is unsure as to when the next feeding will take place.  Conversely, consuming smaller, frequent meals will result in increased fat loss and utilization of the ingested nutrients.  Also, ingesting a large amount of carbohydrates before bed spikes insulin, deters overnight fat burning, and increases fat storage during sleep.  On the contrary, consuming a great deal of calories early in the day does not bring about this problem; rather, these calories are likely to be used as energy to support daily activities.

As you can see, someone could be eating a relatively small amount of calories daily, but at the same time promoting a great deal of fat storage by 1) making poor food choices, 2) combining macronutrients in a nonproductive fashion, and 3) consuming food infrequently and at inopportune times.  To illustrate this further, let’s take a look at a recent study conducted by Demling et al which analyzed the diets of 38 police officers.  Demling found that although the officers were consuming a hypocaloric diet (fewer calories than they burn), they all had unhealthy levels of body fat and had been gaining fat mass over the past five years.  If all you had to do to lose fat was consume fewer calories than you burn, then these individuals would be losing fat, not gaining it!  And to confirm the importance of the factors that I previously mentioned, let’s take a look at some of the other things that Demling noted:

  • Only 15% of their diet consisted of protein, the macronutrient with the greatest TEF.
  • Their diet contained very little fiber.
  • Over 50% of their carbohydrate intake was derived from simple sugars, which have very high glycemic and insulin indices.
  • They didn’t note this, but I’m willing to bet that they didn’t avoid the fat-carb combo.
  • They ate infrequently, only 10% of their caloric intake was consumed at breakfast, and over 50% was consumed right before bed.

By now, it should be obvious that fat loss isn’t just a matter of calories in, calories out.

Enjoy today’s post?  Questions?  Comments?  Post your reply below!  At least 100 comments and I’ll be back tomorrow with more killer content for ya!

Keep rockin’,


P.S.  My buddy Jon Benson just posted a 30 second tip that will literally net you an extra 8 lbs of fat loss with practically NO effort…check it out here:

Lose 8 lbs with this 30 second tip <——- Click here

How I’m burning an extra 406 Calories a day

Posted by Joel Marion on January 9, 2011

This month my brother in crime and one of my absolute best friends Vince Del Monte (and his kick-butt wife Flavia) are staying with my wife Lisa and I here in warm, sunny Tampa.  You know, I can’t imagine why the heck someone would want to get out of the 19 degree weather in Canada during the winter, but whatever the reason, we’re all currently on a mission to get in some serious shape.

Vinny is set to take the stage and compete in the Canadian Fitness Model Championships come April, and I’ve got a little contest of my own going on.  So how are we getting ready?

Well I’ll tell you one thing we’re NOT doing — going out to eat.  In fact, every evening this week Lisa, Flav, Vinny, and myself sat down to an AMAZING dinner at home, and they’ve honestly been some of the best meals I’ve eaten in a long time:

Ricotta & Spinach Stuffed Chicken Breast
Canjun Style Catfish
Organic Grass Fed Bunless Cheeseburgers
Organic Grass Fed NY Strip Steaks
Organic Omega-3 Egg Omelets with Roasted Red Peppers and Artichokes

All served with a huge mound of veggies, like grilled eggplant, roasted squash, zuchinni, and onion, grilled asparagus, sugar snap peas, and steamed brocolli.  A little olive oil, garlic, and/or organic butter…man, we’ve been eating good.  And oh yeah, some killer salads…roasted red peppers, sun dried tomatoes, spinach, artichoke hearts.  DE-LI-CIOUS.

And we’ve been saving an average of 406 calories EVERY day simply by eating at home, as a recent study discovered that eating out just one meal adds approximiately 406 calories to one’s daily calorie total as compared to days in which those same individuals didn’t eat out.

And there’s more:

**Restaurant dining, on average, costs FIVE times more than groceries bought for a home-cooked meal.

**People who eat out often eat 25% less fruits and veggies compared to those who eat in.

Skip out on 406 calories daily, save a bundle of CA$H, and eat a much more balanced, nutrient-rich diet – sounds like a winning combo to me, all achieved by enjoying delicious, home-cooked meals instead of those prepared at a restaurant.

My challenge to you:  Skip restaurant dining for the next two weeks, and instead make it a point to dine in.  I guarantee your results will thank you for it (as will your wallet).

Want another EASY way to burn 8 lbs of fat without doing ANYTHING?  My buddy Jon Benson just posted a really cool tip here:

==> How to burn 8 lbs of fat without doing ANYTHING (30 second tip)

Keep rockin!


P.S. Are you up to take the 2-week challenge with me?  Questions?  Comments?  Post your replies below in the comments section!

9 MORE easy X-mas fat-loss strategies

Posted by Joel Marion on December 24, 2010

As promised and in continuation of yesterday’s article, here are 9 MORE x-mas week fat loss strategies to help you stave off unwanted weight this week!

Strategy #9: Go Non-Alcoholic

Don’t get me wrong, I like to have a few beers or a glass of wine from time to time, so I’m not going to tell you to completely give up alcohol throughout the holidays.

But, what I will suggest is that the majority of your beverages at holiday get-togethers be of the non-alcoholic variety.

Simply put, alcoholic beverages are perhaps the easiest way to add unnecessary calories to your daily total, and unfortunately, it doesn’t end with just the calorie total.

Excessive alcohol intake also creates a hormonal environment in the body very conducive to fat storage, making those calories much more likely to negatively impact the number that shows next time you step on the scale.

So, what’s “excessive” or “how much is too much”. Well, I think we all know that. If you’re regularly getting “tipsy” or drinking to the point of intoxication, then you’re physique is going to take a hit for it.

Enjoy a (non-sugary) drink or two when appropriate, but stick with non-calorie beverages otherwise.

Strategy #10: Modify Your Plate

Sometimes you just want to enjoy what’s there without having to be picky, choosey, or limit your selections.

If that’s the case, here’s a tip that will absolutely keep you from overdoing it while keeping your calorie intake in check:

Use dessert sized plates.

Yep, just go ahead and grab a plate from the dessert line and then head over to the “dinner” line.

Controlling portion size just happens to be one of the best ways you can regulate calorie intake without necessarily giving up your favorite foods.

Smaller plate = smaller portions, and with smaller portions come fewer calories across the board.

As an added benefit, research has shown that people tend to overeat and eat beyond the point of “fullness” when large portions are in front of them. With the smaller plate option, you’ll likely be very content when you finish without “mindlessly” continuing to stuff yourself just because the food is there in front of you.

Strategy #11: If You Don’t Love It, Don’t Eat It

Learning to be selective will prove to be a highly-helpful skill when approaching holiday meals, parties, and buffet lines.

Simply put, you don’t need to eat everything that’s there. If we’re being completely honest, we probably don’t even really like everything that we toss on our plate and instead just include it because it’s available.

So, here’s another valuable suggestion: If you don’t absolutely love it, don’t eat it. As you go through the line or as foods are passed along the table, only dish out your absolute favorites while skipping over the selections that you can probably do without.

Stock Up on the “Good Stuff”

In addition to choosing your favorites, whatever veggies are available, piling them on your plate. They’re filling, will compliment the other items on your plate, and will easily help you adhere to the next rule.

Strategy #12: One and Done

Here’s a realistic insight:

Most of the weight we put on during the holiday season comes from the second (and sometimes third) helping, not the first.

And while it’s easy to go back in for more, a great way to cut out half the calories you’d normally eat at a holiday function is to limit yourself to only one helping.

So, go ahead and fill up your plate (remember, we’re using smaller plates), but once you’re done, you’re done.

Adhere to this one rule alone and you’ll automatically cut in half your calorie intake this holiday season.

Strategy #13: Make the “Announcement”

Here’s perhaps the easiest way to avoid going back for seconds.

My good friend Vince DelMonte hooked me this tip as while back, and as simple as it is, it works unbelievably well.

In fact, I actually did this at the dinner table the other night when out with friends, and it was easily the most comfortable social situation I’ve ever been in while sticking to my diet and moving forward to my goals.

When you arrive at a party or sit down to the table, let people know what you’ve committed to.

Something as simple as “Hey, just want to let everyone know, I’m on a mission to drop some pounds. This food looks amazing, and I plan to enjoy a full plate, but if you see me back in the buffet line, kick my butt into gear.”

People respect that and they’ll back you up.

From then on out, you never have to worry about people who “don’t know” your goals constantly offering you food, and beyond that, it’s a huge source of accountability for you.

I can guarantee that when you put this simple strategy into practice, you won’t even think of going in for seconds. It’s extremely easy to resist once you give people “expectations” for you to live up to.

Strategy #14: Chew, Chew, Chew

Now, I’m sure you’ve heard this one before, but let me ask you this.

Do you ever really make a conscious effort to take your time between mouthfuls? Probably not.

A good rule of thumb is to chew your food at least 20 times before swallowing while giving yourself a bit of a breather between bites.

Trust me, the food will still be there.

Eating slowly and with a high chew-count gives your body time to realize it’s getting full—in the end you’ll be just as content while consuming far fewer calories.

Consciously give it a try, and I guarantee it will make a difference.

Strategy #15: Compensate

Fact is, you’re going to consume more calories from November through January than you normally would at other times of year, even if its just moderately more—that’s reality.

A natural combatant would then be to increase your physical activity to burn more calories. Walk more, run more, throw in an extra gym session or stay a bit longer than usual—whatever you can do to be more active and burn more calories during this time will go a long way.

Strategy #16: Write It Down

In addition to the “announcement” tip above, another great way to establish accountability is to keep a food journal and daily exercise log.

While you may or may not be used to doing this, during times where it’s easy to go off track, keeping a journal of some sort is exceptionally helpful to keep you in check.

There’s just something about having something in writing and tracking your progress simply throughout the day that makes you that much more apt to “stick to it”.

Strategy #17: Serve Yourself “Half” First

Here’s an idea that can make the small plate method even more effective:

Serve yourself only “half” first, filling up the plate half-way and then taking time to sit, eat slowly, chew, and enjoy what’s there.

Then, you have the added bonus of being able to go back for the other half!

It’s funny how simple psychology works, but even though it’s the same amount, you just feel like you’re eating more when you’re able to “go back” for more.

Enjoy today’s post?  Which was your favorite strategy?  And  what strategies do YOU personally use to help avoid weight gain at special holiday events and parties?  Drop your comments below!

Talk to you in the comments section,


8 EASY X-Mas Fat Loss Strategies

Posted by Joel Marion on December 23, 2010

With Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day all happening this week, I’ve put together a list of EIGHT different strategies that you can use to curb the “typical” weight gain.  Enjoy!

Strategy #1: Feast On Protein

So you’re scoping out the buffet set-up at a holiday party and you’re contemplating what to eat. I’m betting there’s a turkey there. Or a ham. Or some shrimp cocktail.

Eat it, and only that, until you’re full.

Protein is, by nature, very filling. And by filling up on lean protein, you’ll avoid other, potentially more destructive food items at the buffet.

And best yet, you still leave satisfied.

Another benefit of protein is that it also helps your body process carbohydrates more effectively by stimulating the release of the hormone glucagon—a hormone which helps to control blood sugar and curb the fat-storage properties of insulin.

So if you do indeed add some carbs, they’ll become much less of a threat to your waistline.

Strategy #2: Do NOT Drink Calories

Calories in beverages are wasted calories. They do nothing to increase satiety or fullness, and can very easily tack on a serious amount of caloric damage to any evening.

If it has calories, don’t drink it, plain and simple.

If you’d like some variety beyond plain water, go with a flavored water or other diet beverage.

Just please, do NOT fall victim to 500 calories of fat-storing high fructose corn syrup. Simple avoidance, great benefit.

Strategy #3: Know Your First Move

While we’re on the topic of beverages, here’s a great tip to go into any holiday party with.

As soon as you arrive, before you do anything else, pour yourself a big glass of water, drink it down, and wait 15 minutes before eating anything. Mingle with the crowd, say hello, etc.

This is a simple, extremely effective way to curb your appetite and give yourself a sense of fullness before heading to the dinner line and is sure to make a difference in the amount of food you end up adding to your plate.

Strategy #4: Be Hospitable

Many times the parties we attend throughout the holidays are “potluck” buffet style where each person is responsible for brining their own dish to contribute to the menu.

If you’ve ever worked in an office, you know what I’m talking about.

This is a great opportunity for you to contribute something healthy to the table, and in turn make it extremely easy for you to make a healthy choice. Simply eat your own meal.

This way you KNOW exactly what’s in it and how it was prepared, a huge plus (i.e. everything that looks healthy isn’t necessarily so).

And even if the party isn’t potluck, bring something to contribute anyway. I haven’t met a host yet that doesn’t appreciate help from others when it comes to feeding the guests.

Strategy #5: Arrive “Full”

I’m sure you’ve heard the recommendation that you never go to the grocery store hungry as you’ll just end up buying everything in sight, spending way too much money, and making a bunch of unhealthy choices because everything looks “so good”.

Well, I’m going to give the same suggestion for holiday parties (again, this is for the one or two that don’t fall into your holiday “cheat” schedule).

Instead of showing up with your stomach growling and mouth salivating, take action to ensure you arrive in the exact opposite position. How? Easy. Eat a BIG, healthy meal just prior to heading to the party.

In fact, I can remember one time when I actually stopped at Salad Works on the way to a party and sat down to a huge bowl of leafy greens, grilled chicken, and veggies. When I arrived at the party full, all of a sudden all those desserts didn’t look nearly as appetizing.

Easy, super effective way to avoid falling into temptation.

Strategy #6: Be “Normal”

This one goes right along with the previous tip. In an effort to avoid the “damage” of a big meal or party, most people don’t eat anything else all day leading up to the big event in order to “save up” the calories.

Big mistake, and for several reasons.

First, when you go into a meal or party incredibly hungry, you will absolutely overeat to a much higher degree than you would otherwise.

Bigger portions of calorie dense, fatty/carb-laden food = WAY more calories than you would have naturally eaten throughout the day.

Secondly, eating nothing only to follow it up with a big, high-fat/high-carb/high-calorie meal leads to a greater percentage of those calories than normal to be stored as fat.

Don’t shoot yourself in the foot by starving yourself all day. Eat as you normally would and then hit up the party.

Strategy #7: Try An (Effective) Appetite Suppressant

While we’re on the topic of arriving “full”, if you want a little extra “curb” to your appetite, you may want to give a little known supplement a try that has considerable appetite suppressant effects.

It’s called 5-HTP and it’s about the only thing that I’ve found to actually have a noticeable affect on my appetite.

As far as the most “popular” appetite suppressant goes, Hoodia, there’s too much trouble finding a legit hoodia product for me to recommend it. That, and I’ve found 5-HTP to be more effective anyway.

Shoot for 100mg just prior to a meal, if you’d like to give this one a shot.

Strategy #8: Deplete Before A “Big” Day

While the previous tip doesn’t work for “damage control”, this one certainly does.

One of the things I teach my clients to do is “prep” for a big day full of food with a depletion workout the day before.

You may or may not know, but there’s plenty of “food” stored within your muscles in the form of both carbohydrate and fats.

Carbohydrate (when stored in muscle, called “glycogen”) and fats (when stored in muscle, called “intracellular triglycerides”) are actually stored within muscle tissue as an energy source to fuel activity.

Fat is a slower energy source, so something as simple as doing a lot of walking the day before a party is a great way to deplete some of your intracellular triglyceride stores.

As for glycogen depletion, go with something akin to circuit-style weight training. Keep the load light, do a lot of repetitions, and really “go for the burn”.

Going into a big meal with depleted intramuscular energy stores (brought about via energy-depleting exercise) will lead to much of that meal refilling those stores as opposed to being tacked onto your waist, hips, and the ol’ gluteus maximus.

Enjoy today’s post?  Which was your favorite strategy?  And  what strategies do YOU personally use to help avoid weight gain at special holiday events and parties?  Drop your comments below!

At least 50 comments and I’ll be back tomorrow with 9 more EASY X-mas fat loss strategies!

Talk to you in the comments section,


Content GALORE with Six-Pack Expert Vince Del Monte

Posted by Joel Marion on December 1, 2010

An Extremely Content-Rich Interview with my friend Vince DelMonte, and a special guest appearance from his wife, Flavia!

Vince and Flavia at their recent Photo Shoot in the Dominican   
Vince and his wife, Flavia.   

Alright, let’s get right down into it, Vinny.  A lot of people work out, few people see real changes from their efforts.  Why do you think so many people fail to see results from the time they spend in the gym?

People are focusing on time spent instead of time invested, and that’s an extremely important distinction. For example, last night I saw this dude in the gym attempting a Bent Over Row.  He picks up the barbell, leans forward about 2 inches, does about ten reps with maybe a few inches of movement, racks the bar, stands up tall and gets some water. No sweat. No noise. No change of facial expression.  Nothing.  I’m thinking to myself, “Go home, man!  Where’s the intensity?  Take up knitting or basket weaving!”   

 Two problems:   

1. Most trainees do not know what intensity looks like. They are a product of their environment and the lack of energy and intensity rubs into their own workouts, whether they are aware of it or not.  After you become a fly on the wall and watch my DVD’s you’ll see and hear what real intensity looks like.  We don’t use professional athletes or scripted models in my DVD’s.  Instead I use real weights, real intensity, real sweat and real effort.   

2. Most trainees have horrible technique.  Again, time spent instead of time invested.  I could cut your workout from 60 minutes to 15 minutes just by adjusting your foot position, hand grip, elbow position, hips etc.  Same weights, better technique and you’ll feel like it’s your first workout ever and say, “What the heck have I been doing all these years?”  Another cool thing about the workouts I filmed is that I also take the time to show you proper lifting technique instead of paying $100 an hour for a trainer.

Agreed 100%, although I do like to knit from time to time.  Let’s talk crucial elements.  If someone is looking to shed fat extremely fast, what are 2-3 elements that they need to include in their training?   

 1. Lactic acid. Lactic acid production from high intensity training leads to an increase in Growth Hormone which burns fat faster from your body. You need to actually feel the “burn” (that’s lactic acid build up in muscle tissue) and you shouldn’t just be casually going through a workout while breathing normally.  I see WAY too many people doing this in the gym, and it’s the reason why people don’t see results.  Workouts need to be CHALLENGING.   

2. Sweat. You need to leave a trail of sweat in the gym and be at least 1-2 pounds lighter after every workout.  My 4-day and 5-day six pack programs are designed to heat up your body like a furnace and dig fat from the most stubborn spots for energy.   

3. Stop babying yourself. Don’t leave anything on the gym floor when you train.  Treat each rep like it’s your last and each set like you don’t have another.  In my six pack programs I even encourage people to stop counting reps and focus on quality instead of quantity.   

Solid!  Okay, let’s switch it up and talk about your wife, Flavia.  I know Flavia has been using a lot of your workouts as well, and I’d venture to say that she looks EXACTLY like most women want to look — lean, sexy, and tone.  What would you say to women who are hesitant to train with weights, or particularly, the training routines included in your DVD series?

My take:
Stop taking advice from people who don’t look like you want to look!  Would you take money advice from your friend is living pay check to check?  So why take female fitness advice from a girl who doesn’t look like you.  But rather than take it from me, Flavia is actually sitting right beside me now, so here it is, straight from the horse’s mouth:   

Flavia: For me having shapely arms is a powerful ego boost and believe me they get noticed.  I have always wanted people to know I workout, instead of just assuming I’m just naturally thin.  The time I’ve put in doing Vince’s workouts (which have been a heck of a lot of fun), have given me the lean, sexy look I’ve always wanted, but didn’t have until just recently.   

There are also quite a few other female-friendly benefits of weight training, such as an increase in metabolism.  More muscles burn more calories, helping to speed along weight loss and achieve you fat loss goals faster.  Another huge problem area for women are their triceps…well without weight training, you will still have the loose flap waving back at people. It is important to know proper techniques for lifting weight but it is well worth learning….the results you achieve by doing things the RIGHT way will make you want to learn more and lift more.  And don’t be worried that you will look like a man…I certainly don’t think I do!   

Awesome stuff.  I know hearing directly from another female (who looks like you look), really helps a lot of people, so thanks for popping in!

As a reminder, Vince just re-released his 9 DVD Six-pack and Muscle Building DVD series for his birthday (he only does this once a year), and there are a bunch of pretty sweet incentives going down right now (EVERYTHING expires tomorrow):

#1.  If you grab Vince’s DVD set through the special link below, I’m going to GIVE you your choice of ANY product I’ve ever created.

*The Xtreme Fat Loss Diet – Lose 25 lbs in 25 days

*Ninja Nutrition Tactics – Stealth Techniques to Slice Through Any Fat Loss Plateau

*Cheat Your Way Thin – Eat What You Want, Outsmart Your Body, Triple Your Results

*The 1,000 Calorie Challenge – The Fastest Fat Loss Progression System Ever Developed

Just pick up Vince’s DVDs through my link below, forward your receipt to support [at] joelmarion.net and let them know which of the above products you want for F.REE.  Any one you want, your choice.

All of those products retail anywhere from $97 – $197, and I’m going to give you the full Deluxe version with all the bonuses, add ons, and goodies for F.REE when you order.

==> Vince’s DVDs + ANY of my products for F.REE 

#2.  These DVDs haven’t been available for a full year, and after a couple of days they’ll be going “back in the vault” for another 12 months…if you want them, this will be your only opportunity this year to get them.

#3.  You’ll also save $50 off the regular price.

==> Vince’s DVDs + ANY of my products for F.REE

#4.  You’ll also get ALL of Vince’s products as a bonus:

*No Nonsense Best Of Series
*Metabolic Ab Shredder
*Top 10 Finishing Moves
*3 Minute Muscle

All in all, that’s a pretty phenomenal deal which won’t be around for at least another year.

Vince’s Six-pack and Muscle Building 9 DVD set, any one of my products for freee (your choice), ALL of Vince’s products for freee, and $50 the regular price.

==> ALL that, plus ANY of my products for F.REE

Grab your copy below and be sure to forward your receipt to support [at] joelmarion.net and let them know which one of my products you’d like as your F.REE bonus.  Again, you’ll get the full deluxe version with all the bells and whistles :)

Happy Birthday Vince!

Enjoy the insane birthday deal here:

==> Vince’s DVD special + ANY of my products for F.REE

To the top!


Beer That Burns Fat? Yes.

Posted by Joel Marion on November 22, 2010

First off, Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!  I’m certainly thankful for you – each and every one of you are incredibly special and important me – YOU are the only reason I’m able to do what I love every day and share my passion with so many wonderful people.  Thank you.

Next up – beer :)

So, when it comes to Cheat Days and the Cheat Your Way Thin program, one of the more common questions I receive is the beer question:

“How many beers can I drink, boss?”

Or something akin to that.

Well, within the manual one of the few “rules” I place on Cheat Days is that alcohol consumption be limited.

Why?  Because alcohol intake lowers leptin levels, which is the exact opposite of everything we are trying to do hormonally on a Cheat Day.

So, what then, is the solution?  Well, if you’re looking to get DRUNK, then I’m afraid there is no solution that will suit your lush-ish ways (yes, I know that’s not a word).  However, if you just happen to enjoy the taste of beer and similarly prefer beer as your beverage of choice to wash down your Cheat Day feast, then there is one particular beer that actually may be able to boost your fat loss results:

O’Douls, non-alcoholic.

Fact is, it’s everything that beer is, just without the alcohol, and tastes strikingly similar to most other domestics.  In fact, in a recent “study” (performed in my kitchen) 7 out of 7 people were not able to tell the difference between O’Douls and 2 other alcoholic domestic brews.

So, how can it help you burn fat?

Well, if you’re familiar with the science behind Cheat Your Way Thin, then you know that simple carbohydrates are by far the most effective nutrients for boosting leptin levels.  O’Doul’s contains plenty of simple carbs, without the leptin-plummeting alcohol content (and it tastes just the same…after all, it is beer).

And it also contains ZERO crap carbs, like high-fructose corn syrup (the most common “beverage” sweetener), which has repeatedly been shown to be one of the most fat-promoting carb sources around.

So, for a Cheat Day choice of beer, I gotta recommend O’Doul’s.  Yes, it’s non-alcoholic.  Get over it.

But what if you want to have a beer during the week, not a Cheat Day?  Is that totally off limits, or is it OK to sneak a light beer every so often?

Answer:  Will a light beer on rare occasion totally sabotage your results?  (I know, that’s a question, not an answer).

Considering that most light beers are around 100 calories, if you had 2-3 a week, I’m going to say no, that’s probably not going to make a substantial difference (especially if you’re compensating for that intake via other means [an extra exercise session, decreased cals elsewhere, etc]).

But hey, why not go for the lowest calorie and lowest carb content?  Here are the Top 3 lowest-calorie, lowest-carb beers:

1.  Bud Select 55 (55 cals)

2. Beck’s Premier Light (64 cals)

3. MGD 64 (64 cals)

They’re all less than 3 carbs per 12 oz. and a whopping 2.5% alcohol by volume (that’s how they’re so low calorie).  But, I actually like Beck’s and MGD 64 − full flavor beers despite the minimal calorie content.

So, if you want to enjoy the refreshing taste of an ice cold brewsky (or 5 or 6) on your Cheat Day, go with the leptin-boosting properties of O’douls instead of the leptin-crashing properties of other alcoholic brews.  O’Douls contains the right types of carbs to postively affect leptin (i.e. simple, fast acting, insulin-spiking carbs), while alcohol unfortunately counteracts the intended hormonal purpose of the Cheat Day.

On other days, a 60-calorie low-carb beer won’t do much damage, but it’s all about moderation (limit to a couple times a week and you’ll be good).

By the way, if you’re not using beer and all your favorite foods to lose fat faster every week–especially over the holidays–then what the heck are you doing? :)  Pick up the Cheat Your Way Thin Holiday Edition and get started today with your first big Cheat Day – Thanksgiving!

==> Cheat Your Way Thin Holiday Edition

Find this information helpful?  Question?  Comment?  Drop it below!

And how do you like the new blog design?

Give me at least 100 comments and I’ll randomly select on commenter to receive a FREE tub of my favorite protein powder, Prograde Protein!

Talk to you in the comments section!


Win a FREE copy of the 1,000 Calorie Challenge System! (24 Hours left!)

Posted by Joel Marion on October 14, 2010

We’re going to make this post extremely quick and easy.

To enter to win one of the 10 THIRTY free copies of the entire 1,000 Calorie Challenge system that we’re GIVING AWAY today, simply reply in the comments section below this post (reply form is at the bottom of the page) with the following information:

In 250 words or less, we want you to tell us exactly why this program is the perfect program for you at this point in your life.  Tell us WHY you NEED access to this information.

Again, please keep your reply less than 250 words, and please, leave finances out of your reply.  This program (via our special launch pre-sale) will be affordable for literally anyone who wants access to  it.  Anyone.

So, again, leaving the financial stuff out, we want you to tell us, based on everything you’ve learned about the strategic 1,000 Calorie Challenge System over the last 6 updates, why this program is the perfect fit for you.

We will keep the contest open until 12 PM EST tomorrow, and then we’ll go through the replies and notify the winners via email sometime late Saturday!

Good luck!

Joel & Arnel

NOTE:  This contest is now closed.

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