The Importance of Omega-3s

Whathumbnail_img_1438t exactly is an Omega-3? Why do we need them? How do I make sure that I am taking enough?

These are some of the basic questions that I get when I recommend Omega-3s to anyone. Let’s start with the basics. What is an Omega-3? Omega-3s are what is known as a fatty acid and are part of the polyunsaturated fat group. Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA) is primarily found in plant-based foods. Flaxseed, Walnuts and Brussels Sprouts are excellent sources of ALA. Next is Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA), this along with its counterpart Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) are found primarily in fatty fish. Sardines, Salmon, Shrimp, Cod and Tuna are all good sources of EPA and DHA.

So, why do we need them? While each one individually provides its own benefit, combined they are the foundation for living a healthy life. Most of the ALA that you consume is stored in your cells as energy. However, it serves a much greater purpose as it is the building block for EPA and DHA. In a way, ALA is not important as EPA and DHA, and in another, it is the most important. Your body relies on

Let’s talk about your body’s internal functions when it comes to Omega-3s. Your body relies on prostaglandins, or messaging molecules, to ensure proper function of our inflammatory system. Why is this important, well, prostaglandins are made from EPA, and foods that are rich in EPA have been shown to have excellent anti-inflammatory effects. While EPA deals with our inflammatory systems, DHA deals with our nervous system, particularly it helps our brain function. According to the book, The World’s Healthiest Foods by George Mateljan (2nd Edition), “DHA actually accounts for 9-12% of our brains total weight.” A healthy level of Omega-3s have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease, can help with stiffness and joint pain associated with Rheumatoid arthritis. They have also been shown to help with lowering depression, baby development, ADHD, Alzheimer’s and dementia, and have been shown in some studies, when paired with a diet and exercise,  to drop body fat by 25%. WebMD has so good information on how Omega-3s help and what they have been used to assist in. Click this link to go to their website.

So how do you ensure that you are consuming enough Omega-3s a day? Well, I’m glad that you asked. There are two options. Option 1 is consuming 8 oz. of wild caught salmon a day or 6.4 oz. of sardines a day, or eat 16 pouches of Starkist Albacore Tuna a day. Easy enough right? You know, I love fish, but even I am not willing to eat this much a day. Not to mention that there is no way that I could afford to eat 8 oz. of wild caught salmon a day. So, what is option number two you ask? Take a high-quality Fish Oil. Simple, convenient and doesn’t taste like fish. The consensus is that you should be getting at least 2.4 grams (g) per day of Omega-3s. When you purchase a fish oil makes sure that it contains at least that much in Omega-3s, but also that it has at least 400-500 milligrams (mg) each of EPA and DHA. For your ALA, make sure that you are eating your vegetable and enjoy a handful of walnuts.

When it comes to my Omega-3 supplement, I take 1st Phorm Full-Mega. In each 2 soft gel serving, I get 2400mg(2.4g) of total Omega-3s. I get 720mg of EPA and 480mg of DHA. Click here to get your own bottle of Full-Mega. You will not find a better fish oil/Omega-3 supplement on the market.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me and I’ll do my best to answer them. Also, be sure to join our mailing list by clicking the sign up for newsletter button. The emails contain fitness and supplement information as well as healthy recipes and workout tips. Follow me on Instagram and Facebook as well for even more content. Keep killing it and make 2017 your best year yet.


When are kids old enough to start working out?

I’ve often wondered this question. When is it okay to introduce younger children to resistance training and proper nutrition. I think that the second part of this is the easiest to answer and you should be teaching your children about nutrition as soon as possible. Children are sponges and mimic our behaviors, the good and the bad.

I keep it simple with my children. The facts are that you cannot completely deprive children of the foods that they enjoy. An example of this is I still buy cereal for my daughters, and I let them choose the flavor. I can’t expect them to eat egg white with kale and mushrooms like I do. Where I don’t flex is on dinner. I expect my girls to eat what my wife and I eat. Whether it is steak and sweet potatoes or chicken and rice, they eat what we eat. I do try to ensure that they have something sweet if they want dessert. However, when I say sweet I am talking fruit. If you don’t want to keep fresh fruit on hand, I don’t, then you can buy frozen fruit and make them after dinner smoothies. Another trick is to avoid buying chips and other processed snacks. Try to keep healthy options available for them, P3 packs are a favorite of my oldest daughter and my youngest likes having pieces of lunch meat. If you limit their options to healthy foods it will only help them in the long run.

Now for the hard part, when do we let them start resistance training. Remember, this is all opinion based and you should do your own research to develop your own educated opinion. Also, there are several personal trainers available that specialize in child fitness training. Just make sure you ask what the trainer’s certifications are and then verify them on the internet. Okay, with that out of the way where do we start? My oldest daughter will be 12 next month and I started letting her go to the gym last year. When I started training her, the main focus was teaching her proper form. You don’t want to have them lifting heavy and hurting themselves, especially at a young age. An injury now could affect them for the rest of their lives. Light weight and proper form are critical to their success as a lifter and yours as their coach. In my opinion, they can do all the lifts that you do, but as mentioned before, LIGHT WEIGHT AND PROPER FORM.

But what about the younger ones? My seven-year-old wants more than anything to lift weights. Mom and Dad do it, and she wants to as well. I feel that she is still too young to engage in weight training. The girl is very active and is constantly on the go so her cardio is great. I did, however, design a few workouts for her to do at home. She, up until she broke her arm on a trampoline, was working on her push-ups and is very proud of the fact that she does them better than the boys in her grade. Sit-ups are another exercise that younger children can do to get started. I also let her use resistance bands for things like curls, squats and other forms of presses. I also spot her when she wants to do chin ups. Another form of resistance you can use is canned goods. Pretty much everyone has 12 oz. cans of something in their pantry and you can let your younger children use them for shoulder presses, curls, and bench presses.

Just remember to do your research. This is should be fun for both of you. If you have any questions be sure to ask your child’s doctor to make sure your child is okay to exercise. The habits you teach today, your children will carry with them for life. Start them off on the right foot and they will thank you later for it.

Keep up the hard work! Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and join my Facebook group for more content. Also, be sure to sign up for my email list. I send out fitness and nutrition information, recipes, supplement information and general advice on it. You can join by clicking the sign up now button on the side-bar.



Wake Up Early

Crazy man, insane, psycho. These are all names that I have been called based on the hours that I keep. On a typical day I am out of bed no later than 3:30 am. While most “normal” people think this is just plain crazy, there is a method to madness and I’m here to explain it. By getting up this early I am effectively adding more hours too my day, which most people complain they don’t have. So,let’s take a look at my typical day.

3:30 am – alarm goes off and I get up. I throw on my gym clothes. Brush my teeth and take my pre-workout.

4:00 am – I get to the gym and at most there are three other people there. This allows me to move through my workout without having to wait for equipment or benches.

5:30 am – Get home and take my post workout. I start the coffee. Shave and shower and get my uniform on.

6:00 am – Make my breakfast, pack my lunch, have some coffee and watch a show on Netflix.

6:30 am – Off to work

7:00 am – 3:30 pm – Work

4:00 pm – Get home and get on the laptop to work on my own goals

5:30 pm – Eat dinner

6:00 pm – Prep lunch for tomorrow and clean up

7:00 pm – Back on the laptop to do more work. Check Facebook and Instagram. Maybe write a blog post and watch some TV or just hang out.

8:00 pm – Put the kids to bed and back on the laptop

8:30 – 9:00 pm – Off to bed

So that is a typical 17 hour day for me. Seems easy right? This didn’t happen overnight for me and took a lot of work to get to this point. Some people that I have talked to say that they can’t go to sleep that early. The main complaint that they have is that they just can’t fall asleep. While some people do suffer from insomnia, that is not the case for most. We are usually laying there staring at the ceiling thinking about what we did during the day or what we have to do tomorrow or what we are doing with our lives. One way to combat this is to let it all go while you are relaxing at the end of the day. Go over what you need to do or what you did during the day. If that doesn’t work for you then get a journal and write your thoughts or plans in it. Just get them out of your brain. Some other tips include not turning on the TV in your room and try to keep it cold. It is scientifically proven that we sleep better when we are cool.

This is the main jumping off point. Another way to insure that you succeed at this is to ignore the snooze button. When your alarm goes off get up. Those extra few minutes are not helping you at all. Sit up and put your feet on the floor. Once you are up you’re not going to go back to sleep. I know this seems like a lot, but it really is worth it. You will get more accomplished during the day and you will be ready for a restful night at the end of it. It does get easier too if you have a good diet and are exercising. These two things alone will help you sleep better.

Alright, it’s 8:48 pm right now and 3:30 am comes early 😉 I’m no sleep expert, but if you need help or advice with nutrition or fitness shoot me an email and I’ll be happy to help where I can. Do something different and keep making 2017 your best year yet. Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and join Facebook group Adam Delgado Fitness.

– Adam

Macros Macros Macros

If you have ever been to a gym or looked at any fitness website, you have no doubt heard the term macros. It was likely something to the effect of, “yeah Bro. I’ve got my macros on lock-down.” I love gym “bro” talk. Anyways, macros and why are they important, or in this instance not so important. First things first. Macros stand for macro-nutrients, or protein, carbs, and fats. Most people involved in fitness focus on these three and pay little attention to anything else, like say micro-nutrients, which we’ll discuss in later articles, and I’ve briefly touched on in previous articles. Anyways, I’m getting off topic again.

Ok, here is the point. If you are just starting a transformation or a fitness routine, I want you to completely ignore these macros. Chances are that your macro count is not the problem. It is more likely the portions of food that are consumed and an imbalance of fats and carbs to protein. What I want you to focus on, like I just stated is portion control and the imbalance that most of us suffer from. To start, your first task is to work on portion control. Don’t get me wrong I love food. I live in Las Vegas and there is no shortage of all you can eat buffets and I love the Cheesecake Factory. However, while okay to indulge some of the time, this is how I got myself in horrible shape. So, let’s look at portions and keep it simple. Protein, one palm size portion. Carbohydrate, one fist size portion. Vegetables, at minimum one fist size portion. Easy, right? No complicated calculations, no weighing each bite, just keeping it simple.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way let’s talk about food. Food is awesome. It is vital to our survival. It’s how we celebrate things, and so many traditions are passed down through the generations while in the kitchen. These alone are reasons not to fear food. I know too many people who, when trying to lose weight, tell me that they are just going to eat salad. You need to eat protein, and not just drink a protein shake that you picked up at Wal-Mart. When I say protein, I’m talking lean beef, chicken, turkey, pork and even buffalo (so delicious). For carbs, we are talking brown rice, sweet potatoes, whole grain pasta, and fruit. Vegetables are basically free game, steam them, put some salt and pepper on them and eat them up. Remember, keep it simple when you are starting. I’ve been doing this for almost two years and have just recently started counting macros because I am training for competition. If not I would still be following the advice I laid out in this article. Have fun and enjoy the journey.

Here are a couple samples of a meal plan and a food list that I put together to give you an idea. As always, if you have questions shoot me an email and I’d be more than happy to help you in reaching your fitness goals.

Building Lean Muscle After You Workout.

shake-vs-foodThe hour after you finish working out is a very important time to ensure that you are getting your body the nutrition that it needs in or to repair itself. There is an old saying the muscles are torn in the gym, fed in the kitchen and rebuilt in bed. The irony in all of this is that your time in the gym has basically the least amount of importance when it comes to getting healthy and building lean muscle. We’re going to take a look at some of the important facts that people are missing and hopefully fill some gaps, so let’s get started.

When you lift weights or do high-intensity cardio, you are tearing your muscle fibers. Most of this is common knowledge to anyone who has ever read a fitness article. However, one facet that is often neglected to be mentioned is where did this energy that you used to workout come from? Your body is an amazing machine and runs on Glycogen. The dictionary defines Glycogen as, “a substance deposited in bodily tissues as a store of carbohydrates. It is a polysaccharide that forms glucose on hydrolysis.” In layman’s terms, Glycogen is your energy stores. It is built up in your muscle tissue and utilized by your body when you need it, like when you are weight training. During your training routine, you deplete these levels and they must be replenished. This is where the most important part of your fitness journey comes into play.

So, we just finished our workout and we’re drenched in sweat, we’re exhausted and probably hungry. Our muscles are begging for nutrients and our body is working out how it is going to replenish our energy stores. Now, our body utilizes carbohydrates as fuel, so that is what it craves. This is where we fall into a trap. What do we feed our bodies to ensure that we repair our damaged muscles fibers, while at the same time, replenish Glycogen and burn fat. There are a few different methods we can use. First, we can eat. Food should always be your primary source of protein, carbs, and fat. The only issue with using food after a workout is that it can take our body several hours to break down the nutrients provided by, chicken and rice after we workout and by the time it has been broken down it will be used to replenish Glycogen first and then repair muscle fibers. Remember, our body is only concerned with survival, not muscle development. So, what can we use instead of food? Maybe a protein shake. We have to remember though that not all protein is created equal. If you take a sustained assimilation protein like Casein, it takes a long time for your body to absorb the nutrients. If you take just a basic Whey protein that is high temp processed or ionized, the Amino Acid structure has been changed and you are likely to not get the best results out of it. The best option, in my opinion, is a low temp processed, hydrolyzed whey isolate protein. The low temp process ensures that the Amino Acid profile is kept intact allowing your body to receive all of the macros the protein boasts and the rapid absorption ensures that your muscles are fed.

Now, to make things even more complex. We are looking to replenish Glycogen and rebuild muscle. This is where Insulin becomes so important. After a workout, your body is in what is known as an Anabolic state. It is craving nutrients and will readily absorb them. For this, I use a mixture of a fast digesting carbohydrate with a hydrolyzed whey isolate protein. This ensures that my muscles are fed and rebuilt and while Glycogen is replenished. This aids in the recovery of your muscles and an added benefit, it reduces soreness. Think of Insulin as a freight train, when you take a fast digesting carb you are adding more cars to the train and the fast digesting protein is the cargo. This combo is almost impossible to beat when it comes to recovery. If you take it 30-45 minutes after training and follow it up with a quality meal 30-60 minutes later you are priming your body for optimal recovery and growth. As always there is so much more that can be said about nutrition and recovery, but I want to keep it short for the article. Hope this helps in giving you a basic guide and if you have any questions feel free to email me or leave a comment.

If you are interested, here is a link to the post workout recovery that I use and I have not been able to find a better combo available. Keep working hard and making 2017 your best year yet. Post Workout

Personal Transformation

img_1098These before and after pictures or from May 2016 – December 2016. Even though my transformation had started August 2015, I lost focus a year later and while I wasn’t as bad as I was before I still had to transform myself again.

The scariest part of any transformation or life change is the fear of failure. When I began my physical transformation in August of 2015 I didn’t take a single picture of what I looked like. Aside from being embarrassed, I had tried this before and failed and had those pictures to remind me of the failures. I was already setting myself up for failure in thinking that I had tried this once and this time it would just end the same. This type of defeatist attitude was only counterproductive. I was able to start with good momentum regardless. I was meal prepping on the weekend, I was going to the gym (which was terrifying), and was following a workout routine. Regardless of all of that though, the thought of failure was always lingering over me. It was gnawing at me, it continued to tell me that I was only going to fail again, that I wasn’t good enough and that I should just give up.

I know this isn’t the way that most would start an article like this, but I ‘ve never been one to follow the norms. Most would post how they hit the ground running and never looked back, that they felt great and saw instant change in every aspect of their lives. While some of that is true for some people, in my experience, it is very rare. Most people deal with the same anxiety and doubt that I felt. The first week is painful. It is full of fear of going to the gym and “not fitting in”, it is the DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness), it’s the monotony of grilled chicken and steamed vegetables, and the drastic change to your daily life.

Now that I’ve gotten the negatives out of the way let’s look at the positives. When your body transforms, it can transform your life. It is a great feeling when in you start seeing results. Your clothes fit better, you have more energy and people start to tell you that you look great. You are lowering the risks of heart disease, stroke, and certain cancers. You are reversing the clock on aging. Give me a day and I’ll show you achievement, a month and I’ll show you results, give me 3 months and I’ll change your life. I will never tell you that this is going to be easy. It takes hard work, discipline and determination. There are going to be days that you don’t want to go to the gym, but you must fight that and go. There will be days that you want to cheat on your diet, but you have to stay committed. This is your life and it is worth fighting for. Don’t wait another day to start. Find a plan and get committed because nobody else can want this but you.

On a final note, this is not something that you can do for a few months and stop. This is transforming your life and leaving the old you behind. Don’t make the mistakes that I made. Take before pictures and don’t doubt your abilities. Stick to the plan and it will work. Keep making 2017 your best year ever!!

If you have questions about how to start shoot me an email or you can find me on Instagram, by clicking the link, or on my Facebook group (Adam Delgado Fitness).