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Ask the expert - Top 5 gym floor questions


From the experts

Asking fitness, weight loss and nutrition related questions to your friends and it is likely the answers will cause you more confusion and only add to the questions. Even Google is filled with variety of answers, depending on the question posed. Sometimes what we all need is a straightforward answer from someone in the know. When talking exercise, fitness, training and nutrition there is really no better source than fitness coach and gym owner, Ollie Marchon. Ollie has a wealth of experience and knowledge in all areas associated with the fitness industry.

Ollie Marchon sharing his knowledge and experience

The gym floor will once again be full of budding exercisers with bags of enthusiasm, motivation and a thirst for knowledge. We have enlisted Ollie’s help to answer some of your burning questions that often come with a variety of answers, depending on who you ask. Please sit back and let Ollie share the insights.

Question 1: What’s the best way to build muscle?

The most effective way to build muscle is to engage in a progressive strength programme. Essentially, you want to increase your muscular hypertrophy (an increase in muscle size achieved through exercise) through metabolic stress. That can be done by following a strength programme with rep ranges between 8-15 that allows for progressive overload, i.e. continually increasing the weights you’re lifting. It’s also crucial to fuel yourself with adequate calories and protein so that your muscles can repair themselves properly.

Question 2: What’s the best way to lose fat?

Maintaining a caloric deficit is how you lose weight, but it’s really important to give yourself time. Change won’t come overnight, so you need to be consistent with your nutrition and training, and find a programme that’s sustainable for your lifestyle. Find an exercise that you enjoy, progress over time and try not to make extreme changes to your diet. Slow and steady wins the race.

Question 3: Should I do cardio before or after weights?

Make the goal a goal. If you want to build muscle, prioritise strength training and fit in cardio where you’ll get the best out of it. Usually cardio will come after a strength session rather than immediately before. There’s more risk associated with lifting heavy weights so it’s recommended to put conditioning afterwards. The important thing is that you manage nutrition around both and find what works best for you and your goals.

Question 4: How much protein do I need?

The standard recommendation is 2g protein per kilogram of body weight. If you’re new to nutrition it might be helpful to track what you’re eating with an app to understand what food groups contain protein and where you need to increase your intake. It’s also helpful to look at packets and see how much protein you’re gaining from certain foods. A basic awareness of the food you’re eating and what you need to be aiming for, will go a long way.

Question 5: Can you build muscle and lose fat at the same time?

This is definitely possible at the start of your fitness journey, but the more intermediate you become the more you’ll need to focus in on your goals. Trying to do everything at once isn’t the most efficient way to get results, so choose one goal and run with it.

Hopefully that answers some of the typical questions that you either hear or have, but don’t let it stop there. If you have more questions for either us or Ollie, please feel free to get in contact with us via Instagram @Maximuscle. We would love to pass more of your questions over to Ollie and help take your training to the next level.

Ollie Marchon showing how to do the perfect Deadlift

Next Level

One thing that is consistent across Ollie’s answers and something to always bear in mind, is the synergy and marriage between training and nutrition. For the best results, both need to be tailored to you, your goal and most importantly, work together. No amount of training will undo a bad diet and nutrition could be that area of focus you need to take your training to the next level, irrespective of the level you are currently at. Check out more on how products, like Cyclone, can support you and your training.