For today’s episode of “Ask Amber Anything”, there is no theme so you can literally ask me anything. It is also more fun because I am joined by my friend and Biceps After Babies’ very own Integrator/COO, Carley Ferguson. She has come up with a new idea for doing this episode and we are excited to answer your questions. Let’s begin!
Find show notes at bicepsafterbabies.com/270
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- Importance of teaching confidence and body positivity to both daughters and sons. (02:54, 04:04)
- Building Muscle and Losing Fat (08:24, 10:28, 16:37)
- Working Hard vs. Perfectionistic Mindset (18:05)
- All-or-Nothing Thinking (19:48, 38:06)
- Fuel Performance with Macros (24:05, 26:06)
You're listening to Biceps After Babies Radio Episode 270.
Hello and welcome to Biceps After Babies Radio. A podcast for ladies who know that fitness is about so much more than pounds lost or PR's. It's about feeling confident in your skin and empowered in your life. I'm your host Amber Brueseke, a registered nurse, personal trainer, wife and mom of four. Each week my guests and I will excite and motivate you to take action in your own personal fitness as we talk about nutrition, exercise, mindset, personal development and executing life with conscious intention. If your goal is to look, feel and be strong and experience transformation from the inside out, you my friend are in the right place. Thank you for tuning in. Now, let's jump into today's episode.
Amber B 00:48
Hey, hey, hey. Welcome back to another episode of Biceps After Babies Radio. I'm your host, Amber Brueseke, and today I am joined by my good friend, Biceps After Babies’ Integrator/COO/Right Hand Woman, Carley. Hey, Carley!
Amber B 01:07
So funny story. I haven't told you the story. Funny story. My sister called yesterday and I was in a meeting. And so I messaged her. I did the like, Can I call you back? And I said I'm in a meeting. I'll call you like an hour, she was like, OK, so then I called her back and she, she was like, I guess I probably should have called, like, ask Carley like, schedule an appointment.
Oh man, that's funny cause yeah.
Amber B 01:31
Yeah, I I forgot. I have to like book book appointments with you. I was like, yeah, honey, so funny.
That's what's so funny.
Amber B 01:37
So she definitely she's like I I guess I should have reached out to Carley, so for those of you who are not familiar with Carley, Carley has been with me for like 4 years is, is it 4 years yet?
Almost, this year will be four years.
Amber B 01:49
Four years and she's fantastic. She does a ton of stuff in the business. Her official role is Integrator of the business, which essentially means I come with crazy ideas and Carley makes them come to life. Makes them actually happen.
Which is funny, we were just talking about that the other day. Isn't it hard for you that you come or that I come to you with so many crazy ideas. I'm like, no, that's your job.
Amber B 02:14
That's my job, yeah. Yeah, I I wanted to make sure that. I wasn't like. I don't know, just coming to her with these really crazy ideas and her being like, Oh my gosh, how are we gonna do that? And she's like, no, it's my job. You come up with these crazy ideas. And then I'm like OK, now what does it actually take to make those things happen so? So happy that you're here today. Carley. Carley, this is Carley's idea. That's actually we wanted to do. I want to do and ask Amber anything. It's been a while since I didn't ask him or anything episode. And we wanted to make it extra fun this time. In the past when I've done these episodes, I have people submit questions, and I just read them and won't won't. Well, that's kind of boring. So this time we decided to make it a little more exciting and have you actually call in and ask your question, and as we were kind of brainstorming about this episode, Carley said, Wouldn't it be fun to have somebody else be on the podcast episode with you, just kind of have a little banter, some back and forth so that would be really fun Carley who? Who should that be?
And I was like you could choose anyone. And you settled for me, I guess.
Amber B 03:12
And and I said why don't you come on and do it? That'll be fun that we could do it together. So that's where we are today. So that's what today is going to be about. It's just, there's going to be random questions. There's no like theme to this Ask Amber Anything. It really is just whatever you guys sent in as questions. So you ready to start?
Let's do it.
Amber B 03:29
OK, we're going to start with Michelle.
Hi, Amber. My name is Michele Efran, I know you work primarily with women, but my question for you is, do you teach the same fitness, nutrition, and body image things to your sons as you do to your daughter? I've seen so many things around building up girls and women with their self-confidence and positive body image, but I wonder what your thoughts are on teaching boys these things.
Amber B 03:58
So I thought that was such a good question.
Oh, that's a good one. I nice one, Michelle.
Amber B 04:04
I love it. And I think so, just as like a little bit of background, I have one daughter and I have three sons and Carley has two daughters and a son. So both of us have both daughters and sons that we are raising, and I think one of the reasons well, I was thinking about this question I think one of the reasons that you see a lot about helping girls with confidence and helping them with feeling good about themselves and about their bodies is because we as a general society, tend to, boys that tend to don't have the same pressure. Some of the same pressures that girls do. Now, that's not to say that boys don't have any of the pressures and there's obviously they have their own pressures that are dealing with but as on a societal level. Boys tend to struggle less with confidence than women do, and especially when it comes to body confidence. However, I think there is absolutely like I I teach the same things to my boys as I do to my girls. I'm encouraging my boys to lift weights. I'm encouraging my boys to eat healthy. I'm encouraging them to develop confidence in themselves and without looking from from external validation from other people. So for me personally, absolutely am I teaching my boys and girls the same things? 100%. I'm curious, Carley. What? What perspective you have on this?
Yeah. I mean, I would agree. I think it's a little different. My, my kids are six, four and two and Amber’s are older than mine. Her youngest is older than my oldest. And so we're still at that like. Everyone has confidence because we're little kids.
Amber B 05:40
And we can do anything.
We can do anything, but I would say like I've already kind of thought about this a little bit just because I want to be really careful about avoiding maybe some of the pitfalls that I feel like I, I grew up with four brothers. And so it was an interesting perspective. Now I have more girls than boys and just not that you know anything particular. My family set me up for this expectation of just, but just, you know, in general society sets these expectations. Like always do these things and girls do these things and I want to make sure my kids understand that they can do anything. And so it's not going to be like only the girls will work in the kitchen. Just the same as like only boys workout with weights and girls do cardio is like no, we all work out. We all work in the kitchen. We all go to the gym and we do weight. We all do cardio. It's like it's it's a human thing, not a gender specific thing and but that was a little off the topic, but.
Amber B 06:39
Well, I think it's good. And honestly, when I started my business I I used to coach both males and females and there came a point in my business where I was, you know, thinking about who, who do I, who I like serving? who do I feel like I can serve the most, and who do I want to continue to serve? And it was actually a really scary decision to niche down to just women because it felt like Oh well, I'm leaving like half of the population out of who, who it is that I'm serving, but what I realized what like that was that when when I was coaching both males and females, males and females needed different styles and types of coaching. The things that landed with women were different than the things that landed with men, and that's not to say that, you know ones right or wrong. I just found that I was able to connect better and to land better and to serve better the women than I was to be able to provide with the men needed, and so I remember like, making that decision to niche down to just serving women. And it was, it was a scary decision, but in a lot of ways a really good decision because I feel like that's the population that I can serve. So I guess I'm saying that because I I talk a lot to one gender, that doesn't mean that what I say to one gender cannot be applied to boys, could not be applied to men. A lot of the things I say can be applied to both genders, but I specifically speak to women and niche down to women because that's who I feel like I can connect with and serve at the deepest level.
Yeah, no, I think that's good because like, yeah, like you said at the very beginning at the end of the day, we're all humans. We still eat food, so it's like you're going to still teach your boys to eat the same way that you're gonna teach your girl, your daughter, you know? Yeah, that there was something else that I had going out with that and it popped right out of my head. So yeah. Amen. There you go. Amen.
Amber B 08:24
Awesome. Okay, let's move on to Stephanie.
Hi, Amber, it's Stephanie. My question is I'm thinking of doing a reverse and just wondering if you can still lose inches during a reverse and maintenance versus a cut. Thanks, look forward to your answer. Have a great day. Bye bye.
Amber B 08:46
OK, so this is like the classic question about reversing is, everybody wants to lose fat and gain muscle simultaneously. It's like the Magic Unicorn, can I lose fat and gain muscle? Because that's essentially what you're doing if you are maintaining your weight and you are losing inches. You're losing the inches because you're losing fat, but you're maintaining weight because simultaneously you're building that muscle. Now there is a subset of the population that can do what we call recomposition. So simultaneously lose fat and gain muscle. But it is a subset of the population. Is not everybody. It is tends to be people who are newer to weightlifting. So you are in what we call the newbie phase of weightlifting where your body is just primed to put on muscle. That's typically in the 1st 6 to 12 months of of you actually implementing progressive overload. So that's the population or the population who is genetically gifted. There is a subset of the population you you're probably not included in it. It's a very small subset of the population that is genetically gifted and can do both of those things simultaneously. Or if you're taking steroids, that's the other population that can really do recomposition well is those who are taking you know steroids. So, if you are someone who is newer to lifting, you can be eating at a maintenance level, setting your calories at maintenance, implementing progressive overload, and what you'll see is your weight may stay within a very small range up and down. You're not going very far in terms of your weight, but over time, you're seeing your inches change, you're seeing your progress pictures change because you're simultaneously building muscle while you're losing fat, and that is something that can happen. But again, it's for someone like myself who has been lifting for a really long period of time. It's almost like your body gets out of this primed period where it's just primed to put on muscle, and you once you get past that newbie phase, you tend to have to cycle through a cut to loose fat and then a bulk to be able to add muscle and you tend to cycle through those to be able to get your body to the place that you want.
I was going to say with that, not from a coaching perspective. This is from me not. I'm not a coach like Amber I I just do the back end stuff. That's where my expertise is and just for some perspective, Stephanie, I like after I had my son. So my youngest, I remember talking to Amber and just casually being like Oh, you know, I'm thinking I want to like add some muscles so I think I want to bulk. And she's like No, ride the newbie games like.
Amber B 11:21
Yeah, lit it up.
Like live it up. Don't have to eat more. Just know that you can do both at the same time, but I will say I was waiting for you to give your classic. It depends. That was what your first thing I. Thought you're going to say like Well, it depends.
Amber B 11:34
Try to be more specific, more specific. That's what people want it was good. All right, let's hear from Crystal.
Hi this is Crystal from Utah. My question is I know that we need a progressive overload to build muscles, but after we've finished the phases of bulking and maintaining and cutting and however many rounds that takes to get to our goal physique, what do we do with our weight training then if we don't want to build anymore muscle, and just kind of keep our, our uh weights heavy and just switch out the moves that we're making every six weeks and then we still do a small, progressive overload. I'm getting close and I'm not sure what to do when I get there. Thanks.
Amber B 12:19
This is such an exciting question and it leads perfectly from our last question of to like a lot of people actually asked me this of OK once I've gone through all these cycles, Amber, I've done the bulking and I put on muscle and I done the cut and I remove some of the fat and I've gone to a place where I'm I'm happy with my body. And I don't really want to change it? What do I do with my workouts now? We know for our our nutrition you're going to be eating that maintenance, which is great, that's where we want to spend most of our life. But what I do with my workouts and the answer is, is you do whatever you did to be able to get to this point and you simply just have to maintain it. So our body does not just randomly put on muscle, it only puts on muscle if it needs that muscle, and so that's why we I talk a lot about progressive overload. I teach a lot about progressive overload. If you have no idea what I'm talking about with progressive overload, I highly recommend my free class bicepsafterbabiesabies.com/workshop, where I teach that principle, but our bodies only respond to the requirement or or the stress that is being applied to it that is telling the body that hey, we need muscle. And so when you progressive overload, you're basically stressing the body. It is responding by adding muscle. And and that's the that's the process. Now what you're saying Is OK what happens when I get the amount of muscle that I want? Do I still need to continue to progressive overload? And the answer is no, you don't need to progressive overload. You simply need to do what you have been doing in the past. Meaning, let's let's just take I'm just make it super simple and just like take some really simple numbers. Let's say you were deadlifting. And you've been deadlifting at 200, you know, for six reps and that's kind of, you know, what you've kind of worked your way up to in in progressive load and that's what you been doing. You simply need to be able to maintain that to be able to continue to maintain the amount of muscle that you've built, if you stop deadlifting, it's a signal to your body that your body doesn't need that muscle, and so you won't be able to maintain it long term. Now, if the cool thing about this is is if you do end up losing muscle and you decide you want to put it back on, it is much faster the second time around. So muscle memory is a very real phenomenon and you'll be able to put that muscle back on. But this is actually the phase that I'm at right now is I'm I'm at that phase where I've built a lot of muscle I don't really need/want to build more. I'm at a happy place with my body and so I am just focusing on doing the things that I love doing and having fun in the gym in a way that that feels good to me. And of course I lift some, but I'm not too regimented about, my gosh, I didn't do that this this week. Because I just enjoying, like the face that I'm in, which is just using the muscle that I've built to be able to have some fun. I feel like did I answer that OK, Carley?
Yeah. No, I think you did.
Amber B 15:07
A little rumbly.
No, I thought you did a really good job. I at least like if I was putting myself in Crystal’s shoes and being because I I feel I've had this question before. I was like, what does maintenance in the gym look like, which is basically if you were to summarize your question, that would be and you answering it I was like, so it's like maintenance with your food. You just get to a place where you're just like. I'm living my life and I'm eating the things I want, knowing that I still need to like, you know, keep in mind, like I still need protein if I want to have muscle and I still need to have carbs if I want to have energy and fat. If I want my body to keep working, it's like, yeah, if you wanna maintain your muscle, you're still gonna go to gym. You just might not have to be so conscientious about making sure you're adding weight every single time and reps or yeah.
Amber B 15:48
That was a really good summary, I'm glad you're here. It is very similar because I was actually just recording another podcast on somebody else's podcast and I was making the point that the how strict you need to be at maintenance to be able to maintain is much looser than how strict you need to be in a deficit to be able to create that deficit and and that's where beautiful things about finance is there's a lot more legal room. You don't have to be quite as strict. You don't have to hit your protein right on. There's a range of calories that you're able to be in, and it is very similar in the gym you don't have to be quite as strict as like you know, every time adding weight or wraps or sets you don't have to even like deadlift every single week. You can take a lot bigger break in between your your workouts and still be able to maintain that muscle mass.
OK question, I don't know if you know well, I should not say that with the guys of, I don't know if you know the answer, but just putting it that way. Do you think that in the gym, if you're in the phase of wanting to grow muscle, that it is much similar, like very much similar when you're trying to lose weight and you try to cycle through, you know, cut phase and back to maintenance and then cut, so you go through those cycles, is it the same in the gym where you should be like in a heavy lift phase and then kind of maintenance for a bit like.
Amber B 17:03
Well, that's what a deload would be, right?
I guess that's true.
Amber B 17:05
Yes, so that that is exactly why deloads are really helpful. So if you don't know what deload is, is oftentimes when you're going through cycles of weight lifting is you will do a cycle. So let's say you're on a hypertrophy block which is a block meant to build muscle. You go through hypertrophy block of like four or five weeks and then you take a week off and bring your volume way down. So often time you're still going to the gym during that deload week, you're just you have the volume of weight that you're lifting is decreased and it's just a way to allow your body that recovery to be able to continue on and then in addition a lot of times people will cycle through, they call them meso cycles where they'll cycle through a hypertrophy block and then they'll cycle through more of a strength block and then they'll cycle through back through hypertrophy. And so they're cycling through these different styles of training as you're going through that process. So absolutely it, you know, if it you don't just keep doing the same thing over and over and over and over and over again on infinium with weight lifting, there are cycles and patterns, just like there is with weight loss.
So you're saying our muscles won't atrophy super fast?
Amber B 18:09
They yeah, it's a lot, a lot slower than people tend to think for, for muscle loss.
Amber B 18:17
OK, let's listen to Kelly.
Hi, Amber, this is Kelly Dater and I was wondering what's your perspective or what you think the difference or how you draw the line between working hard on a goal, having determination dedication and on the other hand having that all or nothing perfectionistic mindset or thinking. Alright, I hope you have a great day. Bye.
Amber B 18:44
So I love this question and what I know that she didn't say in that is that this was specifically she was asking this question in reference to when I shared about my goals this year. So my goals this year, if you listen to my goal episode, was instead of having overall goals for the year is to have a goal every month and to have it be a daily goal that I was committed to. So in the month of January, my goal was to get 10,000 steps. And there were several times in the month of January where it was like 9:00 PM outside. It was raining and I still had freaking 1500 steps to go get. And I would go out and do, do my 1500 steps. There was one time we actually took a cruise after Christmas and so it was beginning of January and we're on the cruise and I in my cruise ship room and I freaking have 3000 steps left. Again, I like walking around the cruise ship, just like trying to get my steps in, and so I thought this question was such a good one because what is the difference of that of like to me it was like I'm dedicated to this goal. I said I was going to do it. I'm gonna follow through and I'm gonna and I'm going to do it. What's the difference between that and all or nothing thinking and which we we talked a lot about of like we don't want to get into this like it has to be this way or I have to do all the things or it doesn't count. And so I thought this was such a good conversation to kind of think about what is. What is the difference between those two things? I don't know if you have any thoughts before I share mine.
Well, I was just, I was just typing down thoughts because apparently I have short term memories today, so I don't want to forget what I was thinking during this time, but I relate to this a lot where it's I feel like it's like balls to the walls. This is what I'm doing, doing, doing and then, eventually, inevitably, burnout comes. It just does. And so that's actually, I've adopted Amber's goal situation for the year, too. I've just been doing 30 day goals or, you know, monthly goals. And I I don't know, are we curious? Maybe I'll ask you this, like, my mentality with it is that I'm using these 30 days to set a habit and then at the end of the 30 days, I get to decide if I want to keep it or not. And so like for January, mine was reading a chapter of a book, any book, every day. And so now. I am like there's some days where I'm like, well, it's no longer my goal to do it every single day. So I get to decide is this actually serving me so like much like on your cruise. It's like if you don't hit 10,000 steps, you're not going to go out at 9:30 at night. And walk 10,000 if you're like. No, I've had a really hard day. I'm really tired. I'm staying with me. I'm like, I'm not going to read today, but I just know that that that it has become part of my nightly routine even if I don't do it every single day.
Amber B 21:24
Yeah, I love that, but I think for me it it comes down to the question of like, what's driving it, what's driving the decision to do this. And to me, all or nothing, thinking like what's behind it, like I pulled the curtain back, what you'd be looking at is fear. So fear is driving all or nothing thinking. Whereas if you're just thinking about well, this is something that, you know, I'm committed to you're pulling that back and it, it is, it is a desire for growth. It is a desire. It is a commitment, right? You're pulling it back. It's not. It's not driven by fear. It's driven by commitment. Now, I think some people can teach, can trick themselves and they're like, oh, I'm just committed. But if you like, but really, that commitment is driven by fear, a fear if I don't do it this way, it's not going to work. It's not going to be successful, it's going to mean I'm a loser, you know, whatever. And so I think we have to be really honest with ourselves of, like, what is driving this decision that I want to make? Is it driven from fear or is it driven from commitment? And if you think it's driven by commitment, look a little closer and still make sure that that it's not like a well, I won't be successful if I don't do this kind of commitment, it's a no, I desire it's it's a forward thinking rather than a a fear based response.
Well, and I was going to say with that when you're looking at that commitment, really deciding is this coming from commitment deciding does success still mean the same thing now that it did when I initially set the goal. Yeah. So maybe it's like. Well, maybe it's not that I get 10,000 steps every day it's, you know, whatever the new goal is is I get it like 5 out of the 7 days or
Amber B 22:58
Yeah, being being intentional with your definition of what success is. OK. I love that question. All right, next let's go to Alicia.
Hi, Amber. My name is Alicia. I've been weightlifting for about 8 years, did some I've done macro counting, I've done a cut and bulk and I've been at maintenance for a while so I feel good about that my thing is now I decided to switch it up a little bit and I want to do some races, so I'm adding in some running and swimming, and biking me to my workout. And I'm wondering if my macros have changed because of that, or if when it comes in. If there's certain things I can do nutrition wise to make sure I'm adequately fueled for those big events. I've never done this before and my macros have always worked out in the past, so I'm interested to see if there are some things that I can do to switch it up to help me perform better. Thanks so much.
Amber B 24:08
OK, I love this. First of all, I love that she's, like, gone through all the cycles. She's like, done all the phases. She's at a really good place and now we're wanting to add some races in, so my recommendation typically for when you're going to be adding distance, you know, distance, running, distance biking, anything that is a long time frame in terms of cardio, I typically my cutoff usually is around the 90 minute mark, so if you're going to be working out for longer than 90 minutes, I recommend starting with adding 50 grams of extra carbs that day, and usually you want to have those carbs pre, pre run pre bike, pre swim, whatever it is that you're going to be doing that's where I like to have clients start. Now when we're adjusting your macros in this case, you are adjusting your macros to enhance performance. That's that's the goal is like we're we're looking to enhance our performance. And So what you really want to pay attention to is how you feel during your workout. So the whole idea with having these extra carbs is how do I feel doing my workout? Am I able to push hard like I want to push? Am I recovering well about something really to pay attention to and I'm like recovering well after the workout and from there you may need to add more or less carbs. Sometimes I will have clients add, you know more than the 50 grams. Maybe they're adding 100 grams or sometimes I'll have them start to carb load the day before, so that may look like having 50 grams of extra carbs the day before your your run. And then 50 grams of extra carbs the day of your run. But this is really where you as an athlete get to experiment a little bit and start to get to know your body about how you know how much is helpful to you to feel energetic on those long runs versus sluggish. And then also to be able to help with that recovery, but since most of the time when people are talking about races. They're talking about long cardio. It typically is really carbs that you're looking at increasing because that is where your body is going to get from, however, it is really important that you're also maintaining enough protein intake over the entire day, because cardio is catabolic, meaning it breaks down muscle tissue and so in order to protect the muscle as much as possible, you'll want to make sure you're eating adequate protein. And then I I really still encourage heavy lifting, you know, on other days. So that you're what you're basically doing is priming your body and telling your body hey, this muscle is important. I'm still using it. Please do not use it for fuel during these long runs. Here's some carbs. Use that instead. Eat that instead, but leave my muscle alone and so by consuming enough protein by continuing to lift and by eating those extra carbohydrates, the whole idea is to hopefully to the best of our ability people to maintain the amount of muscle that you've been able to put on and not have that muscle tissue be broken down during those long races.
There you go. Well, for I was going to say I love that you could tell she was experienced, like I'll say, macro scientist because she's been through all the phases, but also because she was like, how can I change my macros to fuel my performance, not to you know, change how my body looked or whatever not that those are bad things, but it just.
Amber B 27:21
But again, it is that idea that like I'm always trying to preach is that like macro counting is not just about weight loss, it is, it is a tool that and I love it when people are using it in different phases. And using having your nutrition support your performance is is huge. It's it really can make such a difference. There's a reason that professional athletes are so focused on their nutrition it can make such a difference in how you perform and so good for her for for thinking about that.
One question that I have that probably isn't relevant to Alicia, but just personal experience. I actually am one of the weirdos who has a harder time eating lots of carbs, I don't know. I just prefer my macros..
Amber B 28:04
Because you don't like them or because it like your body doesn't react well to them?
I don't like them as much. I like protein and fat. Those are my two favorites. So it's like could you like if you if she was struggling being like I just can't imagine adding that many more carbs. Man, this is really hard. But I feel like I need more. Could she potentially get the same benefit of adding like more protein and a little bit of fat just to kind of update her or increase her caloric intake?
Amber B 28:34
Well, the problem is is you're getting calories that way, but you're not getting what your body needs in in the moment, which is glucose. And so there's a reason that, you know everybody who goes and runs a marathon does like eats pasta the night before, right? Because what you're looking for is you're looking for those fast acting carbohydrate if you eat protein and fat. Your body can eventually, turn those to carbohydrates, but it has to go through a process in order to do that or if you just consume the carbohydrate, it's already in the form of glucose, and it's much easier for your body to have quick access to that fuel, which is what, it's gonna need. So instead what I would really recommend, especially if you are an athlete is figuring out the ways that are easy for you to pound a lot of carbs and there are specific foods that make that easier than others. I mean, you think about those little go squishy go.
Goo things, yeah.
Amber B 29:22
That's what they are like goo things like that's essentially all it is is like straight carbohydrates. I think those are nasty and gross, but but some people that's just an easy way to get carbohydrates in, but some other really dense carbohydrate sources are dried fruit.
Yes, they are.
Amber B 29:38
That's one of my like go tos is super easy dense source of carbohydrates. Some other ones are juice, another super quick, super fast, easy source of carbohydrate, any fruit is going to be have a lot of carbohydrates, a problem with fruit is that you are often getting fiber as well with it and fiber slows down the absorption of that of carbohydrates, which is why people why you want to eat fiber normally is because it slows down that insulin spike. But in the case of when you're in a race or when you're trying to up performance, you're actually not looking to do that, so you know. It's it's It is a fast source of carbohydrate, but it also does have that that, that fiber associated with it. My favorite like pre-workout is those fig bars from from Costco. I think they have like 42 grams of carbs in like 2 little fig bars which is huge carb punch. So yeah. I didn't know you didn't like carbs.
I just I have found that I tend to eat more. I I don't like to say this, but tend to eat more of a keto kind of thing. Not on purpose. I actually like detest, that I'm even saying that because I don't adhere to.
Amber B 30:55
Sure but it's just like it's it's just dietary, it's dietary preferences.
Yeah, it’s preference.
Amber B 30:58
Right. We all have preferences.
At the end of the day, whenever I'm like tracking macros I always have carbs leftover it's like how can you get more carbs. So I eat like buckets of apple sauce. That's my go to carb.
Amber B 31:12
You don't like like rice or tortillas?
I do, but you can only eat so much rice with your chicken and stuff before it’s like. And I and again it's like I want bread, but I want butter with it, but I'm out of fat you know. Yeah, yeah.
Amber B 31:25
Yeah, I got you. I got you. All right, let's do Lauren, I think Lauren will be our last one.
Hey, Amber. My name is Lauren, and my question is around cardio and combining it with weight training. In your opinion, can you be successful incorporating a cardio component more than you know, white walking, such as kickboxing for example, into a weight training program when you're trying to build muscle as well. Thank you. Bye.
Amber B 32:00
OK, so I said it before, but I'm going to say it again, unfortunately for those of us who like muscle and want muscle in our body, cardio is catabolic, meaning it breaks down muscle tissue. So it is, it's never it, it's like if you're digging a hole and then somebody on the other side of the hole is tossing dirt back into the hole. Can you dig fast enough and hard enough that like you can outpace the person who's throwing the dirt back in the hole. Yes, of course. So can you build muscle while you're including cardio? Yes. Will it be the fastest way or the most effective way to build muscle? No. So this is where we really have to just get clear on what is your goal? This is, my husband always teases me because it's like always my question. It's like people ask me a question and I was like what’s your goal? because my answer completely depends on what is your goal. If your goal is to hey, I want to build some muscle and I really want to just enjoy my workouts while I do it, well, then maybe we are having that balance of saying OK, I'm willing to have this go a little bit slower. Because I really love my kickboxing class and that is where I get a lot of stress relief. And that's a really important thing, and so I'm willing to you know, I want to put on muscle, but it can take a little bit longer. That's no big deal. I'd rather keep my cardio kickboxing class. Fantastic. That's awesome. That's your goal. But if you're coming to me and saying Amber, my goal is to put on as much muscle as possible in the shortest amount of time as possible, I'm going to say cool. We should limit cardio as much as possible, because now every time you're doing cardio, you're essentially throwing dirt back into that hole that you're trying to dig. Now, do you have something to add? I was just going to share a personal experience.
No, go and then I'll do mine.
Amber B 33:43
OK, well, so I was going to say I think people hear me talk about this and they're like, oh, I guess I I shouldn't do any cardio and listen like I do CrossFit and I know people think that like CrossFit is, all lifting and it does have a lifting, but it's a lot of cardio like it's a lot of cardio and and but I still do it. And honestly, I've actually lost muscle doing cardio or sorry doing CrossFit so the most muscular my body ever was was probably about four or five years ago. When I was at the peak of my power lifting and I was like at the end of my bulk and I I had a ton of muscle at that time and that was great and fun. And I loved that period of time. But I got bored. I was bored doing the same 3 freaking lifts working out by myself and I wanted more community. I wanted to not just do 3 lifts and so I moved to to CrossFit knowing and understanding that I was giving up some of that muscle because I was going to be doing a ton more cardio and you know, less progressive overload for my body. But for me it was worth it like I I what I wanted at that time was not to have the most muscular body possible, but I wanted to enjoy my workouts. I wanted to have a community again of people that I was associated with, and so it was worth it to me. I and I have I look at pictures now and I have lost muscle over the the period of time. I still have muscle. I still have a lot of muscle. I'm not not like I lost it all.
You're not atrophying at all.
Amber B 35:18
I know, like, completely atrophied. But I have lost muscle. But for me it's worth it. I just think you have to understand the what you're weighing here so that you can make a really good decision about what's most important to you.
Yeah, I think what I was going to share was that, like, so I discovered, like weightlifting and stuff after I started following Amber. I, before that, I always thought exercising once you go for a run, that's how I grew up and so I learned about weightlifting and it's like my pendulum swung me a completely different direction. I'm like, hey, I really want to focus on building muscle and stuff, and it's like, oh I can't go and walk. I really like walks, but I can't because I'm trying to build muscle. So I'm too far the other way and trying to balance it back now where it's like. I mean we're getting to personal stuff here. So right now, in all honesty, right now my goal has completely changed. My goal is I want to remember that I actually enjoy exercising. Yeah, yeah. So I haven't decided what that looks like yet I'm still kind of working through it, but it means that I don't go and just powerlift like I used to because that was getting really old and tiresome and I was like, OK.
Amber B 36:28
Right and this this is the classic balance between effective and enjoyable, right? We talk about this all the time in MACROS101 is like people come into MACROS101. They're like I want the most effective I want it to fastest. I want it to like whatever and I'm like, OK, cool. But we have to overlap that with enjoyable because I don't care if it's like the most effective program if you hate it, you're not going to do it long term and that's not going to actually ultimately be effective. And it's the same thing with your workouts like I want to build muscle I want to have it be as effective as possible. Well, awesome, but if you don't enjoy it, you're going to burn out and you're not going to want to do it. And now how much muscle are you going to have when you're not lifting at all because you're totally burned out of it. And so that, I mean I that was what I experienced when I was doing powerlifting. It was like I liked it for a while. It was fun for a while, I enjoyed it for a while I got to the point where I liked the results. I liked how strong I was. I liked the muscle I had built, but I didn't like what I was doing anymore. And for me, it's just that like the rest of my life, not liking what I'm doing is not worth it. So I would rather give up a little bit of muscle have a lot more fun enjoying my workouts because I know that that's something that I can be able to do long term.
Yeah, it's like you say the only way you can ensure you don't succeed if you quit, so if you're yeah, if you just stopped doing anything, yeah. You're you're definitely not going to gain muscle.
Amber B 37:47
It's so ironic because we think, oh, I want the most effective way to do it, but then often by doing “the most effective way to be able to get from point A to point B it is also the way that burns us out and that we end up quitting and so then it's not effective.” It like doesn't get us there, it's like, so ironic that people don't realize that.
It's true, it's just another way, all or nothing crops up is like going in thinking the only way I can succeed is if I've completely optimized these things.
Amber B 38:14
Exactly, yeah, exactly. And I've optimized every single thing that I could do. This isn't. Yeah, that's just not.
It's not reality.
Amber B 38:22
Not reality. It's not how how life works. I mean, I guess if you want to be like a bodybuilder and you are ready to, like, go hardcore into it and you want to do that knock it out. Knock it out the park, like I I'm I love. I love that for you. So our CrossFit coach, I love that journey for you. But for most of the people listening to this, we are average Joes Moes, and we're moms. And we're, you know, just wanting to live a little healthier life. And we're not necessarily wanting to go hardcore into doing a bikini competition.
Amber B 38:57
Awesome. OK, well, this was fun. If you liked this episode, please let me know. I do really listen to your guys' feedback. So we pay attention every week, Carley knows cause every week we're looking at what was the podcast episode last week? What kind of feedback did we get from it? How many people shared the episode? How many downloads did it get? We look at all of those data and stats. So if you loved this episode, be sure to let us know so that we will put more of these in the future. If you hated this episode also let us know, because then we won’t do them again. So either way, we love hearing feedback from you guys.
I was going to ask so as a follow up because maybe not everyone knows how should they let us know like DM you on social media or e-mail us.
Amber B 39:36
Yeah, they are the best places to DM, although e-mail works as well. We like the inbox keeps us pretty appraised of what's going on. So you can either e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can shoot me a DM on Instagram. I love hearing from you guys there. If you liked the podcast episode, I highly recommend leaving a rating and review on iTunes or Spotify or whatever platform you're listening. If you hate the episode, don't worry about it.
Yeah, it's fine. We don't need to hear that on those platforms.
Amber B 40:07
We don't need to hear it then, but if you did like it, leave a rating and a review. All right, well, this was a lot of fun Carley. Thanks for hanging out with me and answering some listener questions.
I could do this all day. Was super great.
Amber B 40:21
All right. That wraps up this episode of Biceps After Babies Radio. I'm Amber, now go out and be strong because remember, my friend, you can do anything.
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