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To ever improve at bodybuilding, you always have to beat what you did last time, today. Stringing together a long run of 16, 32 or 64 workouts in a row where you are progressively improving is what this is all about– not to mention how the body protects itself with an adaption (AKA more muscle mass). There are certainly those days where you are just off. You’re just really not feeling it. …You know its not going to happen.

Now… you can go in and try your regular workout, get ‘tomato canned’ with the logbook making you its b*tch and be entirely unproductive…

…OR you can “get weird with it“.

…Here’s an example: About 50 times a year I’m bombing away at my regular leg workouts, and I leave there like a truck ran me over. (Success!) A job well done. The logbook by and large gets its come-up-ance.

About 2 times out of the year I just don’t have it. Truthfully, it’s just not going to happen. (I usually consciously make this decision about an hour before the gym but there are times I just can tell during the warm-ups.) “Dante you don’t have it today. Sorry bro, you just don’t have it.”

Photo Credit: bulkpowders.co.uk

So this is what I’ve done for years. On a leg day where I just don’t have it (it’s rare- like I said- but they do happen) I chuck my regular workout to the side and go for the Dante Trudel World Record on the 50-rep Leg Press. I go in and do the following:

Hypothetical Weight x 16 reps
More Hypothetical Weight x 12 reps
More Hypothetical Weight x 8 reps
and if I feel as though I’m ready at that point…
(Drum-roll, please)
More Hypothetical Weight for an all-out assault-to-the-death for 50 reps.
Yes, that workout is short- but it is brutal.
Then, I stretch and get the heck out of the gym.

Photo Credit: t-nation.com

On the final set, I’ll get to 35 reps and I will absolutely want to rack it. I will find some willpower and some way to claw my way through those last 15 reps or perish trying. If you do good, deep, strict reps and use a decent amount of weight (weight that you have serious doubt with) you will make 50 with (and somehow, some way you WILL yourself to get 50 with), trust me… you will be bombed. Stretch out. Get the hell out of there. Come back to your normal workout next time.

Trust me, you’re still gaining because you didn’t do your regular workout (and failed).
You did a workout that was way outside your box and comfort level.

Remember: “Getting weird with it” = Adaption.

I also do something similar if I ever have days besides legs that I’m ‘out of sorts’. I’ll pick one exercise for that body part that I have either never done before or rarely have done and I’ll do the same scenario up above. The only difference is I’ll do it for 20 reps instead of 50.

The main take-away? Stay motivated. Get weird. Don’t let your “out of sorts” days take you out of the progression ladder!

How do you handle days when you lack motivation?

The post “Getting Weird” with Dante appeared first on True Nutrition Community.

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Once You Go Keto, You Won’t Want to Go Back
by Sarah & Ashley Armstrong


I’m sure we’ve all heard this buzz word flying around, especially recently as a few of the Kardashian sisters have picked it up as their latest ‘quick fat loss’ regimen *eyeroll* …

Maybe you’ve considered trying Keto, you tried Keto but didn’t like it, or maybe you’ve been completely turned off from the start because you can’t fathom giving up your precious carbs…

We’re going to be real – we were the latter.

Give up my sweet potatoes and oatmeal?

No thanks.

Even after basically drowning in all the research out there regarding the health and performance benefits of going Keto… we weren’t sold on the idea of it.

Until… we realized that if we actually were after optimizing our health and performance (what we kept telling everyone) …we probably shouldn’t pass up on all that Keto has to offer.

We’re here to talk about why we finally switched to Keto, and to promise you (yes, PROMISE) that you will NOT miss your precious carbs once transitioning to Keto!

Why We Switched to Keto: The Key to Health & Performance Optimization

We made the switch to Keto in order to truly optimize our health and mental and physical performance.

When you think about our evolution, at no point were cavemen reaching for their Sara Lee loafs of bread and making marshmallow sweet potato pie casseroles.

Reality is, most of mankind evolved eating fattier cuts of meat [whatever they could get their hands on] & the leafy greens, nuts, and seeds that were available to them depending on their geographical location. So, mostly fats and protein.

When it came to fruit, fruit was a LUXURY – something they’d come across only occasionally, and something that we, too, can absolutely enjoy occasionally, but is not an essential part of a ‘healthy diet’ [contrary to popular belief].

Tangent aside, our biology as humans is built to thrive on fats.

A few health benefits associated with the Ketogenic diet that we were most intrigued by include improved insulin resistance, improved cognition, and reduced deuterium levels.

Less discussed is deuterium, which you can read more about here on our blog post if interested (it’s real interesting stuff, peeps!)

But most relevant to society is insulin resistance. In short, insulin is a hormone that determines whether you burn or store the food you eat.

Over consuming refined carbs (breads, grain, pasta) alcohol, and sweets means your pancreas has to produce more insulin to process all of the sugar. Your body’s response of becoming resistant to this insulin is intuitive — whenever there is an excessive amount of a given stimulus, an organism becomes resistant to that stimulus. It is similar to developing a resistance to a drug after taking it for a long period of time.

This can lead to a whole host of health problems down the road, but most noticeable from the start is the difficulty one can experience losing weight, and the brain fog, fatigue, and overall drowsiness one will experience throughout the day as they’re constantly relying on more and more carbs for energy.

Keto eliminates this, and is a healthy way to reverse one’s insulin resistance. Further, Keto combats the debilitating brain fog and fatigue as one’s body begins to produce Ketones, which can help to improve one’s cognition, overall energy levels, and performance.  

3 Reasons Keto Will Make You Forget About Carbs

First off, there’s no such thing. Just because you go Keto does not mean that you can never touch any of those foods again. There’s always room for balance.

Ok, as we mentioned, our initial hesitation with Keto was fueled by our taste buds. It’s not easy to think about a world with no bread, no oatmeal, no high sugary ice cream…

Second, we assure you, once you DO go Keto, you will never want to touch those food items again.

Here’s why:

1. The benefits you will experience are too good

Simply put, if you stick with Keto long enough to experience the cognition and performance benefits, you will not want to go back to eating carbs.

It is different operating on Ketones. From our experience, no longer relying on carbs for energy has eliminated the dreaded midday crashes we’d go through where we either required some sort of quick carbs, an energy drink, or a nap to carry on.

I don’t know about you, but we don’t like being reliant on any sort of stimulant or feeling like 2 heavy potato sacks by 3pm.  

Here’s the thing: unless you’ve practiced intermittent fasting for some time and your body is relatively good at switching from using glucose to ketones, you may have a hard time initially transitioning to Keto.

So, if you are someone who tried Keto but didn’t like it, perhaps it is because you experienced the Keto flu as your body was weaning off of relying on carbs and making the transition to using fats.

It is NOT easy to start a new style of eating and feel like crap, but the mental clarity and enhanced energy you will eventually experience on Keto makes the transition worth it. Once you reach that point, one will have developed a whole new appreciation for the power of fats and will not look at carbs quite the same.

2. Your taste buds will adapt

HONEST opinion – asking for a friend… which is better:

1. PB2 vs. 2. All natural creamy peanut butter?
1. Turkey bacon vs. 2. Bacon?
1. 99% lean ground turkey vs. 2. A juicy Ribeye steak?
1. Arctic Zero vs. 2. Gelato?

If ANY of your answers were (1), were you really being honest?

Before Keto, we tried convincing ourselves that we liked low fat, tasteless ice cream for the sake of eating low fat and fitting in more carb macros.

The result? A lot of bland food. A lot of carbs, sure, but what’s the fun in oatmeal without a dollop of almond butter? Or an omelet without a few eggs and a side of avocado?

Fat is where the FLAVOR is at! Do you ACTUALLY crave plain oatmeal or bread, or the oatmeal toppings and the crispy, buttery taste of the breadstick?

When we started to eat Keto and implement a whole lot more of full fat, nutritious foods, we began to realize how much we were previously depriving ourselves from enjoying fat, and how superior the taste of things are when you don’t strip the fat out.

Once we experienced how satisfying it is to actually eat healthy fats, our cravings for carbs diminished.

To further exemplify this, we even tried incorporating a day of high carbs into our Keto diet (which is totally possible in the form of ‘cyclic Keto’ – a method useful for enhancing athletic performance where you cycle in days of high carb, low fat occasionally), but we actually couldn’t get ourselves to finish our carb macros due to the unfortunate lack of flavor and satiety.

Have you ever tried eating an entire bowl of plain cream of rice?

Not fun.

We missed our fats, and we have not done another day of high carb since that experience.

If you give it some time, we’re confident your taste buds can and will make the switch, too.

3. Keto doesn’t mean boring

And this is absolutely key for those of us with a sweet tooth – Keto does NOT have to be boring, and it does NOT mean ‘no sweets’!

There are SO many amazing Keto-friendly products on the market to spice up your plate, and even more so, there’s a Keto-friendly recipe for every single one of your favorite dishes.

Don’t believe us?

Google “Keto (insert dish name)”

It exists.

All it takes is getting a little creative in the kitchen and using a bit of all natural sweetener [like stevia or monk fruit] to kick those sweet cravings to the curb.

Luckily, True Nutrition has been MAJOR KEY for all of our Keto baking! First off, their ‘TrueFlavor ’ flavoring is sweetened with STEVIA and contains no unnecessary additives or ingredients (we’re all about being as natural as possible over here)…

Second, the flavors are bomb. You want to make some sort of cinnamon roll flavored Keto cloud bread? Use the cinnamon roll egg white protein powder– Problem solved.

Missing ice cream? Try the classic ‘protein ice cream’ using their egg white protein powder (which gets 100x more thick and fluffy than other protein powders, we promise!)

Keto Protein Ice Cream

Here is how we make our protein ice cream – note: the addition of pumpkin is totally optional, but it won’t work quite as well if you do not use egg white protein powder!!!

Anything baked good related? We love using their grass-fed beef hydrolyzed collagen. The texture in cookies and brownies is perfect – it is similar how brown sugar really adds to a recipe.

True Nutrition has made eliminating OUR reliance on carbs, and our switch to the Keto diet, 10x easier by providing clutch products for us to get creative in the kitchen with.

As mentioned, our favorites are egg white protein and the grass-fed beef hydrolyzed collagen, but anything with no sugar and very few carbs will work and will help you stick to your Keto diet too. (Yes, even in those times where all you can think about is stuffing your face into a giant cheesecake!)

…Guess what? There’s definitely a Keto recipe for that! We got you!

By: Sarah & Ashley Armstrong
INSTAGRAM: strong.sistas
YOUTUBE: strong.sistas (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSpofOL75STGMvUUlD5em7g
BLOG: www.mindbodypowerlifting.com

By education, Ashley is an engineer, currently pursuing her PhD in mechanical engineering at the University of Illinois, but on the side, she’s (still) an extreme science nerd who is extremely passionate about learning how the human body functions and how we can optimize it (AKA, biohacking). Sarah is an integrative nutritionist, recreation specialist, & certified personal trainer who is all about taking a holistic approach to health, and is admittedly a little obsessed with all things mushrooms.


The post Once You Go Keto, You Won’t Want to Go Back appeared first on True Nutrition Community.

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Intro to Keto

by Tony DiCostanzo Health Coach / Keto Transformation Specialist

Imagine…  Imagine being able to condition your body to burn only fat for energy.  Would that excite you?  I’m sure to most it would sound pretty amazing.  We all want to get rid of that excess fat in those hard to lose areas—love handles and lower abdomen (pooch)—just to name a couple. 

Well, what if I told you that you don’t need to imagine any longer because it’s already possible?  That’s right, it is! There is a way to create a metabolic environment in your body, where fat becomes its preferred source of fuel.  Enter the ketogenic diet.

A Brief History
Dr. Russell Wilder

As of late, there has been a lot of hype surrounding the keto lifestyle.  However, make no mistakes about it, keto goes all the way back to the 1920s.  It was way back then when Dr. Russell Wilder and some of his colleagues at the Mayo Clinic began experimenting with what he called the “ketogenic diet” in an effort to help children with epilepsy. 

What they discovered was not only did the diet help to control epileptic seizures, but the children were also thinking and behaving better, as well.  It was the direct effect of the “ketones” produced in the fastest state which they attributed as being the cause for the benefits of the diet on epilepsy.  What was next was to stimulate the body to create these ketone bodies without total starvation.  They accomplished this “state of ketosis” by restricting carbs and increasing fat intake.  The “state of ketosis” is when your body is breaking down fat for energy to produce ketones.

Carbs Are Not Your Friend

Keep in mind, it is the absence of carbohydrates and sugar that brings your body into a state of ketosis—not simply the addition of a higher fat diet.  You must restrict your carbs in order to force your body to look for other fuels to burn. If your body doesn’t have readily available glucose produced from carbs and sugar, it then begins to burn fat for energy.  This also means that if glucose is present, your body will stop using fat.  That’s why on a ketogenic diet you want to restrict your carbs as much as possible.

Hence, the ketogenic diet, is a high fat, moderate protein, low carb diet that forces the body to burn fat for fuel.  So now, rather than your body using stored glycogen from carbohydrates, it must break down fat instead.  Where will it get that fat from?  Well, it will either come from the fat you eat or the fat you wear on your body.  Stay with me here, because this is why so many on the ketogenic diet can get stuck in their weight loss efforts.  We will come back to this in a little bit. 

Losing weight is just one of the many benefits within a Ketogenic diet
It’s Not Just Fat Loss

First, I think it’s important to point out the many benefits of ketosis and the keto diet beyond just the fat loss. 

  • Increased Mental Sharpness and Clarity
  • Reduced Appetite and Cravings
  • Lower blood Sugar and Insulin Levels
  • Weight loss
  • Abundant Energy
  • Improved Mitochondrial Health
  • Better Sleep
  • Body Reshaping 
  • Decreased Inflammation
  • Less Anxiety and Depression
  • Combat Cancer and Chronic Disease

As you can see, it goes far beyond just weight loss.  Personally, I have been utilizing a ketogenic approach to eating for many years now and I believe it to be one of the healthiest and most sustainable diets out there, if done correctly. When just starting out on the keto diet, it’s important to keep in mind that your macronutrients (fats, proteins and carbs) will always need to be shifted to reflect your body’s changes in weight and composition. 

Mind Your Macros

For instance, inductively, a typical ketogenic diet may require the following ratio of macronutrients: 60-70% of calories from fat, 20-30% from protein and 5-10% of calories from carbs.  While your carbs will not move much, your protein and/or fat intake must be adjusted to meet your current needs and goals as your body is changing. 

This takes us back to what I stated earlier.  Quite often those who are new to the keto lifestyle jump out of the gate eating way too much fat for their caloric requirements.  Yet, since they restricted carbs, initially they’ll see a big drop in weight and so they continue down the same path without changing a thing. 

Unfortunately, the weight loss at the beginning was also a lot of unwanted water weight.  For every single gram of carb ingested, your body can hold on to 3-4 grams of water.   If you do the math, you’ll see just why cutting carbs can drastically reduce water retention.  Yet, that weight loss does not continue.  Why?  Because if your body is constantly busy burning off the fat you eat, how can it burn off the unwanted body fat you so desperately want to lose?

If you’re new to keto, be sure to keep track of your macronutrients, calories and don’t fear increasing your protein to fat ratios—particularly if your goal is to get leaner.  Remember, based on your body’s needs, you can always bring those fats up again.  As a coach and trainer, the biggest mistake I see new keto clients making is overdoing their fats and calories and undereating their protein.

The other issue that can arise on the ketogenic diet is the overindulging of foods like processed cold cut meats, bacon, butter, sugar alcohols and nuts.   All of these things have their place in the keto lifestyle, but they should not and cannot be abused.   What happens is that you not only find yourself eating too many calories in fat and protein, but also impacting your blood sugar and insulin levels negatively.  The next thing that happens is your fat loss comes to a halt.

So, What Can I Eat?

Assuming that you will try to keep your macronutrients and calories in check, let’s look at what you should be eating:

  • Meats and Eggs (Chicken, Beef, Fish, Pork, lamb, etc.). if you use fattier cuts of meat, cut your fat intake elsewhere.  However, I recommend leaner cuts of meat.  This allows you to use your fat calories elsewhere on healthy fats like oils, nuts and butters)
  • Greens– Arugula, Collard Greens, Romaine Lettuce, Asparagus, brussels Sprouts, Kale.  Virtually all leafy greens and above ground vegetables are fine in moderation and if in line with your daily macros.
  • Healthy Fats and Oils– Avocados, Macadamia Nut oil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Avocado Oil, MCT oil and Coconut oil.
  • High-Fat Dairy– Cheese, Cream, Butter, etc. Be careful with overdoing dairy.  Many will find that it stalls their weight loss.. Try not to abuse.
  • Nuts and Seeds– Pecans, Macadamia Nuts, Almonds, Walnuts and Brazil Nuts.
  • Berries– Blueberries, Raspberries, Strawberries and Blackberries (in moderation)

You want to stay away from sugar and sugary foods, grains (rice, pasta, wheat), root veggies like potatoes, starches, fruits, beans and legumes, alcohol, most condiments (hot sauce and mayo are okay in moderation).

You should avoid most artificial sweeteners and “net carb” products, at least until your body enters a state of ketosis.  Then, if possible, you would want to utilize the natural sweeteners with the least impact on blood sugar (Stevia and Monk Fruit).

The Final Recap

Now that you know what the Ketogenic diet is, let’s do a quick overview on how to get started and get your body into a fat burning state of ketosis in the fastest amount of time.

  1. Restrict all carbohydrates to under 30 grams daily.  Get carbs from greens and nuts and seeds.  It’s the absence of sugar and carbs that keeps your blood sugar and insulin levels low.  This allows your body to release fat more freely.
  2. Utilize fasting to help deplete your body of its stored glycogen. We need to get all of the glycogen out of your system so that we can get into a state of ketosis and burn that body fat.  If fasting and going without food is too difficult, try skipping a meal or two.
  3. Exercise and move your body.  Full body workouts will deplete the body of glycogen faster than any other type of workout.  Focus on major body parts like legs, back and chest and move through the workout quickly with little rest between sets and movements.
  4. Drink lots of water and be sure to supplement with minerals and electrolytes.

As your body is shifting fuel sources and acclimating from glucose to a ketogenic state, you may feel lightheaded, dizzy, experience weakness and fatigue.   It’s important to remember, you’re not only transitioning your body to a different metabolic mode of energy management, but you’re also detoxing your body from sugar, processed foods and unhealthy carbs. 

In the long run, this will all lead to a leaner, healthier and much more vibrant you!

Anthony lost 40 lbs on a Ketogenic diet

Tony has been a health coach for many years, specializing in Ketogenic transformations. He provides a straight-forward approach to diet and nutrition with proven successes among all of his clients. His favorite True Nutrition products include our Grass-Fed Beef Protein Isolate and Egg White Protein. Hungry for more information?  Be sure to follow Tony on Instagram: @ketoshreds!

The post Intro to Keto appeared first on True Nutrition Community.

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“So, imagine my delight when I had the opportunity to create my OWN custom oatmeal. True Nutrition has a product called MyOatmeal, a personalized blend of all the oats, mix-ins, and flavorings your heart desires. True Nutrition did provide me with free product to sample, although I was under no obligation to share my opinions and this is not a sponsored post. I thought it was such a fun concept that I just had to share with all my fellow oatmeal lovers out there!”

Link: https://thetoleranttummy.com/2018/11/06/myoatmeal-review/

Link: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bp4Ye8jFvXn/

Link: https://www.facebook.com/toleranttummy/photos/a.469581633515792/521380388335916/?type=3&theater

The post The Tolerant Tummy appeared first on True Nutrition Community.

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