Do you ever feel, when listening to this podcast, that you have some things you really would like to ask Ted? Do you want to get answers from Ted Ryce to your wellness and health-related questions? Well, in this new episode, we are going to bring back the listener’s question segment!
Ted Ryce will answer listener’s questions about protein and weight loss, high resistance training for people over 40, is carb backloading effective, best meal plan for you, how to stay consistent with your nutrition, and much more.
These answers are packed with the latest scientific research, so there’s no fluff here, it’s all backed by science, in addition to Ted’s 20 years of experience coaching thousands of clients, and his own experience testing everything available on the market.
So, if you want to hear Ted’s answers to the listener’s most requested questions, listen to this Real Talk Friday episode.
What is the right amount of protein for someone who needs to lose weight? [01:22-06:11]
Can too much high intensity resistance training harm your immune system after age 40? [06:11-19:08]
Can you consume carbs around your workout? Should you do carb backloading? [19:08-23:05]
How to be consistent with nutrition? [14:32-23:05]
What is the best meal plan for you?[23:05-30:17]
And much more…
RTF 76: The Link Between Protein & Weight Loss, High Resistance Training For People Over 40, Carb Backloading Explained, The Best Meal Plan For You, How To Stay Consistent With Your Nutrition & More
Ted Ryce: Do you ever have the feeling, when listening to this podcast, that there are things you'd really like me to answer, some questions you really would love to know the answer to? Well, guess what? We are bringing back listener questions, and today it is all about answering some great questions that I've received from you, the listeners. And can't wait to dive into this.
What is up my friend, welcome back to another episode of the Legendary Life podcast! I'm your host, Ted Ryce, health and fitness expert, and coach to entrepreneurs, CEOs, and other high performing professionals.
What we do on this show is we break down science-based information on how to lose fat, prevent disease and live a legendary life. But on Fridays we have a real conversation. We talk about the issues underneath the tactics, the science, and in this case, we're going to do something a little bit different than I've done in a while.
I used to have an "Ask Ted" segment and we kind of did away with that, but I've been getting a lot of people reaching out with questions. So, today we're going to dive into these questions, some excellent questions that I've chosen from you. So let's get right into it!
The first question is from Elizabeth and she says: "I've heard so many different answers to this question, it makes my brain hurt. What is the right amount of protein daily intake for weight loss? And should it be based on ideal weight, lean body mass, total current body weight? Thanks, Ted."
Of course you are welcome, Elizabeth! So, first of all, it's a great question. And let me tell you this: the reason why you hear so many different approaches is because there are so many different approaches and none of them are right or wrong. Different coaches have different ways of doing things. And they all, at least the guys that I'm thinking of, the people that I'm thinking of, they all get great results.
So, whether you're doing it on your ideal weight, lean body mass, or total current body weight, it's less important. I'll start off by saying this: it's less important that you try to get optimal or ideal in this and it's more important just to start somewhere and go.
Now that said, here's what I do: I base it on total body weight. I've read evidence from research that suggests this and also I've tested it out with a lot of clients, including myself. So, here's what I do: First of all, you need to figure out, are you normal weight or are you overweight, or are you obese. Because this matters. Now, most people who are looking to lose weight, usually aren't normal weight.
Most people who are looking to lose weight, they're overweight or obese. So, here's what I'll tell you: for my overweight or obese clients, I will have them eat in between 0.7 to one gram per pound of weight. For example, if someone weighs 200 pounds, I'll make the math easy for us here. If someone weighs... actually I'm making the math easy for me. I used to tutor math by the way, but if you don't use it, you lose it.
Let's say you weigh 200 pounds. What I want to do is I would have someone eat somewhere in the neighborhood of 140 grams all the time, way up to 200 grams of protein per day for that person.
Now here's the thing I want to tell you if there's a range and it sounds like a huge range, 140 to 200, that's a variation of a lot. And here's what I would tell you: Experiment! Here's the question, here's the thing that I post you: experiment with this, try at the lower end or at the higher range. See how that works for you. See what your results are and experiment within that range to figure out one: what are the results that you get from doing whatever number you choose?
And two: See how it works for you in your life. In other words, how difficult is it to hit 140 grams versus 200 grams versus anywhere in the middle and what are the results? Because you may bump up your protein and you may not notice great results. You may cut it back, you may not... it may be easier to do. So, really experiment with that!
But I would say, don't go below 0.7 grams per pound, unless you are really obese. And in that case, you really shouldn't be asking me, you should be asking, you should be working with a doctor in that case, if you are, you know, say 300 or 400 pounds. But if you're, you know, even 300 pounds. I've had a client who weighed 300 pounds and we got him great results. He was 5'11'', 300 pounds. He lost 70 pounds with me.
So, you got to experiment here and I'll just add this as a bonus: Don't overthink this, just choose something and test it. There's too much thinking and not enough doing. So, it's a great question and I really don't want to come across as harsh here, because I really appreciate when people reach out and ask me questions, like I'm an expert.
But the truth is when someone comes to work with me as a client, I don't know what's right for them. I know what the evidence-based ranges say, I know what my approach, like, I know what I've used to be successful with clients in the past. But what I don't know is: is this unique person in front of me, are they going to respond to higher levels, or lower levels? Because a lot of this, the truth is you gotta make it work in your life. So I know that was a bit of tangents there, but I really like adding context instead of just straight up answering questions. Because there's always a lot of nuance when it comes to these things.
So let's get to our next question. Our next question comes from Twitter, from substratum - and probably not his real name if it's a he. So: "Is it true that three times or four times a week high intensity resistance training could harm your immune system after age 40?"
What an interesting question! Now, there, again, there are so many nuances here. Three times a week at how long are you training? Are you training two hours, or are you training 20 minutes or so, somewhere in the middle or longer, you know what I mean? So it's not just about how many times you train it's about how long you spend in that training session, it's about how much volume you do in other words, how many sets do you do.
But with that said in all, actually I will share with you what I do with my clients after I answer this question.
So the research... So, number one: I don't know the answer, and I don't think we know the answer because it's so variable. Now, the research I've seen shows that lifting weights increases the number of immune cells that help fight infection. In other words, it boosts your immune system, it is the best exercise for immune system
People who workout, get sick less than people who don't. I have seen some research that says that athletes suffer from infection... like... athletes. In other words, you're not an athlete, right? I'm not an athlete, but I'll tell you I was an athlete, although an amateur one. I did Brazilian jiu jitsu competitions, and there's a lot of stress involved with it, not just the training, but the psychological stress of preparing for a competitive event.
So I've read that athletes get sick more often, or can get sick more often. Actually, the vitamin C trials that I've seen, the studies that I've seen actually shows that it helps athletes more than your average person, because they have this added stress.
So in thinking about this, if you're working out, it's not something you need to worry about. If you're hurting yourself, if you notice that you're getting sick more often, then it could be that you're doing too much exercise. And I want to clarify this in a second. It could be that you're doing too much exercise, it could be that you're sleeping poorly, it could be something with your diet, all these things. It could be something with your stress, right?
So there's all these factors that go into whether you're going to recover from your workouts or not. And I would just ask you this though: How do you feel from your workouts? Do you take time off and your body stops hurting so much and you get your energy back? Then maybe you're overdoing it.
Now I don't want to talk about over-training because it's quite rare except for again, competitive athletes. But what isn't probably as rare, at least I don't know the data on this and that's why I say probably, but there are a lot of professionals who suffer from professionals burnout, so they don't sleep well, they work too much, they've got jobs stress, life stress, relationships stress, biological stress from their lack of exercise, or maybe too much exercise.
When I was training jiu jitsu and working hard in my business, I got sick a lot. And after a hard training in jiu jitsu, I would just lay on the mats for about 10 minutes. I was so exhausted! And I got sick often, and I felt like garbage, to be honest, it was, I was training too hard. And what I needed to do was to focus... was to change things. I needed to change my lifestyle and that's, I don't want to get into how I changed my workout routine, although I'll share a little bit here, but I had to change a lot of things.
I had to look into my sleep, I ended up getting an Oura Ring. It really helped out a lot. In case you don't know what an Oura Ring it's a wearable ring that tracks your sleep. And although it's not like super accurate, say like a polysomnograph that you would get from a medical doctor who specializes in sleep medicine, it's much harder to do a sleep study than it is to pop a ring on your finger after charging it for 30 minutes and just wear it every night.
So here's what I want to tell you, here's what I do: I encourage more frequent exercise, but I think igh intensity training for people over 40 is overrated. So if you're crushing yourself in the gym, it's overrated, I believe. I'm not saying high intensity interval training isn't a good thing, I love doing that. I'm not saying lifting weights to muscular exhaustion is not a good thing. I love doing that.
But you don't need to do it as, let's say for strength training, I do one or two sets per workout, but I'll train more frequently, I'll train up to four or five times as much as I can get away with. And I back off when my joints, when I start feeling, if I feel my joints too much, then I back off. But you can do a lot more training than you think. In fact, one of my favorite workout routines for people who come to me is I do a total body four times a week workout. I'll do, just for example, Monday, total body, Tuesday, total body, take a rest on Wednesday, hit total body again on Thursday and either total body again on Friday, or maybe even skip a day and do it on Saturday. All right? And you can mix the days up here depending on your schedule, but what matters is two days on, one day off, two days on two days off, or again with that, that, that second workout consecutive workouts, you could space it a day. And so you... but hitting four workouts per week.
I have another plan that I do, where I do six days a week. And it's more of a cardio focus. So I'll do, I'll do say 40 minutes of cardio on day one, and I'll add low volume strength training. So a one or two sets of a push move, a pole move and a leg move. So for example, a push move, let's say, I'll use what I'm using right now. So I'll do band resisted pushups, I'll do a band resisted rows. So rows with bands - I travel with the band system - and then I'll do Bulgarian split squats. And I'll do one to two sets depending on how I feel. That's day one. And it takes me about an hour or so to do.
The next day I'll come back, I'll do high intensity interval training. My favorite intervals are eight minutes on, two minutes off. And I do that four times after... and then of course, I do a warmup beforehand and maybe a little bit of a cool-down after. But eight minutes on, two minutes off.
I'll talk about high intensity interval training some other day, but I do have an episode where I talked about the high intensity interval training methods I use and why I use them. And long story short, I used intervals based on research, not based on what Bob in the gym says, really worked for him.
Okay? That's how I do things. So that's what I do. Oh, I'm sorry. And the third day is a recovery day. So I'll do isometrics à la Brad Thorpe. I've interviewed Brad Thorpe several times. If you want to check out Brad Thorpe on www.legendarylifepodcast.com. If you search for his name and legendary life podcast, you will find the interviews that I've done with Brad.
And I'll tell you, game-changing isometrics, just game changing. I'll be doing a lot more with isometrics, but if you go listen to those interviews, you can learn a lot. And so I do a combination of isometrics and maybe 20 to 30 minutes of low intensity cardio on that third day. And so I repeat that and do six days a week. So just repeat that three-day cycle twice during a week.
So, that's what I do. And then I try to get my steps on top of it. Although I don't, I tend not to do a lot of steps. I do more what you would call rehab exercises or isometric exercises, mostly isometric exercises instead of steps. I believe it's superior, but that's for another podcast.
So let's move on to the next question here: "Do you consume carbs around your workout?" Of course ... First of all, this comes from…, another Twitter question, is a great question, Justy Rojas. And he asks: "Do you consume carbs around your workout? I'll do carb backloading, later in the day when insulin is more sensitive and cortisol is lower. Do you use high-glycemic carbs like rice to maximize gluten uptake?"
Wow! What a mouthful of a question, right? So it is a good question, but I'll tell you, I don't get so detailed about the physiology anymore.
First of all, I forget what carb back-loading is. That was popularized by this guy, Kiefer, I forget his name. I don't even, I don't know if he's still around or what he's up to, but he popularized this idea that you would eat carbs towards the end of the day and that would be better somehow.
I don't do carb back-loading and I think it's pretty much been disproven. So... and I don't take such a, like "Oh, let me time my carbohydrates in a way with high-glycemic carbs to maximize glucose uptake!" I don't think like this at all anymore, because I just think it's just not that important.
Now, maybe if you are in an olympic athlete where you're trying to get a 0.5% improvement on the next person, because that's the difference between a silver medalist and a gold medalist, okay! Time it, have your high-glycemic carbs and, you know, do all those things.
But I don't think like that. I keep things simple. If I lift weights or practice martial arts, or do high intensity interval training, I'll eat carbs before the workout, because I know it fuels performance.
I used to do BJJ classes, like I was telling you earlier. One of the problems I had was I wasn't eating enough carbs. And so I was so exhausted from the training and it was killing me. I was super lean though, but I was feeling terrible. My body was broken down, it was terrible. I'm still struggling with the injuries that I had from that time of over-training and not fueling myself and sleeping properly. So, what I do now is: I make sure, before I have a hard workout, that I have carbs. But if I go walking, if I do low intensity cardio or, you know, low intensity to moderate cardio, I'll even try to do it fasted.
Now I won't go out of my way to do fasted cardio because it doesn't do anything for fat burning, but it might help with something called metabolic flexibility. Again, if you haven't listened to my interview with Dr. Mike T. Nelson, search for that on www.legendarylifepodcast.com. We talk about metabolic flexibility, just search for his interview, Mike T. Nelson on www.legendarylifepodcast.com and you will find his reviews and he'll talk about that.
But I'll tell you what I really focus on, folks. I focus on managing hunger. To the exclusion of everything else, people like to get so fancy. “Oh, like all the time, the carbs with the insulin and the cortisol and the...“ I don't test my hormone and measure my hormones all the time. But what I know is that if I get hungry, I'm going to eat. So I make sure that I focus on managing hunger.
That's how I look at food consumption in general and certainly carbohydrate consumption. And by the way, if you're under the impression that carbs make you more hungry, try eating three oranges and tell me how starving you are.
When you say carbs, you don't know, you're not being clear about it. You know, it's not the carbs that are making you hungry or the low blood sugar or anything like that, okay? It's not any of that, I promise you. It's that you're not eating foods that send satiety signals to your brain.
Everybody likes to focus on this fancy stuff. I'll tell you, after I've been in this business for 22 years now, I think it's interesting questions and interesting rabbit holes to go down, but the most important thing is like, can you manage your hunger? Because if you can't - and that's mostly my struggle, right?
When I'm trying to get lean, it's like, I'm hungry and so how do I manage my hunger? And that's how I make food choices, especially with carbs and fat, especially with carbs and fat.
So then is that answer.
Now let's move on to the next one. This comes from Big E on Twitter: "What's your advice for someone struggling with being consistent with nutrition?"
Now that, my friend, is a great question. Fantastic question! Because what are we talking about? We're talking about the real root here.
Not like "Oh, how do I optimize my testosterone to cortisol ratio?" No! How the hell to get you to do the things that you need to do? That's what we're all struggling with. So if you're struggling with consistency, there's a good chance that you're probably taking on too much. So the answer here is to break things down.
For example, don't try to change too much if you're struggling with consistency, start with something simple. For example, not just with something simple, but something simple that gives results. For example, if you eat 30 to 40 grams of protein in every meal that is going to help with hunger, that's going to help with fat loss, that's going to help with growing muscle, that's going to help you with energy levels. You are going to, that is a big needle mover, and it's easier to do because you're telling yourself "Hey, this is... I'm going out of my way. I got to eat..." Eating 30 to 40 grams of protein per meal is not easy. It's not easy, especially if you know how much protein you're getting versus fat or carbs, right?
If you're choosing fatty cuts of meat, you're going to have to eat a lot more protein and that's going to be hard to do with fattier cuts of meat. Oh, not for some of you, but what I'm saying is this: if you focus on a small, but effective change in your nutrition, it's going to be easier for you to stay consistent with, it's going to be easier for you to stay focused and when you see results, that's going to motivate you more. So give that a try!
And another great question: "How do you manage stress?" I find long hikes bike rides or swims do wonders to bounce stress in my life. So, it's a great question. And I certainly find benefit in aerobic exercise and time and nature for sure. Spending time in water versus being on a machine and a gym that can do wonders for you.
But that said, if you're under a lot of stress or like me, you have higher anxiety levels - I don't know if you knew that about me, but why do you think I talk so fast sometimes? So I struggle with anxiety levels with stress, and this can come from anywhere from your genes, you may have a high level of neuroticism to childhood experiences, even in utero experiences, meaning when your mother was pregnant with you, if she had higher cortisol levels, that can influence your level of neuroticism/slash anxiety, whatever you want to call it.
So I find I've got to do more to balance myself out. So I meditate almost daily, not every day, I've meditated today, 45 minutes. I get massages, I do acupuncture and I schedule time with friends and family. And I also, it's tricky now, but even now, during this coronavirus pandemic situation, I plan adventures. I go and do things. I do the things that I know that are going to put me in a good mood.
And it's one of the things I wish more people took seriously. Perhaps more people are because of what's happened, but it's just something that can really move the needle for you and make you a happier, healthier person. It's not just about how many grams of protein you're eating, or what body part split you're doing at the gym, or how much cardio or what type intervals. Those things are important. But if you're not living a great life, a fun life, if you're not scheduling those things, you're not as healthy as you think.
So moving right along. And, the last question here is: "Would you post your meal plan?" Now, here's the thing: This is a good question and I appreciate when people want to know what I'm doing, but here's the thing with my meal plan: it's not going to be relevant for you.
So if I say, "Oh, here's my meal plan" I mean... so here is like a crazy thing I'll do: I'll have white fish for breakfast. Does that sound appetizing for you? I'm guessing not. For most people, they're not very open. Now, it's not unusual to have fish for breakfast, if you're in Asia, for example, in Japan and other places, in Thailand, where I spent two years, the better part of two years in Thailand...
So, it may not be... listening to, asking what people do it's understandable because you want to say "Hey, you're an expert, I want to see what you do." And I'm happy to share that with you as much as possible, but it's not really relevant.
And I'll tell you another thing. For example, today I had for breakfast, check out this breakfast that I had: I had café com leite which is Brazilian café con Leche - I can't even speak Spanish anymore, I've been speaking Portuguese so much. But café com leite which is a coffee with milk in it, and it comes with sugar in it. It's not a big coffee, it's a small one, they drink small coffees here in Brazil, but it's got sugar in it.
Then I had pão de queijos, which are cheese bread, pan de queso. If you speak Spanish, if you habla Espanol, pan de queso. But is pão de queijos, aqui do Brasil. So it's pão de queijos. So, cheese bread, I had three of them. I also... So how are we doing so far? Coffee and milk and cheese bread. And then I had, what else did I have? I had a green juice and then I had a protein shake, two scoops of protein for 50 grams protein to help hit my protein target.
So that's what I had for breakfast. It's not what I would recommend people to do. And when people see that, you're like "Oh my gosh, you eat so unhealthy!" It's like, yeah, but I'm lean and my biomarkers are great. I see my abs, my vein is coming back on abdomen now, I'm back in that state - in case you've been listening for a while and you know I was talking about the veins on my abs and now the... and when I was dealing with the death of my father, I really had a hard time staying on track nutrition wise, I was eating my feelings.
At least, I mean I was okay, but I gained some weight, I gained some body fat and understandably so, right? I mean, it was a tough time. And I was even tracking my food through part of it, but I just... the stress was so high and I lost a lot of the things that I was doing to help. I couldn't stay on track. So, what I'm trying to say here is what works for me, may not work for you.
In fact, I had a great conversation today with a new client, a new coaching client, and he came from Twitter and I see a lot of stuff that might be construed as anti low carb on Twitter. And he was saying like "Oh man, but I like my fats and I don't want to eat a lot of carbs.". I'm like: "Listen, I'm not here to tell you to eat carbs or not eat carbs. I'm going to tell you what the best way to do this is in terms of the numbers. Then I'm going to have you meet the numbers and you're going to try to make it work. Okay?”
And so it really comes down to the genius behind - if I may - the evil genius behind my coaching program is that I don't tell you what to do exactly. I have the framework, I have the rules, I have the nutrition principles, the fundamentals, the foundation, but you've got to figure it out, figure out how to make those principles work in the context of your life, in the context of your preferences, in the context of what you're willing and not willing to do.
For example, this guy who doesn't eat pork, and he doesn't eat seafood. Pork is not a problem because it's quite high in fat, even the leaner cuts of pork, actually that may not be true for pork loin, all right? I don't know, I don't eat much pork, so I'm not... except barbecue ribs. So, I'm not really the one to ask about pork and I don't memorize all the details. That's what I use MyFitnessPal for. But I was like: "Listen, I'm not here to tell you what to eat or what not eat, the foods..."
It's in fact, that's probably the biggest question that I get asked about my coaching is "Hey, what foods do I need to eat?" Listen, folks, for fat loss there's no special foods that you need to focus on. It doesn't mean the food choices are not important, but when it comes to fat loss, it's about calories, it's about protein, it's about foods that manage your hunger. And that's what it's really about.
And then if my clients want to try to optimize nutrition choices, then we start getting into, okay, well, let's look at what you're doing, let's look at what you might be deficient in based on what you're currently doing and what you can add in to help with that!
But at the beginning, master fat loss, okay? Master the principles! And you don't need to... I have shared the principles so many times, go to www.legendarylifepodcast.com, type in "The absolute best diet for fat loss" and I give you everything that you need to know in that episode, okay? I give you everything that you need to know: how to track your calories on MyFitnessPal, how to hit your protein target... You will get results if you listen and apply what I teach you in that episode, okay?
So, stop asking people what they're doing! Following Tom Brady's crazy workout, isn't it necessarily going to help you, or following what I do isn't going to help you. But following the principles I use, now, that's different. Following the principles can help you a lot. And nobody asked me: "Hey, what are the principles that you're following?" Because I share them all the time, but people want to know. And it's really hard... I teach people in the context of a three month coaching program and even then it's got its obstacles. People don't learn right away, they've got to overcome some misinformation.
So again, don't worry about my... like, listen to what I had for breakfast! Are you going to do that? Now, I don't recommend it unless you really know what you're doing. Having coffee with sugar and cheese bread, which is high in carbs and fat and low in protein, and then having a protein shake to make it work, it's not what I recommend doing. Now, it's not something I do all the time, but I did it today.
And so I operate on principles and I don't overthink things. And again, I'm in Brazil where they have coffee and cheese bread, for breakfast café com leite and pão de queijos. Right? Porque I'm still in Brazil, right? So anyway, that may not be relevant for you, okay?
So that's what I have today. Did you enjoy this episode? If so, hit me up on Twitter, ask me some questions there! I'm very active on Twitter now. My Twitter handle is @ted_ryce. Hit me up there, let's keep the conversation going, feel free to shoot questions or tell me what you liked or even didn't like about this episode. And we can talk more there.
And of course, stay tuned for Monday where we're going to talk about how to stop losing and gaining the same 10 to 15 pounds. That's going to be with me, I'm going to break down some research for you, some solid strategies so that you can end that cycle.
That's coming up on Monday. That's all I've got, have an amazing week and love you lots and speak to you then!
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