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The Camera Adds 10 pounds


I recently worked as a principal character for the 11th episode of “Chase”, a popular action series in the middle of it’s first season on NBC. I played a police officer leading a team of cops on the chase for a bad guy. Exciting stuff! So I asked myself, “What would Robert DeNiro do to get into character?” He’d be lean, mean and on a fitness routine!

In the last 3 years God has graced me with national commercials for JCPenney and Office Depot as well as a returning role as “Chip” on the second season of “Friday Night Lights”. So, I’ve had more than a few chances to watch myself on camera and I always wished I’d been in just little bit better shape. This time I would raise the bar and be my fittest ever.

Luck Befalls the Prepared

In order to leave a good impression with the director, and producers (which are always on the lookout for future talent), I always try to be as lean as possible. As an actor, you’re being judged from the second you set foot on the set, until you close the door to your trailer at the end of the day. And since getting invited back, or being booked for a future role depends on how prepared you are, it’s a great idea to enact a meal plan at least 3 days before your scheduled to shoot date(s).

The Plan

I shot my episode on Friday October 29, coincidentally Halloween week, but I knew I had to stay strong, and so I started cutting off all sugar and carbs as of Tuesday October 26th. 72 hours might have been a little over-kill, but I would rather have the liberty of gaining back a pound of two, rather than having to plan a “kamikaze” workout the night before AND the morning of.

And that’s the brilliant plan. The only modification I made was to simply leave carbs and sugar out of the picture for just a few days. I would eat like the tribes of North Europe long before the “western diet” hit the scene.

The benefit of adhering to the hunter-gatherer diet of lean meats, nuts and berries means that you’re never carrying around extra carbs that turn into fat. I would estimate that 80% of my diet comes from lean, organic protein (chicken, beef, fish, turkey, ham, protein powder and greek yogurt) and quality sources of fat, like almonds, avocados and cheese. I’m like everyone else in America, and have a hard time avoiding the ever present temptation of sweets, but if I consume the right balance of protein, vegetables and fat, I feel that I’m not as tempted to head down the “sweets road” as when I’m consuming carbs... “Once you pop, you just can’t stop.”

Drink Up

Water is also essential, as I’ve mentioned in past articles I try to drink at least 60 oz of water first thing in the morning (and then keep it flowing throughout the rest of the day until I hit at least 100oz). This does two things; number one it gives me a chance to catch up on the water that I radiated, perspired and breathed out while I slept. The second benefit is that it gives me the full stomach feeling that allows me to start off with a lighter breakfast instead of a 7am feast.

Exercise

Eating well is only half the battle my friend, in order to really tighten up you have to do some form of moderate to intense exercise to give your muscles the opportunity to eat any remaining fat stores. I believe that 30 minutes is all you need to get your heart rate up and create a demand for Growth Hormone, which is the champion at eliminating fat stores. The only trick is that Growth Hormone will only hit the scene in the absence of carbs or sugar, so in effect, not having any carbs or sugar in your body in the first place will keep fat stores low; then the Growth Hormone prowling around your arteries like a hungry lion will ensure that any left over fat will be consumed as energy for your workouts, as well as energy for the recovery period.

In this case, I did a 30 minute arms session as demonstrated in my 
Traveling Exercises - Elastic Bands video and on Wednesday Oct, 27th, I threw the medicine ball around (see my workout at Medicine Ball Workout) on Thursday Oct 28th and finished strong the morning of Friday Oct 29th with some track drills and (10) 50 yard sprints.

By the time I got on the scale (right before I had to leave for the set) I weighed in at 193, the lowest weight I’ve been since I hit my 20’s. Mission complete; not only was I at my ideal weight, but I had worked off any nervous tension and was ready to sit in my trailer for 5 hours until I shot my scene.

Written by Daniel Crouch, True Balance Health and Wellness
Personal Trainer & Wellness Guide.

Workout Videos

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