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Transformassacre Q&A With Trainer Dan Trink

Dan answers your questions about building muscle, eating right and staying motivated.

Did you participate in the Live Transformassacre Q&A on the Men's Fitness Facebook? Dan Trink, the trainer for the Transformassacre answered questions for an hour—here's the top five. Dan Trink C.S.C.S., CPT is the Director of Personal Training Operations at Peak Performance NYC Follow Trink on Twitter @TrinkFitness And stay tuned tomorrow for Week 6 of the 8-Week Transformassacre...

1) Matty T What is the best way to gain muscle weight? I already eat healthy, take protein and work out but seem to have stopped gaining weight.
“That depends on the individual. Unfortunately ,though there are certainly ideas and trends that we follow, not every person will respond to the same nutritional protocol the same way. That is why I assess, monitor and reassess clients constantly. That is the best way to know what works. But a good tip would be to pay extremely close attention to your nutrition around the workout window and make sure you are maximizing your carb and protein intake at those times.”
2) Donna Jeanne Wells What, would you say, is the recommended amount of sleep for one to get per night. I recognize that everyone is different, but on average?
"I'd say 7-9 hours sleep is a good rule of thumb and if you are training hard I would say get closer to nine hours. Your gains actually come when you are resting, not when you are in the gym. The majority of positive hormonal factors occur at night when you are sleeping. Maximize that by getting a great night's sleep (no lights, no sound, cool room, comfortable bed, etc.). Caffeine is fine, especially pre-workout, but if you are hypersensitive to it, that may be a sign that you are not metabolizing it well and should stay away."
3) Michael LaTulipe I need to get my push-up and pull-up numbers pretty high for the physical fitness test to start SEAL training. What are some of the best exercises I can do with weights to help me with this?
"If you need to get your push-up and pull-up numbers up I would focus on 'eccentric' or 'negative' training of those movements. So get as many reps of those movements as you can and then, on the last rep, lower as slowly as possible. If you focus on increasing the time of these eccentric/lowering portions of the lifts, your total number of pull-ups and push-ups will increase over time. Military presses are also a great way to increase push-up strength. Finally, losing body fat makes push-ups and pull-ups much easier (for obvious reasons)."
4) Emma Harbinson How many grams of protein and carbs is he (Charlie) eating each day?
"I don't really like to count grams of macronutrients unless someone is extremely advanced in their nutritional strategy. I just find that you can make strength or fat loss gains without that type of additional work/stress. Plus, if you eat as I prescribe (non-processed foods) it is actually pretty hard to determine accurate macro-nutrient counts. Unfortunately, it is much easier to determine how many calories, fats and carbs are in a Wheat Thin (because they are all made exactly the same) than in a piece of sirloin steak (depends on how fatty the cut is, what the cow ate, exact portion size, etc.)"
5) Felix Leiter Dan It seems like Charlie is really strong willed and doesn't really stop or ever look for excuses. Is he like that all the time? What words of wisdom do you have for someone to keep up the intensity or have the drive like he does in the videos
“Great question! Charlie is definitely motivated. But he has thousands of people watching and rooting for him here at Men's Fitness. That makes the motivation easier. Early in my career, I was always worried that I wanted success for my clients more than they wanted it for themselves. Ultimately I had to let that way of thinking go as it was keeping me up at night. Motivation to your goals has to come from within. While I think strength training and exercise should be a part of everyone's life, achieving great body composition will not happen for everyone. As they say, if it was easy, everyone would do it. You have to be committed day in and day out to your goals. But you'll find once you get going, it becomes easier and even somewhat addictive to reach your goals. Charlie was just saying the other day that it's no longer a struggle for him to get to the gym, eat a solid meal at the right time, etc. He just does. When you get to that point, you are on your way to success."

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