By Joel Marion and Craig Ballantyne - Review
Joel Marion and Craig Ballantyne
are two experts in the fields of nutrition and training
respectively, and they've collaborated on a fat-loss program
designed with one thing in mind...losing fat as fast as
Overall, I like the underlying
structure and strategies found in the program. It's a
well thought-out approach to fat loss and can definitely
help you lose fat.
As you know, the basis of
any successful fat-loss program is going to be diet and
exercise...what you eat and how you train...so to really
judge how effective this program is going to be, I'll
dig into both of those facets a bit.
The training portion of
this program is based primarily on Metabolic Resistance
Training (MRT for short). MRT is simple in concept...think
of it as using weight training in a "cardio"
fashion, using large-muscle exercises, compound movements
and short or no rest periods in between sets.
This type of training has
the ability to not only burn fat and improve cardiovascular
capacity, it allows you to build strength and muscle mass
at the same time.
The 24/7 program workouts
utilize a circuit training type of approach, going directly
through a series of exercises moving from one exercise
directly to the next with no rest. Once you've completed
a circuit through the exercises, you take a short rest
then go again.
The workout schemes vary
between rep-based (e.g. 8 reps per set) or time-based
(e.g. go for 40 seconds) and include a variety of workouts
for beginners and advanced trainers. There are a good
number of workouts to progress through included in the
Personally, I'm not normally
a big fan of time-based training with resistance...it
can be a bit tricky to figure out the best resistance
to use and then if you repeat the circuit, you may have
to adjust the resistance again, based on your fatigue.
That's primarily a personal preference, though. If you
gauge the resistance correctly and don't go too light
and flail around with the weight or go too heavy and struggle
to make it through the time period, it can be a very effective
way to train.
The specific cardio training
included in the program is high-intensity interval training,
which is definitely more effective than long-duration
cardio. The recommendations in the program are spot-on.
Overall, the approach
to training in this program is an effective one.
I would have liked to have
seen some instruction on how a person could put together
their own workouts based on these MRT principles, though
after experiencing some of the workouts, you'll probably
get a good handle on this and be able to adjust the workouts
to your own needs pretty easily.
Joel and Craig have also
included a full exercise library where you can see pictures
and descriptions of all the exercise. Also, during the
check-out process, you'll be able to take the options
of a full video library that includes full "follow-along"
video workouts and a bodyweight-only version of the program,
for those who train at home.
The nutritional approach
to fat-loss in this program is pretty simple...the two
biggest "take home" concepts are nutrient combining
and carb timing ("Carb Syncing" as they refer
Nutrient combining is essentially
not eating fats and carbs together...the idea being that
because carbs cause a release of insulin, you don't want
to have fats present in the bloodstream, otherwise it
makes it easier for those fats to be shuttled into fat
cells. Protein is included in every single meal, which
There is merit to this concept...I
actually base my own Metabolic Surge fat loss program
on a similar concept rotating nutrients on 5-day schedules
rather than "meal-by-meal" schedules used by
Craig and Joel, so I know it's a good concept and I use
it regularly myself.
The only small hole in the
concept on a "meal-by-meal" basis is this...when
you eat fats, it actually slows down the digestion of
carbs (thereby lowering the Glycemic Index of the entire
meal together) and therefore slowing actual insulin release
into the bloodstream. Small to moderate amounts of "good"
fats along with carbs aren't really a problem. If you
have a habit of eating a lot of fats and carbs together
then, yes, it can absolutely become a problem.
The other thing to keep
in mind when you're eating protein and carb-only meals
is to make sure you're getting plenty of fiber in the
meals. Fiber also slows down carb digestion and will give
you a more stable source of energy.
Carb Syncing is also
a very good concept...it's not really a new concept,
though. I like to call it "eat 'em when you earn
'em"... essentially, you eat carbs only when your
body can make best use of them, i.e. first thing in the
morning and after a workout.
Joel and Craig have done
a nice job of putting together a detailed schedule showing
when you'll be eating what, timed with your workouts so
you'll have no questions as to exactly what you need to
eat and when. They also give you the option of picking
up "done for you" meal plans that show exactly
what and how much to eat as well.
All-in-all, 24/7 Fat Loss
is a solid program...it combines excellent and proven
training concepts (MRT and interval training) with research-backed
nutritional strategies (nutrient combining and carb timing)
that will absolutely get the job done.
The workouts are well-structured
and include intelligent progressions (increasing the difficulty
of your training as you get in better shape is critical
to keeping fat-loss moving) and there are plenty of them
to keep you busy. The nutrition concepts are well-explained
While this isn't a groundbreaking
program that turns everything you know upside down, it
IS a very good program that takes into account training,
nutrition and how both of these two facets INTERACT with
each other in order to maximize fat loss, which is a concept
you don't see in a lot of fat-loss programs and yet is
a CRITICAL factor to the success of a program.
If you're a very advanced
trainer, you're probably going to be familiar with a lot
of the material in this book.
If you're a beginner
to intermediate trainer, this is going to be a VERY good
approach for you to follow...you WILL get results with