Written by justis berg
05 May 2010
The Pro Builder

By George Farah

I've read many articles suggesting that you never skip breakfast, but with my busy schedule, it's so hard to wake up and make myself a meal; I always find myself late for work. What are your thoughts about this? Is it harmful to skip breakfast?

Man, not a week goes by without someone asking me about how important breakfast is; I was even surprised to be asked that same question by some advanced bodybuilders. I am going to answer this question and put it to rest, and I hope that I can be a help to you and others.

I have been training with weights since I was 13, and the main thing I always did is eat breakfast. Don't get me wrong; I did leave the house a few times without having breakfast and oh man, what a feeling! I felt like I really did rob my body and brain of the most important nutrition they could have. As soon as I had time to eat, I practically ate the wrapper off my sandwich.

Believe me, if you want to be successful bodybuilder, powerlifter, model or just want to be a normal, healthy individual, you will need to eat your breakfast. Much research has been done about the importance of breakfast and every single one of these studies has shown that skipping breakfast is unhealthy. The negative effects range from not being fully capable of doing what others can do in school, at work, or at any sport event, to becoming very ill in the future, such as developing diabetes or high blood pressure.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day for any dieter at any age. Without breakfast, you're not going to amount to anything. What does breakfast do for bodybuilders? First, let's begin with stopping your catabolism! After you have been sleeping for six to eight hours, what happens is that your brain and body need something to feed on while asleep, so the body uses your muscle for fuel. By eating a good breakfast, you will do your body a favor, and you will stop the catabolism, and in doing so, you are sparing your hard-earned muscles.

With so many good proteins on the market, especially Hydrowhey protein by Optimum Nutrition, no one has an excuse to skip this powerful and important meal. Go ahead and give your starving muscles a quick charge by mixing a scoop or two with your favorite oatmeal or cereal, or just stir a few scoops of your favorite flavor and grab a piece fruit with it and head out the door. By doing so, no need to be worried any longer about losing your hard-earned muscles— or just do it for your health.

What is your take on fruits? I heard you talking about letting your clients have fruits in their diet on talk radio. To my knowledge, most bodybuilders stay away from fruits because fructose mediates fat storage. Can you please explain?

Fruits cause fat storage? That's a good one. I love fruits and I think that any bodybuilder who does not use fruits in their diet had better rethink their strategy. Fruit is a wonder food and it has so many good properties that range from natural antioxidants and vitamins to prevention of many different diseases, including high blood pressure and prostate enlargement. Not to mention that fruit makes a great fat-free dessert ;).

In the off-season or whenever I need to speed up the metabolism of one of my clients, I load them up with so many carbs that it is almost impossible to eat plain rice, potatoes, or yams— so the fruit is a perfect way to bump their calories and carbs without getting bored.

Having a tasty variety of different foods and vitamins helps any bodybuilder take his or her physique to that next level, and if you don't believe me, give it a try and you will be very happy. I have no idea why bodybuilders out there think that fruits are bad for them.

Go ahead and add a few pieces of fruit to some of your meals and watch your weight go up like never before and as long as you are training with higher intensity, you will never gain any fat except from eating too many fats, hint: fat makes you fat ;). Good luck and please let me know how it goes.

George, I saw the list of the Arnold's competitors and Branch's name was on it. I could not help myself but to ask you how come he is not taking the time off so he can come back to the Olympia and surprise everyone? I don't see a reason why he should do the Arnold. Is he going to be ready in such a short period?

That's a good question, but I asked myself the same question before and I found many reasons that Branch should do the Arnold. In the first place, this is one of Branch's dreams— to win both the Arnold and the Olympia. I have promised him that we will not stop until he reaches his goals. Branch took a good rest right after the Olympia and when I gave him his new program, he went back to work with no questions to ask, with a firm determination to win the Arnold.

Before sitting down to write this article, I looked at Branch's '10 weeks out' pictures and all I can tell you is— he could be ready in four weeks to walk on any stage and win a pro show. In order to win the Arnold, he needs the whole 10 weeks because, as you already know, people and judges in particular want to see improvement. I promise you that we will bring the new and improved Branch to the Arnold and once again surprise everyone.

Got a question for George Farah? You can ask him directly on the MD website and have George personally answer your question! Go to www.musculardevelopment.com, MD Forums, MD Staff and Pros, Q and A for George Farah.