Three Core Philosophies

Have you ever thought of the rules

of a game as what partly 

determines your success?

Think about it for a moment, only when you know the rules of the game can you stand any chance of winning.

Lets take football for example, or soccer in the States, if you keep breaking a rule like running outside of the lines of the pitch while in possession of the ball then you keep giving up possession.

If you do not have possession of the ball you cannot win the game.

Or if you keep running offside when in an attacking position then again you give up possession & never get a chance at a close range shot on target. Therefore decreasing your chances to win the game.

Well success in any area of your life has similar determinants.

I remember a story from Tim Ferris about how he became a world champion at a martial art.

Tim studied the rules of the sport & created a plan around those rules – not breaking them – that enabled him to become a world champion in a matter of months.




Want to know what he did? I’ll tell you…

Within the rules of Tim’s chosen martial art it states that you must be weighed a matter of days before the fight & be within the stated weight category for your weight-class.

Exactly like boxers do before a big fight, where they stand on the scales before a big crowd and usually have a little show & flex of their muscles.

So what Tim did was this, which was the first part of this clever move, with the supervision of a trained doctor he dropped his weight over a few weeks to as low as possible.

This enabled him to qualify for a lower weight-class. Meaning he would be fighting small or lighter guys than his ‘natural’ weight.

Now here comes the next clever part…

Straight after the weigh-in he went about, with supervision from the doctor, eating & refueling as to put on as much weight & gain as much energy as possible in the shortest period of time.

Why did he do this?…

He did this because of another rule.

This rule states that if you push your opponent out of the ring three times within a round you win the fight.

You got it; Tim pushed his way to world champion martial artist.

He increased his weight those days before the fight closer to his natural weight but he was now considerably heavier than his opponents.

He learnt the rules & applied himself around those rules in order to become a world champion.

Needless to say he wasn’t applauded at the event but he got the job done! I remember him saying that ‘the crowd where far less than happy’ with the way he became champion.

But he didn’t break any rules so he won it fair & square.

Now this leads to my next point, which is also a core principle of my business & mine.


You Expand On Demand…

I strongly believe that we must actively search out more knowledge each and every day.

In so doing we strengthen our position and resolve, while at the same time propel ourselves toward our ultimate goals.

The fact that you experience problems is a sign that you are alive. The only people who do not experience problems are those who live in a cemetery! That’s right they’re dead.

If you asked Arnold Schwarzenegger how he achieved his muscular physique he would say something like ‘Every single day I pushed these muscles against extremely heavy weights’.

The attempt at pushing the weight past where it became a problem is where the growth & progress lives.



So what is the point I’m making? It’s this…

The exact problems that you are experiencing right now are the perfect opportunity to sculpt YOU to achieve your personal best.

That’s a little ‘way-out-there’ so let me break it down…

Lets go back to rules for a minute

A rule of building a breathtaking physique is that you must challenge your muscles under tension.

This can be done in many specific ways but that is the rule.

Another rule of body conditioning is that if you over eat, meaning you eat more calories than you burn off, you will lay down more fat.


So lets put those two rules together…

If you challenge the muscles of your body regularly, maybe even daily, then you will expand the capabilities of those muscles.

The more you expand those muscles the more calories they will burn (even at rest).

So it’s easy to see that the more conditioned your muscles are the better they will look & perform.

Now, if you get the balance just right with your calorie intake, where you are not overeating day-in-day-out (the type of food you choose plays a big part here) then you at worst will not get any fatter.

Food Choice Matters…

If your food choice enables you to be energised while at a steady pace lose stored body fat then you will get thinner.

Do you see how being aware of these two simple rules can give you advantage within the game of ‘Fat or Thin’!

So the core principle is that YOU EXPAND ON DEMAND.

The demands that you put on yourself or those that are forced upon you by every day life are what create You.

The demands you decide to place on yourself will expand you – your body or your mind – in direct reflection of the demand.

Once you know the rules of the game you can apply yourself in a specific way that empowers you. You can apply demands that will shape the person you wish to be.

You can therefore leverage the rules to your advantage. Which also means you can leverage the demands to your advantage.

So that you can win… Maybe not every time… But at least more consistently.

On Tuesday 26th April 2016 I’m holding a book launch gala for by book, HealthWealth.

I’ll be introducing this concept & a number of other ‘Game-Changing-Principles’ that empower you to win the rat race.


Optimal Health & Performance is Where Success Lives…

My book introduces the rules of this game.

There will be other experts in the room for you to talk with who hold similar beliefs from within their services.

It will be a free room to roam & talk, there will be complimentary wine, Healthy Coffee & Tea. The whole event will last for two hours.

We are all here to help & have a great night, which will be fun, informative, light-hearted & energising.


I’d love to see you there… Book your spot (for free) by clicking here.

To book your place (places are limited)


Circadian Rhythms & The Best Time to Workout

What time do you usually go to sleep?  Is it the same time every night?


I am asleep by 10.30pm four or more nights every week. This is a goal that I’ve set for myself & I stick to in order to help me have successful & productive days as well as support my productive.


What is a Circadian Rhythm?

This is your body’s natural biological clock.  Katherine Sharkey, MD, PhD, assistant professor of internal medicine & psychiatry & human behaviour at Brown University & associate director of the Sleep for Science Research Lab explains:

“The human clock is about 24 hours, thanks to Earth’s 24-hour light-dark cycle.  But some people have a slightly longer natural cycle, & some are slightly shorter.”

Sharkey says, “There’s a developmental piece to this puzzle – school-age children are generally early birds, while teenagers tend to be night owls, & then as they age, adults gradually transition back into morning people.”


Early Bird or Night Owl?

So which are you?  Do you tend to get up early & feel most active & productive first thing?  Or are you one who tends to get a burst of energy later at night?

Good news for the early birds: “night owls tend to be more depressed, have a higher dependence on caffeine, & use alcohol more,”

Sharkey says.  According to a study from the University of Toronto morning people also tend to be happier & report feeling healthier than night people.


When to Workout…

So what does all of this have to do with your workouts?

Well, once you know about your body’s rhythms you can work with this internal clock to schedule workouts to get maximum results.

In terms of your circadian rhythm (sleep/wake cycle) it’s best to work out earlier in the day. Between 8am & 2pm for example.

Your Cortisol levels are naturally higher (or should be) at this period of time so it would be wise to take advantage of that.

Also, as your day progresses you will begin to experience more fatigue. So in order to keep your workouts intense enough to generate results you should aim to workout as early in the day as your schedule permits.

The night-time is for relaxing and recovering.,, & the occasional wild party.


Keep up the good work.



To Your Best Health

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant




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Burn Out: The Price Of Success? Executive / Corporate burn-out & how to avoid it

While aiming high helps you achieve greater success, at times your ambitious nature may lead to such a level of stress that you risk ‘burn out’.  New studies on this topic show that while great pursuits are not a bad thing, there is a level of perfectionism that is so high that it can lead to stress, frustration, depression & more.


The Perfectionist

Studies discussed at describe new research showing that 90+% of highly ambitious people refer to themselves as ‘perfectionists’.  The study also revealed that the trick to keeping stress & potential burnout at bay is to keep your high standards but avoid beating yourself up when you don’t meet every expectation or goal.  A fine line to walk basically!


The Risks

While the above strategy may seem difficult to balance perfectionism + forgiveness for failures, consider the alternatives.  Stress related to perfectionistic tendencies & high-goals has been linked to:

  • Mental health problems
  • Physical health problems
  • Depression
  • Fatigue
  • …& even early death!

So is it worth trying to find this balance to avoid any of the above?  After all, any of the above problems will set you back on your goals far longer – or even permanently!


How to Avoid Burnout

Study author Andrew Hill, a sports psychologist at York St. John University in England explains that:

Perfectionists “tend to be rigid,” Hill said. If they set their goals too high, they may burn out or bow out at the first sign of failure. Thinking of achievements in degrees, rather than as pure success or failure, can help reduce the stress that causes burnout, Hill said.

So what can you do today to start on this path?

Start by outlining your goals & thinking of all of the steps involved in achieving them.  While you still want to outline dates & deadlines, remember the ‘degrees of credit’ advice suggested by Hill.  Instead of thinking of everything as success or failure give yourself a rating: ‘70%’ & then use that as an additional motivator to continuously improve your rating/scores on all fronts.

…After all, 100% is not achievable 100% of the time – so remember to give yourself partial credit PLUS a bonus for the overall amount of projects you are tackling at once!

To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant




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Spicy Food Linked with Longer Life

In a new study researchers found that eating spicy foods one to two days per week improved their life span.

A seven year study based on 500,000 participants proved that those who ate spicy foods one to two days per week lowered their risk of death by 10%.

Moreover, the study determined that those who ate spicy foods three or more days each week lowered their risk of death by 14% over those who ate spicy food less than one time per week.


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Reduce Your Exposure…

Interestingly, participants who ate spicy foods also tended to have a reduced risk of certain disease such as ischemic heart disease & cancer.

Also, the benefits seemed to be slightly greater for women than men & those who ate fresh chili as apposed to dry had more improvements.
While the study – so far- has only identified this correlation, it is still unclear as to how exactly spicy foods may help to improve longevity.


For more examples of this correlation between health & spicy foods read:

The Power of Cumin Powder on Body Composition

The Bottom Line…

While again, these are all still correlations, not proven facts – it seems that if you love spicy foods then it’s definitely a great idea to keep it on the menu a few times a week!

Add some spice to your diet this week.

Alongside bringing alternatives experiences to your taste buds there are a load of health benefits to be had.



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To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant




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The Importance of a High Protein Diet: Volume One

You may not realise it but protein is an important element in every cell of your body.

For example, both hair & nails are made up of protein. Your body uses protein to make enzymes, hormones & to repair & build different tissues. Protein is an important component in bones, skin, blood, muscle & cartilage.


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So…obviously keeping high levels of protein in your diet is important for optimal health & wellness!


What Are Macronutrients?…

Micronutrients provide calories or energy. In order to grow, repair, digest or perform any bodily function you require specific amounts of macronutrients on a daily basis.

The word macro means large, this indicates that you need a lot of these types of nutrients regularly.

There are three types of macronutrient:

  • Protein
  • Fat
  • Carbohydrate

Each provide energy as explained, but they all provide different amounts of energy in a different form for the body to process.

Protein provides four calories for gram, carbohydrates seven calories per gram and fat nine calories per gram.

Aside from macronutrients the only other substance that provides energy is alcohol at seven calories per gram.

This is not considered a nutrient as we do not require it to survive… much to the surprise of some people I’m led to believe!

Alcohol provides what is termed ‘empty calories’. As you’re taking calories on board but without any nutrients that help perform vital processes.


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12 Benefits of Protein…

  • Greater muscle mass & lean tissue
  • Lower hunger & calorie intake
  • Easier fat loss on a calorie-restricted diet
  • Decreased belly fat
  • Greater muscle development
  • Greater strength gains from training
  • Better bone density & lower risk of osteoporosis
  • Better brain function
  • Better sleep
  • Lower Blood Pressure
  • Stronger Tendons & faster recovery from injury
  • Greater lifespan & better quality of life as you age


Coming Soon…

In the next article I will explain why protein is so important for your health & performance, plus what is the best protein supplement that money can buy…

Until then…


To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant



p.s. This Free Coaching Won’t Be Available Forever – Click Here To Learn More




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Stress Management, Anger, & Benefits of Living a Less Stressful Life

I rarely lose my temper, no more than once or twice a week on average.

How often do you find yourself getting angry?

Are you aware that anger is the psychological manifestation of stress & worry?

How often do you lose your temper?


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We’d all like to be able to live a more stress free lifestyle. The benefits of less stress can be seen, not only in the way you handle situations, but in what you decide to eat, how your body reacts to stress & the shape of your body & where you store fat.

Case studies that directly correlate with the benefits of anger management, as well as how a person handles stressful situations have proven the benefits of stress management.



Symptoms of Stress…

Have you experienced any of the following issues without knowing why?

  • Trembling or tremors
  • Grinding of your teeth
  • Lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Cold or sweaty hands or feet
  • Frequent colds
  • Frequent infections or sores
  • Unexplained allergy attacks
  • Heartburn
  • Stomach pain
  • Nausea
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Frequent crying spells
  • Feelings of loneliness
  • Increased frustration
  • Nervous habits
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty making decisions
  • Heart racing or palpitations
  • Increased number of minor accidents
  • Overreaction to petty annoyances

…Any of these can be symptoms of being over stressed!

Stress affects the body in other ways as well… The tendency for heart disease is a more obvious & well known correlation.

Numerous studies have indicated that due to consistent heart rate increase created by stress, we are stressing our hearts physically more so than on average, & the correlation of heart disease & stress is long standing.


Case Study – Stress vs. Diabetes…

Those who suffer from diabetes, for example, have seen positive results when they address & manage stress.

Stress management training was associated with a small (0.5%) but significant reduction in HbA1c.

The term HbA1c refers to glycated haemoglobin. It develops when haemoglobin, a protein within red blood cells that carries oxygen throughout your body, joins with glucose in the blood, becoming ‘glycated’.

By measuring glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c), clinicians are able to get an overall picture of what our average blood sugar levels have been over a period of weeks/months.

For people with diabetes this is important as the higher the HbA1c, the greater the risk of developing diabetes-related complications.

HbA1c is also referred to as haemoglobin A1c or simply A1c.


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What To Do…

It’s obvious that any or all of the symptoms above can decrease your level of heath, your wellness or even your life if experienced on a long-term basis!

So what’s the cure? 

Obviously – trying to find ways to limit your stress as best possible.

Begin to say ‘no’ when people ask to add new things to your plate, especially when it is already full.

Take time to implement systems that help you manage overwhelming tasks or problems.

Delegate tasks. Be smart with where you spend your precious time. If someone else could be completing the task for you then pass it over & spend a fraction of the time reviewing their work before completing the job.

Talk; to yourself, outloud, to co-worker, to friends, to complete strangers!

A problem shared is a problem halved.

Not only will it help you feel less stressed by talking out the issue(s) but the person you share with may come up with additional solutions on how to manage, decrease or eliminate specific stressors in your life that didn’t come to your mind.

It’s worth a shot.



Food & Exercise…

Also – remember: eating healthy & exercising are great ways to stimulate feeling good, strong & energetic while at the same time reducing stress levels.

Eating well helps to increase serotonin which is the ‘happy hormone’ & exercise also helps to increase endorphins – other hormones that help stimulate happiness & positive thoughts & emotions.

Be aware of your stresses & what causes them.

Always look for better ways to manage & reduce your stress & promote positivity, wellness & longevity!

My LENS questionnaire will point you in the right direction. Takes less than five minutes to complete & you’ll receive a personalised report – Click Here To Take The Questionnaire Now.



To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant




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Why Your Workouts Should Be High Intensity

New studies show that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) may be even better than regular aerobic exercise.

Emerging research indicates that HIIT may be more effective in reducing subcutaneous (beneath the skin) abdominal fat than other forms of exercise.


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The Benefits of HIIT…

According to research by Stephen H. Boutcher, High intensity exercise helps lower insulin resistance & results in a number of skeletal muscle adaptations which help enhance skeletal muscle fat oxidation & improve glucose tolerance.

Basically put this form of exercise will increase muscle tone and burn off body fat.

Tests were performed on sprinters as they often have quick bouts of intense exercise with periods of rest in between.

Beyond the health benefits mentioned above HIIT has also proven to be more time-efficient & helps you to get results more quickly & efficiently.

…Particularly when you’re focusing on the abdominal area.


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HIIT can easily be modified for anyone at any fitness level & even for those with special conditions such as diabetes or weight problems.

Examples of HIIT exercises includes but is not limited to:

  • Walking
  • Swimming
  • Aqua Training
  • Cycling
  • Eliptical
  • Cross-training
  • Treadmill walking, jogging or running (sprinting)


An Example Workout…

Try this as a workout next time you’re in the mood to shift some belly fat.

Two minutes steady pace – this will act as a warm up. Slowly increase your speed over the two minutes.

At the two minute period hit the gas and go into a sprint (or something resembling a sprint). Keep this pace up for 30 seconds. Just do your best, that’s all that can ever be asked of you.

At two minutes thirty slow it down to a steady/slow pace. This is active recovery. Actively recover for one minute – then repeat the process.

Complete at least five sprints and work your way up to fifteen. That is a goal.

If you try and complete fifteen on your first attempt you may experience nausea like you just downed a glass of thick salt water – so aim for five and build yourself up.

At the end continue the movement slowly and easily for two to five minutes as a cool down – keep the blood flowing for a period of time after the intensity, then apply some light stretching.



The Bottom Line…

If you are not sure where to begin, click the link below and I will walk through your L.E.N.S (Lifestyle, Exercise, Nutrition, Supplementation) status & how to best utilise your time in order to get to where you want to be – fast!

I can get this to you today, for free.


Click Here – This will not be Free forever so grab your personal health report while you can, I’d love to start helping you out by coaching you today.


To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant




Also be sure to keep an eye out for my new book, which will cover all the above mentioned points in detail.

I’ll keep you posted on the release date – it’s a matter of weeks now!




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The Effects of Music on Your Workouts: Perceived & Otherwise

If you’ve been watching my social media – you may have seen the fitness fact stating that you tend to lift more weight when listening to music.


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What’s Going On Here? ….

Basically – when listening to music, you’re distracted.

You aren’t focused on the fact that you’re sweating or breathing hard or that your muscles are starting to burn.

Either way, while all of this is going on, your body is working & can end up generating more force & therefore completing more reps than you would have if there were no music.

According to The National Center for Biotechnology Information these are actually relatively new findings.  Prior to 2012 the effects of music had been studied to determine the effects of those performing aerobic exercise.


The Studies Show…

Below are some highly interesting results from this study.

According to the Effects of self-selected music on strength, explosiveness, & mood:

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of self-selected music (SSM) vs. those of no music (NM) on the mood & performance of the athletes performing bench press & squat jump. Twenty resistance trained collegiate men completed 2 experimental conditions, one while listening to SSM & the other with NM. The subjects reported their profile of mood states (POMS) & rating of perceived exertion (RPE) before & after performing 3 sets to failure of the bench press at 75% 1 repetition maximum (1RM) & 3 reps of the squat jump at 30% 1RM. Statistical analyses revealed no differences in squat jump height or relative ground reaction force, but the takeoff velocity (SSM-2.06 ± 0.17 m·s(-1); NM-1.99 ± 0.18 m·s(-1)), rate of velocity development (SSM-5.92 ± 1.46 m·s(-2); NM-5.63 ± 1.70 m·s(-2)), & rate of force development (SSM-3175.61 ± 1792.37 N·s(-1); NM-2519.12 ± 1470.32 N·s(-1)) were greater with SSM, whereas RPE (SSM-5.71 ± 1.37; NM-6.36 ± 1.61) was greater with NM.

So according to this study – athletes were not actually exerting more energy when they were not listening to music, & yet they felt like they were.

Their “perceived” exertion seemed to be greater when they were not listening to music.  It only stands to reason that when you perceive yourself working harder you are quicker to draw your workout to a close – thinking you’ve maximised your efforts versus if you feel like you are exerting less effort – you’re likely to continue the workout even longer.


Want A More Dramatic Response From Your Workouts? For More Muscle Toning Tips – ‘Click Here’


The Bottom Line…

The next time you head out for a workout make sure to first: grab your iPod, create a great playlist & crank up those tunes!

This is a good alternative from time to time. The aim of this article is to give you an altered experience while you exercise.

You need laser focus while you train. This is what I teach most of the time. However, every so often you must change up the whole routine.

The environment, the style, the intensity & even the focus of your mind.

Distract yourself for a session or two – ‘Without losing form’ – & see if you can stimulate a new level  of fitness from your body.



To Your Best Health

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant




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Muscle Burns Fat. Fact.

Studies have shown that muscle is 3 times more effective at burning calories than fat.


Burn Fat All Day Long…

The more muscle you have the more calories you’ll burn. Muscle is a calorie furnace.

Even at a rest you can be burning off calories… & fat.

Your metabolic rate is the rate at which you’re burning fuel (fat, sugar, protein – think coconut oil, a chocolate bar & steak).

The higher your metabolic rate the higher your calorie burn. This means that while you’re sitting on your couch, enjoying a binge of your favourite shows, you could still be burning calories – & the more muscle the more calories you are burning.


Take ShapeTrainer’s Optimalism Test: LENS Indicator to discover how to optimalise your workouts for maximum-calorie-furnace-fat-burning-muscle-tone




A Not So Useful Scale…

Don’t get too excited & think that you can pack on muscle & then sit around & let it do all of the work!

Recent studies into claims that muscle can burn fat at a rate of 60 calories per hour have now been discounted as greatly exaggerated.

Even though you may have a great BMI percentage, (body mas index), this is a measure of fat using your height & weight. This method can give an inaccurate reading!

If you happen to be vertically challenged but genetically gifted, ie. You’re short but built like a brick s*it house, something like an Arnold Schwarzenegger version of Danny DeVito, then the BMI scale is of no use to you.

It will simply categorise you as being obese. Which is obviously not the case!

This means that, yes, you might have more muscle than fat, but you still can’t rely on only sitting, there needs to be regular exercise & optimal nutrition.


How Many Calories?…

So the obvious thought would be to balance calories in with calories out, right?… But there are a few more things to consider.

Each calorie, depending on which food the calorie was extracted from, behaves differently once it reaches the hallowed grounds of your digestive system.

A calorie from an almond will be digested & it’s energy released much slower due to the fibre that comes with, in comparison to a spoon full of sugar which hits your blood stream much quicker with little impedance.

Sugar may help the medicine go down but it’s no good for your health – thanks for that Mary Poppins!

So where as calories in is an important piece of information, I suggest that the type of calorie is more important. So choose your foods wisely.


The Bottom Line…

Basically, it is true that the more muscle you have, the more efficiently & quickly your body will burn calories.

Still, you need to not only consider just exercising the correct way, but also watching what you eat, & making certain that your body chemistry (vitamins & supplemental needs) are in balance to help this process along & turn your system into an optimal fat burning machine!


Take ShapeTrainer’s Optimalism Test: LENS Indicator to discover how to optimalise your workouts for maximum-calorie-furnace-fat-burning-muscle-tone


Until we talk again…


To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant




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Do You Know The 3 Muscle Types?

There are three types of muscles in the human body; many of them go un-noticed or unrecognised for the most part, as we associate the conversation of muscles primarily with the skeletal muscles.

Skeletal muscles are the only voluntary muscle tissue in the human body & control every action that a person consciously performs.

Most skeletal muscles are attached to two bones across a joint, so the muscle serves to move parts of those bones closer to each other.

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Visceral, or smooth, muscle is found inside organs such as the stomach & intestines, as well as in blood vessels. It is called a smooth muscle because, unlike skeletal muscle, it does not have the banded appearance of skeletal or cardiac muscle.

As the weakest of all muscle tissues, visceral muscles contract to move substances through the organ.  Because visceral muscle is controlled by the unconscious part of the brain, it is known as involuntary muscle, as it cannot be controlled by the conscious mind.

Found only in the heart, cardiac muscle is an involuntary muscle responsible for pumping blood throughout the body.

The heart’s natural pacemaker is made of cardiac muscle that signals other cardiac muscles to contract. Like visceral muscles, cardiac muscle tissue is controlled involuntarily. While hormones & signals from the brain adjust the rate of contraction, cardiac muscle stimulates itself to contract.

When you become aware of the functions of your muscles and the connected role they play getting you through the day you cannot help but be amazed.

To discover what positively affects these muscles take my Optimalism Test: LENS Indicator. It will provide you with instant ways to improve your health & performance.

You can take the Optimalism Test: LENS Indicator for free & receive your personalised report – Click Here


To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant




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