Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Packing on Mass

Sick and tired of plateauing lifts, Stagnant muscle mass gains, just so you can keep those washboard abs? I am.

And I've got just the thing... It's bulking time.

Now, before you get too excited you must ask yourself this, are you lean enough ? There are two main reasons that you should ask yourself this:

1. Fat cells! - When bulking it's likely you will gain some fat, if you are already a little chubby you're going to be creating new fat cells. Fat cells can not be destroyed, they can only inflate and deflate. The major problem is that the more fat cells your body has the more easily it retains fat, so being wary of this will save you a lot of trouble when it comes to cutting.

2.  Insulin Sensitivity - Lean individuals have far better insulin sensitivity, this is a great advantage when bulking. Other than feeling more energetic and keeping the risk of diabetes at bey, having good insulin sensitivity means more of the carbohydrates you eat will be stored in the muscle as glycogen and increase rate of protein synthesis, rather than being sent off to be stored as fat before your glycogen stores are even full. In layman's terms if you are lean you're body will use your nutrients for muscle gain and energy instead of causing your body to retain fat.

Now that you've decided your body is ready heres what we're going to do. I keep some of the basic elements as seen in my cutting diet:
  • High protein - ~3-4grams protein per kilogram of body mass (mostly aquired from meats)
  • Lots of veggies - try to have 2 serves of vegetables with at least 50% of meals.
 Here's what we do differently:
  • High carbohydrate - carbohydrates should be consumed with every meal but breakfast, your post workout meal should contain the highest amount of carbs in comparison to other meals. Amount of carbs consumed in total should be approximately 2-3 grams per kilogram of body mass. (Ideal sources: sweet potato and brown rice)
  • Start the day with a protein shake - and i dont mean replace breakfast with a protein shake, i simply mean down a protein shake while you're cooking your steak. this always helps me pack on mass in a hurry.
  • Strictly eat every 2.5 hours. No exceptions! - if ever you think you're going to have to miss a meal find a way! the best trick is to have a protein shake and a bag of nuts on standby.
So you've got the basic idea, but where do you start?

Well here's an example of a day in Tom's bulk.

Meal 1: WPI/WPC protein shake
Meal 2: 250-300g rump steak, handful of roasted almonds
Meal 3: 6 rice cakes with peanut butter, coconut oil and whey (mixed)
Meal 4: 250-300g taco meat with either 300grams sweet potato or 200 grams brown rice
Meal 5: 300 grams BBQ chicken thighs, beans, 300 grams sweet potato
Meal 6: Casein protein shake
Meal 7: WPI Shake (2 scoop)
Meal 8: 250-300g fish, salad, 300-400grams sweet potato
Example of Meal 5: 300 grams BBQ chicken thighs, beans, 300 grams sweet potato

Friday, January 27, 2012

Red meat for breakfast? DEFINITELY

A lot of people have read my nutrition page and are shocked when they read that red meat is the be all and end all of breakfast foods. To these people I say, GET USED TO IT! let me explain...

Why not cereal?

All cereals are very high carb and generally speaking very high GI. Now, if you look at the graph below it shows a persons natural cortisol curve, this occurs when one has meat for breakfast. The red line shows the release of cortisol when carbohydrates are ingested at the start of the day.

Cortisol is a hormone that controls energy, as you can see in the graph when uninterrupted, energy levels are normal. Steady throughout the day and low at night (when you need to go to sleep). When interrupted by a high carb breakfast (which spikes insulin therefore reducing cortisol) most will find themselves lethargic mid-morning and restless and unable to sleep at night

Why red meat?

Red meat is a great source of protein and that's exactly what you need coming out of an 8 or so hour fast, especially as cortisol is high and to avoid catabolism you require amino acids in the bloodstream.

Red meat is also know to have a positive effect on the production of the neurotransmitters acetylcholine and dopamine, which are responsibly for alertness and drive, respectively.

The result

This is the ideal way to start your day, the increased drive and energy will help you calm and in control all day as well as helping you lean up and increase lean muscle mass. If you take one piece of advice from this blog let it be this. You'll thank me later!

More posts coming in the next few days, stay tuned and bookmark

Monday, January 23, 2012

Getting to single digit body fat %

There are many different methods people use. Some people use a simple 'anything goes' caloric deficit, some use fat burners and some people absolutely wreck themselves with cardio.

While all of these have their merits the most effective way, in my opinion, is low carb dieting (in conjunction with regular weight training of course).

The beauty of the low carb diet is that it's far easier to eat a caloric deficit. This is for 2 reasons:

  • Eating high protein meals are far more satiating than high carb meals. Meaning you'll stay full for longer (I've also found eliminating carbs from my diet has greatly reduced carb cravings).
  • On a low carb diet one can easily get ample amounts of the essential nutrients (fat and protein) whilst remaining in caloric deficit (yes you dont NEED carbs).

Example of my Diet when Cutting:

Meal 1: 250-300g rump steak, handful of roasted almonds
Meal 2: 250-300g taco meat (beef mince capsicum beans and some spices)
Meal 3: Half a roast chicken and a salad (spinach, capsicum and avocado)
Meal 4: Casein protein shake
Meal 5: WPI Shake (2 scoop)
Meal 6: 250-300g fish, salad, 200g sweet potato (optional, if hardcore cutting go without, if slower cut, enjoy!)

  • Each meal is approximately 2.5-3 hours apart except WPI shake which is directly after workout
  • Drink a lot of water between meals (not with meals)
  • Coffee is allowed, only black
  • Supplements: 2-3 teaspoons of fish oil, Multivitamin, Whey Protein Isolate (WPI) and Casein Protein

That's it! stick to this essential diet plan you'll be well on your way.

If you're still having trouble shredding up don't be tricked into doing doing cardio, it will wreck your recovery and you'll likely end up loosing muscle mass and strength. Just throw in a conditioning training day once or twice a week (I'll be posting my conditioning workout here very soon)

 first current pic, been sick for a couple of weeks lost a kilo or two hopefully gain it back in the coming weeks. 

current weight: 77.5 KG (171lbs)

current height: 183cm (6'0")

(this post will also be seen in the nutrition tab).

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


Ahoy-hoy, just letting you all know I've updated the blog. I've added a tab containing my current workout. It's a 3 day agonist/antagonist split and I highly recommend it for intermediate lifters. I've had awesome strength and hypertrophy gains on it and trust me, this one will wreck you.

I've also added a "Nutrition" tab which I will write up the basis of my diet in the next couple of days. It will cover everything from key factors in getting to sub 10% body fat to stacking on lean mass in a hurry. 

So bookmark and/or follow this page... THIS SHIT'S JUST GETTING STARTED!

 Above picture is more recent than other pictures, I went on a small bulk and put on a couple kilo's of lean mass (as well as a little body fat to keep it company :s )

PS: excuse my spastic face

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

ASK and you shall receive!

This is my first post on this blog and since you lovely people are my audience I would love some feedback.

I'm going to be posting mostly about diet and training but I'd love to hear what specifically you'd like to read about as "diet and training" is extremely broad.

I'll also post photo's and stats relating to my progress so, again, if you have any specific requests I'll be happy to fulfill them.

Anyway be sure to bookmark my blog and keep an eye out for new posts as I'll be updating as regularly as possible.

PS: The photo's below were taken with a 2 month gap in which I drastically changed my diet, I gained ~1kg lean mass and dropped ~3% bodyfat.

 PSS: my dog's name is peppa... don't you fucking forget it