T Nation

5 Months In, Re-Evaluating My Diet

Hey, so I’ve been training and eating clean for 5 months now. I started a few weeks after turning 15.
I think that my diet is really holding back my gains. I know very little about nutrition and have kind of just been eating what seems clean to me and trying to get some protein. I also just started supplementing and I feel that I need to change my diet to maximize my gains.

Alright, here’s what I have been eating. Please tell me what is write and wrong. My goals are size, strength, and lowering my body fat percentage as much as possible.

Breakfast:
*1 teaspoon of Colostrum Gold 10-15 minutes before eating breakfast.
*It depends, but I will usually eat one of the following:
-2 hard boiled eggs, some vegetables (tomato, lettuce, red pepper for example), water
-1 bowl of Cereal(usually Special K), skim milk
*1 teaspoon of Cod Liver Oil.

Lunch:
I stopped eating the school lunches just a few days ago because they have very unhealthy food and are overpriced, so I’m very open for anything here.
I cooked some stir fry yesterday and brought it to school today for lunch. It was made on Olive Oil. Tofu, Kale, Onion, Garlic, Brussels Sprouts, Tomato, and Broccoli.

I’ve been learning how to cook, so please just tell me the best possible thing to eat for lunch in order to achieve my goals and I will learn how to cook it.
I was thinking maybe brown rice and vegetables, but brown rice has a ton of carbs and those will prevent me from lowing fat, right?

I work out right after school and eat a Zone Perfect nutrition bar before my workout. My sister gets that and EAS Myoplex Protein shakes for free since she works in marketing at Abbott and is working with those products. I never drink the shakes though, I prefer my protein powder since it has less calories.

I get home and take my Protein powder, Creatine, and a BCAA pill. Then, I do cardio for about an hour.

Dinner:
Again, nothing specific, whatever my mom makes. What is the best thing that I should be eating that I could make?

I’ll usually get hungry before bed and have banana or something. What should I be eating as a quick snack if I get hungry before bed?

I drink water with everything.
In between meals, I have 2 tablets of Buffered Vitamin C and 1 tablet of BCAAs.
The BCAAs bottle says "As a dietary supplement, take three (3) capsules, three times daily between meals and after workouts.
Does this means 3 a pop or 1 a pop? So, am I taking 3 in a day or 9? I have been taking 1 a pop so far.

I’m open to change anything so please tell me what I am doing wright and wrong and what the optimal things to eat would be. I’m just trying to figure everything out and make sure that I’m doing everything right. I’m learning new things every day and I feel like I know nothing, so please help me out here.
Thanks a lot

First of all… way to go on trying to eat healthy at 15. I was clueless at that age. I remember crushing bags of pretzels, because they were fat-free! Try to eat a source of protein at every meal (eggs, chicken, fish, medium fat meat like turkey. Try to eat veggies with every meal. Try to limit carbs to breakfast and around when you work out.

Limit these to complex carbs like brown rice, oatmeal, low carb wraps, and fruit. Except for postworkout where you want qucik digesting carbs and protein (no fat) Look into getting Surge from this site if you can afford. Also, i’d hit your sister up for the free EAS protein shakes (they are free!)

Some ideas for lunch: Spinach salad - ton of spinach, tomatos, green peppers, onions, grilled chicken, 1 oz feta 1 tbsp olive oil, 2 tbsp balsamic…

dinner- stir fry like you said… or meat and veggies cooked in a healthy oil (cocunut or olive oil. Try to get your mom to cook something healthy.

Bed time- cottage cheese, 1 tbsp Natural PB, and scoop of protein powder. or protein shake w/ 1 oz almonds

First post your stats like height, weight, etc. The BCAA should be 9 caps a day. Drinking water with everything is great. your supplementation doesn’t sound that bad so stick with that. You can drink the EAS with no problems. At your age watching calories shouldn’t be a huge problem unless you are obese. Being that you said you want to gain size/strength i don’t think you are obese. I think you should try and eat protein and carbs with every meal.

So breakfast can be something like a small bowl of oatmeal and 2-3 eggs. a good lunch to bring with you to school would be something like a tuna sandwich and a piece of fruit like a bananna or apple. Protein shakes can be good snacks and used pwo and before bed. Cottage chees is great before bed for building muscle due to the casein protein in it.

I noticed you ate tofu. Ditch that and anything else with soy in it. I’m anti-soy. A small amount is ok but try to limit it as much as possible. A better thing to add to that would be chicken or beef. For dinner do you really have a choice or are you just stuck with what your parents make? lol
send your stats and i think that I and others will be able to be of more assistance

-Gerdy

Thanks for the advice so far,
I’m 5’10’’ 140-145lbs. 55lb/arm dumbell bench, 110lb row, 80lb shoulder press, 35lb curls, 45lb skull crushers. Numbers for legs will be both inaccurate and very low since I do legs on machines and because I just started doing legs again like a week ago because I had to change my routine so it wouldn’t hurt my back.

I have no clue what my BF% is, but I want it to be lower, whatever it is. You can see some lines in my shoulders and chest and all, but I have that annoying belly fat, but I’ve really upped my cardio, so I’ll see how I’m doing in a few weeks.

I know that a lot of cardio can hinder muscle growth. I just want to be lean and muscular. To build muscle, I need to eat. To be lean, I need to burn off those calories through cardio, which hinders muscle growth for some reason. It’s a vicious cycle…

Yes it is a viscious cycle. lol My advice is to just focus on gaining size and chances are at your age you will put on a lot more muscle than fat. Your natural testosterone levels are soo high right now and will continue to be for a while. In between my jr. and sr. year in high school i put on 25lbs of muscle over the summer and everybody accused me of steroids. i just ate like a horse and lift heavy weights.

lol…i commend you for trying to eat healthy in school because it is very hard. lol wow what a world we live in. lol If its an injury from your back i understand. If your not squatting because it hurst and it’s not an injury then it’s time to man up! Squatting and Deadlifting will make you bigger, stronger, faster, leaner and meaner! lol

-Gerdy

The doctor told me that I have mild Scoliosis and I didn’t want to do anything that would make it worse. They told me that it might be possible to fix it at my age, but either way, it’s not a big deal. A point between my back discs hurts if I’ve been standing for a long time with no back support and it doesn’t even happen that often.

Yea, about the eating healthy in school thing, it honestly is ridiculous. There is absolutely nothing healthy to eat or drink in the main lunch line. You have to go inside the cafeteria where they have fridges and whatever where you can pick stuff that’s not on the menu that day to get something even remotely healthy.
Even then, all I could find that was healthy was fruit, vegetables, and a Chicken Caesar Salad that I had to take the krutons(sp?) out of. It was basically a few pieces of overpriced, low quality chicken and some cabbage. They don’t even have wheat bread on the subs. I mean, they could at least make like 1/3 of them on wheat bread.

They sometimes have bake sales or whatever to raise money for whatever they feel like raising money for, I guess. How about a fresh fruit sale or something?
My school prides itself in replacing all of the regular Coke machines with Coke Zero machines, because zero calories means it’s healthy, right?

Anyways, sorry for the rant, but what the hell are they doing with our tax dollars?
I know this is a question for a completely different topic, but I’ve been thinking of going from a full body workout to some sort of split workout. I’ve never done a split, but I feel that when I do compound exercises, I sacrifice the full use of some muscles later when I do concentration exercises.
For example, I’ll do all types of rows and then my curls are weak.

My workouts are also getting longer and longer and I only have like 1.5 hours to work out after school. I’m thinking I might join a gym over the summer so that I could work out whenever I wanted and for however long I wanted.

hey man it’s okay to rant. lol well you have a legitamite reason for not squatting, most people don’t. 1.5 hours is too long to be lifting. I’m a firm believer in workouts that last 45 mins to 1 hr. Going longer than that is too much. If your going hard for 1 hr you will get enough work in to cause hypertrophy and muscle growth without overtraining. This 1 hr session does not include cardio. Cardio can be done after and this gets to your 1.5hrs at the most in my opinion. I’d rather split the cardio and training session up and eat in between but if time is a factor and cannot be done we have to play the hand we are dealt. lol I think you should try this split. It works well for me and worked great for me at your age.

Mon:back/arms
tues:legs
wed:chest/shoulders
thurs:legs
fri:back/arms
the following week switch the back/arms and chest/shouder days so that the following week you will be training back/shoulders 1 and chest/arms 2
this is great in my opinion for keeping a balanced upper body and proper posture

try and keep each workout to 60 mins or less and i’d recommend doing cardio on leg days and on saturdays.
sat and sundays are off days and cardio is inserted here as needed.
I take Sunday completely off and go to church. Other than that I eat and sleep and “chill” lol
I don’t even like doing homework on sundays. lol

Watch your cardio. If you are not making gains cut it back and focus on gaining weight. As I said before your body is in a prime age for growth so take advantage of it and worry about cutting later.
Joining a gym is a great idea…

feel free to pm me if you have any other questions…

-Gerdy

Props to you for starting early, when I was your age(5 years ago) I just trained hard and tried to rationalize eating like shit. You are too young to be carbphobic. It also sounds like you are skinny fat, not big and fat, so carbs should not be eliminated, just monitored. Carbs for breakfast and around workout times are the best and try to keep the sources good whole foods like oat meal/bran, fruits, veggies, etc (exception Surge). Eliminate the shitty carb sources like soda, candy, crackers, cakes, ice creams, basically anything with alot of sugar. Get a good lean protein source at every meal. Almonds are the best snack in the world, tied with celery and natural peanut butter.

In the gym you need to learn to bust your ass and train smart. Sucks about your back, but if it is mild proper training should help, talk to your doctor. If you can’t squat or deadlift can you still do weighted lunges. I take it you can’t deadlift, but you could try dumbbell deadlift.

Good luck, and great job starting early.

Cardio is awesome, but HIIT is even better.

[quote]Artem wrote:
Anyways, sorry for the rant, but what the hell are they doing with our tax dollars? [/quote]

Spreading freedom and democracy at gunpoint. Well, I just had to sneak that in.

Anyway, kudos for your motivation. I’d start by ditching the Special-K in favor of a more nutritious and cheaper alternative (try some muesli). Else, you seem on the right track. Make sure to read all the stickies in the Beginners forum. They’re full of links to top-notch articles about nutrition.

Best of luck.

P.S: What’s Colostrum Gold?

^I approve of your avatar. :slight_smile:
Colostrum Gold? I have no idea. My mom got it and I take it… the bottle says something about recovery and muscles and blabla, can’t do any harm, can it?

For legs, I was thinking of using the hammer strength machine where you can hold the weight instead of resting it on your shoulders. That shouldn’t put pressure on the back, right?

I could do squats and those calve raises or whatever they’re called where you do a hopping motion, on that thing. I could do leg curls on a machine, where you curl the leg behind you as opposed to pushing it outward like in a kick while squatting.