Coach Thib's Nutrition Log/Thoughts

If you’ve been reading my newest log posts you learned that I highly dislike talking nutrition.

Not only that, I hate having to be super regimented,with my diet, calculating/weighting everything.

I can do it, I do when my goal is to get shredded (e.g. for a photoshoot) but, at best, I can do it for around 6 weeks before it sucks the life out of me!

Even worse is that I can stay acceptably lean without being strict with my diet. Why is that bad? Because there is no strong incentive for me to do something that I hate and that kills my motivation (being strict with my diet).

I’ll give you an example, and I’m not telling you this to piss you off:

In my latest photoshoot (you probably have seen some pictures in my most recent articles and on a Surge Workout Fuel ad) I was 194lbs and I was really lean.

I actually got leaner a bit later this year when I dropped down to 192lbs. I didn’t do a photoshoot at that point but here are some selfies to give you an idea of the level of leanness that I had.

Anyway, for the past 8 week I’ve essentially been eating anything I fancied. While I don’t include too much crap, I do have more than a liter of frozen yogurt per day, plenty of bread, a boatload of grapes, at least 2 “breakfast bars” (like chocolate granola bars) etc, per day. Not necessarily a diet that I would recommend to anyone wanting to get lean.

Despite all of that I gained, at the most 2-3lbs of fat. My weight increased a bit more (201lbs morning weight) but that is mostly from higher glycogen storage, water retention and (judging from my performance increase and my look) some muscle growth.

Even though it sounds cool, it kinda annoys me. Not so much from a body composition standpoint, but from control issue. I find myself eating more and more processed/pleasure foods. Subconsciously because it’s not affecting my look.

But I hate being this way, believe it or not.

I’ve tried to get back on a more strict or, at the very least, a heathier/less processed diet. But without a strong psychological or goal-oriented incentive, I basically got back to my pleasure eating way after 1-2 days of stricter eating.

One of the reasons is that when you overconsume processed, highly palatable and taste-intensive foods, your taste buds (or your brain’s interpretation to foods) changes: foods become less flavor-intensive and non-processed foods become really bland and not satisfying.

That’s why, after talking at length with @Tim_Patterson , I decided to do a bout of the Velocity Diet . First and foremost to resensitize my pallet to “normal” foods. Of course, I won’t be mad about the next level of leanness I’ll get!

I might even adjust this approach to maximum muscle growth once I’m done with the leaning out process (which is likely going to be less than the full 28 days considering my current level of leanness). If I do that, I’ll be sure to keep you guys updated on my strategy.

In this “log” I won’t necessarily do a day-to-day log of exactly what I’m eating. Rather I will share my thoughts on this experiment and how it is affecting me.

Obviously, I hope that you guys will help me make this thread interesting by contributing with your questions or thoughts.

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Thanks for starting this thread,coach.I recently was on a strict 12 week diet(which I hated) with counting/weighing daily.I got down near 10-11%BF but it was not easy at all.There were some days I questioned why I was doing it–I dont compete and no-one had offered to pay me to be shirtless.I 've had pizza,candy bars and the like since it ended.Maybe the V diet is in order to reset my palate.

This was always my favorite benefit of the Velocity Diet… and it was a total accident. I experienced it, but didn’t talk about it much in the first iteration of the plan. Then other people discovered that “side effect.”

In the last few years I’ve learned more about taste buds. Human taste buds (or taste sensory cells) die and regenerate quickly. Their average lifespan is just a few weeks. I think this partly explains why people lose their junk food cravings on the V-Diet. By the end of the diet, they’ve re-grown a whole new set of taste buds – cells that can now perceive sweetness more easily and don’t need overwhelmed with hyperpalatable foods to be satisfied and happy.

Also, we now know that low-grade inflammation brought on by being too fat reduces the number of taste buds you have. So, very obese folks literally can’t taste their food very well, triggering them to reach for even bigger calorie-bombs, usually more sugar, fat, and salt combined.

A lean person may find a banana sweet and a piece of pie cloying, but an obese person wouldn’t taste the natural sweetness in a piece of fruit, and it wouldn’t be satisfying. More info here. At the very least, it’s easier for the leaner person to satisfy his sweet tooth with a smaller amount.

(One of my strategies for leaning down is to avoid the after-dinner snacking. I snack healthfully, but the calories can add up. So I eat ONE frozen black cherry after a savory dinner. It’s just enough to balance the natural savory/sweet, hot/cold hunger ratio, and skipping the snacks later is much easier.)

I think even the chubby-but-not-obese folks experience this as well, just to a lesser extent. So, borrowing an idea from Dr. John Berardi, it makes sense to get ripped at least once per year to keep all this check and avoid the slippery slope.

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Some random thoughts:

  1. I need to feel satisfied when I eat a meal. A typical “bodybuilding” diet is hell for me, not so much for the restricted food choices, but because I rarely feel satisfied after a meal…merely teased. Doing that 4-6 times a day takes its toll psychologically. That’s why I always enjoyed intermittent fasting. The problem is that IF never allowed me to gain muscle and wasn’t even that effective at preventing muscle loss while losing fat. The 3-4 daily protein pulses will take care of that.

  2. My main goal isn’t so much dramatic fat loss (which will be achieved with the base Velocity diet), in fact, I’m quite content with my current leanness (I won’t be pissed if I get leaner while still being able to perform optimally). So after 2 weeks on the base Velocity diet, I might increase calories by mixing the pulses with a small amount of cream to boost caloric intake and maybe even increase protein accretion.

  3. After being on a strict diet for 14 weeks (counting and logging everything) I’m mentally tired of tightly controlling macros and calories (which is, in fact, one of the reasons why I wanted to do the Velocity diet). So I personally will not shoot for a specific caloric intake on my solid meal. BUT I will follow a specific structure: a) start with a protein food (animal flesh, basically), then b) veggies, followed by c) starchy carbs or fruits and finally, if I’m still hungry d) pleasure food (for me that is more often than no frozen Yogurt). Important: Understand that I’m under a true 10% body fat with a very high activity level. If you do have more fat to lose, I recommend being a bit tighter with the solid meal although you’d still lose fat with my approach.

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I’ll be following this closely! I can’t wait to see what your results will be.

Hi Christian, do you care about how much time do you have in between meals, regarding stimulating muscle protein synthesis optimally every x hours? How important do you think is this claim or the fact that some should eat at least every 3 to 4 hours I guess and does it matter if someone is natural or enhanced?

I also feel way better when I eat less meals, the typical breakfast, lunch and dinner. When I eat six meals I never feel full or satisfied!?

thanks!

If you are talking about a regular nutritional approach (solid food meals), it really doesn’t matter. provided that you get the same amount of protein in at the end of the day.

For the protein pulses will you be using Metabolic Drive or Mag 10 ?

Metabolic drive

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thank you

Ok, I’m officially starting the Velocity Diet today.

For the past 3 days I essentially eased into it by reducing my meals to 2 (breakfast and evening meal) along with two pulses, from 4-5 solid meals a day.

I’m not a superhero or any different than the average person who wants to lose fat. In fact, in many regards, I’m worse: I have a very bad relationship with food developed during a childhood of emotional eating.

I’m someone who eats for emotional support and out of boredom. And the fact that I do train a lot and am quite active (weight training session pretty much daily right now, golf 3-4 times a week and walking at least 10 000 steps a day, most of the time wearing a weight vest, and doing some conditioning here and there) allows me to avoid the visual/aesthetics of eating crap

When I “turn it on” and decide to dedicate myself to proper eating and making all the efforts to get as lean as possible I’m like a machine. BUT it’s kinda hard for me to get there without a strong incentive (not merely a goal, but a goal that will have repercussions if I don’t achieve it. Like planning a business photoshoot).

It is especially hard for me to transition to a somewhat strict way of eating when I’m eating anything I want, mostly for pleasure.

Doing it cold turkey doesn’t work for me. This is why I gave myself a few days to adjust and decided to only start when I felt ready.

And that’s today.

I will provide you with weight updates, and maybe even a picture here and there (I HATE posting pics). I will provide two different body weights:

  • Upon waking up
  • Before the solid meal

The reason for this is that I find that on a diet like the Velocity Diet (or intermittent fasting) my body weight fluctuates a lot during the day. And the morning weight will be heavily impacted by my solid meal.

Providing two different weights will help understand what’s going on a bit better. For example, this morning I was 207lbs upon waking, for a 210lbs weight at bedtime yesterday, but I’m 203lbs right now (and still have a few hours before my solid meal) because I had an intense range session focusing on maximum distance with the driver in very hot weather and then had a deadlift workout (I would normally do the opposite, but fatherhood sometimes come with surprises).

So I have not fully rehydrated yet and my glycogen stores are fairly low.

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QUICK TIP

I believe that the worse time to start a “diet” is on a Monday.

I don’t know why but people have this impression that they should start their diet when the week start. And if they fail to get on board on that first day (which happens to most… many, including myself need a transition) they get the “I’ll start over next Monday” mindset kick in, because in their mind you need to start your diet on a Monday.

And then they proceed to eat like crap for the whole week because in their mind, next Monday they start over so better enjoy life while you can!

If you take out this Start of diet = Monday connection, it’s much easier to keep trying to do better the day after you did a less than perfect diet initiation.

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CT, any specific reason you chose the Velocity Diet over other methods(calorie restriction, vertical diet, etc, etc)?

It’s the way my brain is wired.

Some people can’t do extreme and others can’t do moderate.

I’m the latest type.

Any “balanced” diet is doomed to fail for me. The more extreme it is, oddly, the better it works.

I’m also wired for very short (3-6 weeks) but very intense fat loss phases.

Lastly, I need to be excited by a concept to want to do it and stick with it. Just eating “normally” but with less calories doesn’t do it for me.

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@Tim_Patterson and I had been discussing Protein Pulsing recently, and I was curious as to your thoughts on pulse spacing.

I read your Pulse Feast article and saw that it lines up pretty well with the V-Diet, except that you opt for ‘pulses’ 4-5 hours apart (and they were Mag-10 when written) and have less Pulses throughout the day. I don’t want this to come off as me saying “b b but you said…” because I know it annoys you (it would annoy me too), I just want to know your current thoughts. Do you think there are different applications for the V-Diet vs the Pulse Feast?

Lastly, thank you for making this log; I’m sure it’s a pain to not only log food, but to answer all of our nitty gritty questions. Getting a glimpse into your methods is a learning experience that carries value beyond measure.


For comparison (for others):
V-Diet 4.0:


Pulse Feast:

The best image I can give you is having two training programs based on the same principles but that are slightly different in applications.

And, I’m not gonna lie, the Pulse feast approach was:

  1. My first application of a theoretical concept that had not been tested in real life before. It worked really well, but it was still the first iteration.

  2. The Pulse feast has. slightly different objective: fixing the limitations of intermittent fasting while keeping the spirit alive. I had been a big fan of the original intermittent fasting approach, which was first published in T Nation (The Warrior’s diet series). It always worked well with my psychological profile, made me feel awesome and productive during the day and get lean while having the freedom to eat (within reason) what I wanted. BUT it never worked to build muscle. The Pulse Feast’s objective was to fix that. And I theorized (key word) that casein hydrolysate (Mag-10) would work better because of its super rapid absorption. But I found that it often led to reactive hypoglycemia due to the very high leucine content and fast absorption.

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Do you think the Pulse Feast could work effectively as a substitute to the V-Diet if Mag-10 were changed out for Metabolic Drive? I mean, we’re only talking the difference between 2 and 4 pulses a day (and a larger HSM +supps), but some of us (me) don’t have space to bring 3 full shakers to work with us :sweat_smile:

Between you and Tim, I’m becoming convinced that I should follow in your footsteps - although I’m not sure if I’d rather follow the V-Diet or alter the Pulse Feast to have Metabolic Drive instead of Mag-10… The small HSM in V-Diet is a bit of a turn-off, but I’m in it for the Feast! I think it would fit in well with lifestyle and mental hurdles of dieting for me.

Well, one thing I told Tim is that unless you are someone with an eating disorder (of the binge eating type) it will be very hard to eat too much in that one solid meal. Of course, if you make that meal pizza, ice cream, pastries and other fast food you can kill your fat loss, but that’s not what I’m talking about.

I personally like the Warrior’s diet approach of structuring your meal in a way that will prevent you from binging out on crap, but still allow to have some if you want.

  • Start with a solid protein food (at least 6-8oz, ideally more)
  • Then have a decent portion of veggies
  • Third is your main carb source for the meal, either starchy carbs (rice, potatoes, yams…) or fruits
  • Then, after that, if you are still hungry you can have some pleasure foods

Obviously steps 1-3 must be of normal/decent portions otherwise it defeats the purpose.

That structure, along with the Metabolic Drive pulsing (which is more filling than Mag-10 was), Flameout and Superfood, you should not be hungry enough to abuse pleasure foods at your meal.

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Hi Chris, I read that most of the time you don´t track or weigh your food, but when you track because you are on a strict diet or preparing for a shoot etc.

-do you always weigh your protein cooked or raw, regardless if you eat lean chicken breast or lean sirloin or fattier cuts like beef shanks, ribeye whatever (on carnivore for example)?

thanks

CT,

Went over your recent article “The Bulking Diet: Necessary or Nonsense?”. It raises the question of fighting the up hill battle or the path of least resistance for us in our mid 40’s. I hit my genetic potential in late 20’s and averaged 205lbs at around 10-15% body fat at 6’ 2”. The 30’s were rough with car accidents, surgeries, kids, etc and mid 40’s leaves me around 160 and still in that 10-15% body fat. Try to bulk or just take lean and ripped which is way easier? Bulking now is so much harder!