Diet Catches Up w/ Lifting, Suggestions!


First a little background about myself: 6’1, 207, body fat 12-16%. I understand there’s quite a margin with my body fat, but it wasn’t taken accurately and those were the figures I was given.

That said I, at one point, bulked up to 230. I was both the strongest and biggest I’ve ever been. I filled my shirts out like no other, my traps were up to my ears, and my chest was prominent. However, without a shirt on I looked like shit. My stomach was bulging in every direction and I had a very, very round look with little definition aside from my shoulders and some definition in my arms.

Later, I broke my leg in three places during a rugby game and dropped a ton of weight. I’m just starting to do legs again, so that’s partly why my weight is around 207. Before, my legs were good-sized and I had a deadlift around 475. That said when I bulked the first time it was dirty – fried chicken, pasta soaked in oil, fried calamari-- fried everything, every night.

I want to gain size again, but I really, really want to focus on looking good. I know I might get flamed for this, but I want to actually go by a routine diet. Can anyone suggest a diet that will help to lean me out a little while still allowing me to pack on muscle and strength?

It would be greatly appreciated. As of last week I started working legs back in and I’m just finishing the third phase of HS100. Also, at 207 I feel like I still look quite rounded, but after taking almost a 2 month break after my injury, I’ve been lifting for the past 3.5-4 months.

Thanks, I need some encouragement.

It’s pretty tough to do what you are looking for, especially for trained people.

Maybe look into an article that Thibaudeau (CT) wrote (see the authors section) not too long ago. I can’t remember which one it was, but it talked about staying lean while gaining.

Personally, I’m not someone who can stay lean and gain, but I suppose there are different levels of “staying lean” and I could probably be a bit more strict about some things if I really wanted to.

I’ve been there. 20% BF at 240 at 6’2"…strong but can’t say I miss it.

First and foremost the scale tells you very little. That said, focus on your strength and what the mirror tells you.

As for diet, it’s going to be tougher because you’re already 200+ and looking to gain relatively clean. I’m there it can suck sometimes. Getting lean (and cheap) sources of protein is a job in itself.
Shoot for 300 grams of protein and play around with your carbs and fats until your happy. Unless you are insulin resistant (somewhat carb intolerant) treat carbs as your friend. Structure your high carb meals around workouts and taper carbs off towards the end of your day.

Foods I eat(and can afford on a student budget):
*Lean Ground Beef
*Chicken Breast
*Peanut Butter (the real shit)
*Barilla Plus Pasta (whole protein pasta with great low gi carbs)
*Brown Rice
*Skim Milk
*Fruit and Vegetables
*Olive Oil
*Fish Oil

Experiment with your body and see where it goes. Get more calories on workout days and when you feel like you need them. Aim for a balance where you can tip the scale slightly in one direction as need be.

This sounds like a really good start guys. I’m definitely going to heed to your advice and play with my intake and see where that takes me.