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Diet While on GVT


I just got done with an 8 week keto cycle. I dropped about 4% body fat and about 10 pounds. I just started a 10x10 GVT cycle. I would like to gain some lean mass on the program. I just need a little help with my calculations for macros. I know maintenance is about bwx15, but I need a little help calculating p/c/f %'s.

Optimally, I would like to continue dropping a little body fat with the GVT cycle, so I was pondering carb cycling. Currently, I am having trouble eating carbs. Since the keto diet worked so well, I automatically think eating any types of carbs will lead to fat gain, but I suppose I have to have them to put on mass with GVT. If anyone can help me out a little...I would really appreciate it. If you have done a similar GVT program before, let me know what diet worked best for you and if you dropped bf and gained mass...etc.


GVT is too much volume for most people, but if you want to do a volume program try CT's Optimal Volume Training (OVT) program.

Stick with one goal, dropping fat or putting on mass, don't try to do both simultaneously you'll go nowhere fast.


As for diet, if your goal is to drop fat, then stick with what was working when you dropped BF, if you want to carb cycle there are many previous threads on the topic.


Then my main goal is to optimize mass gaining and minimize fat gain


I am confused about how much of a caloric excess I should be in with something with this high of volume.


No one can tell you exactly. You may even want to start at maintenance just to see if it really is maintenance. If you're carb cycling, the extra carbs alone should give you a nice performance boost. After a couple weeks, bump up calories 10%. If you're not going anywhere after two weeks, add 200 calories (preferably post-workout, split between protein and carbs). And so on until you're happy.

The alternative is to start higher--the "I don't want to waste any time" mentality--and dial it back if you're gaining weight too quickly or noticeably gaining fat. But because you're coming off restricted calories and low carbs and you want to avoid fat gain, you'd be better off approaching it from the other side.

Hope that helps.


That is a very individual question. I tried GVT for the first time in college when I was probably averaging 4 hours a day in the dining hall. I put on a lot of mass in a short time period, and eventually hit my heaviest weight.

The guy I was training with at the time didn't see any significant difference in his physique, and was disappointed because of the slide of his 1RMs. He thought he was eating well, but in reality, he was lacking calories in the effort of staying relatively clean.

Note: GVT will add mass, and temporarily stall your 1RMs. When you return to heavier weights you will make gains relatively easily.

My advice:

If you are going to try GVT, getting enough calories to benefit from the intense training should be your number one concern.


However, If you gain mass and return to your former eating protocol, you will lose bodyfat because of your increased caloric requirements.

Hope this helps.


OP, the key to your success here will be doing things in a progressive, incremental manner.

If you go from low calorie, zero carb diet to a 1000kcal/day surplus overnight, you will gain fat. If you go from a lower volume to a very high volume overnight, you will likely get hurt or overtrained.

Why not work your way into something like this a little more reasonably...something like:

week 1: 2x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, calories at 90% of maintenance
week 2: 3x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, calories at maintenance
week 3: 4x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, 105% maintenance calories
week 4: 5x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, 110% maintenance
week 5: 6x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, 110% maintenance
week 6: 7x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, 115% maintenance
week 7: 8x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, 115% maintenance
week 8: 9x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, 120% maintenance
weeks 9-...: 10x10 per body part, 2x per week frequency, 120+% maintenance

This seems like a more rational way to approach things compared to just completely changing what you are doing. I know from experience that accumulating volume in this manner does work very well in the short term (eventually it becomes impractical to just keep adding sets) and by slowly ramping up your calories to meet the demands of your workload should have some benefit as far as minimizing excessive fat gain. I think 12-16 weeks of this training (including the 8 week work-in period above) would be a pretty effective "bulking plan" for someone interested in adding substantial mass in a short period of time. Obviously, training this way will not work as well in the long term since the body is fairly adept at adapting to meet volume demands (assuming adequate food and rest), but as a short term cycle before switching to a more long-term plan, I think it would work very well.


It's also the type of training that sets you up for injury and structual imbalance - quite bizarre considering Koresh has always been yammering about "achieving structural balance" with a bunch of contrived muscle testing ratios (eg, external rotations:incline bench press ratio).

Several writers like Ian King, Alwyn Cosgrove, and Eric Cressey have pointed out the flaws in this way of training.

10 sets of bench press (horizontal pushing) versus 0 sets of rowing (horizontal pulling)
10 sets of squats (quad dominant) versus 0 sets of any hip dominant exercise
10 sets of chins or pulldowns (vertical pulling) versus 0 sets of overhead pressing (vertical pushing)

Gotta love Koresh and his bizarre fascination with anyone who lives outside of North America - something that's also strange because he's lived in North American for quite some time and hasn't moved to where all the strength greats are, who speak all the languages he loves (eg, Swedish, German, Spanish, Russian, Bulgarian).


You better sign up for some visiting nurse services so you can receive parenteral nutrition after your workouts.


When we did it we paired exercises antagonistically so that was never an issue. I don't remember how it was traditionally set up, but I think some simple logic will solve any programming issues one could point out.

I'm not waving the flag of the GVT bandwagon, but I do think an understanding of why it works, and experimentation with volume is good for anyone looking to improve their physique. It doesnt' have to be an all or nothing approach...

There is no such thing as perfect programming. Every program I have ever seen has holes in it, whether they are apparent initially, or if they develop along the way.


Great post.