T Nation

Help With the Transition


Height: 6' 0
Weight: 192
Age: 19
Bench: 315
Squat: 225 x 8
Deadlift: 315 x 4

A little background. I started lifting about 2 years ago. I lifted for 6 months, but I did not do deads or squats (stupid I know). That is why my benches are not in proportion to my squats and deadlifts. I then took 6 months off and have been lifting consistently for about a year. Over the past 10 months I have been doing a low carb diet and have gone from 265 to 192.

After reading some articles here on T-Nation I have come to the realization that I have been doing it wrong. My fat intake has been too low and my overall calories are way too low. Every week I have a cheat meal/day but I have not taken any breaks longer than a couple days from my diet. I am worried that I have permanently screwed up my metabolism. Is that possible?

I know my body needs a break from dieting. I want to maintain this bodyweight for a few months and then try doing a clean bulk.

I would like to transition off of the low carb diet but I just wanted to ask how to do the transition? Would it be best to add about 70 grams of carbs to my post workout shake (it is currently just 69 grams of whey protein) for about two weeks to see how my body reacts? Then add something like oatmeal to my breakfast for two weeks along with the PWO shake? And then slowly add carbs throughout the day?

Currently my diet looks like this (I am limited to what my college cafeteria serves and what I can store in my dorm room)

3 scrambled eggs
2 hardboiled egg whites
1 cup of cottage cheese with cinnamon
Bowl of fruit and an apple


Chicken breast or 5 oz of tuna
1 oz of walnuts
1 cup of peas


Protein shake(Procomplex from Optimum Nutrition)
1 oz of walnuts


Can of tuna or chicken


Caseine protein shake

Also, I drink about a gallon and a half of water a day

Fish oil (9 grams a day)
Protein Powder
Fiber Choice tablets (6 a day)

I realize that my fat and overall calories are too low and I plan on slowly increasing them both.

My workout looks like this (they take about 1 hour give or take 15 minutes):
Monday: Upper back and biceps
Tuesday: Legs
Wednesday: Chest and tris
Thursday: Off
Friday: Lower back
Saturday: Chest and shoulders
Sunday: Off

The only lift that I have gone down in while dieting is my bench (10-15 pounds)

I am considering switching to the 5 X 5 program when I transition off of the diet. Is this a good idea or is there a better option?

I think I covered it all but if you guys need any more information just ask and I will do my best to provide it. Any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks.


I think a carb cycling diet would fit well for a transitioning period.

Look it up on here.

I think it would be good to start with more low carb days, and then slowly introduce high(er) carb days until your body accepts carbs as a fuel once again.


Would something like Berardi's 'Getting Unshredded' a good plan for me to follow or do you mean something like Thibaudeau's 'Carb Cycling Codex'?


You have a day devoted to lower back? Can I ask why.

Not to be rude but you aren't putting up big enough number or have enough development to be working a large muscle group twice. Especially splitting a large muscle into "upper" and "lower".

Or do you just do some DL on your lower back day?


from Thib zone:
"I like to gradually increase carbs until I find the point where mass gaining is optimal without leading to too much fat gain. Macro PERCENTAGES don't mean anything to me, only quantities.

The first step is, like you did, add carbs post-workout... start with 50g. And hold it there for 1-2 weeks. After which you evaluate your progress and decide if you need/can go up further.

If you can, then add 25g to breakfast. Hold it there for 1-2 weeks and once again assess your progress.

If you decide to go higher, add 25g more to the post-workout shake. Hold for 1-2 weeks and re-assess.

If you decide to add more, add another 25g to breakfast. Hold 1-2 weeks and re-assess.

If you decide to go up, add 25g more to the post-workout meal (up to 100g now). Hold 1-2 weeks and re-assess.


So if you want to add more carbs at this point you can't add them to breakfast or post-workout. So you add 25g in the meal you ingest 60-90 minutes after your post-workout shake. Hold 1-2 weeks and re-assess.

If you decide to go up again, add 25g to the meal 60-90 minutes after your shake (up to 50g now). Hold 1-2 weeks and re-assess.

If you decide to go up, you add 25g in one of the meals before 6pm... but not one that is already ''full''.

And you keep going until you find your ideal carbs intake.

Obviously if you start to gain fat at an unacceptable rate, do not increase carbs further."


Yea on my lower back day I do some DL and a couple other exercises.

Thanks for the replies guys.

I was wondering if going from a 5 day split like I have above to a 3 day split (like the 5x5: geocities.com/elitemadcow1/5x5_Program/Linear_5x5.htm ) would be a good idea?