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Macro Timing and Mixing. Does it Matter?

I was reading John Berardi’s articles, and one thing I noticed was that he claimed to not mix carbs and fats together, and your meals should either be P+C or P+F. My question is, does it really matter if they’re GOOD sources of P,C,and F? Like, if I had 4 jumbo eggs with a serving of oatmeal, that would be relatively balanced at around 25C/40P/24F…would that be bad? Or some salmon with sweet potatoes…you get the point.

Also, concerning “no fats post-workout”… would that also make a big difference? I make a 4 egg omlette after I train and eat it with some sweet potatoes, so thats around 30C/38P/24F… is that bad considering its post workout? About 2 hours later I have a mainly P+C meal of oats and chicken.

I consider myself on the skinnier ends of things, so I’m on a bulking phase, but in the interest of physique I’d still like to keep fat gain to a minimum, which is why I wanted to see if Berardi’s principles held true.

It does not matter.


Mostly it’s nonsense. The only reason not to have fat post-workout is that it will slow down digestion and take longer for your body to start processing protein, but unless you are training fasted or something stupid like that it really doesn’t matter. Just eat an hour or two before training and you should still have enough amino acids in circulation that you don’t need to worry about a little bit of fat. You mostly need protein and carbs after training, but a bit of fat won’t make a noticeable difference.

Don’t get caught up in the minute aspects of this and that, just eat and lift weights. You are young and haven’t been training long, it should be easy to make progress.

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Agree with the others. You don’t need to get bogged down in concepts like this. Particularly this one, because as Chris mentioned, it’s kinda BS.

Dude, you’re 125 lbs. You just need to eat. A lot. You actually weigh what I did when I started lifting weights. I was 5’10 though, so even skinnier than you. So, I can tell you what worked for me, because I think it probably applies to you.

I put on my first 30-40 lbs by really pushing outside of my comfort zone when it came to eating. I started eating much larger meals than I was accustomed to. I ate when I wasn’t hungry. I ate a lot of pasta and rice, a lot of chicken, and I drank a lot of milk. I made relatively healthy food choices, as I wasn’t eating a lot of junk food on top of all that, but I definitely ate a lot more than I wanted to. It worked. I put on some fat, but my metabolism was high, as I assume yours is, and so the fat gains were minimal. Once my weight gains kind of stalled, I stayed around 160 lbs, but started to shed some fat and gain muscle. Basically what we call ‘recomposition’. I didn’t change anything in my diet, I just kept eating the same stuff, similar amounts, while continuing to push myself in the gym. Over a period of time, I got to the point where I was at a pretty lean 160-165. Then, I pushed the calories up again, gained about 10 lbs, and repeated the process of improving to a ‘better’ 170-175. This is essentially what I’ve done over and over again to where I am now, which is a VERY lean 200ish lbs. This year I’ll be pushing up to 210-215, with the expectation that I won’t initially be as lean at that weight, but as I get comfortable with maintaining that weight and eating enough to maintain it, I’ll gradually be a higher quality 210+.

That strategy has worked for me for quite a long time. Because my metabolism is so high, I also tolerate junk food very well now. I can eat as much carbs as I want. Hopefully you’ll be as lucky as me in that regard.


It might matter. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/advanced-glycation-end-products

-Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are harmful compounds that are formed when protein or fat combine with sugar in the bloodstream. This process is called glycation.

-Studies have found that advanced glycation end products (AGEs) may also have a powerful effect on your metabolic health — regardless of weight.

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What this concept overlooks is that a meal takes 6-8 hours to fully digest. If you eat a p+c meal 4 hours ago and a p+f meal now, there will be significant overlap. So you will have glucose, fatty acids and amino acids in your bloodstream at the same time (to varying degrees).

What nutrition coaches are trying to get at is you don’t want a massive insulin spike with a bunch of fatty acids in your bloodstream (doughnut). But mixed meals slow down insulin spikes and gastric emptying anyway. That’s the main point of all this periworkout theory. Fat and fiber slow digestion and gastric emptying. Probably doesn’t matter for 99% of us more mortals on this site.

There are people who’ve built an entire diet around sugary/fatty snacks and lost weight and improved health markers.

Edit to add: You do want carbs before and/or during weight training. Insulin not only shuttles nutrients to cells (muscle and fat), but it is anti-catabolic for muscle tissue as well, which speeds recovery.

IMO if it’s good quality food, it doesn’t matter. Quality food is important for overall health, don’t want to be eating processed junk. The one thing I would avoid is a high carb AND high fat meal. Protein is a staple of every meal, if you’ve got a lot of carbs then maybe consider going low to moderate fat, and vice versa.


Also note, Berardi has built the foundation of his nutritional principles on high frequency eating routines. While he did experiement with IF, he still adheres to a principle that involves having insulin levels elevated throughout the day - despite the P+F, P+C distinction you will have increased blood glucose with such an approach.

His stuff appears to be more geared towards classic ectomorphs, so perhaps his advice is better-placed there?

Sorry, more a point about Berardi than the poster’s question - which has been answered better than I could have!

I literally eat 2-3 big meals a day. My “post workout meal” I eat literally HOURS after lifting. I’ve done pretty well, I don’t think macro timing makes that big of a difference. As long as daily/weekly you are getting in quality foods and eating the right amount you need for your goals, shouldn’t make a difference IMO.

But do you have the same stats as the poster?

Vince Gironda said he ate steak and eggs for nine months and that he was in the best shape of his life but he wasn’t 135lbs at the time.

Ahhh missed the part that he is 125lbs lol. Nevermind OP scratch what I said and get some fucking food in your BELLY!!!

I don’t think any of this is really useful as far as the OP is concerned. I find that bogging a beginner down in scientific details is counterproductive. The dude weighs 125 lbs. This isn’t rocket science, he needs to eat more, period. If he’s making the effort to separate carbs from fat every meal, he’s simply not going to eat enough. He’ll end up avoiding meals entirely this way, unless he happens to be an extraordinarily disciplined young lifter.

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I used to be into all of this fancy stuff up until relatively recently. I remember reading the very article that’s being discussed here and wanting to implement it myself last summer.

Then a coach put me on the most basic diet ever. Really, read “the 30 day bro diet” on this website and you’ll have all the info available to recreate a diet that’s virtually the same as the one I followed. I ate the most basic foods, no more than maybe 5 different ones, every day. No post workout shake. No intra workout carbs either. Every meal had P+C+F. And I was able to get shredded (I don’t nearly have an impressive physique but the level of leanness I got to was kinda impressive IMHO).

Here’s something I found to work. Every time you read an article about the latest tech gimmick to get ripped or huge, ask yourself this question as a reality check, “if this is the secret to getting shredded/huge/strong as fuck, why did I just read this for the first time and why isn’t everybody talking about it?”

Are rows and chinups the secret to building a big back? Ask 2,000 accomplished bodybuilders and you’d be hard pressed to find even one who wouldn’t tell you so.

Is creating a caloric deficit the key to losing fat? Well, everybody who has ever gotten shredded on earth would tell you so.

Is separating carbs from fats the secret to gaining muscle without getting fat? Hmmmm.

hey, thanks for the advice. Pretty cool and motivational to see someone that has a good physique starting out where I started out

Something bothers me tho…you said “unless he happens to be an extraordinarily disciplined young lifter” (when talking about seperating carbs and fats)…so are you of the viewpoint that it DOES in fact make a difference?

The point is that, yes, it may be healthier to eat them separately. To what extent? That’s not clear. What is clear is that your number one goal is gaining mass. If you get too caught up in other minutia you will be less efficient in your progress toward that goal.

Context is important. Some of John Berardi’s clients are professional athletes (like Olympic level) and competitive bodybuilders looking to get an edge. He is looking for that extra 1%. This article was published at a time where this place was likely much different and the content people were looking for here was different.

Keep that in mind. For regular ol’ folk who trains <6 hours per week, John says eat 3-4x per day with a few hand sized portions of proteins, a cupped hand full of carbs, a thumb sized portion of fats and 2 fist sized portions of veggies.

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That’s a great litmus test. Here are two other’s that I employ:

  1. Is the person espousing X successful/strong/fit/… despite what they are doing or thanks to what they are doing?


  1. Were there people that look and/or perform the way that I want to look and/or perform before this product/training template/… was available?

Usually, with 1. it can very well be “despite”, and 2 is a great way to save money. To me, Sandow looks great, and he predated so many supplement stacks and so much knowledge that we have today. Of course, it can be fun to scratch the intellectual itch of “what is optimal” but whenever I start to get stressed about not being perfect I just adopt a “Everything will work if you adhere to the laws of thermodynamics and put in hard work in the gym”-attitude.