T Nation

My Current Program


Does this mean you are eating at maintenance? Therefore in a weekly deficit. Or is it enough of a
surplus to put you in a surplus for the week? This seems like a great method for a lean bulking cycle.
Do you think one could eat at maintenance for 5 days, fast for 2 while gaining muscle and no fat?


I would say that out of 5 “normal” eating days, 3 are at a slight surplus, with higher carbs and 2 are at a slight deficit/maintenance with lower carbs. The end result is an overall weekly deficit BUT I seem to be putting on muscle (the higher volume workouts have the highest calories) while getting leaner. My body weight has not changed much (from 220 to 218 in 3 weeks so far but I look A LOT leaner).

But my goal with this dietary approach is mostly health related. It also allows me more leeway on the “normal” days. While I don’t eat tons of crap, I am not as regimented as when I was preparing for a photoshoot, if I feel like eating some ice cream, I will. And I’m getting leaner at pretty much the same pace as when I was super strict 6-7 days a week preparing for a shoot… it is just mentally easier.

As for being a good approach for bulking without getting fat, maybe. In theory it could be. But I have not tried it, nor will I since, as I mentioned earlier, I’m pretty close to the maximum muscle I can carry. So bulking makes no sense because of the limited amount of muscle growth I have left.


Ct whats the reasoning for the strength circuits to be after the ‘normal’ lifting days?

Hypothetically- if on the normal liftong days you were doing more growth factor type training would they then go the day after strength circuits?


I fast Sunday and Wednesday, so I don’t want to do whole body strength work on the day after a fast.


I like the idea of fasting for health purposes, but is it possible that some types should just avoid it? My fasting experience as a 2B…

-With intermittent fasting (16:8) I get massive sugar/junk cravings by mid afternoon and feel pretty cranky. Can’t maintain it.

-I tried the 5/2 diet when TC wrote about it a year or two ago, which still included a few hundred calories on the 2 low days. I got really cranky and felt super anxious and cranky. Couldn’t maintain it.

-I haven’t tried a true 24 hr water fast (is a black coffee allowed)


do you drink coffee during the fast. makes a big difference. come to think of it, i haven’t done many fasting days withotu coffee or tea or energy drinks.

if you train in evening, you shoudl eat mid afternoon after fast (break it with protein & fruit, maybe some veggies). it is really really awesome


A) People will probably ask you anyway.

B) It’s just because people want to look like you!

On behalf of my forum peers, I apologize for the interrogation. There are a lot of us that like to read your posts and leave you alone. I typically don’t bother to respond or “Like” your posts because I know you get bombarded with tons of notifications every time you log on here, but I wanted to let you know your posts are appreciated. Thanks!


How on Earth are you doing this!?? I’ve been trying to push back my first meal to around 10:30am which is right before I train and I’ve been starving. This morning I woke up hungry. It’s a non-training day so I thought maybe I could wait a little longer before eating but I’m not going to make it long at this rate.

Any tips to fight the hunger? How do you eat the day before you fast? Is there anything I can manipulate with timing to make it so I don’t wake up hungry?



How high is your carb intake? I find that the more carbs I eat the hungrier I am.


It’s usually pretty high. I consider 200g to be a low carb day :smile:


I’m always interested to see how you are training.
In fact, following one of your plans from the mid 2000s gave me the best strength gains of my life. Thanks for sharing. I’m interested to see how it works for you.


if you wanted to use a loaded carry how would you wave distances for the realization phase? ty


I wouldn’t wave during the workout (like wave loading as a loading scheme).

Accumulation would be 60m
Intensification 30-40m
Realization 15-20m


thats awesome ty


Supersetted this on arm day. Allowed pin height to stay the same. Strongman arms :grinning:
A1. Reverse Bench Press from pins
A2. Zercher Squat from pins

Programming Powerbuilding


I know I’m digging up an old thread here but I didnt want to start a new one just for this:

Do you generally have a “normal” training program that you do most of the time, and then when you want to fix or specialize something do a “program” for a few weeks until its fixed (like the one that started this thread)?

For example… Run something like HPMass until you notice something is lagging or needs fixing, then program around that until its fixed, and go back to your “normal routine.”

I know youre a 2A so you like to “program hop” a bit, but this is something I have started thinking about doing. Having a “regular program” that I know produces broad results, and then diverting off it for a few weeks as needs or wants crop up, then coming back to it.


The way I work with myself is that for a certain period of time (normally 3 weeks) I have a general structure and training philosophy but the details are adaptable day-to-day.

Things that I plan:

  • The training split
  • The general volume/intensity approach
  • The workout structure (e.g. number of exercises, type of exercises, intensity zones, horizontal, vertical or antagonist pairings)
  • The “feeling” of the workout (e.g. more explosive work, more mind-muscle connection work, more eccentric/isometric focus, etc.)

But things like:

  • Exercise selection
  • Training method
  • Loading schemes

Can vary depending on feeling, motivation, mental focus, energy, etc.

But the modifiable variables stay within the realm of the fixed variables… for example I wouldn’t do clusters if the philosophy of the phase is low volume/muscle failure/constant tension work.

Note that I very rarely work like hat with clients. With 2As I do have a lot more variation but I sill plan the whole phase in advance.


Sorry, you feel that this ended up being an inquisition. Most unfortunate, because this is very interesting for me to read.

I for one would like to know more about your dietary habits, because if I recall correctly you also workout in the morning which I do as well. One thing I’ll take a stab at asking you about is sodium bicarbonate and the timing, when do you ingest it? And, I’ve checked up Arm & Hammer, that you mention on your blog, it seems to be a zero calorie product, is this why you’ve landed with that particular brand? Unfortunately, all of the sodium bicarbonates I’ve found here contain potato starch and are about 33g carbs/100g but I’ll order in Arm & Hammer from elsewhere.

Unrelated, and maybe therefore unwelcome: How advanced should a trainee be before joining your coaching program? I’ve thought about joining it in the future when I’m less of a rookie.


Getting in earlier would probably be better than later. Learn how to train correctly from the beginning and set the stage for a life of good habits.

Thanks CT, so you kind of “program hop” every month basically (not saying that in a bad way, just that you change focus often)


Right. Unless you are preparing specifically for something (powerlifting meet, bodybuilding contest, sporting season, etc.) there is nothing wrong with frequent variation if that’s what YOU need to stay motivated. Training hard trumps pretty much everything, provided that the training is not idiotic. I get better results from doing short 3-4 week blocks of training than a very well thought out 12-16 weeks periodization plan with the best progresion model. Because in the later case I get bored after 3-4 weeks, my motivation suffers and my effort goes down the drain. Not everybody is like that.