T Nation

Natty on Pennies

Thats great man!

Pretty good

1 Like

Have you done this yet?

I haven’t, it was borderline impossible to fit into my schedule and after a while I forgot

However, I did talk to a rather high level nutritionist about this, and he thought my problem could be too good insulin sensitivity, so I kinda decided to roll with it.

I’m still going with the cut, apart from two mandarins after training I’m going with the GSD-type of diet. Although I’m eating 1900-2000 calories per day my strength has maintained or improved on my big lifts. At the moment I’m following a 4 day (+1 “hypertrophy day”) powerlifting program. It’s just three big movements on each of the four days.

As I came out of my diet I definitely had signs of reactive hypoglycemia, eating a lone tangerine for instance would require immediate exercise or I’d crash.

As you were describing your issues I read up a lot on reactive hypoglycemia and noted that it seemed to be curiously prevalence in the bodybuilding community but it never clicked for me that it could be that one’s insulin sensitivity was too good.

Anything else you’ve learned from this person?

1 Like

I never thought of that either, but the moment he said it it all made sense

About this particular issue, not really. He did say that the best way to not have issues is to eat carbs in large quantities (as in a lot in that particular meal, not all day) if you do have them.

I still want to drop another 3-4 kgs but after that I’ll make sure to take an advantage of the situation at hand

Pans out. Or decrease one’s insulin sensitivity, heh. Increased meal frequency and carbs more often. I’m going to claim that having exclusively P+F meals except during the peri-workout window is at one extreme, and that maybe instead opting for no carbs during rest days might be a happy intermediate path that doesn’t cause this issue. Since reading: Alan Aragon Bodybuilder Diet Study I’ve been less carb-phobic. Perform better as a result.

How so?

Wouldn’t be surprised if staying lean and timing my carbs the way you said has lead me into this situation

When I get back to eating a respectable amount of carbs I’ll probably have them in all of the meals after training and 1-2 of rest day’s meals (the last one and maybe the one before, that is)

I enjoy a certain amount of asceticism, but when maximizing growth and strength gains I do eat heaps of carbs and calories in general

I’m in the middle of my long cut for this year (the one where I shoot for new lows in terms of bodyfat)

I’m trying to get really low this time and build back up slowly, last time I rebounded quite a bit too quickly. I had planned to have a two to three year ads gain phase but I was at 100kgs after a couple of months so I decided to step back and try again

General life update:

Everything is going pretty well, although I’m busy as hell at the moment

Education-wise, it’s going great. I’m passing all of the tests with flying colours both in school and in the cert thingy

As school takes a lot of time I’m only working 35-40 hours a week now, which is less than I’d like but it’ll have to do.

Training-wise I’m doing pretty well too. At the moment I’m following a powerlifting program, it’s pretty fun. Sitting at 100kg OHP, 150kg Competition bench, 180kg Squat and 250 Deadlift, all done at RPE 8 or so, at 87kgs. (Yes, my squat still sucks, and yes, I’m pretty light at the moment)

This is all anecdotal from my end, but when you return to having carbs more often I’d be very interested to hear back if the reactive hypo goes away or persists.

When do you train during the day at the moment?

Me too! The asceticism part, have yet to achieve any sort of proficiency at maximizing growth and strength, without simultaneously wreaking my body composition.

Power to you my friend. I found that with my previous BF levels I have to be very mindful of how I add weight back. It just rushes right back to my abdomen after a few days at a surplus, I know some of that is bloat/mental, but the tape measure doesn’t lie that much. I guess this depends on just how many adipocytes one has. Right now, I’m just trying to focus on this:

1 Like

I’ll make sure to report back about that. I’m going to ride the diet train for another 6-8 weeks, so it’s going to be a while before we find out

Usually around 6PM as I’m at school or working during the morning and the day. Afterwards I have time for a meal or two

It’s a fine line, last time I didn’t quite keep to the right side of it. It’s (not really) fun how when I’m building up I tend to get lost in the process, eat a boatload and end up gaining too fast.

That really sucks man, guess you’ve got to be real mindful about it then. But you’ve gotten really lean before and can do it again, so keep in mind that being a tad fatter than you’d like for a while isn’t the end of the world if it serves a purpose. (Now I’m not saying getting fat serves a purpose, but if staying really lean doesn’t match with your goals you’ve got to give in a bit on something)

Yeah, the more you have the easier it is to gain fat. Also if you have a lot of adipocytes your bf setpoint is probably on the higher end of the spectrum

Seems like the best course of action for those with the willpower required (which shouldn’t be a problem for you, I’d say)

I remember reading months ago that apparently there is some evidence that adipocytes eventually die off but it takes a really long time for the body to decide it’s better to reclaim them than keep them around.

As I’m not looking to step on any other stage other than the beach I can probably just focus on staying lean for quite some time and not hamper my lifetime achievements too much.

Posted a physique update in my log if you are curious: Nordic Blood: 30m 180kg Loaded Carry and a Front Lever Before I'm 30

1 Like

I’ve read that too, but the time required for that to happen was pretty damn long

1 Like

Zottmann chins

Haven’t seen anyone do these ever, and I don’t remember anyone mentioning them so I thought I’d do that.

Why? Cause they’re one hell of an movement, that’s why. My lower/mid traps haven’t been this sore in ages.

How it’s done;
Like you’d imagine, really.

On rings, every rep starts from a dead stop. Pull yourself up (and by up I mean up) with a supinating grip. (Begin the movement with a neutral grip and supinating as you pull up)

At the top, turn your wrists into pronation. Take your time doing this, you should remain in the top position for 1-2 seconds.

Lower yourself slowly (4-6 seconds) with the pronated grip. Go all the way down.


This is a very humbling movement, I was doing sets of 5-6 with only 15kgs of added weight. But man was it hard.

Give it a try, 5x6 with enough weight to make your head burst (while maintaining good form and tempo) will almost guarantee some major doms.

1 Like

Hey man, Any tips for Lifting whilst in the military? And not getting pathetically skinny whilst doing basic training

1 Like

Oh yeah. I have a couple of tips.

  1. Eat a lot

Yeah, this is not a lifting tip, but it’s something you absolutely need to do. During my first two weeks in the military I got known as the guy who out-eats the rest of the company. I’m pretty sure I was getting down over 6K calories per day. I still lost a lot of weight during the initial two weeks (and after that as well, I once lost six kilos in one week when we were on a training camp). So eat as much as you can without having it affect your performance. (It’s pretty uncomfortable to do combat practice when you’re stuffed as hell)

  1. Focus on big movements

This is a no-brainer. You’ll be doing a lot of work outside lifting so you probably won’t have too much energy to spare. Bench, overhead press, chins, deads, squats and the variations of these lifts should make up the bulk of your training.

  1. Your training should not be equipment-, lifting gear- or spotter-dependant

This ties in with the point above. Don’t pick lifts that you need fancy equipment for. Nearly every gym has squat stands, but not all have power racks - pick paused squats over pin squats. Sometimes you’ll be the only one in the gym - make sure you are strong enough not to need hand offs. Don’t depend on your belt, you may not have the time to find it or you may not have it with you at all when you’re given a chance to train. Same goes with all kinds of wraps and straps. Remember the three phased program I did in the military? It was designed so that I could train alone with minimal equipment, regardless of the schedule.

  1. Make sure your sessions are not too long

Sometimes you only have 30-45 minutes to train. That is enough if you’ve planned well. Again, the three phased program was great for this; quite a lot of submaximal sets with low rest followed by one all-out set (in the first phase at least) and you could even superset your movements if you were in a hurry. So either do just a couple of hard sets per exercise or use clusters/muscle rounds/myo reps to cut the training time. Also limit your exercises per session to 2-3 (4 tops)

  1. Do the stuff you need to do in the military

Push ups, chins, sprints, sit ups. Do them. You’ll do a lot of volume for these movements in your basic training so in the gym I’d focus on getting stronger in the 4-8 or so rep range. (If you can’t load push ups by yourself consider dips)

  1. There is no such thing as being “too tired to train”

You never know when the next chance to train comes, and wether you’ll be tired then. If you have the time to train, take it!

  1. Cut the fluff regarding warm-ups

Learn to train without a general warm-up, stretching and foam rolling. Warm up with the movements and get going. (Now to magnify the shut storm; general warm ups, foam rolling and stretching don’t have to be done if you warm up sufficiently with the movements. None of those things have been shown to help with performance or reduce the risk of injury)

  1. Train with a full body or upper/lower split

For the first half of my time in the military I was basically doing full body every time I was in the gym. It’s the safest option as you never know when you’ll be training again. After the halfway point our schedule became a bit more solid and I was able to switch to a upper/lower split.

  1. Get your work capacity up before you go into the military

This will help with performance both in and out of the gym, as you’ll be less fatigued both from basic training and lifting.

Those are the first couple of things that came to my mind, @Irishman92 probably has a couple more things to say regarding this.

I Plan on It man, at every meal in the mess hall or whatever I’m going to be stuffing my face. Will I be able to bring food in e.g high calorie snacks and whey?

I’m already a big movements guy so that’s no problem.

Honestly I suck at short training sessions. I love resting between sets lol. Im going to have to learm to rest short and have quick sessions

Fair enough. I do not want to lose weight or become weak so I plan on doing what I have to to train.

Damn lucky I don’t like to warmup much lol

Sweet Man, I usually do upper lower anyway. I’ve never liked anything else. I could alternate upper with lower as well.

cucky I did deep water for 12 weeks. I’m getting a coach soon will be awesome. Thanks so much man! It’s months away before I leave and i still have all my testing etc but pray for the gains

1 Like

Probably not for the initial training (I couldn’t for the 1st 2months) but I can assume you will have once all the basic training is done. Milk and peanut butter sandwiches were my staple and I still lost a heap of weight.

100% agree. Make sure your running endurance is decent and you have conditioned your shins to the impact of running / jumping. Also get good at pushups.

Dante covered most of the main points, just mentally be prepared to lose weight. It sucks, I hate my abs but get used to being a part of something that is outside of your control coz that is the defence force!

1 Like

I was able to do so from the get go, but as Irishman noted, it may be different for you

I found protein bars to be the most convenient type of additional protein. Whey is good if you’ve got the time to make it and rinse the bottle, but it is a pain in the ass if you’re in a hurry (don’t even think about bringing it with you to the field)

I highly recommend doing so. Alternating sets and strength circuits can save you a lot of time

You’re welcome

No problem man! Damn I wish I was in your shoes. Military was easily one of the best experiences I’ve had

Oh yeah. Shin splints are the devil

How are you doing by the way?

1 Like


Well atleast il have abs for the first time ever

1 Like


Ended the diet a couple of days ago (well really, nearly a week ago)

I’ve been eating kind of intuitively since then, with some rules.

Before training I only eat protein, fat and vegetables in reasonable portions. (50g protein/meal, 20-30g fat/meal, as much veggies as I want)

After training I eat mainly carbs, protein and vegetables. Again, around 50g protein/meal and as much vegetables as I want. Not really limiting carb intake but I try to keep it under 150g/meal.

It’s been pretty great.

My presses have felt good this week. Hit a 105kg OHP and 150kg 1ct Bench @ RPE8 also hit 4x140kg on TnG Bench @ RPE8.5.

Feels great and I’m pretty sure big things are coming regarding presses. Trying to get to 160kg on 1ct bench during this program (next 7 weeks) and to 120kg OHP in the 12 weeks after that

It’s worth mentioning that I want to hit those numbers at RPE 8-8.5, if I went all out grinding I could probably hit those numbers or close even now