T Nation

Never Been Lean

Im new to this forum, but have been reading articles here for awhile.

Ive never known what its like to be lean. I cant say that I haven’t tried my hardest with various diets and training methods.

I just tend to flatten out, lose muscle and then my metabolism just gets used to the diet. No matter the weeks I dont get ripped.

Ive never seen my abs in 10 years of training. never been vascular, never seen my body minus a strong layer.

Ive tried many types of plans, but feel deep down frusturated. So usually just choose to maintain around 13 to 14% and continue what I do best. Strength and size!

Any help?

Other than your posted BF levels, what are other stats? Age? Weight? Height? Maxes perhaps?

Edit: Most importantly, diet?

outside of “not trying your hardest” what have you been doing? Do you have any stats (weight/height)?


5’8" 215 lbs 15%BF calipers 4 site
29 years old
495 max dead lift with straps no belt
incline 265 for 6
db incline press 110 for 8
chin up 25lbs added for reps
military press 205 for 8

Serpen, start reading some of John Berardi’s and Lonnie Lowery’s articles here on the site. The information you’re looking for resides within these hallowed eHalls as rrjc5488 and itsthetimman alluded to. (grin)

Basically, what you need to be doing is eating in a way that protects muscle when dieting. You want to minimize (as much as you can) the loss of muscle and maximize (as much as you can) the amount of fat lost. Bulking is the exact opposite, of course, maximizing the amount of muscle put on and minimizing the amount of fat that’s put on.

You have a nice foundation. If you dial things in a bit and get a little more precise in the areas of protein intake, GOOD fat intake and the type, timing and amount of carbs, you should make very nice progress towards your goals.

Do some reading, and we’d be glad to take a look at what you’re doing (or propose!) and make recommendations.

[quote]Tampa-Terry wrote:
Serpen, start reading some of John Berardi’s and Lonnie Lowery’s articles here on the site. The information you’re looking for resides within these hallowed eHalls as rrjc5488 and itsthetimman alluded to. (grin)

Basically, what you need to be doing is eating in a way that protects muscle when dieting. You want to minimize (as much as you can) the loss of muscle and maximize (as much as you can) the amount of fat lost. Bulking is the exact opposite, of course, maximizing the amount of muscle put on and minimizing the amount of fat that’s put on.

You have a nice foundation. If you dial things in a bit and get a little more precise in the areas of protein intake, GOOD fat intake and the type, timing and amount of carbs, you should make very nice progress towards your goals.

Do some reading, and we’d be glad to take a look at what you’re doing (or propose!) and make recommendations.[/quote]

Im actually very familiar with JMBs protocols, Ive been reading here fro awhile just not using the forum.

I find that JMBs nutritions strategies don’t work for me that well. High fat plus high carb daily keeps me strong but ni dont get much leaner.

here is a typical day

two chicken sausage
eggs omega two
eggwhites
fish oil
apple

train
Surge 3 scoops

second meal pwo
chicken potato veggies

steak
veggies
olive oil fish oil

metabolic drive3 sciios
almond butter
fiber
maybe apple

eggwhite ommlete
with bellpepper
fish oil 1 tbs.

serpen, we can use the concepts JB teaches without using the numbers he does. JB has a higher/faster metabolism than a lot of people and had to work really hard to put on size. But bulking or cutting, male or female, the concepts work, and they can be used to get you below 10%.

Not working out fasted state. Check
Five meals. Check
Food choices are excellent. Check.
PWO drink & PWO meal. Check
Veggies. Check.
Olive oil & flaxseed oil & fish oil. Check
Fruit. Check
P+F and P+C food combining. Check

Since your food choices are spot on, we need to dial in the numbers. Do you have (or could you get) a food scale that weighs in ounces and grams? I use a little food scale from Office Depot. It’s actually a digital postal scale that weighs in tenths of an ounce and grams. Really precise. Runs about $35.

I’ll give you numbers. If you’re willing to weigh and track your food and weigh in once a week and report your results, I’ll help you adjust your numbers.

I actually have one really cool little tool or trick up my sleeve. It’s invaluable when helping people to break plateaus. When you weigh in every week, I want you to take the following measurements and report them, too:

Right Arm
Chest
Waist
Hips/Butt
Right Thigh
Right Calf

The absolute best results you could get would be for scale weight to remain the same, but have inches going down. Muscle is dense and takes up less room than fat, which is “fluffy.” If scale weight stays the same but inches go down, that’s because LBM (Lean Body Mass, aka muscle) is going up and FM (Fat Mass) is going down! When monitoring someone’s progress, I use scale weight and inches to see what’s going on.

If you decide you want to do this, serpen, I’ll give you:

Daily Protein Requirements
Per-Meal Protein Requirements
Total Fat Requirements (and mono & poly fat requirements)
PWO Carb Requirements

You’ll notice calories aren’t on the list, but don’t worry. They’ll take care of themselves. (grin)

I mean yeah Id like to bust through some fat plateaus and die when it comes to vlcd. I guess ive been eyeballing portions , and never believed in weighing foods. PER Poliquin.

Well, here’s my logic on that one … there really isn’t a reason to weigh, measure and track your food (and even your weight) if that approach gets you the results you’re wanting. But if it’s not getting the results you’re wanting, then you either have to give up on the idea of being lean or else take it up a notch.

You don’t have to weigh, measure and track for the rest of your life. Do it for just long enough to get a handle on what your body requires. At that point, weighing, measuring and tracking is only a tool … one you pull out when you need it.

Why don’t you take it all under advisement, serpen, and track me down if you’d like some help. Either that or follow along on Puglsley’s thread. He and I have been working together, and he’s just in the initial stages of realizing he’s broken his plateau. It’s a lot easier to do the kind of stuff we’re talking about if you really believe it will get you where you want to go. Until you do, it’s just a whole lotta work, fuss and bother. (grin)

Agreed with above. Your training sounds like it’s going well, but the numbers in the kitchen are going to be what get you there.

Weighing 215, if you worked down to eating 320 grams of protein per day, 105 grams of carbs per day(basically, your 3 scoops of Surge, and then the rest spread out throughout the day in trace amounts for your meals), and 95 - 100 grams of fat spread throughout the day, I guarantee you would lean up considerably. Eyeballing is great, and has obviously put some size on you. Getting lean is hard without paying attention to the numbers.

Kubo

Serpen, I believe it is very difficult for most natural people who aren’t naturally lean to eyeball appropriate food portions.

I think that nature has us (those that don’t get lean) set so that we carry more body fat than we might want with more advanced goals. In short, the eyeball method gets influenced by the unstoppable survival machine…

Anyway, if Tampa-Terry is willing to help you out, I’d say go for it!