T Nation

Nutrition for Deployment



A little background first. I'm going on my first deployment soon and I'll be away for roughly 3 months. Should have access to a gym more or less every day for the entirety of this so obviously I'm looking to make some pretty good progress in my physique and conditioning within this time. Hopefully pack on a couple lbs of muscle too.

I'll probably be splitting my training up into multiple small sessions to fill out my days off and to kill boredom. Possibly looking at some form of cardio - C2, running, weighted walking, spinning... Some form of short Crossfit workout (leave it out) and then obviously my strength training 5-6 days a week. Probably not all 3 sessions every day, but at least 2, 6 days per week. Also, there'll be shit loads of prehab and mobility going on too. I've been working up to doing this volume for the last 4 or 5 months now so that shouldn't be an issue.

This is the first time my nutrition is out of my control and really, I have no idea how much I should be eating to see some good body comp changes. I'm not talking getting huge or anything, more getting very lean whilst retaining all my muscle. I'm 172 lb, 5ft 8, at about 10% BF (guessing this, however probably a safe assumption due to abs being clearly visible in all lights). I know I'm fairly lean as it is, but I'm talking about really hardening up. Figure this is as good a time as any as temptation from good foods and alcohol will be out of my control.

So... the main question. I'll be eating canteen food for 3 meals a day and will have whey protein and fruit for in between meals and workouts. With this 3x a day training, can anybody offer insight as to how much I should be eating?

I know it takes about 2.5k calories to maintain but I've no idea what you burn doing 2-3h of phys a day and what sort of surplus you should be eating to account for the raised metabolism etc. from strength work and near all day training. So far all I have is Meadows recommendations for macros from this forum, however this is aimed at training on a normal schedule.

I know it seems a bit picky to be questioning this and a lot of people may say - 'eat as much as you can blah blah' however I really want to come back from this deployment in the best shape and condition of my life. The time for gaining mass will come after deployment, when I'll switch to strength based training again (as opposed to physique and conditioning) when I have more control over my training i.e. access to heavier weights, bumpers, squat racks, barbells etc.

Thanks for any insight that you guys can offer, if I've missed out any information that will help let me know and I'll do my best to give it.



I'm not really sure what kind of deployments your service and specialty entail, but if it's anything like the US's you would be one in a million, and possibly putting your comrades in harms way with this mentality. You are there to perform your job, not for an easy way to get shredded.


It entails a fair bit of time off and a lot of time spent alongside in ports. We've been told by higher up that it's almost going to be a chilled few months doing phys, hence the thread. I'm not looking for an easy way to get shredded, but hoping to channel time spent for recreation into something productive.

I'm not sure how changing my diet to support my goals would put anyone in harms way either... I'm also not sure where I mentioned not doing my primary job to the best of my ability...

And thirdly, surely wanting to be better conditioned will have only a positive transfer to my day job? Being better at fucking, quicker at sprinting, able to go harder and longer and recover better...

I appreciate your concern, but I'd appreciate your input into my question more than you trying to call me out and make me out to be a liability.


High protein and keep a close eye on carbs....


Also bear in mind most people who do 2 a day training report being ravenously hungry