First of all youÃ¢Â?Â?re never going to make gains unless eat a healthy, calorie surplus diet. Personally I recommend a diet of 40:40:20, that is forty percent carbs, forty percent protein and twenty percent fat. This is a well-known diet that many people use, but some people prefer 45:30:25.
There are three macronutrients: protein, carbs, and fat.
Well there are two different kinds of carbohydrates and each serves their own purpose.
- Simple sugars: these are burned up relatively quickly and drastically spike the insulin levels in your blood. They come from fruits and anything with sugar in it obviously. One of the most useful simple sugar comes from honey which I believe is the miracle substance of nature. Every since I have introduced honey into my pre- and post-workout shakes I have noticed a tremendous increase in my ability to recover. Many people have no idea about the benefits of honey but I strongly recommend adding it to your diet by putting it in your shakes or putting it on peanut butter sandwiches.
- Complex carbohydrates: supply a more steady supply of energy and do not spike your insulin as highly as simple sugars. Complex carbs come from starches like potatoes and from grains like bread, pasta.
It is well known that you should be getting at least 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight you have. But you should strive for 1.5grams/pound just to keep your nitrogen balance high. So how should you eat this much protein? Well I suggest buying some protein supplements.
There are several types of supplemental proteins on the market. But instead of naming them all I will take the confusion of picking out which you should use. Whey protein and a blend of proteins are the only two that I consider using. There is no sense in buying 5 different protein supplements when you can buy whey protein, fast digesting protein, and a blend of the slower burning proteins: casein and egg, and achieve the different speeds of digestion. But all protein doesnÃ¢Â?Â?t come in supplements and you have to learn which foods have better quality protein. Protein is rated by its biological value. The biological value of a protein is how well your body can use the protein; basically the higher the biological value the better. Whey protein has the highest value rating in at 104, while egg protein is second at 100, milk protein comes in at third at 91 and beef is third by having an 80. With this evidence you would rather have a lot of foods with a high BV instead of eating beans for protein all day because your body will not absorb the protein from them efficiently, also who wants to eat beans all day?
Most people look at nutrition labels and see fat and think fat. Let me elaborate most people think that if you eat fat you will become fat, this is not the case. Fat is good for your body as long as you eat the right kind. Saturated fats are the unhealthy fats if you eat these too often it will cause your diet to be unhealthy and maybe lead to fat gains. Unsaturated fats are healthy fats these include omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids come from fish and flax seeds. Instead of eating flax seeds you can buy flax seed oil. Omega-6 fatty acids are found high in concentration in walnuts and sunflower seeds. Other foods have omega-3 and omega-6 fats in them also. Healthy fats in your diet can cause you to become leaner and more muscular because healthy fats in your diet cause your body to increase natural testosterone in your body.
How to Space Out Your Meals and What to Eat
But you don’t want to eat all of those calories in two meals; you want to eat 6 to 8 small nutritional potent meals spaced out 2 or 3 hours apart. Three meals are more important than the others. Breakfast and Pre- and Post-workout meals are very important in gaining strength and muscle. Breakfast is when you need to re-feed your body after a nine hour rest with no food. So after you awake you need to supply your body with a quick supply of carbs and protein. So for breakfast you want some simple sugars from juice and maybe a whey protein shake because as mentioned early they enter your blood stream relatively quickly. However, you need some complex carbs and some slower burning proteins to keep your body loaded up with amino acids and energy, so a good bowl of oatmeal and some boiled eggs will do.
Pre-workout meals are simple. An hour and a half before you go to work out eat some complex carbs and a slow digesting protein like casein. Doing this will give your body a constant stream of energy through your workout causing you to sustain your pump and the protein will give your body amino acids to your muscles. These amino acids will keep your muscles from breaking down as quickly and causing them to recover quicker. But you also need fat before your workout. Fat is used by the body for energy this will help your results by having fat being used as energy instead of muscle and protein.
Now post-workout meals are a little bit more complicated but very simple once you know what your body needs. After a workout your muscles are very drained and in need of nutrients to recover and become stronger. During this meal you should eat in a ratio of 2:1 carbs to protein, this way your body will intake all of those carbs to refuel your body the rest of the day. But you canÃ¢Â?Â?t just suck down a bunch of chocolate chip cookies and a protein shake and except to gain much strength. You need to have some simple sugars to cause your insulin to spike and absorb your protein quicker and more efficiently, however you also need some complex carbs to keep your insulin levels sustained for a little while and continue to fuel your muscles. So I suggest you eat 150g of carbs and 75 grams of protein for your post workout meal.
Water is possibly the most important substance to your body obviously because it makes up 70-75% of your body. It is needed for all bodily processes. However if youÃ¢Â?Â?re an athlete it is even more important. Water will help your kidneys breakdown all that protein you are shoveling down your throat-hole. Drinking water during your workout will cause better results also it will help you lift for more reps and sets by flushing lactic acid out of your muscles. Also dehydration is basically killing the body in a minor way that can turn drastic. Minor dehydration can decrease your performance by up to 20%. However major dehydration can cause many ailments to your body even causing death if not resolved.
A lot of people hate on milk, but personally i love milk. I feel it is a hypertrophic tool more people should use. A lot of people say that it’s not meant for the human body and will make you look bloated and stuff like that, but frankly i don’t care.
It has 1 gram of protein and fat per ounce. That may be a lot of fat to drink but it won’t make you gain ten pounds of fat. I usually drink 3 to 4 gallons of milk a week and i’m at 11% body fat. 11% may not be competition cut but it’s a good place to start cutting. I have gained 30 pounds this past year and i am not fat. I place most of my results on the shoulders of Milk. Got Milk?
Many people know the importance of macros however many people do not understand the importance of micronutrients or probably donÃ¢Â?Â?t even know what I mean by micronutrients. By micronutrients I mean vitamins and minerals. Vitamins and minerals are very important to daily life processes. They are used to speed up nearly every action of all the body systems. But I will not go into complete detail on what all the vitamins and minerals do. But I will suggest using supplementation to get your daily amount of vitamins preferably twice a day pills, I rather twice a day instead of once a day because it will give you a constant supply of vitamins and minerals. See drinking all of that water will flush out a lot of your vitamins and minerals throughout the day if you only take a one a day supplement. However, I will suggest introducing one mineral to your diet especially after your workout, magnesium it is used for muscle contraction, protein metabolism, and energy. Some professional football trainers even go as drastic as to give their clients an IV drip containing magnesium to enhance recovery speed and results.
However, if you do not have proper sleeping habits your results will be hampered drastically. Growth hormone is produced during sleep which as the name states causes growth. It is usually produced about 45 minutes after you fall asleep but that doesnÃ¢Â?Â?t mean you can only sleep 45 minutes a night. I recommend 9 hours a night not 8 hours and not 10 hours but 9. However if you cannot sleep this long due to work schedule or other reasons get 6 or 7 and a half hours of sleep. This is best because your body goes through deep sleep in 90 minute intervals and if you interrupt these intervals you will feel drained during the day which will cause your intensity in the gym to drop. Some people say not to take naps during the day because you will not sleep as good at night but I disagree. I usually try to take a power nap, 45 minute nap, during the day to rest my body and release some growth hormone during the day and I always sleep good at night.