T Nation

One-On, On-Off Diet


#1

I'm currently on the V-Diet but will be coming off in about 10 days. I'm 6'1" and currently weigh 195 pounds at about 8-9% BF. Anyways, when I come off the V-Diet, I would like to hold my current form. I have a plan for my diet.

One day, I would take in ~1500 calories, at least 75% of which will come from protein. And on the next day I would eat normally (4000-5500 calories), while still keeping protein intake high. Would a diet like this work, or would there be any side effects from such drastic caloric intake changes so frequently.

Thanks for the input guys.

RJ


#2

MY [fairly educated] guess is that you'll put more fat back on than you would if you transitioned off the V-diet with something like the t-dawg 2.0 diet.


#3

Due to the holidays and feasts and so on I've given up on it, but I've been doing the calorie cycling for quite a while.

From a training standpoint you'll have to watch your recovery, as you have less calories (total), and less energy going into recovery.

However, it's really easy to eat light one day and heavy the next. I found the day after eating heavy I could tear ass in the gym.

I did find that calorie cycling had me lose weight while I was gaining strength, slowly, over a period of three months, so it can't be that bad an option.

However, I don't know if coming off the v-diet into it will change anything.


#4

It could work...but I'd transition off the VD for at least a week. Add meals back in over the course of the week, then try your expirement.

Dr. Squat has a similar diet, called zig zag, which has you eat maybe 5 lower cal days and 2 higher...something like that.

I think I read that Cosgrove does a sort of cycling as well.

If nothing else, use your off days as low days and training days as higher.


#5

One-on and other gimick diets don't work. Ask big guys how they eat. It's simple: Eat 5 meals every day and eat more than you burn if you want to bulk, and less than you burn if you want to lean out.

Forget cutesy diets people write up so that they can sell you shit. Just be consistent with your diet and you'll be successful.


#6

Something tells me I should write up what I've been doing...


#7

One thing that I saw Disc Hoss recommend on the AD thread (paraphrasing because I don't remember which of the 160 pages it was in) was to set your direction (bulking or cutting) by keeping track of calories overall on a weekly basis and varying them during the week so that you're more often in a deficit on a daily basis. I think he referred to it as waving calories.

Say 4000 calories is maintenance level for you and you want to bulk, requiring 4250 calories daily. What you do is multiply 4250 by 7 to get your weekly total of 29750. Then divide that up:
Monday, Wednesday Thursday, Friday: 3300 calories
Tuesday, Saturday, Sunday: 5500 calories

The idea being that you would be getting enough calories to fuel growth over time, but be spending more days than not in a caloric deficit to minimize fat gains. I'm not sure that it works, but I think that the weekly framework at least gives you a more directed way to plan what you're doing.


#8

Thanks for the responses guys. I was thinking about setting things up so that I was in a small deficit once everything was totalled for the week.

And CaliforniaLaw, thanks for the input, but I really don't care how the big guys eat. I'm a sprinter, and if I go out of single digit BF, I'll be in a far from optimal condition.

Right now, my goals are to get my BF down to around 5-6% and keep it there, all the while maintaining the intensity and effectiveness of my workouts. A one on, one off diet will allow me to eat big on training days, while simultaneously staying lean.


#9

You might want to try a 3-on 1-off routine instead of a 1-to-1 ratio. Keeps you in fat burning mode but it lets your body know that you are still taking it plenty of calories.


#10

The thing is, I think a 3:1 ratio would be too lopsided for me. If I go 1 on, 1 off, then my weekly calorie intake will still put me in a deficit, though small it may be. Once I get to where I want to be, BF wise, I want to stay as close to maintainence as possible, and a 3:1 diet might put me too far away from that.

That's not to say your suggestion is not good. If I were looking to lose more fat, then it would be perfect, but I'm looking into this type of diet mainly for maintaining my condition.


#11

Ahhh, I musta missed that. If looking to maintain, just eat the same cals everyday instead of over/under. I don't see a reason to make it complicated like that if you arent trying to manipulate your weight.


#12

I'd be interested to see what John Berardi had to say about this.

I don't have any science to back this up, but I think drastic changes are more likely to trigger hormone responses than keeping things on an even keel. I'd be worried that the sudden reduction in calories would trigger a release of cortisol. I would also be afraid that drastically reducing calories on my recovery days would limit any chance at hypertrophy.


#13

Carb cycle up. Search it.