T Nation

Protein Shakes All Day?


#1

Hi All,

Quick question about Protein shakes. I am trying to bulk, but I dont eat enough and my job is very demanding which leaves me no time to eat more then once a day for lunch and at home for dinner. I work from 6am to 5pm, therefore I have been relying heavily on protein shakes for my protein intake. I drink on average 4-5 a day. Is this bad? I really have no choice but without it, I will never hit more then maybe 100g of protein a day (I weigh 185).

What do you all think?


#2

it’s fine


#3

I don’t see a problem, especially if this is your only option and not getting anything in during the day is going to seriously set back hitting your daily #s.

S


#4

[quote]MHB wrote:
my job is very demanding which leaves me no time to eat more then once a day for lunch and at home for dinner.[/quote]
Wait, so, “protein shakes all day” is really “I can have a regular lunch and a regular dinner, and some protein shakes during the day”?

What did you have for lunch and dinner yesterday?

It’s not bad at all. The Velocity Diet is a very successful fat loss plan that’s basically only protein shakes (with flax seed and fish oil) 5 times a day with one good whole food meal (not a “cheat meal”) per week.

What kind of numbers are you trying to hit on your bulk? In terms of your target calories and macros. Is there really no way you could still hit them with some planning and weekly meal prep, a bigass shake in the morning, bigass lunch, and bigass dinner?

Just saying, it’s worth remembering that not everyone “needs” to eat every couple of hours. 3 squares a day did the job just fine for plenty of bodybuilders.


#5

Hi Chris and thanks for the reply,

Basically, this is my schedule:

I wake up at 4:00am and have a shake (25g), work out for an hour, have a shake(25g). I drive to work (hour drive) and have another shake (25g). 11am is my lunch break, I work in a school, so limited to cafeteria food, and I usually end up eating tuna wraps and salad (about 30g). Around 1, I have a shake (25g) and then at 4 I have a shake (25g). I drive home and have dinner with the fam around 6, usually lean meat and veggies (50g) and then shake before bed (20g).

Thats a total of 225g, with only 80 coming from foods. I am trying to aim for 1-1.25g per pound. The reason I dont make myself “big ass” shakes is because I thought too much in one sitting doesnt get absorbed as well as smaller sizes over the course of the day.

Thoughts?


#6

You can definitely successfully bulk on 100 grams of protein per day. A little more would be better, but there’s no reason to drink 8 shakes in a day or whatever. There are plenty of easy high calorie snacks like a zip lock bag of nuts, dried fruit, etc… right? Isn’t a PB&J just and quick and easy as a shake? If you’re trying to bulk, you need fat and carbs. it looks like your diet is mostly protein. That is not usually the best option for a bulk.


#7

[quote]MHB wrote:
I work in a school, so limited to cafeteria food[/quote]
The Mighty Stu very successfully prepped for several bodybuilding contests while working in a school. You’re as limited as your preparation allows. Can pack and bring a lunch?

I meant one bigass shake in the morning - like a typical breakfast blender bomb with milk, fruit, protein powder, maybe some peanut butter or other goodies - and then lunch and dinner, not really having several giant shakes through the day.

And anyhow, the “how much protein per meal” is a theory that’s been around for a while and there’s no one overwhelmingly-agreed on answer. But the body can certainly handle a “decent” amount of protein per meal, especially if digestion is optimized and especially when your body’s putting the protein to work by recovering from/adapting to weight training. This article talks a bit about it:

So, you could easily shoot for protein in the 40-60g range per meal. That’s shouldn’t be tough to get from whole foods - two cans of tuna, two chicken breasts, 5 or 6 hard-boiled eggs, even a bag of beef jerky has about 45g.

I’m not “against” protein shakes by any means, I’m just think there are options other than a predominantly-liquid diet for your current situation. But if that’s what works, and I do mean works as in seeing the results you want, then that’s what works for you.


#8

FWIW, I set my all time OHP PR while only having a bit of oatmeal/fruit in the morning before work, a preworkout shake, and a huge post workout meal… I also gained 5 lbs over 3-4 months… you’ll be fine. You just have to believe you will gain and work towards it.


#9

I have been thinking of doing something like this for a while now because I have kind of lost my appetite. I have always eaten a ton and now for some reason I hardly want to eat. Protein shakes and mixed nuts are slowly taking over, except for one real meal after work.