T Nation

Serge Storms: Balance and Control


I had a lot of catching up to do in here. Putting in some serious work and great job on the cut! You’re making me want to start being more diligent about tracking food again…

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Averaging 60g of fat/day this week.
2400 calories.

Lots of protein bars and fake food, but that’s okay. Being able to nail macros with nothing but Quest bars, MetRx bars, cookies, and beer is a Ninja-Level skill that must be practiced and maintained.

I finally have a flight-less and event-less stretch ahead of me, so it will be a good time to buckle down and just knock down macro targets. I should also be able to string together some more traditional workouts in my regular gym. I’ve been drifting into a bit too much broga and tai chi stuff, I need some machines and some cables and some dumbbells.

Oh, and I’m up to 192 consecutive days of logging my food intake.

I took a few days off from doing in in real-time while I was out west, but I went back in and got caught up. The streak is too long to blow now, I might as well push for a year. That way, I can write a Facebook Listicle: “I logged my food every day for a year and this is what happened!”



Do you log your food after you eat it or do you plan your food in advance?

I’m assuming you know about what X amount of food has in it calorically, but was just wondering how spontaneous you allow your intake to be.


I could be wrong but I’m pretty sure Serge logs his food for the day than tells his food what calories and macros it has.

Master Level Ninja :sunglasses:





I am super spontaneous.

I generally try to stay within a calorie limit for each eating window. 500 from wake-11. 1000 from 11-4. 1000 from 4-bed.

I log as I eat or right after.

Beyond that, I just try to stick with my staples and let my macros come together on the fly. Having a pretty low target for fat (60g) tends to keep this process pretty straightforward.

I’ve tried to plan in advance, but because I have a field-based job where I’m flying and eating at nice restaurants all the time, it’s not sustainable. I’ll do it once in a while on weekends. I’ve found that it tends to draw my focus to food a bit TOO much, though, as I tend to have this low-level hum of anxiety around whether or not I’ll stick to the plan. I think there is a sweet spot for how much mental bandwidth I devote to eating and thinking about macros and calories. Too little, and my habits start to deteriorate. Too much, and my wife starts to get pissed.


I was not a big fan of the recent “4 gym gadgets that are wasting your time” article. Since the days of LiveSpill discourse and article discussions are over, I’ll just talk amongst myself about it:

Activity trackers can be extremely inaccurate, often underestimating or overestimating steps and calories burned.

-Who cares? Once you start using these consistently, everything is relative.

Heart rate monitors have their uses for HRV training, but many people use them as an excuse to avoid hard training.

  • If you are using a heart rate to avoid hard training, you are officially uninvited to T-Nation and this log.

Masks that make it harder to breathe don’t really improve your cardio training. They can even cause dysfunctional breathing patterns for novices. Fix your breathing first.

  • You better be an Olympic athlete if you’re going to show up to the gym wearing a mask. I saw a prepubescent DYEL bag of jello-shit wearing one of these a few months ago, and I wanted to rip it off his face.

A smart plan will always be more useful than a smartphone. Many fitness apps are just crutches than inhibit you from learning how to program.

  • “Learning how to program?” What are we, software engineers? I"m guessing most beginners have a long way to go before they “learn how to program” for themselves. If watching a tiny video or downloading a workout helps get someone in the groove, then I say, go for it.

Maybe it’s just that I’m hitting my tolerance threshold for these “4 of This” and “Top 6 That” articles, especially ones that seem to be aimed at beginners and seem to generalize the shit out of everything.


Thursday - 2600 calories

65g P
275g C
215g P

Workout: 1 hour dancing with dumbbells


Thats what I figured. I’m half surprised you even log any more because you have been doing so long I kinda figured you just “knew”, but i know when you want to get a little extreme logging/tracking/planning is necessary for most

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puts me in mind of this


Other than the flat bench and barbell, it looks exactly like one of my workouts. Same soundtrack and everything. Mind blown, I thought I invented this stuff and here I see a whole group of dudes doing the same thing, wearing the same lifting gear.

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For me, I just look back through the last 20 years of my lifting life. I’ve never reached the kind of shape I’m in now without logging intake. Eventually, I stopped caring about whether it was correlation or causality. I log, therefore I am.

I also enjoy it. It’s a good fit for the way I’m wired.


183.5 these last few days.

I have set 185 as a good target weight, so I would prefer to enter the weekend a few pounds under. It let’s me decide if I want to hit the gas pedal and use the weekend to blast through a plateau, OR, coast and toast my way through and take advantage of the 1.5 pound cushion.

As of 3:15 on a Friday, I’m feeling more of a plateau-buster weekend ahead. In fact, I may punch out early, rub some jelly on my belly, and go do some street cardio. Game on.


That should be your new tag line:

I Log, therefore I am. Shredded.


Quick check-in.

Been steady at 185 lbs while driving my intake up into the 2900-3100 range.

This is all geared to position me for an efficient

and effective shred in the 3-6 weeks leading up to the virtual pose-down with Yogi. He’s gonna need to plug some DNP to beat me. (Not a pleasant experience. Too much mitochondrial uncoupling in the rectum, and you can literally start shooting flames out your ass.)

Also, I hit another logging milestone. 200 days.

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stains that asshole yellow, too. I rely too heavily on my webcamming revenue to allow such a thing.


Workouts have been looking less like squat rack curls and more like dance recitals.

I’ve been devoting more and more time to the hand stands and breakin’ moves and dumbbell-loaded pop-lockin’ routines.

But arms and shoulders and traps and chest and back all day, too. So I guess more of everything?

I have also been devoting some time to the lower back extension machine. I kept tweaking my back like an old man. Random shit would throw it into spasm, I’d be a wreck for a few days, and then poof. Gone. Like new. So now I’m trying to bullet-proof my back as I listen to “Bullet Proof” and do lower back/glute/ham work to the beat of the music.

I also feel like maybe just more blood flow and burn in that general area might start to etch away some of that stubborn lower back cushion.

Oh, and pull-up bar stuff. I’ve switched out the super-slow torture reps for something a bit more fun. I’ve been playing around with walking my feet around while hanging from the bar. I’ve seen it on YouTube. I suck at it, but this is the kind of thing that gets built slowly over time, like pistol squats. So I’m going to keep playing around with it. Basically, just trying to get my body into impressively unleveraged positions while hanging from the bar. Of course, their will be air footwork that is synced to the music. I’ve already come up with some pretty cool shit. One move is like a hamster running around in a wheel. I turn a bit sideways and walk my feet around an imaginary cylinder, even going upside down and over. I’m sure this will help build my forearms if nothing else. Also good for the core.

Side note of sorts…I have a theory on middle-body fat. It goes there because that’s the most leveraged position for it to be carried, especially if you spend most of your time sitting or even standing. But if you spent most of your time swimming, or flying, your fat would prefer to be stored differently. Plane taking off gotta hit send.

The diet has been loosening up a bit, but overall still very much on-point. I am shooting for 2200-2800 calories, which is a pretty big range. I have more room to improve on the “quality” side of the diet equation vs. the “quantity” side. I feel like over time, especially on a higher carb/lower fat baseline diet, carbs start to beget carbs, which beget bowls of cereal.

This is where having some flexibility with my approach and having experience with all kinds of macro combinations came come in handy.

I just shift gears and shut down the carbs to the 130g range and it seems to get things moving in the right direction. I’ve been doing that this week and I like the way things are looking.

I guess the trick with swapping in fats is that over time, olive oil and a scoop of nut butter become bacon-and-cheese-laden omelette. Hmm. I sense a pattern. Maybe a good plan would be to go low-carb until you notice that your fat choices are getting sloppy and you are sensing that a cereal binge is around the corner. At that point, switch to low-fat but don’t go straight to the cereal, start with the high-quality carb sources. Ride that out until potatoes, rice, and oatmeal get boring and switch again.

The SWITCH diet.


Common knowledge mate. This is how cankles were discovered [insert cankles meme].

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183.5 today.

Lifting is on-point.

Diet has been on-point.

This weekend will test me. Wedding getaway. It won’t really test me. I’m actually testing it. I’ve been researching the effect of alcohol in triglycerides and other CV health markers.

My synthesis of what I’ve learned is that for those prone to dyslipidemia, combining alcohol with high fat intake is not good. Kind of a similar concept described by the lean gains dude who seems to have disappeared. This doesn’t jive with my current baseline diet setup, where I usually start the day with low fat and progress to higher fat at dinner.

So I may try to significantly decrease fat intake around events where more than one or two light beers will be consumed. Pretty simple, until you put yourself in the event and look around at the food options that generally dominate parties and other festivities. But what the hell, it’s worth a shot. It’s time for me to get all that blood work done soon, so I’m gonna make this tweak and see what happens.

Chicken breast and bourbon, anyone?


In other news, I finally tried on a pair of Hoka one one shoes and I loved them so much, I bought two more pairs.