T Nation

Thib's Q&A - April 13 - 20

Post away!

How do you feel about static stretching:

  • Immediately post-training
  • A few hours post-training
  • At night before bed

CT,

Today was my second day of Beast Building I. The isometric deadlifts were very uncomfortable - In the lower position with my hips back I felt like my spine was going to rip out of my back and onto the floor.
What other movement could I do instead?

My second question I posted in your previous thread. How concerned are you personally with the pH of your stomach acid and your assimilation of nutrients. What measures have you taken? I have been taking HCL with most of my big meaty meals, but that’s about it.

Thank you!

hey coach,
please, some questions:
I’m suffering from low back pain.
I’m able to train my lower body with Front Squat, Trap-Bar,
Bulgarian Squat,Reverse Hyperextension and Single Leg Squat…Not with the Back Squat.
I have pain with squat isometric hold, jump squat(DB), power clean too…
What other movement could I do instead of those, in Isometric/explosive contrast(Beast Building program)?
Any suggestion to train my lower body and core decently?

thank you in advance

CT,

I will soon be walking the “Camino de Santiago.” It’s basically a 4 week hiking trip across Northern Spain. I could really use some advice on how to maintain the muscle mass I’ve worked for so dearly.

I’ve actually considered NOT going; but I refuse to let a little fear of losing muscle prevent me from doing something I really want to do. Now that I’ve decided, here is what I’m facing: 4 weeks of constant walking. All I will have is a backpack. I’ve thought about taking protein powder, glutamine, etc, but I will really be limited in what I can take.

I’ll shut up now: do you have any advice? (evening bodyweight routines, diet help, anything??)

[quote]Control_61 wrote:
How do you feel about static stretching:

  • Immediately post-training[/quote]

There are pros and cons. On the “pro” side, stretching a muscle while it’s “pumped up” could help you stretch the muscle’s enveloppe (fascia) which could, over the long run facilitate muscle growth.

There is also some evidence that stretching increases IGF-1 receptors sensitivity. IGF-1 is elevated after a lifting session and increasing the sensitivity of the receptors would mean that the IGF-1 could have a greater effect which could translate into more growth.

On the “con” side, excessive stretching of a muscle that has suffered micro-trauma during training, could tear the muscle further without increase stimulation, which could delay the recovery process.

So my recommendation would be that it’s fine to do it, maybe even beneficial, but don’t overdo it.

[quote]Control_61 wrote:

  • A few hours post-training
  • At night before bed [/quote]

These would carry the “con” stated earlier without the “pros”.

[quote]dharmabum31 wrote:
CT,

I will soon be walking the “Camino de Santiago.” It’s basically a 4 week hiking trip across Northern Spain. I could really use some advice on how to maintain the muscle mass I’ve worked for so dearly.

I’ve actually considered NOT going; but I refuse to let a little fear of losing muscle prevent me from doing something I really want to do. Now that I’ve decided, here is what I’m facing: 4 weeks of constant walking. All I will have is a backpack. I’ve thought about taking protein powder, glutamine, etc, but I will really be limited in what I can take.

I’ll shut up now: do you have any advice? (evening bodyweight routines, diet help, anything??)

[/quote]

I’ll be honest you will lose muscle mass regardless of what you do.

First of all the caloric expenditure (amount of energy burned every day) will be fairly high. Assuming that you will walk around 18-20 miles per day it will jack up your daily expenditure by 3400 to 4000 calories per day. Depending on your size your daily energy expenditure WITHOUT the walking would be around 2000-2400 calories… So to simply maintain your current size you’d need around 6000 calories per day.

Then, all this walking can become catabolic over the long run, which is obviously a negative thing for muscle mass.

Finally you have the lack of stimulation. Yes bodyweight exercises can help if they are challenging enough. But sets of 50 push ups or 50 bodyweight squats do not represent the same level of stimulation as bench pressing and squatting big weights.

Also consider that by doing exclusively low intensity work for 4 weeks, you will stimulate endurance adaptations to your muscles and muscle growth is not one of these.

But look at it this way:

  1. You’ll lose a lot of fat too… so when you get back to strength training, you’ll be able to add muscle to a much leaner body.

  2. When you get back to training, your body will be more responsive for a short period of time. So the muscle you may lose will be regained very fast.

The advices I can give you during the trip (I understand that it’s a religious thing, and building your muscles should never take the place of stronger beliefs) are:

  • Make sure to get enough of all the nutrients. A zone type diet of around 30% protein, 30% carbs and 40% fat is ideal in your case.

  • Glutamine (gotta be a fairly high dose) can help a bit and so will BCAAs (10g every 3 hours) or leucine (5g with every meal).

  • Bodyweight exercises are a good idea. In that case go for frequency over volume. For example, after every mile, perform two sets of push ups, bodyweight squats and chin-ups (if possible).

  • If you can, carry a heavy backpack. The resistance will make your muscles work more intensity during the walk.

Hi coach Thibs.
Can you recommend a good coach in israel?
Thanks in advance

You could use a TRX or jungle gym and bring some resistance bands whuch can go up into the hundreds of pounds.

Hi Coach,

I have two questions regarding nutrition.

  1. Why is it important to consume carbs in the morning in order to replish liver glycogen ?

2.I want to add muscle while having a moderate to low carb diet. If I consume 1.25 grams of protein per body weight and I stay around 100-150 gr, of cabrs what sources of good fats can I use ? I need some ideas because adding walnuts, olive oil, whole eggs and some omega 3 does not get me to 3,000 - 3,500 cals. Any tips on adding calorie dense foods ?

Thanks in advance.

I have a question about the 30 min cardio sessions in your Get Jacked e-book. I am having to workout during my lunch break for a while, and is not enough time to get in my workout plus the 30 min session. I would workout in the morning that way i could get them both in at the same time, but there is just not enough time to do both before work. I was wondering if I did the cardio in the morning before work then did the resistance training at 12:00 if this would be exceptable? Thanks in advance.

Hi, Thib.

For calf training, how does foot position alter the effects of specific exercises. Also, are there particular exercise choices involving the calves where you can safely make a rapid transition from eccentric to concentric in order to train them in explosive fashion? I ask this because typically it is recommended to pause at the bottom to limit the contribution of the SSC, which also has the secondary benefit of minimizing any problems that may occur if you bounce in the bottom or stretch too rapidly and compromise the tendon.

If you have the time, I would also greatly appreciate your quick input on the natter of HIIT and mass gain.

Can some HIIT be used during a mass-gain phase? If so, does it boil down to consuming a sufficient carb intake, ensuring that periodic measurements are headed in the proper direction, and being mindful of how the HIIT impacts on lower body and CNS recovery?

CT,

When using conventional deadlifts, is it best to stick with 8 reps or fewer? And when using deadlifts, would it be acceptable to let go of the bar and reset your grip between each rep (as if executing the set as one giant rest-pause) or are there times when you’d advise hanging onto the bar and pausing briefly on the floor or even going touch and go style?

On a quick side note, if engaging in 20-30 minutes max of low-intensity ESW after weight training, would you simply delay consuming a PW drink until after the walking provided that the weight training session was not a marathon one?

Hello Coach,

I had always followed a target carbs approach to dieting, but started eating a moderate - higher carb diet, high protein and low to moderate fat ratio. This lead to great muscle gain and strength but also to quite a bit of unwanted fat gain (also getting an injury to the wrist that didnt even let me hold a mouse without pain).

So now im going back to the target carb approach, which will hopefully help me gain muscle mass while losing fat mass.

I have always thought that beans and legumes were kind of heavy on the carbs and thus i never really ate them at all. But recently the other authors have been giving the beans more credit. And i also found this post:

"FIRST CHOICE
Veggies (potatoes, corn and yams are not included)
Legumes - if you can digest them fine (baked beans, kidney beans, split peas, etc.) "

I see the beans have decent fiber but the carbs are also quite high. Do you recommend them in smaller portions? As you have often mentioned, green veggies are not counted in the macro breakdown, but do you have any guidelines regarding beans and legumes?

Hey, Christian.

I’ve got one more question regarding mechanical drop - book.

For the A-exercises, do you recommend to increase the weight to the given RM.
Something like 70% RM x 6, 75% RM x 6, 80% x 6, 85% RM x 6 (all out set) (or maybe you suggest a different type of weight progression, in that case, how would you do it?)

or

use the same weight for all 4 sets and barely get the 6th rep on the 4th set?

Thank you!

Coach

I’ve seen your fat lose diets you propose less meals, even only 4 on rest days, like Amit’s die. Have the starting points of macros and meals changed respect keto and tkd diets discussed early in Thib a&q? For mass gain phase have it changed too?

Thanks

when it comes to purely hypertrophy, can percentage training work? I’ve been using an 80%rm on all exercises at the moment, and gains have been coming fast. To me, using this percentage puts the reps right in the meaty range for growth. what is your oppinion?

Thanks for taking the time to write that, CT - That was exactly the information I needed.

Hey Thib,
I had two questions.

what exercises or variants of other exercises should someone with longer arms use when trying to build up the lats?
I ask becasue my arms fatigue before my lats are stimulated in the chin up or pull up.

[quote]xsquatx wrote:
Hey Thib,
I had two questions.

what exercises or variants of other exercises should someone with longer arms use when trying to build up the lats?
I ask becasue my arms fatigue before my lats are stimulated in the chin up or pull up.[/quote]

Read my article ‘‘The Torso Solution’’ it will give you a lot of exercises to use when your arms are dominant over your back.