Training & Nutrition - please critique

I’m hoping to get feedback on my training and nutrition from you guys. My goal is to get stronger, leaner and more functional. I also want to add muscle that may come from getting stronger. I know, I’ve heard it a million times, you can’t gain and lose at the same time. I don’t think it’s necessarily true. I think it is possible if your nutrition and training is top knotch. Okay, here it goes. Stats: 26, 5’4", 150lbs, about 13% bodyfat. As for training, I am following the 5x5 method. Prior to the workout, I stretch, do abs and of course warm-up sets. This is my current routine:

Monday: Deadlift, stiff-legged deadlift, barbell rows, close-grip bench. Wednesday: Overhead press, shrugs, barbell curls, seated/standing calves. Friday: Front squat, weighted chins, bench press, dips.

I follow this with 20-30 minutes of cardio, usually on the stairmaster. On Tues and Thurs, I usually mountain bike, run stadiums or use combat conditioning. Workouts could be 20 minutes to two hours (I ride the trails about that long when I go out). Intensity is not always high. Depends on how I feel and what I’m doing. I also try to stay active on the weekend usually playing frisbee, swimming, mountain biking, etc. And I usually have one day a week where I am not active at all. I don’t feel overtrained at all by doing this.

Daily nutrition is as follows. BREAKFAST: Grow mixed w/ 16oz skim milk, 8-10 oz OJ. SNACK: 8 oz lowfat cottage cheese. LUNCH: (leftovers) Chicken breast, potato, veggies, apple. Or some variation of the above (tacos, fajitas, pot roast, chili, porkchops, etc). SNACK: 1 can albacore tuna and 8 oz yogurt. POST-WORKOUT: 2 scoops of Surge. DINNER: Some variation of my lunch (pot roast, burgers, steak, chicken, fish, etc). If I need another meal, I'll have another Grow shake with milk. I also will use this as my postworkout meal on non-weight training days. Daily calories is between 2,800-3,200. I consume at least 200 grams of protein and up to 280grams per day. My ratios have been consistent at about 33% protein, 40% carbs and 27% fat. I consume at least a gallon of water a day.

Supplementation is as follows: Mulitivitamin, Fish oils (6 grams), Vitamin C (1 gram), Vitamin E (1,000 iu), ZMA (three caps), T2 (2 caps) Grow and Surge. So do you have any feedback for me? Please let me know if I'm missing something. Thanks guys.

Dogg: I tell you…it looks clean and solid…your diet is VERY similar to mine. No real criticism, but just some little points and questions:

  1. I use a little more salmon, but it seems you get in plenty of fish oil per day…no problem…

  2. I try to get in a few more phytochemicals in the form of onions, garlic, brocolli, tomato paste and products (a good salsa works well). Sort of rounds out the anti-oxidant picture.

  3. Those are definitely mass building cals, Dogg (about 19-21 cals per pound). Do you consider yourself as having a “fast” metabolism and do you ever decrease those cals during a “cutting” phase? Do you like to cut fat, carbs or a little of both when “cutting”?

  4. I noticed that those are “Zone” macro percentages (I am really considering those). Is that coincidence, OR are those macro percentages that you played with and you found worked for you?

  5. Solid protein at 1.3 grams/ pound. Do you ever go higher?

I tend to use a 2 day spit (Mon, Tue; Thur, Fri; Wendsday off; cardio in a.m.; resistance training at night with my Posse). But yours looks solid. Hey, brother…the “proof is in the pudding”…you ain’t broke, Dogg…so there’s no reason to “fix” 'ya! -:)–

Keep up your great (and funny!) contributions to this site!

Natedogg, I’d drop out the skim milk in the Grow shakes. If you have 4 cups a day thats about 192 calories of insulin spurting lactose each day or 5760 calories, the rough equivalent of a pound and a half of fat per month! Start using half milk half water in your shakes then 1/4 milk 3/4 water and then eventually ditch the white juice. Milk makes me really bloated and I seriously shedded alot of weight just taking it out of my diet. I love milk, but it just isn’t good for my body. Try it out see if it does any good. -Watts-

OK ill give you my 2c worth - you are in a pathetic rut and wont get out of it trying to get bigger and leaner at the same time. You have been in this shape for months and you will keep spinning your wheels and wasting money on supplements until you let go of the silly idealism on which you base your getting bigger and leaner program. And I aint trying to hear excuses tman. Since we last spoke I have put on 4 pounds in one month massive eating and 6 pounds the next including creatine. Training 4 days (CRITICAL IN MY VIEW) my BF went from 6-5% on the tanita scales but I always had a 6 pack and im not noticably leaner. I would diet for a week or two (just pull about 90% carbs out of your proposed diet and do extra cardio), then bulk for 3-4, then diet again for a few until you are as lean as you want, and then bulk up for real. Another point, my workouts are MUCH better on creatine - I see it as food in the same way as protein powder if you are worried about taking it (ie it would be in the extra beef I would eat if the shakes werent so handy). You have been good to me with advice in the past (pecs now growing thanks) and I dont know the above is appreciated or what were looking for but I know the old alligator stew does wonders for me. Either way I hope you achieve your goals - Id hate to see you end up in one the the neurotic food/anorexia support groups on the forum (some days I wish I could send them to the richards simmonds site or somewhere else confused old women lurk). IA final thing, ignore the nitpicking and pedantic advice - for most of us there is nothing to be gained by majoring in minor issues - just get the basic approach right.

Nate Dogg…lookin’ pretty sharp there, buddy. It’s great to see that you’re eating pretty massively at the same time as trying to clean things up. You know, JB’s got people eating pretty damn huge these days–well, not huge, but more than they’re used to–which is great because people are starting to take advantage of their elevated metabolisms.

Just a note or two…I know you’re fat intake’s right about where you want it, but you might consider some extra omega-3s or some flax. As far as training, one technique you might want to throw in down the road is some Rest-Pause reps (no, I’m not Joe Wieder). That would be to observe the Law of Progressive Resistance. I know you increase the weights when you get 5x5, but maybe on the last set of 5, rack the weight for 10seconds or so, then do another rep or two. It’s rather effective. Just a few thoughts, buddy, and wanted to let you know you’ve got things going pretty well. Stay Active like you are too. If you enjoy it and you can handle it, keep it going, baby!

Mufasa, let me answer your questions. 1)The only time I eat salmon is if I grill it up for dinner. I can’t handle it too often, and won’t eat it in the can. Hopefully, the fish oils do take care of what I need. 2) I didn’t put it in, but my lunch and dinner tend to have many of those things you mentioned. I always consume a few servings of veggies at both meals. And I love brocolli, garlic and cooked tomatoes! 3) I used to think my metabolism was fast when I was younger. But I think it has slowed down the last three years. I’m probably at a medium-level. It’s not too often that I do a cutting phase. In fact, I haven’t done a true cutting phase in about four years. And to do that, I ate very clean, lower fat and lower carbs. 4) The zone thing wasn’t planned. After taking tips from John Berardi’s Massive Eating and using his meal combinations, that is sort of what it just came out to be. Not sure if it is the best thing for me, as I stayed leaner when I ate a lower fat diet with higher carbs and moderate protein. 5) Some days my protein intake is higher than others. It typically depends on what my lunch/dinner meals are. Everything else stays consistent. Thanks for the kind words bro! :slight_smile:

Watts, I have thought about cutting the milk, but then I would also need to find another way to make up for the loss in protein. I like my shakes with milk. As it helps add another 18-20 grams of protein per shake. I know what you mean about getting lean and cutting milk from the diet. The one time I tried to get very lean, I did limit milk consumption to 8 oz a day. And that seemed to make a big difference. I'm not too concerned with the insulin spike, as I hope my overall nutrition and training make up for it. And as for calories, skim milk only has 90 calories per 8 oz. So that's only an additional 360 calories to my diet. But that is also 36-40 grams of extra protein. If I don't feel like the T2 and my training is helping me to get lean enough, I will cut it down to half. Thanks for the help!

You know your own body best, but personally, I’d shoot for 2400-2800 calories/day. I’m 185 at about 11% bodyfat and even when I eat really clean, I won’t lose fat until I get down to 2500 cal/day consistently.

Dre, thanks for the feedback. I do appreciate it. I like your idea of cutting for a couple weeks and then eating massively for three or four weeks. You may be right about me trying to get bigger and leaner at the same time. But I’m going to give it a month to see. Since I just started the T2 and Surge, I’ll use it for four weeks. I’ll see how my progress is and evaluate from there.

I don’t want to waste money on supplements or keep spinning my wheels. As I see it, I’ve made progress going from 142lbs in February to 152lbs as of last night. And my goal isn’t to be a “bodybuilder.” Sure, I want to add muscle to my frame and be lean. But my primary goal is to be functional and strong. Look at sprinters. They are extremely lean, strong and very well muscled. Is this not possible for me? They train with very heavy weights for the strength, and then sprint and do other running to stay lean and be able to compete.

Like I said, let me give the T2, Surge, and my current training and nutrition a full month before trying your idea. If I just spin my wheels, I’ll know that I need to keep eating massively and leave the getting lean for later down the road. At this point, your bodyfat is low. Mine is not. So there is quite a difference in me trying to gain muscle at what I consider a high bodyfat level (13%). Summer is almost here, and I don’t want to be a fatty on the beach. And right now, all my fat is in my abdominal and lower back. So if I can burn that up, and then gain solid muscle weight, I’ll be happy.

Timbo and Rosheem, thanks for the feedback guys! I’ll definitely keep you posted.

Up your protein intake to 300grams minimum
lower the carb intake to 200 maximum…150 would be better.

40 protein 25 carbs 35 fat would be much better
take lots of FLAX OIL UDOS CHOICE is great.

ur carbs should come from supplements you use, post wrk out drink, tha yogurt cuz of tha bacteria in it for digestion purposes, and other complex sources.

good luck

OK Nate - but keep us posted on your progress. Id imagine that doing one thing at a time you could easily lose 2 pounds of fat a week in your cutting phase and then, having gained control of BF, you could attack the mass phase without the concerns some have about bulking up and gain at least 1 pound lean a week. These may not be the most accurate estimates but you could use something like this at the end of each month to determine whether you time and supplement $$ could be better spent. Good luck tman.

Thanks Dre! I know what you mean. We’ll give it a month and see if it works. The good thing about T2 is that it each bottle will last a long time. So if I don’t make progress in one month, I won’t be losing too much money on supplements. My goal for the month is to increase strength while dropping some bodyfat. I hope it’s possible since I’m trying to get back to previous strength levels. Once I’m at that point, then I will most likely not be able to try and burn fat while continuing to increase strength. We’ll see!