Journal Entry 103 – Weekly Update 3

Average Morning Weight – 173 lbs

IMG_2898

Weekly Workouts

  • Chest and Triceps
  • Back and Biceps
  • Shoulders and Triceps
  • Full Body

Chest and Triceps focused on Bench Press and Incline Dumbbell Press; Back and Biceps DB rows and Pullups; Shoulders and Triceps were Dips and Shoulder Press; Full body was a little of everything.

Not much new in training and was pretty much the usual set up.  I’ve stopped all direct Ab exercises and replaced them with an exercise called: the Cat Vomit. Terrible name, but its basically supposed to really hit the Transverse Abdominal wall much more so than planks or any other exercise and really strength the core.  I also do stomach vacumms when I’m just sitting around so I have a little strengthening action going on all day long.

Lifting Stats:

Bench Press – 205lbs for 5 reps

Shoulder Press – 60lb DB for 4 reps

Dips 25lbs added for 8 reps (need to increase weight)

Pullups – 25lbs for 6 reps

Also cardio before my workouts (only 5-10 minutes) greatly increases the effectiveness of my workouts.  As soon as I’m done im ready to roll and feel a ton of energy.  Obviously going too long would sap energy and strength, but keeping it short avoids these problems.

Nutrition

Quest bar apple crisp recipe with protein pudding
Quest bar apple crisp recipe with protein pudding
Eggs Cabbage Tortillas
Eggs
Cabbage
Tortillas
Christmas Eve meal at Williamsville Eggs Broccoli Casserole Ham Stuffing Roll Salad
Christmas Eve meal at Williamsville
Eggs
Broccoli Casserole
Ham
Stuffing
Roll
Salad
Christmas Day Filet Mignon Shrimp and Scallops Broccoli
Christmas Day
Filet Mignon
Shrimp and Scallops
Broccoli
Lean Red Meat (been eating a ton here recently) Veggies  Pepperoni
Lean Red Meat (been eating a ton here recently)
Veggies
Pepperoni

Pretty much the same for nutrition here recently although I have picked up a few additional tips.

One is that carbs at night or 2 hours before bed decrease growth hormone levels and make it harder to burn fat while you sleep.  I’ve tested this and I definitely wake up looking better (leaner) if I have a protein/veggie dinner vs a protein/carb type dinner.  Since I still need carbs I plan to move more of these toward lunch and post workout period since I work out much earlier in the afternoon.  In the past I’ve written about approaches that recommend all carbs at night, but after trying this myself it really doesn’t work well for me.  I just wake up looking puffier than if I had the same carbs earlier in the day.

The second is that I have established staples in my diet that I more or less eat every day.  For example:

  • Everyday
  • 2 scoops of protein powder
  • 12oz of lean meat (at least)
  • 1 Quest Bar
  • Vegetables
  • Supplements (MV, Vita D, Magnesium, Fish Oil)

So basically no matter what I eat this everyday as my base diet.  It keeps me on track and I enjoy eating this way.  If I have a workout or a high-carb refeed type of day I will continue to eat these same foods, but will add much more fruit and starches on top of the base diet plan. Protein and Fat grams stay relatively constant at 170grams: 50grams and carbs go up or down depending on the day.

Lastly I saw a really simple/minimalist type template I really like for establishing “bulking or gaining muscle” calories and macros.

Bodyweight in carbs x 2; bodyweight in protein x 1; 1/3 of bodyweight in fat grams

For 170lb man: 340 carbs, 170 protein; 55 fat grams; Calories: 2540 calories.

Journal 

Reading a book on amazon called Bigger, Stronger, Leaner and most of the book is pretty basic and good for someone that has no former knowledge of training and nutrition, but I have still gained a few valuable tips that I will definitely implement in my plan.  The author also has a nice website and for the price the book is well worth the money.

Christmas day was good and even though I basically knew everything I was getting it was still fun to open presents.  I got an Ipad Air (which is incredible); clothes; and lots of Quest bars. 🙂

Also saw the Wolf of Wall Street with Leonardo DiCaprio.  Very interesting movie, and some of the events were hard to believe.  Leo is an awesome actor though.  Usually everything he does I end up liking.  Most likely due to the intensity of his acting, he definelty keeps your interest and becomes the character he is trying to portray.

Christmas Eve
Christmas Eve
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Journal Entry – 102 – Weekly Update 3

Morning Weight – 172 on average

IMG_2866 IMG_2859

Workout Schedule

Chest and Triceps

  • Bench Press
  • Inc DB Press
  • Close Grip Bench Press (DB)
  • Flys
  • Rope Pushdowns

Back and Biceps

  • DB Row
  • Chin-ups
  • Farmers Walks
  • BB Curl
  • Band Pull Apart

Shoulders and Triceps

  • Military Press (seated)
  • Dips
  • Lateral Raise
  • Skull Crusher
  • Farmers Walks

Back and Biceps

  • Chinups
  • DB Row
  • Shurgs
  • BB Curl
  • Band Pull Apart

Off days

  • Cardio
  • Stretching

One of  my favorite splits in a long time.  I like to call this the minimalist template.  I consider myself a minimalist in a lot of regards so it only makes sense to apply it to my workout.  The way this split works is the first two exercises each day are my main exercises.  I focus all my energy into these moves and then finish with smaller, accesory type exercises.  The first two moves are done for 4 sets of 6-10 reps, usually in a pyramid type fashion.

Lifting Stats this week:

Bench Press: 205lbs by 6 reps

Shoulder Press: 60lb Dumbbells for 5 reps

Chinups: 25lb weighted vest for 6 reps (multiple times)

DB Row: 90lb DB rows by 10 reps (mulitple times)

BB Curl: 65lbs by 10 reps

Also added in some farmer walks which is where you carry a heavy weight in each hand for a minute without putting it down.  Works traps, grip strength and abs and drives a lot of blood flow into the muscle.

Also BB curls light my biceps on fire.  My biceps were shaking so hard after the workout I couldnt even drink water.  (Always a good sign)

Nutrition

Red meat Chicken Broccoli, onions, peppers
Red meat
Chicken
Broccoli, onions, peppers
Red Meat Whole Egg 3oz sweet potato Veggies
Red Meat
Whole Egg
3oz sweet potato
Veggies
Pumpkin Protein Pudding
Pumpkin Protein Pudding

Pretty much the same as last week.  Around 16-1800 calories during the week with balanced macros and 2000-2400 on the weekends.

Journal

Not a whole lot more on Nutrition this week.  I did learn that Resistant starch has to be eaten cold or raw, because cooking it denatures the resistant starch and renders it useless.  Also probiotics taken with RS have shown to be absorbed much more efficiently than when taken alone.  Usually when probiotics are taken alone they are basically useless, becuase they never make it past the small intestine.  In order to be effective, they have to make it to the large intestine and RS helps shuttle them there.  Another term for RS is prebiotics and these have been shown to be more effective for a healthy gut than probiotics, even though people think it is the exact opposite.

Other things that happened this week:

My boy Eli Manning threw 5 int 0 tds and we scored no points. He also got relentless bashed by the media. Really hard to watch this happen.

I went and saw the Hobbit which was awesome. Almost as good as Lord of the Rings.

I’ve also been watching a lot of Dragon Ball Z. Something about this show just keeps me motivated to lift.

Journal Entry 101- Weekly Update 2

Morning Weight on Average – 171.5lbs

IMG_2845

Workout Schedule:

SU- Off

M- 0ff

Tuesday – Chest and Back

Wednesday – Shoulders and arms

Thursday – Off

Friday – Cardio warmup / Upper Body and Abs

I missed a day on Monday due to lack of time.  It didnt effect my strength gains though and on Friday I was able to bench 195lbs for 6 reps and 135lbs for 30 reps.

I did a 5 min cardio warmup and it greatly increased my strength and energy levels during the workout.  The cardio and loud music got my ready to lift heavy better than my normal warmup.

One thing I noticed during the week is if I dont include at least a little exercise my energy levels tank. Its like my blood never gets going and I really dont like that feeling.  Next week I plan to make even my off days include some type of short cardio or bodyweight circuit.  Not too much cardio but enough to get the blood going.

Nutrition

EPIC Croutons from Bertuccis
EPIC Croutons from Bertuccis
Olive Garden Shrimp Pasta Crab Rangoon Half of Bertuccis Calzone
Olive Garden Shrimp Pasta
Crab Rangoon
Half of Bertuccis Calzone
6 oz red meat pepperoni Vegetables
6 oz red meat
pepperoni
Vegetables
6 oz red meat  Ton of Cabbage
6 oz red meat
Ton of Cabbage
Pumpkin Protein Pudding  1 apple
Pumpkin Protein Pudding
1 apple

Been hitting about 1600-1800 calories during the week with balance macros.

Interesting Research this week:

I learned about some interesting topics I have never really heard much before this week.

The first is a proper pH acid/base balance in the body.  90% of the foods everyone eats (basically everything except for fruits and vegetables) contribute to a positive acid load in the body.  If not properly balanced many negative side effects could occur such as bone loss, muscle loss, hypothyroid symptoms and just overall lack of energy.  The way to make sure the acid content doesnt get too high is to eat a fruit or vegetable with every meal. (especially if the meal is high in egg yolks, red meat or cheese – as theses are HIGHLY acidic).  Two foods that are very counter active against acid is raisins and spinach.  The rest of the fruits and veggies are about the same.  Nothing groundbreaking here, but found it interesting that not eating enough fruits/vegetables could greatly increase fatigue even if enough calories are eaten.

The second is about resistant starch.  There has been a huge surge of research on the massive benefits of resistant starch, which include increased body temperature, better digestion, healthy gut flora, better mood and energy, less bloating, and greater insulin sensitivity.  These are all benefits people would like to have.  The absolute best source is Bob’s Red Mill Potato STARCH not FLOUR. The starch per Tbs has 10 grams of carbs and 8 grams of those are resistant starch.  This makes it a very high dose and healthy source of RS.  Getting RS from food is trickier as heating food can reduce it, bananas have it unripened, but once ripe have none.  So basically foods may contain RS, but may lose it over time.  To make it easier I plan to just mix potato starch in water and drink it down.  The recommended range is 20-60 grams with the higher end showing no additional benefit. My goal since I have become such a huge fan of moderation and balance is to hit around 40 grams a day.  I plan to do 4-5 tbs a day or 32-40 grams of RS.  That will hit the perfect range and I will most likely get some more RS from other sources of food I eat (potatoes, beans, rice, oatmeal, unripe bananas).  Quick Note- don’t heat potato starch as this takes away the resistant starch.

Journal Entry 100 – First Weekly Update

Weekly Weight

IMG_2823

170-174lbs

Workouts

Monday – Chest and Triceps

Tuesday – Back and Shoulders

Wednesday – OFF

Thursday – Chest/Back

Friday – Shoulders/Traps/Arms

Saturday and Sunday – OFF

Changed up the style a little bit on Thursday and Friday.  Chest and Back was awesome.  The scheme was like this:

Bench Press superset with DB row 4×6-8 reps

INC DB Press superset with Cable Rows 3×8-12 reps

Dips superset with Chinups/Lat Pulldown 3xAMAP (as many as possible) (bodyweight)

Chest flys superset with Rear delt raise 2x15reps

The reason I liked this so much is because of the perfect balance it brought.  Volume was equal for chest and back and since they were antagonist body parts, I was able to lift faster and superset each exercise without burning out.

Shoulders/Traps and Arms was also a nice change.  I supersetted shoulders and traps for 2 exercises of 4 sets each and did the same volume for Biceps and Triceps in superset fashion.  At the end I did a 3 sets of machine curls, tricep extensions and shoulder lateral raises for 3 sets of about 15 reps each, but the goal was to “burnout” the muscles.

Nutrition

Seafood Pepperoni Broccoli Sweet Potato
Seafood
Pepperoni
Broccoli
Sweet Potato
Lean Red Meat Sweet Potato Ezekiel Bread Broccoli and Onions Low Fat Pepperoni
Lean Red Meat
Sweet Potato
Ezekiel Bread
Broccoli and Onions
Low Fat Pepperoni
Lean Beef Chicken Broccoli and Onions
Lean Beef
Chicken
Broccoli and Onions
Kraken Mudslide Kraken Rum Diet Coke Reddi Whip (Fat Free) Low Calorie Chocolate Syrup
Kraken Mudslide
Kraken Rum
Diet Coke
Reddi Whip (Fat Free)
Low Calorie Chocolate Syrup

Monday through Friday included about 1600-1800 calories with protein:carbs:fat around 160grams:120grams:45grams. (roughly)

One change I did make is eating more fruit at lunch and after I lift.  I also have a small pure protein bar shortly after.  This would provide me about 60 grams of carbs and 60 grams of protein, right in the “exercise window.”

I think the sugar from the fruit really helps with my lifting.  Dinner usually had a potato, but sometimes I just went protein and vegetables.

Weekend will include some “cheat foods”, but eating them on the weekend in modest amounts prevents me from eating them during the week.

Journal

I didn’t have much time to post this week, so I figured I would just do one weekly post on the weekend.

I may try to post twice a week: once on Wednesday (off day) and once on either Saturday or Sunday.  This will allow me to sum up what I did in the days before without doing it everyday.  (Not that I don’t want to or enjoy doing it everyday, but time has become a factor, especially during the week.)

Journal Entry 99

Morning Weights – 175lbs, 171lbs, 173lbs

Workouts

  • Friday – Chest and Triceps
  • Saturday and Sunday – None

Been kind of lazy over the break when it comes to workouts.  Definitely got some bloat that needs to be gone ASAP.

My Friday workout was pretty good though.  Started with heavy bench and did accessory exercise like my other workouts.

Nutrition

If I could sum up my nutrition over the past few days it would be: Not very good haha. Lot of sugar, mixed drinks, too many calories. But I’m hoping the extra food will make my workout later today very effective.

Pumpkin Brownies (with banana nut protein)
Pumpkin Brownies (with banana nut protein)
Kraken mixed drink with diet coke
Kraken mixed drink with diet coke
Thanksgiving Dinner
Thanksgiving Dinner
Pumpkin Crisp
Pumpkin Crisp
Pizza Hut - Hand Tossed Chicken Supreme
Pizza Hut – Hand Tossed Chicken Supreme
Texas Roadhouse - Huge Grilled Chicken Salad
Texas Roadhouse – Huge Grilled Chicken Salad
Seafood  Sweet potato Broccoli
Seafood
Sweet potato
Broccoli

Journal

Looking forward to getting back in the gym today.  I had a nice break, but time to put in some work.

Uptown Alley - Bowling/Bar on Saturday Night
Uptown Alley – Bowling/Bar on Saturday Night
My oldest dog Frisco, Chilling.
My oldest dog Frisco, Chilling.