Ending of Spring Cleaning stats –
Weight – 184lbs
Bodyfat – 10-11%
This is the end of my spring cleaning cut. The last week of this I implemented some carb cycling with 5 low days at 1800 calories and two high days at 2800 calories. I’m happy with where I ended up, but I want to switch gears again and start building more muscle while keeping bodyfat at the same level.
Things I learned from Spring Cleaning:
One thing I learned from this cut is 1800 calories is too low for me now. I felt low in energy on this amount and in the future when I cut again it will most likely be at 2100 at the lowest.
Two is towards the end I started to plateau and my body didnt really “want” to go lower in bodyfat. Instead of constantly dropping my calories again and feeling terrible, I’m going to revere diet my calories back up again.
Three is my maintenance may be higher than I thought. I’ve been wearing the FitBit religiously for the past two weeks and I’ve noticed two really interesting things. One is that I’m way more active when I wear it, because I try to achieve the goal of 10000 steps or 5 miles everyday. This isn’t just running, but overall activity and walking. I’ve been implementing a 30-45 minute walk everyday on an incline just for general health and to achieve the goal on my Fitbit, even though it doesn’t really track weightlifting very well. The second benefit is that my caloric maintenance is higher than I thought. After two weeks my calories averaged around 2850 calories a day with some days going about 3000. After researching if these numbers were accurate most of them are with a small percent error. So more of less, I burn this much everyday. So I could be eating around 3000 calories each day to maintain my weight.
Four is body temperature as sign of your metabolic health. I wrote about this a long time ago, but basically the lower your body temperature at any point in the day, the lower your metabolism. When you get sick your body temperature kicks into overdrive to fight off infection, which increases metabolism and calorie burning. The opposite is also true. I remember back when I was on a low carb and low calorie diet, I measured my body temperature and it was at 93.3 degrees. This is pathetically low and it was no wonder I had no energy. I measured my body temperature this week on a random day and the reading was 98.9 degrees with the same thermometer that gave me the 93 degree rating. Shows you the power of food and the answer lies in eating more not less.
Where I am going now: I plan to reverse diet back up to 3000 calories a day. I probably averaged an intake of about 2300 over Spring Cleaning with the exception of the last week. So I will start there and increase by about 100 calories each week until I get to 3000 calories which matches my fitbit. This should take about 7 weeks. For the last 5 weeks I will maintain on 3000 calories, while also building muscle at an accelerated rate. At this calorie intake protein synthesis will be at an all time high. I’m going to try and slowly increase my weight, but I plan to stay around the same weight. If the scale starts climbing too fast, it usually represents fat gain not muscle gain. My lean mass is around 163 lbs and this is want I want to increase. So my total weight may not change that much the entire time, while my lean mass climbs higher and higher. So if the scale starts climbing too quickly I’ll moderate my calorie intake until my weight is stable then I’ll increase. This the beauty of reverse dieting. Its slow enough to allow your body to catch up with calorie intake. If I jumped from 2300 to 3000 calories immediately, then fat gain would be a sure thing. Patience wins the game.
A couple more things I wanted to mention. I’m reading Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle by Tom Venuto and its an awesome read. I really respect Tom Venuto as he’s one of the more consistent trainers in the field. Meaning many people jump on fads (Myself included), but he has remained extremely consistent in his beliefs for a long time. Some experts I used to respect, I no longer do. Their either trying to sell you something or their advice changes daily with contradictory information. I dont have time to waste reading BS, so I no longer follow these people. His advice is simple to follow and implement and that’s probably why he has much success. He also relys more on what works for most people, more so than what looks good in research. Research doesnt always translate very well in the real world.
The second thing is that Hugh Jackman is a huge inspiration for me. Why is that? – Every time I see Wolverine he comes back bigger and stronger than the previous movie. He also consumes 6000 calories a day, which I wouldn’t be able to do or afford, but his dedication and results are unreal. He also has some of the most impressive vascularity (veins) I have ever seen. This was all relatively recent too, as he used to be small at 170 lb and and 6ft 2 inches when he first became Wolverine.
As for my macros and calories for the next 12 week reverse diet / muscle building phase: Calories starting at 2300; Protein at 180 grams; Fat at 60 grams (going to leave this consistent the entire time); Carbs at 240 grams and will increase by 25 grams each week. As I get into higher calorie intakes I may increase protein as well, but not by a huge amount.
Going strong with MC Power and Hypertrophy Split. I plan to use this during my next phase as well.
- Su – Push – Hypertrophy
- M- Pull – Hypertrophy
- T- Cardio
- W- Push Power
- Thur- Legs
- Fri – Pull Power
- Sat – Cardio
Strength was consistent the entire time, but didnt set any records since I was cutting weight and calories were reduced. I also did cardio everyday (incline walking) and went longer on my rest days. I also refeed (high calorie day) on my rest day as I had more time to eat and was hungrier on those days.
For legs I changed to a power stance for squats and my legs are still sore. A power stance is wider and hits more inner quads and hamstrings. My legs have never been this sore in my life. Thats one of the main reason I hate doing legs is the debilitating aftermath they bring, but gotta do what you gotta do.
My favorite day is the push hypertrophy day. Lighter weights and the pump is awesome, although I did get a good pump on the power day as well, even though the weight was much heavier and weights were reduced.