Journal Entry 153

Week 7


11/29 – 176.8lbs – Calories Eaten 2400 – 9000 steps – 4.45 miles – push

11/30 – 176.8 – CE- 2200  – 9700 steps – 4.89 miles – pull

12/1 – 177.8 lbs – CE- 2250 calories – 12500 steps – 6 miles – off

12/2 – 178 lbs – CE- 2000 calories – 11200 steps – 5.28 miles – push

12/3 – 177.4 lbs – CE- 1850 calories – 14000 steps – 6.6 miles – off

12/4 – 176.4 lbs – CE- 2100 calories – 9000 steps – 4.3 miles – pull

12/5 – 177.2 lbs – CE- 2150 calories – 10000 steps – 4.77 miles – legs

Average Weight – 177.2lbs  Average Calories – 2135 calories


A good week in training. I hit 90 lb DB’s for 3 sets of 5 reps on Bench and 110 lb DB’s for 4 sets of 6 reps on DB Rows. Legs felt pretty weak strength wise this week and even 185 felt heavy. The endurance felt pretty good though. I decided not to weighted pullups and just do 5 sets of as many as I could with body weight. I seem to feel my muscles much better without added weight. I also did some incline hammer curls for biceps and had sore biceps for almost 2 days after, so I will definitely keep these as one of my main movements. I did Barbell Bench for the first time in a long time and strength was exactly where it was the last time I did it. Right around 195lbs for 5-6 reps or so. Didn’t really miss it that much though and I still like using the DB’s as my main movement. Dumbbells just feel better to me and I feel like I get more out of the exercise with less risk of injury.

No overhead shoulder press work was done and I stuck to lateral raises, rear delt raises and face pulls for my shoulders. I honestly didn’t miss the overhead press at all and I’m not saying I’ll never do it again, but right now I’m going to see how my shoulders respond without it. Also found a new move though which is really effective for your legs and abs: Hip Extensions with an Ab vacuum (I’ll call it HEAV). Basically perform the hip extension like normal, but tightened your Abs as hard as you can during the movement. This will strengthen the TVA without the need for planks and improve posture and pelvic function especially in people who sit all day. I do like planks, but after watching peoples lower backs sink in every time they do them, I just think there is a better way to hit the TVA without some much stress back there. HEAV also helps people with distended guts to pull their abdominal’s back into place. A warrior lunge stretch is also something I do and recommend everyone who sits does to avoid tight hip flexors. Once these muscles are loose your legs and overall movement and flexibility feel amazing.I usually try to loosen these up early in the day and afternoon time. Doesn’t take long either, probably around 1-2 minutes on each side of static stretching.

As for my walking, I averaged close to 5 miles a day, which is my sweet spot. This isn’t all done at once, but accumulates over the day.

Here are my workout logs for the week: (note on the second and third pic, the pull workout is listed twice)

IMG_1253 IMG_1254 IMG_1255


Average calorie intake for the week was right around 2150 calories. Low carb during the day and high carbs at night. Some days I had right around 150 total carbs with 50 grams being eaten during the day and 100 grams after my workout. I actually felt much better though when I had 50 grams during the day and 130 grams after my workout for a total of 180 grams. I felt the added carbs gave me more energy through the day. Some days I fell below 150 grams and I felt somewhat sluggish during the day. One of my rest days I dropped carbs to 100 grams and increased fat intake to about 80 grams and I didnt like the way I felt the next day. I felt sluggish right around noon, most likely due to low glucose stores and didn’t really feel much better till I got my carbs in me. So I plan to stick to right around 180 grams a day everyday of the week and keep fat right around 60 grams. This is the sweet spot for me. If I eat any more fat than this I usually lose my appetite for it, which is a sure sign that my body has gotten plenty. I love playing around with different macro splits to see what works best though. It seems the more carbs I eat at night the better I feel the next day. I consider night time a perfect time to “refuel the tank” and also getting a big dose of carbs at night has a lot of hormonal benefits that I don’t want to miss out on.

I also bumped up protein on some days to close to 200 grams. I increased my lunch and dinner totals to 7-8 oz instead of my usual 5-6oz. I think I have found a sweet spot though in terms of calories. Right around 21-2200 calories a day seems to be the perfect amount to give me a plenty of energy and burn fat during the day. 1800 calories especially if the carbs are low just seems inadequate, however if I lowered fat and increased carbs then I may feel just fine on that intake (something Ill have to play around with). Considering my average weight last week was 177.8 and this week was 177.2lbs this once again reaffirms my belief that my maintenance is right around 2500 calories a day. Since my average intake was 2150 calories, 2150 x 7 = 15050 calories. 2500 x 7 = 17500 calories. 17500 – 15050 = 2450 calories. 2450/3500 = .7 lbs of fat.

As for my carb sources I usually stick to white rice, white potatoes, sweet potatoes or oatmeal (for a late night dessert), Firehook crackers and fruits are always berries in the morning, apples for afternoon snack and sometimes bananas for dessert. Rice I usually mix into a huge stir-fry, Potatoes I’ll make into fries, but may try those in a stirfry as well, and sweet potato I eat on its own as a dessert. (pretty much like some people eat ice cream). I also usually have some Firehook crackers with most of my meals. On Saturday, Ill usually make bread (from pizza or calzones) my main source. I have nothing against bread during the week or anything, but I find my meals are much more satisfying and filling with other sources of carbs.

As for fat sources, peanut butter is always a go to in the morning; cheese (goat and laughing cow) and whole eggs for lunch; and butter, coconut oil or olive oil for dinner. I’ll also so do some lean sausages as well. If I use a fattier source of meat or use eggs and cheese in my dinner meal, then I’ll skip the oil. I spread fat through out the day in all of my meals. As for the amount, you want to stick between 15-40% of your BMR calories in fat grams. My BMR is roughly 1800 calories a day, so anywhere between 30-80 grams is usually enough to maintain hormones. I like sticking in the middle.

A quick work on sodium. My sodium is between 4-6 grams or 4000-6000mg a day. I used to freak out if I got anywhere near 3000 mg and most recommendations are around 1500-2400mg a day. Whenever I would eat out on the weekend, I would wake up with massive amounts of water retention, because my normal intake was so low. Sodium is not bad for you at all, especially if you eat plenty of potassium and stay hydrated to balance it out. Your body will adjust to the amount you usually take in and make this the new normal. Its call aldosterone and it can be manipulated up and down. The beauty of maintaining such a high amount is when you want to cut water, dropping down to 3000mg a day from my usual 5000mg will have immediate benefit. Sodium also has many benefits including increased hydration and reduced cortisol. So dont be afraid of it.

Here’s a couple of recipes that you need to try:

Peanut Butter/Oatmeal Balls (really good for a healthier Christmas cookie)

  • 2 tbs of peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup of oatmeal (rolled works better than quick or instant due to texture)
  • 1/2-1 scoop of protein powder (I like 1/2 because I dont want this to overpower the flavor)
  • 1 pack of truvia
  • 1/4 cup of almond milk
  • Mix it all up and roll into balls OR just eat it all at once 😉
  • Note – you can easily double or triple this recipe if you wish

The White Knight:

  • 1 -1.5 cups of white rice
  • 6-8oz of lean chicken or turkey
  • 1/2 onion (optional)
  • 1 tbs of coconut oil
  • Put 2 tsps of coconut oil in the pan and cook the rice and onions. In another pan cook 1 tsp of coconut oil with the meat and then blend together.

Pics from the week:

6oz of lean meat Veggie mix Apple Cranberry crisp
6oz of lean meat
Veggie mix
Apple Cranberry crisp
Longhorns Napa Grilled Chicken Large Sweet Potato Side Salad
Napa Grilled Chicken
Large Sweet Potato
Side Salad
Leftover Longhorns with added lean meat and broccoli
Leftover Longhorns with added lean meat and broccoli
Steamed shrimp and broccoli from chinese with a crab rangoon
Steamed shrimp and broccoli from chinese with a crab rangoon
4oz of red meat with 1 slice of gouda cheese on top. 5 oz of broccoli and a whole egg
4oz of red meat with 1 slice of gouda cheese on top. 5 oz of broccoli and a whole egg
8oz of seafood mix with french fries and crackers
8oz of seafood mix with french fries and crackers
seafood stirfy with rice and a whole egg
seafood stirfy with rice and a whole egg
7oz of meat with broccoli and reduced guilt mac and cheese
7oz of meat with broccoli and reduced guilt mac and cheese
Frisco's 11th birthday
Frisco’s 11th birthday

4 thoughts on “Journal Entry 153

  1. caronbot

    Very thorough log. I’ve never experimented with intake to find my exact maintenance like you did (I just spitball it with weight/equation) but that’s a great idea.

    Did you avoid training legs for a long period of time or deal with an injury of some sort? Sometimes I see a squat that is only marginally higher than a bench but rarely a bench that is higher than a squat. I avoided legs for a long time during the beginning of my weight lifting (because I was a vain college dope) and my squats have definitely suffered for it. Similar for you or something else?


    • Michael Cocchiola

      Yeah been keeping this log for the past 7 weeks to get a really good feel for my total maintenance and just to see what macro split I feel best on. I have always thought calculators were too high and I was right. To be honest, so much of nutrition and exercise is individual, I feel like to get a real accurate gauge of your individual metabolism, doing something like this is probably something everyone should do who is serious about changing body composition. The leaner I get the more I need carbs to for adequate energy. I can increase dietary fat all day, but if there is not enough carbs my energy sucks.

      As for my legs, Im not sure what my problem was this week haha. No injuries and not too long ago I was lifting right around 235x 6 reps and 225x 8 reps. And my squats have always been well beyond my bench press. I have recently knocked down squats to once a week and hit upperbody twice, so maybe I should bump legs back up again. I’m really focusing on DB Bench at the moment, as the “main” move. Definitely one of my favorite moves.

      Thanks for the comment.


    • Michael Cocchiola


      Nice article he actually recommended the same amount as me. But with sodium I just dont worry about it. I dont really add a bunch of salt to my food, but I just eat and it always adds up to around 4-6 grams. Sometimes down around 3 grams, but not very often.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s