P.H.D. Revisited – Journal Entry 161


Week 15

1/24 – 175lbs – 2800 calories – 9500 steps – 4.7 miles

1/25 – 176lbs – 2400 calories – 6200 steps – 3 miles

1/26 – 176.8lbs – 1650 calories – 12800 steps – 6 miles

1/27 – 176lbs – 1750 calories – 9200 steps – 4.4 miles

1/28 – 175lbs – 1900 calories – 7800 steps – 3.75 miles

1/29 – 174.2lbs – 1700 calories – 12100 steps – 5.7 miles

1/30 – 174.6lbs – 2550 caloires – 10516 steps – 5 miles

Average Calorie Intake – 2100 calories – Average Weight – 175.3lbs

Average calories and weight a bit higher than last week. This Friday night was kind of unplanned and higher than I anticipated, but a real fun night with a decent amount of drinks and food with friends. I actually woke up looking leaner than I have all week, but this is most likely due to the alcohol’s dehydrating effect. I’m thinking about taking 1-2 weeks off from dieting though. Its good to throw in these maintenance periods every so often to reset the metabolism. I’m happy with my leanness and I may try to get leaner in the future, but right now eating more sounds more enticing then getting leaner. Based on what I know from dieting, this means a short break is in order. The meal plan will stay more or less the same, but I’m just going to eat based on hunger and nothing is off limits.


Busy week at work. We went from 4 patients to 16 patients haha. Quite the jump in one week. As a result, this has decreased my time to train and I have been much busier. I may adjust my training slightly to compensate. What I was thinking is just doing 1 muscle group a day, so I can do a quick cardio warmup, hit that one muscle group with the reverse pyramid rep scheme and be done in hopefully 30-40 minutes. Its actually pretty similar to what I was doing, but instead of shoulders/triceps and legs/biceps, I’ll just do a shoulders/traps day, legs day and arms day. My overall steps may go down a bit as well.

Strength went up this week though. I hit 215 on squats for 6 reps, 60lb db’s on Shoulder Press, 255×6 on trap bar deads, and 190×6 on barbell bench press. I then dropped the weight by 10% on each subsequent set for a total of 3-4 sets. Really been liking this reverse pyramid scheme though. My off days just had some light incline walking.

Chest and Triceps
Chest and Triceps
Back and Biceps
Back and Biceps
Shoulders and Triceps
Shoulders and Triceps
Legs and Biceps
Legs and Biceps


Been reading and researching more on the perfect health diet in respect to the macros he recommends. I kind of moved away from his thinking, but the more I read his research I do think he is correct. He basically sets a max limit on protein and carbs and says that fat from healthy sources such as monounsaturated and saturated fat with a low polyunsaturated intake is the healthiest way to go. Protein and carbs in excess can stress the body and lead to toxicity. But on the other hand they are both critical for a healthy diet and not getting enough can trigger some very nasty deficiency symptoms. I have noticed this myself first hand. In the past I have done very high carb and protein diets, because I thought the extra insulin would have generated more muscle gain and less fat gain than the same approach with dietary fat. I was wrong and eating that way felt unnatural to me. I also definitely gained some fat eating that many carbs each day. Past a certain point protein just gets excessive as well and bloating and digestive distress is usually the outcome. For me anything over 200 grams of protein just seems like overkill. With carbs its probably around 250+ is definitely too much, especially everyday. Unless I’m very depleted of carbs I can go higher than that and look good, but once my glycogen is full anything beyond 200 grams is definitely too much. Paul Jaminet has research showing why that could be overkill for some people, even one as active as myself. He recommends keeping carbs around 100-200 grams or 30% of total calories. I really dislike percentages of the diet, because if you eat a very high calorie or very low calories diet than 30% is drastically different. For most people though he recommends between 100-150 grams. If your more active its probably closer to 200 grams or just a 100-200 gram range. This is the amount you use and can eat before it just becomes excessive. The rest of the diet should be filled with healthy fat. Fat has a plethora of benefits, the best being an increase in hormones, which are critical for optimal body composition. It also tastes good and doesn’t bloat you out like carbs do.

Based on my average bodyweight of 175lbs this is what my Perfect Health diet macros would be:

  • Estimated Maintenance – BMR = 1800 calories + 200 (thermic effect of food) + 350 calories (Daily walking and movement on average) + 200 (weight workout and extra calories burned from soreness) = 2550 calories a day (may be slightly more or less than this)
  • Recommended Macros:
  • Protein – 150-200 grams – (he recommends lower than this, but as long as I dont eclipse 200 grams I’m fine)
  • Carbs – 100-200 grams – I’ll use 195 since its 30% of maintenance
  • Fat – 120 grams of fat

Pretty balanced diet overall. Testosterone would be sky high with a fat intake that large and fat gain should be minimal if calories are controlled and the balance of the diet is maintained.

On the opposite hand he recommends at least 500 calories worth of fat, 500 calories worth of carbs, and 300 calories worth of protein for a sedentary person to lose fat without comprising health. This is 125g carbs / 75g protein / 56g fat and 1300 calories. It wouldn’t be a fun diet, but it would rip you up nicely if you could stick to it. He also says that as long as enough nutrients are eaten hunger shouldn’t be an issue. Maybe if your sedentary, but I would be very hungry on a diet like this. Protein seems too low for me as well, but this is for sedentary people. My fat loss diet is similar to this as long as protein was basically doubled.

Pics from the week:

Lean meat 3 whole eggs Vegetables
Lean meat
3 whole eggs
2 whole eggs Lean meat  Veggies
2 whole eggs
Lean meat
Beans, lean meat and onions
Beans, lean meat and onions
Chicken, beans and onions
Chicken, beans and onions
Rockstar sugar free energy drink and tequila
Rockstar sugar free energy drink and tequila

4 thoughts on “P.H.D. Revisited – Journal Entry 161

  1. Carson Danyluik

    Hey Michael,

    I also was getting into the perfect health diet book. I took his ressomendations and really ran with it for the past 3 weeks. I was also in the phase of mass gain so i was in a slight calories surplus. Im a Ectomorph who does not add much fat ever and gets lean very easy. To the point this Diet was a FUCKING disaster. 3 pounds 3 weeks and every damn ounce of it was FAT. It is 100% true if you eat surplus in fat that shit gets stored (no matter how healthy the sources). Whereas in the past when i eat the carb rout this barely happens.

    Conclusion….i totally agree with Nate Miyaki plan that some people Paleo low/carb diets work very well (old, sedentary etc.) But if you are young and active there is NO need for that. Im going back to following his “Japanese Village Diet Plan and his Macro/Calorie Suggestions they did truly work and i dont know why i got of them.

    Im really starting to hate the ANTI CARB Crowd even more so. I am no longer following these fad diets of modern books etc. If you want to pick a diet pick a CULTURE. I resaerched multiple different cultures with great health (mortality, obesity, longevity,m disease etc.)

    This is by far a better way todo it. Example Japan…..a couple 100 million people cant be wrong* compared to following the newest diet from some book on the shelf.

    If you look at the world Chart on Macronutrient consumption, There is not ONE nation that eats less than 40% of its calories from Carbs. NOT ONE.

    – Protein averages about 10-15% for all nations
    – Carbs range from 38%-75%
    – Fats range from 15%-46%

    The 4 Healhiest countries in the world at the moment(rated for mortality disease obesity etc etc) are.

    Japan – 13% Protein 58% Carb 29% Fat
    Netherlands – 13% Protein 49% fat 38% Fat
    France – 13%Protein 46% Carb 42% Fat
    Norway – 12% Protein 51% Carb 36% Fat

    – NOBODY goes crazy with Protein
    fats are all moderate, japanese are relatively lower because there not big on butter dairy or cooking oils so there fats come from meat fish eggs mostly. (Traditional japannese atleast)
    – These 4 are all much more active on a daily basis than north america (walk to work ex.)
    – They all have a large consumption of fish/fermented foods/organ meats. Things north america does not.
    -These numbers are actually skewed a little because upon further research over the past 100 years these cultures Fat intake have all increase mainly due to wealth. Carbs are cheap. But at the same time there health markers have gotten worse(though still very good).

    Traditional diet Japan – Rice(lots)+Fish+Soups with vegtables or animal meat
    Traditional Norse diet (scandavian countries) – Bread(lots)(Rye Usually)/Dairy/ Fish
    French – Dairy/Bread(lots)/Organ Meats

    Note * all these countries enjoy there organ meats rater than a chicken breast.

    As i reraserched what they eat every day meal by meal i noticed 3 things.
    A protein A carb A fat….the carbs always being more prominent, and proteins not a large portion (3oz example)

    *** I am not deominizing FAT PROTEIN OR CARB(note on carbs-over 75% of the worlds nations ate over 55% carbs). But the trend here is that Carbs were still dominant. I do belive Fats and Proteins are essential you cant live without so when you have to determine what they majority of your diet is (after youve met the right amounts for those two) is carbs! Thats the way every culture has done things since DAY 1 besides the Inuit (for Obvious reasons/location). Its not going to change because its a better way to feed the world (lets face it 90% of people on the earth could not feed there family a paleo lifestyle), Its also more enviromentally responsible in the long run. Some of these quacks writing thes diet books and fitness guys alike tossing out health advice, really loose perspective on a bigger picture.

    Countries with high carb intakes actually have the lowest obesity rates.* Though im not going Vegan lol.

    So i say all this because i think a good way to pick set a healthy diet is to pick one with a REAL track Record that you enjoy and can follow or take some from multitide of cultures.

    I like the asian cultures diets so i follow that more so from now on.

    Sorry for the long Post but i think you would enjoy this perspective on things.

    ** 1# Trend with all these cultures they ate REAL FOOD**

    Disclaimer* I have been to all 4 of the countrys i had listed and can confirm those diets are very accurate for what there staples are.


  2. Michael Cocchiola


    Yeah pretty interesting. There’s definitely a huge genetic component to nutrition and I do think your ethnicity has a lot to do with it. I’m Italian, so I honestly feel like balanced macros no matter the calorie intake is the way to go. Sometimes I just eat by feel without worrying about fat, protein or carbs and it always comes out balanced. Japanese people lived on white rice for many years and that’s why Nate Miyaki does so well with carbs and not fat. If your not Japanese though, you may handle dietary fat better. Protein is definetly overplayed, but it does have advantages. I have dropped mine to around 160 grams on most days. I think dietary fat plays an important role in muscle building though. I seem to handle fat really well and get very good strength gains with it. Last year I went really high carb and low fat and after a few weeks of strength increases, it leveled off and I felt like I was just getting fat. But thats just me. I feel like I would have done better by just eating more balanced instead of excessively high carb.

    If you gained a lot of fat on the PHD diet, it probably wasnt do to the extra dietary fat, but more than likely just too many calories for your body too handle. The easiest way to set up a diet is to pick a calorie intake you are shooting for and just eat foods you enjoy to fill them. Dont worry too much about what macros you are hitting. I guarantee eating this way you’ll eat in a manner than makes sense to your body. The best diet is one you’ll stick to and not what someone else said should work for you.


  3. Carson

    All fair points.
    But as for Italians still on a 3200 calories per day (national average)
    46% is carbs….350-400G carbs per day. lots of healthy fats though. but so little protein.
    Almost every athletic nutrition board ive researched from England to china recoomend 20% calories/ 1.8-1.5 kg per pound protein and these were suggestions for there Olympic athletes. Good to know that if those training 4-6 hours a day do fine with that amount than im sure the average gym rat can too ha.

    As for calories when I gined fat I was 17-18 calories per pound and im very active so theres no chance I was surplusing like crazy. And I do track calories closely so I was not far off fro estimates.

    Fats are great fuck I love em I could put 20 soft runny eggs over top of a big bowl of rice lol……BUT like lyle McDonald (who I trust more than anybody with his material) fats are the most likely to get stored and very easily when in a surplus.

    Conclusions in my mind if you are trying to improve your body composition
    -1..8 g/kg prtein
    -eat good fats but don’t go crazy (.4-.6 per pound is still a healthy range)
    – and don’t be afraid of carbs (except for fructose**. this is the biggest thing with all the healthy cultures I mentioned!. they all eat lots of carbs yes BUT there fructose intakes(which were tough to find but I did) are quite low. Compared to the US&Canada the 4 countries I mentioned ate same amount of carbs or more BUT there fructose consumtion was all 1/2 or even less. Japan was 1/4 the amount.)
    The Old recommendation of 2-3 serving of fruit per day is still relavant and shouldn’t be exceeded unless an endurance athlete.

    Again sorry for so much info, but I love your blogs and I just try to chime in to give you some relevant info to think of.

    Keep your blogs coming! me and my wife read them every saturdyy morning during breakfast!!!:)


    • Michael Cocchiola


      Yeah man appreciate it.

      Yeah Lyle has been doing this way longer than everyone else and he’s also a realist. Hes not right all the time, but I’d say based on the amount of information he knows anything he says is correct if you follow it consistently. Yeah carbs do get a bad rap, sometimes I just take breaks like I plan to for the next couple weeks and just eat like I feel like eating. No rules or anything, but my totals always come out to low to mid 2000’s in calories / protein around bodyweight / carbs anywhere from 150-250 and fat around 60-80 grams. Then I may have some wine, which dont really fit into carbs, fat or protein, but moderate drinking (3 drinks or so) can actually increase free testosterone by interfering with SHBG. (dont mind if I do haha)

      Also pretty interesting about Italians eating 3200 calories a day, that’s pretty high even for most Americans to average.

      17-18 per pound of bodyweight is definitely too much for me. That would be an all out bulking diet, which I really dont like doing. I like to stay at or right under maintenance most of the time, which is bodyweight x 14-15 for me.

      Thanks for the comment.


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