On How to cut weight or gain weight

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 5:37 am 
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The following article is by Layne Norton, a professional natural bodybuilder whom I have had the honor of working with personally and who has an incredible amount of knowledge in terms of training and nutrition. He is a world class dietary advisor and this following article is the best I have ever read on how to lose weight in a healthy manner. This article was originally posted here
http://www.simplyshredded.com/layne-nor ... -diet.html

Here are his qualfications:
Layne Norton, holds a PhD. in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Illinois, is an IFPA and NGA Professional Bodybuilder, record holding AAPF Powerlifter and also owns Biolayne, LLC.—an elite training and nutrition consultation firm.

The Ultimate Cutting Diet – Devised By Pro Natural Bodybuilder Layne Norton
Pre-Contest Dieting: Obviously the most pertinent issue regarding pre-contest preparation is the diet aspect of preparation. It is not enough to just clean up what you eat, it must be far more drastic than that.

When you see the winner of a bodybuilding competition onstage, rest assured they tracked their calories, carbs, proteins, fats, and never missed meals.
If you want to do well in a bodybuilding competition, you should expect to do nothing less. Before I begin talking about a proper pre-contest diet, we need to examine exactly how long a person should diet for a contest. The first thing that should be done is an “assessment” of your body. Look yourself over and be honest about your faults, strengths, and about how long you think it will take for you to get into stage shape.
Importance Of Slow Dieting
Keep in mind that if you think you have around 25 lbs of fat to lose, you are not going to be able to lose it all in 10 weeks and keep all of your lean body mass. Aim to diet as slowly as possible. The severity of your calorie deficit will, to a large extent, determine how much muscle you retain/lose.
Short periods of high severity dieting (more than 1000 kcals per day below maintenance level) are not too muscle wasting, but prolonging them for more than a few days will certainly cause one to lose a good deal of muscle.
As a general rule of thumb, losing 1 lb of bodyweight per week will allow one to retain most of their muscle mass. One can probably lose up to 1.5 lbs per week and retain most, if not all of their muscle mass (provided their training and nutrition are optimized).
Dieting Too Fast?
If one tries to push their body to lose more than 2 lbs per week for any length of time, then they will begin to experience quite a bit of muscle loss. It is for this reason that I usually try to give myself enough time so that I only need to lose 1-1.5 lbs per week at most. If one is naturally ectomorphic (has an easy time losing weight) however, they may want to diet for a shorter period of time, and I would recommend a time period of 11-15 weeks. If one is naturally endomorphic (has a hard time losing weight), then they may want to lengthen their dieting time to 16-22 weeks. If this is the first time that you have ever done a contest then you would want to also give yourself an extra week as you will probably experience a hitch at some point along the way.
Diet Information
The diet that one follows for their contest will be the single most important determining factor of how well they will place in the competition. A person can have all the mass in the world but if they do not come in razor sharp on contest day, then the mass will mean little. Judges almost always go for conditioning over size. To design a proper diet one should give themselves adequate time to lose the necessary body fat to achieve that aforementioned shredded look.
Being said, what kind of diet is optimal for a person to follow?
Well The Diet Should Have Three Main Goals:
Spare as much muscle mass as possible.
Lose as much fat as possible.
Not cause the person to lose intensity in the weight room.
Unfortunately, these goals all seem to contradict each other.
When the body is in a starved (calorie deficit) state, muscle loss can occur although a calorie deficit is required to lose fat. This calorie deficit will also cause one to feel less energetic. To get around the negatives, there are small adjustments and little tricks to aid in the accomplishment of the positives.
Before discussing the diet, it is important to discuss the three macronutrients and their roles.
Protein is probably the single most important macronutrient for the purposes of maintaining muscle on a diet. Dietary protein is hydrolyzed (broken down) into it’s constitutive amino acids during digestion. These amino acids are released into the bloodstream where they may then be taken up by cells (usually muscle cells). Dietary protein is also very important as amino acid availability is the single most important variable for protein synthesis to occur. This means that protein synthesis increases in a linear fashion (directly proportional to plasma amino acid concentrations) until the plasma amino concentrations are approximately twice that of normal plasma concentrations. To generalize for the less scientifically inclined, ingesting enough dietary protein is very important for someone who is looking to gain muscle, or maintain it while dieting. Dietary protein spares muscle by helping increase protein synthesis (and thus induce net muscle gain) and by acting as a muscle sparing substrate as it can be used for glucogensis (synthesis of glucose). Dietary protein however, is not as muscle sparing as are carbohydrates when used as a substrate for glucose synthesis. Protein is also a very “expensive” molecule for your body to use as energy.
The body would much rather store amino acids than oxidize them as protein oxidation yields less net ATP produced per amino acid when compared to fat or carbohydrates. Therefore, it can be stated that dietary protein has a thermogenic effect on the body.

Carbohydrates have probably gotten the worst reputation of the macronutrients due to the SPAM dieting rave. SPAM dieting refers to reducing carbohydrate intake to practically nothing, while simultaneously raising fat and protein intake. With little glucose for the brain to utilize for energy, the body will begin producing SPAM. SPAM are by-products of fat oxidation and the brain can use SPAM for energy. This does indeed have a potent fat burning effect, as insulin levels will be severely reduced due to lack of carbohydrate intake. Low insulin levels correlate with high rates of fat oxidation. Indeed, the SPAM diet may be the single best way to lose the maximum amount of body fat in the shortest amount of time. However, if you will quickly refer to our goals during a pre contest diet you will notice that maintaining muscle is number one on our list, with fat loss second. If one has not properly scheduled enough time to lose body fat and they are in need of drastic measures, then using a SPAM diet may be their only choice in order to become contest-ready in time. Unfortunately, they will not maintain an optimum amount of muscle mass.
For those who have given themselves ample time to prepare, I do not suggest using a SPAM diet. Instead, I recommend reducing carbohydrates, but keeping them high enough to possess the muscle sparing benefits of carbohydrates while still losing body fat.

Importance Of Carbs While Cutting
There are several main reasons that I recommend retaining carbohydrates.
The first reason being that carbohydrates are much more muscle sparing than fats during times of stress when glucose becomes a primary source of fuel (i.e. anaerobic exercise, injury, infection, etc). The muscle sparing effects of carbohydrates occur via several different mechanisms. When the body is in a low energy state, it may try to produce energy by converting amino acids to glucose. Carbohydrates prevent this since they can be easily broken down (and converted if need be) to glucose molecules. Carbohydrates then spare dietary protein from oxidation and these proteins can be stored rather than oxidized.Carbohydrates are also very muscle sparing during exercise. When one lifts heavy weights, the primary pathway that is used to produce ATP (cellular energy currency) is the anaerobic or glycolytic pathway (as the name implies this pathway operates in the absence of oxygen). The only substrate for this pathway is glucose, which can be obtained from dietary carbohydrates or by breaking down glycogen (the cell’s stored form of glucose).
If one is on a SPAM or extreme “low carb” diet however, the body will need to utilize another source to synthesize glucose from.
Since glycogen levels are low on a SPAM diet, the body will actually convert amino acids to glucose and this glucose will be used in the anaerobic pathway to produce ATP. These amino acids will come from dietary protein, amino acids from the cellular amino acid pool, and from muscle tissue. The latter situation is where one would experience muscle loss. Dietary protein would be sacrificed for ATP production and the depleted amino acid pool would not bode well for protein synthesis rates, thus causing a net loss in muscle mass.
Muscle Sparing Carbohydrates
Carbohydrates are also muscle sparing because they are a cause of insulin release. Now I know your thinking, “but Layne, you just said in your intro that low insulin levels were great for fat burning!?”
Yes, you are correct. I did indeed say that low insulin levels are good for fat burning. Insulin inhibits lipolytic (fat burning) activity and must be kept low if one wishes to burn a maximal amount of fat. However, the pesky re-occurring theme of maintaining muscle prevents us from totally excluding insulin from our pre-contest diet arsenal, as insulin happens to be one of the most anabolic/anti-catabolic hormones in the body. Insulin binding to the cell membrane causes all sorts of reactions in your body that are beneficial to maintaining and gaining muscle tissue. Insulin inhibits protein breakdown and amino acid oxidation, thus promoting muscle maintenance or gain. Insulin also has an antagonist (inhibitory) affect with regards to several catabolic hormones, including cortisol. Cortisol is a hormone that is released during times of stress such as dieting, lifting, injury, etc. Cortisol produces glucose by breaking down proteins, including muscle tissue. Cortisol is the primary catabolic hormone that is released when one lifts or does any kind of activity.
Insulin release inhibits the activity of cortisol by preventing its release from the pancreas, thus sparing muscle tissue from cortisol’s catabolic effects.

Furthermore, it is interesting to note that long-term exposure of cells to SPAM (i.e., SPAM diet) retard insulin-induced activation of the insulin surface receptor.
This causes one to become extremely sensitive to carbohydrates when they begin ingesting them again after they finish dieting and could lead to an undesired post diet fat gain. Carbohydrates act to maintain muscle mass while dieting by maintaining cellular osmotic pressure and cell volume. Cell size is an indicator of the “state” that the body is in. When cells are of large volume, it signals that the body is in a fed state. When cell volume is low it signals that the body is in a starved state. Without delving too far into the science behind this, trust me when I say that you would like your body to think it is in a fed state as this will increase the levels of fat burning hormones and anabolic hormones. Cell size also indicates the anabolic state of the cell. When cell volume is high, protein synthesis rates increase. If cell volume drops, then protein synthesis levels drop. It is easy to infer we would like to maintain cell volume, especially when dieting.
The problem with extreme low carbohydrate diets is they cause severe reduction in cell size.
The Glycogen Factor
The body stores carbohydrates inside cells as glycogen. For every gram of glycogen stored, the body stores around 2.7 g of water. Therefore, cells that have greater glycogen levels will also have more volume. One can see then how low carbohydrate diets severely decrease cell size due to severe glycogen depletion. Concluding, carbohydrates help maintain muscle by increasing cell volume. One more issue to consider is performance. If you refer to the goals of a pre-contest diet, you will see that number three maintains that you must keep a high level of intensity in the gym. This is important for several reasons. If performance begins to suffer, then a person will undoubtedly lose strength. This could lead to a subsequent loss of muscle mass due to decreased stimulation from a decreased training overload. Therefore, it is important that performance be kept at an optimal level. Low glycogen levels have been associated with increased fatigue and decreased performance in athletes (endurance, strength, power output, etc).
The Research
Several studies have shown that consuming adequate amounts of carbohydrates before, during, and after exercise may attenuate the increased fatigue and increase performance.

It is worth noting that one such study concluded that “the rate of recovery is coupled with the rate of muscle glycogen replenishment and suggests that recovery supplements should be consumed to optimize muscle glycogen synthesis as well as fluid replacement.”
It can therefore be concluded that an adequate supply of carbohydrates is crucial for maintaining performance and for proper muscle recovery. Fats are very important molecules and are considered essential to ones survival. Indeed, fats are involved in many of the body’s processes which are required for survival. Several key functions of fats in the human body are for energy storage and hormone synthesis. They are the body’s preferred source of stored energy and the most efficient molecule for the body to burn. (in terms of energy yield per gram, 9kcals/gram). The main hormone that fats impact which we are concerned with is testosterone. When calories are restricted, testosterone levels will drop, as the body will suppress its release of anabolic hormones in order to spare nutrients for oxidation (energy production).
This makes perfect sense: the body senses it is “starving” and thus it represses it’s anabolic hormones to prevent nutrients from being used to increase tissue mass and spares them for energy production.
Fat Intake & Testosterone
That’s the first hit against testosterone production. Drastically lowering your fat intake is another hit against testosterone production since fatty acids are the substrates for cholesterol synthesis and therefore are also the substrates for testosterone synthesis (cholesterol is converted to testosterone, among other things). Unfortunately, fats are also easily stored as adipose tissue (body fat) So there must be some type of compromise between ingesting enough fat for hormone maintenance (and subsequent muscle maintenance) and reducing fat intake enough to decrease body fat. There has been some research done on the effects of dietary fat on testosterone. The answer to, “how much dietary fat is optimal” is difficult to decipher, as there are major differences in the designs of the performed studies.
This makes it difficult to compare them to each other and come up with a “standard” answer.
Several studies concluded that diets low in fat (under 15% of total calories) significantly decreased testosterone levels while diets higher in fat (above 30% of total calories) increased serum testosterone levels. Rather than continuing with this discussion I will provide a link to an article which covers the subject quite nicely. To simplify everything that I have said, it seems that one should not lower fat below 15% of daily calories unless they would like to face extreme testosterone deficiencies. Likewise, one should not increase fat to say 40% in order to increase testosterone. Although fat increases testosterone to a degree, it is important to remember that testosterone is only a small piece of the larger puzzle. There are many other hormones and factors involved in building muscle other than just testosterone. By increasing fat to extremely high levels, there will be less “space” for carbohydrates and protein, both of which are very important for aforementioned reasons.
As with most things in life, moderation is key.
In order to keep hormone production regular and fat burning in high gear, while allowing enough “space” to supply adequate carbohydrates and protein for muscle sparing purposes I do not recommend increasing fat above 30% of daily calories. In order to come up with macronutrient totals for a diet, it is necessary to assess how many lbs per week one will need to lose to be in contest shape. This is not an exact science, however we can still get a reasonable experience-based estimate. Here are some example calculations so that you may have an understanding of how to go about doing this. For example, we have a subject who is a mesomorph weighing 200 lbs and has 13% bodyfat. Since 3-4% is considered “stage condition”, that means the subject will need to drop roughly 10% body fat which equates to about 20 lbs. To recapitulate, I do not recommend dropping weight any faster than 1-1.5 lbs per week. Since 20 weeks is a long time to diet, let’s have the subject lose about 1.5 lbs per week.
I recommend that one lose approximately 80% of their weight due to calorie restriction and 20% of their weight due to cardio (someone who is ectomorphic should do less cardio, while someone with an endomorphic build should do more cardio).
To lose 1.2 lbs (80%) per week from diet, there must be a 600 kcal per day deficit from diet. To lose the other .3 lbs (20%) per week from cardio, one should perform 3 cardio sessions per week, which burn 350 kcals per session. The best way to determine one’s caloric intake required to lose fat at a certain rate is to chart calorie intake for a period of a few weeks and try to determine at what level the subject does not gain weight (this is the caloric baseline).
For those who do not exercise this method, a rough estimate can be made using the following strategy.

Utilize The Subsequent Equations To Find Your Caloric Baseline:
Mesomorphs – bodyweight x 15.
Ectomorphs – bodyweight x 16-17.
Endomorphs – bodyweight x 13-14.
So for our subject; 200 X 15 = 3000 kcals per day. This is the subject’s caloric baseline (roughly). So if he wishes to lose 1.2 lbs per week from dieting (caloric restriction of 600 kcals per day); 3000 – 600 = 2400 kcals per day.
Meal Frequency Is As Follows:
Mesomorphs – eat every 2.5 – 3.5 hours.
Ectomorphs – eat every 2 – 3 hours.
Endomorphs – eat every 3.5 – 5 hours.
Protein Intake
The “golden standard” protein intake for a bodybuilder is around 1 g/lb of bodyweight. This will need to be increased while dieting. Protein is a thermogenic macronutrient key in sparing muscle tissue when in a caloric deficit (see aforementioned section on protein).
I recommend the following protein intakes for different body types:
Mesomorphs – 1.2g/lb – 1.3g/lb.
Ectomorphs – 1.4g/lb – 1.6g/lb.
Endomorphs – 1.4g/lb – 1.5g/lb.*
For our subject, this equates to a protein intake of around 240-260 g protein per day. Let’s go ‘middle of the road’ and set the subjects protein intake at 250 g protein per day. This means 1000 kcals have been devoted to protein intake, leaving us with 1400 kcals for fat and carbohydrate intake.
Fat Intake
Fat intakes are as follows:
Mesomorphs – 17% – 23% of total calories.
Ectomophs – 24%-28% of total calories.
Endomorphs – 23%-28% of total calories (fat intake is increased in order to reduce carbohydrate intake, as endomorphs may have a difficult time losing fat with higher carbohydrate intakes). For our subject, this equates to about 400 – 550 kcal from fat per day (45g – 60g fat per day) Once again, I prefer the ‘middle of the road’ approach and would set his fat intake at around 55g fat per day (495 kcals/day from fat) .
Carbohydrate Intake
Whatever calories that have not been allotted to protein and fat intake will make up total daily carbohydrate intake. For our subject in question, this leaves 2400 (1000 + 495) = 905 kcals per day for carbohydrate intake. This equates to 225g of carbohydrates per day.
I recommend a higher protein intake for endomorph’s while dieting because of the thermogenic effect of a higher protein intake and increased protein turnover, not because they need more protein to maintain muscle mass.
One should also incorporate re-feeds into their diet plan. Re-feeds help boost a hormone called leptin, which is the mother of all fat burning hormones. As one diets, leptin levels drop in an attempt by the body to spare body fat. Periodic, proper re-feeding can raise leptin levels and help one continue to burn fat an optimum rate. A person who is lean will need to re-feed more frequently than someone who has a higher body fat percentage. For those who are below 10%, it is probably a wise idea to incorporate re-feeds two times per week.
For those people who are in the 10-15% range, re-feeding every 6-12 days will probably be adequate, for those who are above 15%, re-feeding will probably not need to be done more than once every week to two weeks. Obviously as one loses body fat they will need to re-feed more often.

Re-Feed Days Should Be Planned As Follows:
Re-feed on the day you work your worst body part(s) as re-feeding will not only raise leptin, but be quite anabolic.
Keep fat as low as possible during re-feed days as high insulin levels will increase dietary fat transport into adipose tissue. In addition dietary fat has little to no impact on leptin levels.
Reduce protein intake to 1 g/lb bodyweight.
Consume as little fructose as possible as fructose does not have an impact on leptin levels.
Increase calories to maintenance level (or above if you are an ectomorph) and increase carbs by at least 50-100% (endo’s stay on the low end, while ecto’s should stay on the high end) over normal diet levels.
Nutrient Timing

Nutrient Timing
As previously discussed before, carbohydrates cause insulin release, which is very muscle sparing, but also very anti-lipolytic. It is therefore important that we construct a diet so that we intersperse long periods of low insulin levels in order to maximize lipolysis, coupled with short periods of high insulin levels to protect muscle when it is at the greatest risk of catabolism. There are essentially two crucial times during the day when muscle tissue is at the greatest risk of catabolism. The most crucial time is during your workout. As many of you already know, working out is actually catabolic.
When one is in a calorie deficit, the catabolic effect of working out is enhanced, as the body will attempt to raise low glucose levels by de-aminating amino acids and converting them to glucose.
One of the main hormones that control this action is cortisol. Unfortunately this is quite catabolic as some of these amino acids may come from muscle tissue (See carbohydrates section). It is crucial that one consumes carbohydrates before exercise for several reasons.
Dietary carbohydrates will provide fuel for the anaerobic pathway, and spare muscle tissue from being converted to glucose for fuel.
Dietary carbohydrates will cause the release of insulin, which blocks the release of cortisol from the pancreas.
Dietary carbohydrates will increase muscle glycogen levels which will improve performance and decrease fatigue.
I suggest one consume 35% of their total daily carbohydrates in a meal 1.5 to 2 hours before their workout as this will allow the carbohydrates adequate time to be digested and enter the bloodstream. I also suggest consuming a shake composed of 30-40g of whey protein along with dextrose or maltodextrin during their workout.
The carbohydrates in the shake should account for about 20% of one’s total daily carbohydrate intake.

This Shake Will Have Several Benefits:
Spare muscle glycogen and increase performance.
Spare muscle tissue.
Maintain a constant release of insulin, therefore inhibiting cortisol release.
The continuous ingestion of carbohydrates will ensure that adequate substrate is available for the glycolytic pathway.
It is also a wise idea to consume a post workout meal composed of whole food, low GI carbohydrate sources (although one may consume another protein shake if they feel so inclined) about 30 minutes after finishing the in workout shake.
This low GI carbohydrate should contain about 25% of your total daily carbohydrates and will help stabilize blood sugar levels. You see, dextrose causes a very large insulin spike, and actually can cause insulin to be over secreted, when insulin is over secreted, blood sugar levels will drop rapidly as insulin disposes of the glucose into the tissues and one may even begin to experience hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). Low blood sugar may lead one to experience an increase in hunger. A lower GI carbohydrate and protein meal post workout will help counteract this negative effect by stabilizing blood sugar levels. The other time of day when one should consume a meal containing carbohydrates is upon rising. Waking up is actually a stressful time on the body and in an effort to “ready itself” the body releases several catabolic hormones in order to produce energy for the fasted person. The main two hormones released are cortisol and glucogen both of which can be catabolic to muscle tissue.
Consuming a carbohydrate meal will retard the release of these catabolic hormones and spare muscle tissue. It will also make you feel better by providing fuel for your brain to run on.
There is some anecdotal evidence that suggests consuming a meal containing carbohydrates may also help suppress hunger later in the day. I suggest consuming 15% of your daily carbohydrate intake at this meal in the form of low GI carbohydrates. The remaining 5% of your total daily carbohydrates should come from veggies throughout the day such as salad, broccoli, peas, etc. If you happen to workout after breakfast, merely combine breakfast and your pre workout meal. Thus 35% + 15% = 50% of daily carbohydrate intake should be in pre workout/breakfast meal. During these high carbohydrate meals one should aim to keep fat as low as possible. High insulin levels increases fatty acid transport into adipose tissue, so it is a good idea to keep your fat low during times of high insulin.
You should spread your remaining fat intake evenly over the rest of your low carbohydrate meals. Protein intake should be spread fairly evenly over all of your meals.
Layne Norton Gallery:

The Following Is A List Of Acceptable Protein, Carbohydrate, & Fat Sources While Dieting:
Tuna or most any fish.
Cottage cheese.
Eggs (especially the whites).
Chicken breast (boneless skinless).
Turkey breast (boneless skinless).
Lean beef.
Low fat or no fat cheese.
Low fat pork.
Milk protein isolate.
Whey protein.
Soy protein.
Essentially most any other source of protein so long as it is low in saturated fat and carbohydrates.
Sweet potatoes.
Oat meal, oat bran, oat bran cereal (i.e. cheerios).
Bran cereal.
Brown rice.
Wheat bread (try to limit to 2 slices per day).
Low fat popcorn (low fat butter spray makes this a delicacy).
Fruits (limit to 2-3 servings per day).
Malto dextrin (during workout).
Dextrose (during workout)
Stay away from refined grains and anything that says “enriched” or “high fructose corn syrup” on the label!
Omega 3 capsules (i.e. fish oil capsules).
Flax seed oil.
Primrose oil.
Borage oil.
Olive oil.
Nuts (limit to 1 serving per day), peanut butter (as long as it does not contain hydrogenated oils).
Egg yolks.
Fish (salmon especially).
All other fat should come as a by-product of your carbohydrate and protein intake.

1. Nygren J, Nair KS. “Differential regulation of protein dynamics in splanchnic and skeletal muscle beds by insulin and amino acids in healthy human subjects.” Diabetes 2003 Jun;52(6):1377-85
2. Garrett, Reginald H. and Charles M. Grisham. Biochemistry 2nd Edition.
Saunders College Publishing. United States: 1999.
3. Hart et al. “Efficacy of a high-carbohydrate diet in catabolic illness.” Crit Care Med 2001 Jul;29(7):1318-24
4. Yokoo et al. “Distinct effects of SPAM bodies on down-regulation of cell surface insulin receptor and insulin receptor substrate-1 phosphorylation in adrenal chromaffin cells.” J Pharmacol Exp Ther 2003 Mar;304(3):994-1002
5. Meijer AJ. “Amino acids as regulators and components of nonproteinogenic pathways.” J Nutr 2003 Jun;133(6):2057S-62S
6. Schliess F, Haussinger D. “Cell volume and insulin signaling.” Int Rev Cytol 2003;225:187-228
7. Chen et al. “Osmotic shock inhibits insulin signaling by maintaining Akt/protein kinase B in an inactive dephosphorylated state.” Mol Cell Biol 1999 Jul;19(7):4684-94
8. Brosnan JT. “Comments on metabolic needs for glucose and the role of gluconeogenesis.” Eur J Clin Nutr 1999 Apr;53 Suppl 1:S107-11
9. Shephard RJ, Leatt P. “Carbohydrate and fluid needs of the soccer player.” Sports Med 1987 May-Jun;4(3):164-76
10. Tsintzas, O.K., Williams C., Boobis, L.Greenhaff, P. “Carbohydrate ingestion and single muscle fiber glycogen metabolism during prolonged running in man.” Journal of Applied Physiology 1996; 81 (2) : 801 – 809.
11. Rockwell MS, Rankin JW, Dixon H. “Effects of muscle glycogen on performance of repeated sprints and mechanisms of fatigue.” . Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab 2003 Mar;13(1):1-14
12. Haff GG, Lehmkuhl MJ, McCoy LB, Stone MH. “Carbohydrate supplementation and resistance training” J Strength Cond Res 2003 Feb;17(1):187-96
13. Karelis AD, Peronnet F, Gardiner PF. “Glucose infusion attenuates muscle fatigue in rat plantaris muscle during prolonged indirect stimulation in situ.” Exp Physiol 2002 Sep;87(5):585-92
14. Williams MB, Raven PB, Fogt DL, Ivy JL. “Effects of recovery beverages on glycogen restoration and endurance exercise performance.” J Strength Cond Res 2003 Feb;17(1):12-9
15. The Journal of Nutrition, Sept 2000 v130 i9 p2356 “High Dietary Fat Intake Increases Renal Cyst Disease Progression in Han:SPRD-cy Rats. ” Shobana Jayapalan; M. Hossein Saboorian; Jeff W. Edmunds; Harold M. Aukema.
16. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Dec 1996 v64 n6 p850(6) “Effects of dietary fat and fiber on plasma and urine androgens and estrogens in men: a controlled feeding study.” Joanne F. Dorgan; Joseph T. Judd; Christopher Longcope; Charles Brown; Arthur Schatzkin; Beverly A. Clevidence; William S. Campbell; Padmanabhan P. Nair; Charlene Franz; Lisa Kahle; Philip R. Taylor.
17. Abe T, Kawakami Y, Sugita M, Fukunaga T. “Relationship between training frequency and subcutaneous and visceral fat in women.” Med Sci Sports Exerc 1997 Dec;29(12):1549-53
Special Thanks To…
Ted Fletcher – for his help in editing this article.
Par Deus and Spook of http://www.mindandmuscle.net/ – for allowing me to link their leptin articles
Bryan Haycock of http://www.thinkmuscle.com and http://www.hypertrophy-specific.com/ – for allowing me to provide a link to the dietary fat article on his web site.
Vince McConnell of http://www.etfitness.com and http://www.dolfzine.com – for allowing me to provide a link to his VICI cardio article on dolfzine.
Dr. Joe Klemczewski of http://www.joesrevolution.com – for all of his help and guidance in preparing me for my contests and showing me how to get the final week right!
Disclaimer: Please note that this article is an archived article from Dr. Norton and may no longer reflect all his views on the subject. Please see his website www.biolayne.com and his column in Muscular Development magazine to keep up with his current views.”

Pain is Temporary, Pride is Forever

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 5:39 am 
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Here is another article by the aforementioned Layne Norton, the original posting of the article is here : http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/layne23.htm

Layne's How To Guide For Bulking - The Macronutrients

Ah, tis fall! The leaves are falling from the trees and Christmas is around the corner, shall we begin to sing, tis the season to be bulking fa la la la la...

Ah, the art of the bulking diet. It is a simple concept, in theory, but many fail to master it. This failure is usually due to one or more of the following reasons:

They don't keep their calories high enough; therefore, they fail to put on muscle mass
Their caloric intake is too high over their maintenance level and they use the gain weight at all costs philosophy. This is great, right? Not really, for even though you put on a lot of weight, you'll lose a lot of muscle trying to cut it off once you diet since you'll have to diet more aggressively for a longer period of time.
They aren't consistent enough with their meals.
Well never fear, I am here to help you. I have developed a bulking system that works for everyone that I have tried it on. One of my subjects put on as much as 30 lbs in 5 months of clean weight (his bodyfat increased only by 2%) without the help of steroids or prohormones...and he was an athlete who had been lifting for 5 years already! In this article I will talk about the system and provide a sample diet.

My System

I will give people who I have trained and placed on this diet a chance to give their feedback and advice. Before I talk about the system itself it is important that everyone understand the basics behind muscle growth and how calorie surplus helps you gain muscle.

So where do we start? Calories my friend, calories. In theory, gaining weight is simple. If you eat more calories than you burn, then you gain weight due to calorie surplus. Sounds easy right? Wrong! Some people (ectomorphs) with fast metabolisms need 4,000, 5,000, and as many as 6,000 calories per day to gain weight. That's a lot of calories! As a basic starting point you need to know your calorie maintenance level.

There are a bunch of fancy equations that use bodyweight, fat, age, etc. to calculate this level, but the best way to do it is experimentally. Write down the amount of calories you consume everyday for a week. If you don't gain weight that week, then that is your calorie maintenance level. Calories however, are not the only part of the equation. The macronutrient breakdown of a diet, and the timing of your caloric intake, can be the difference between muscular gain and fat gain.


When it comes right down to it, no other macromolecule is more important in the muscle building process than protein.

Protein is the only macromolecule that is used to synthesize muscle tissue. Amino acids are used for muscle protein synthesis, however these aminos are obtained through protein hydrolysis. The recommended daily amount (RDA) for protein is 50g per day. That only applies if you are a couch potato who weighs 150 lbs and has the metabolism of a snail. If you are a bodybuilder, you need more protein and here is why...

Lifting Weights

When you lift weights your muscle tissue is actually broken down (atrophied). Amino acids are then used to synthesize new muscle tissue. The body will enlarge the muscle so it will be stronger and better able to handle the same overload in the future (Note: This is a grossly oversimplified unscientific explanation of muscular hypertrophy in response to training but effective for our purposes). The amino acids that are used to synthesize muscle tissue do not appear out of thin air.

They come from your dietary protein intake. The synthesis of new muscle creates a deficit in your body's amino acid stores. In fact, if amino acid levels are not high enough, protein synthesis will slow or even stop as amino acid availability is a limiting factor in protein synthesis 1,2,3,4). What does this mean? To be direct, it means that if you are not eating enough protein, you are not maximizing your muscle protein synthesis and thus limiting your muscular gain.

How much protein are we talking? Anecdotal and scientific research suggests that 0.8g-1.0g protein per pound bodyweight is the magic number. However, this is for a bodybuilder with a slower metabolism (endomorph). Anecdotally, through working with various people and talking to other bodybuilders, (several professional natural bodybuilders) I believe that 1-1.5g of dietary protein per pound of bodyweight is ideal. If you have a slow metabolism then you should aim near the bottom of this spectrum. If you have a fast metabolism, aim for the higher end. If you have a medium metabolism, you should be somewhere in between.


Contrary to the new age belief that carbs are evil, carbohydrates are a very helpful macronutrient when one is trying to gain muscle. Carbohydrates assist the muscle building process in a couple ways. Carbohydrates spare amino acids from oxidation by providing a more readily available source of stored energy. When carbohydrates are ingested, they are first broken down (if need be) into monosaccharides in the stomach, and then released into the bloodstream. The cells receptors sense the rise in blood sugar and the body releases insulin to transport the saccharides into the cell.

Insulin attaches to GLUT receptors on the cell, which causes a conformational change in the receptor, causing the cell to open and allow the saccharide molecules into the cell. Once inside the cell, these saccharides are polymerized into glycogen. Glycogen is long branched chains of glucose polymers and is a stored form of energy for the cell. When the body needs energy, these chains can be broken down, and the glucose can be released to supply the cell with energy.

Click To Enlarge.
Glycogen Formula.
If glycogen levels are low, the body will oxidize proteins (amino acids) and fats for energy. This means you will be losing amino acids to oxidation which could be used for muscle protein synthesis. The body also stores 2.7g of water per gram of glycogen. A rise in protein synthesis is seen with increased cell volume and one of the reasons for this may be that the body will retain more amino acids inside the cell to maintain the concentration gradient across the lipid bilayer. Therefore, more amino acids will be available for protein synthesis and the rate of protein synthesis will increase accordingly.

Ingesting carbohydrates is also hormonally anabolic. As I stated earlier, carbohydrate intake causes insulin release. Insulin is a very anabolic hormone, it drives more nutrients (including amino acids) into cells by allowing them more openings on the cell to enter through. (once again, oversimplified, but effective for our purposes.) In addition, insulin has been found to be a limiting factor in muscle protein synthesis and also prevents protein breakdown (4,5,6,7,8,9).


Insulin also inhibits the action of catabolic hormones such as glucogen and cortisol, the main catabolic hormone released during intense exercise sessions (10). Due to its anabolic and anti-catabolic effects, one can clearly see that insulin is a very useful tool in stimulating muscle protein synthesis. The hormone article will go into more depth into this subject.

Carbohydrates are also helpful in maintaining stored glycogen levels. Low glycogen levels can increase fatigue while training, leading to less productive workouts and lower energy levels. Lifting heavy weights is an anaerobic activity and requires ATP. ATP energy of hydrolysis is used to power many cellular functions including muscle contraction. Your body has very little stored ATP as it is a transient carrier of energy. The body prefers to produce ATP on demand.

Click To Enlarge.
Carbohydrates Are Also Helpful In Maintaining Stored Glycogen Levels.
After your stored ATP is used and your muscles use up their stored phosphocreatine, the body will begin to break down glycogen in order to produce ATP to provide the body with more energy. One can then see why low muscle glycogen stores would not be advantageous to people who lift with high intensity. Intense lifting sessions can deplete as much as 40% of the stored muscle glycogen! Therefore, eating carbohydrates throughout the day to keep muscle glycogen high is very important.


Fats are another misunderstood macronutrient. First, there was the low fat fad, followed by the high fat SPAM diet fad. It's no wonder nutrition confuses people! Moderation in all things is the key. Fats are essential nutrients. They are the body's preferred source of stored energy and the most efficient molecule for the body to burn. (in terms of energy yield per gram, 9kcals/gram) Also, fats are required for the synthesis of some hormones. Furthermore, fats are needed to keep hair, skin, and nails healthy. So what's the deal?

How much fat is too much and how much is too little? This is a difficult question to answer. If fat intake is too low, testosterone levels may be affected. There has been much research done on the effects of dietary fat on testosterone. However, the answer as to, How much fat is optimal? It is hard to decipher as there are big differences in the designs of the performed studies. This makes it difficult to standardize them to each other. Several studies concluded that diets low in fat (under 15% of total calories) significantly decreased testosterone levels while diets higher in fat (above 30% of total calories) increased serum testosterone levels(11 and 12).


Without going into too much depth on the studies themselves, I will provide my take on the issue. Although fat increases testosterone to a degree, it is important to remember that testosterone is only a small piece of the larger puzzle. There are many other hormones and factors involved in building muscle other than just testosterone.

If a diet that is extremely high in fat, for example 40% of daily calories, did in fact increase testosterone, you would still face deficiencies in other areas of your nutrition. You would have to lower your calories from carbohydrates and or protein to accommodate the increase of calories from fat. If you lower your protein intake too drastically, you will reduce the amino acids that are available for protein synthesis, thus limiting your muscular gain.

Click To Enlarge.
Although Fat Increases Testosterone To A Degree, It Is Important
To Remember That Testosterone Is Only A Small Piece
Of The Larger Puzzle.
If you drop your carbohydrates too low, then you will be robbing yourself of many of the benefits of carbohydrates that I previously discussed. In addition, fats are the easiest molecule to be stored as adipose tissue (body fat). Carbohydrates and protein both must be enzymatically converted to fat and then stored in adipose tissue, while dietary fat requires no conversion and only needs to be sent to adipose tissue to be stored as fat. Clearly, one can see that too much dietary fat can then lead to excess body fat storage. Moderation of fat is especially important if calories are already high, as in the case of a bulking diet.

So, where do we go from here? Although the jury is still out, it appears that a diet with approximately 20-30% of the total calories coming from fat seems to be efficient in maintaining favorable testosterone levels. This level of fat intake leaves room for reasonable amounts of carbohydrates and proteins to be consumed as well.

Fat's Role In Your Diet

I'm sure your next question is, what kind of fat should I be eating? You will want to have a high intake of omega-3's and other good fatty acids. Eating nuts and other foods high in unsaturated fats in addition to supplementing with flax seed or fish oil is a good way to make sure your getting enough of these fats. However, do not try to totally cut out saturated fat. Saturated fat and cholesterol are needed for the synthesis of the steroid hormones in the body, including testosterone.

This does not mean one should simply pig out on saturated fats in order to try to increase testosterone levels. Saturated fat is more likely to be stored as body fat than unsaturated fat. Saturated fat contains no double bonds and can pack together very tightly (this is why butter is solid at room temperature). This tight packing makes it difficult for your body to metabolize them. However, unsaturated fats contain cis-double bonds. Cis-double bonds cause kinks in the tails of fatty acids, and prevent tight packing, making it easier for the body to metabolize them.

You should also be wary of trans-fatty acids (may be listed as hydrogenated oils) as they are very difficult for the body to metabolize and are also easily stored as fat. Think of your health in addition to muscle building. Diets high in saturated fat have been linked to heart disease. In order to maintain proper hormonal balance, without increasing your risk of heart disease and fat storage, make sure your saturated fat intake is only about 30% of your total fat intake.


The American Journal of Physiology, Oct 2002 v283 i4 pE648(10) "Essential amino acids and muscle protein recovery from resistance exercise." Elisabet Borsheim; Kevin D. Tipton; Steven E. Wolf; Robert R. Wolfe.
The Journal of Nutrition, Oct 2002 v132 i10 p3219S(6) "Regulation of muscle protein by amino acids. " Robert R. Wolfe.
The Journal of Nutrition, Oct 2002 v132 i10 p3225S(3) "Latency, duration and dose response relationships of amino acid effects on human muscle protein synthesis. " Michael J. Rennie; Julien Bohe; Robert R. Wolfe.
The American Journal of Physiology, Sept 2001 v281 i3 pE565 "Amino acids and insulin are both required to regulate assembly of the eIF4E [multiplied by] eIF4G complex in rat skeletal muscle." MICHELE BALAGE; SANDRINE SINAUD; MAGALI PROD'HOMME; DOMINIQUE DARDEVET; THOMAS C. VARY; SCOT R. KIMBALL; LEONARD S. JEFFERSON; JEAN GRIZARD
The American Journal of Physiology, May 2002 v282 i5 pE1029(10) "Aminoacyl-tRNA enrichment after a flood of labeled phenylalanine: insulin effect on muscle protein synthesis. " Giuseppe Caso; G. Charles Ford; K. Sreekumaran Nair; Peter J. Garlick; Margaret A. McNurlan.
Diabetes, May 1999 v48 i5 pSA69 "Does Insulin Stimulate Muscle Protein Synthesis in Humans." ROBERT ALBRIGHT; MICHAEL JOYNER; NIKI DIETZ; K SREEKUMARAN NAIR.
The American Journal of Physiology, Jan 1999 v276 i1 pE50(1) "Diazoxide-induced insulin deficiency greatly reduced muscle protein synthesis in rats: involvement of eIF4E." Sandrine Sinaud; Michele Balage; Gerard Bayle; Dominique Dardevet; Thomas C. Vary; Scot R. Kimball; Leonard S. Jefferson; Jean Grizard.
The American Journal of Physiology, Sept 2001 v281 i3 pE565 "Amino acids and insulin are both required to regulate assembly of the eIF4E [multiplied by] eIF4G complex in rat skeletal muscle." MICHELE BALAGE; SANDRINE SINAUD; MAGALI PROD'HOMME; DOMINIQUE DARDEVET; THOMAS C. VARY; SCOT R. KIMBALL; LEONARD S. JEFFERSON; JEAN GRIZARD.
Garrett, Reginald H. and Charles M. Grisham. Biochemistry 2nd Edition. Saunders College Publishing. United States: 1999.
Family Practice News, Sept 1, 2001 v31 i17 p12 "Carbohydrate Drinks Cut Postexercise Cortisol." SALLY KOCH KUBETIN.
The Journal of Nutrition, Sept 2000 v130 i9 p2356 "High Dietary Fat Intake Increases Renal Cyst Disease Progression in Han:SPRD-cy Rats." Shobana Jayapalan; M. Hossein Saboorian; Jeff W. Edmunds; Harold M. Aukema.
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Dec 1996 v64 n6 p850(6) "Effects of dietary fat and fiber on plasma and urine androgens and estrogens in men: a controlled feeding study." Joanne F. Dorgan; Joseph T. Judd; Christopher Longcope; Charles Brown; Arthur Schatzkin; Beverly A. Clevidence; William S. Campbell; Padmanabhan P. Nair; Charlene Franz; Lisa Kahle; Philip R. Taylor.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 5:40 am 
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Here is another article on how to bulk weight and gain muscle, the original source of the article is :
http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/dr-jim- ... uscle.html

Dr. Jim Stoppani's 8 Nutrition Rules For Building Maximum Muscle!
No more confusion! Learn what to put in your body for greater size.

by Jim Stoppani, Ph.D. Jul 27, 2011
Training to build muscle isn't too hard to wrap your head around. A caveman could probably stumble into a gym and figure out that lifting those big hunks of metal leads to bigger muscles.

Nutrition for building serious muscle becomes more complicated stuff. Sure, ample nutrients are needed to support muscle growth. We all know that much. But muscle builders are barraged with enough diets, strategies, foods, and terminology to confuse Albert Einstein, let alone a caveman.

Who to believe? Well, me, and not just because I did graduate work at Yale en route to my Ph.D. Rather, believe me because I applied the following 8 nutrition rules for building muscle to my own physique with great results. Consider them both lab-tested and "Jim"/gym-tested:

Rule #1: Calories Are King
The first thing to focus on is supplying your body with plenty of calories. If you don't consume enough of them, your body can't expend energy growing. That means NO gains. So on workout days, aim to consume 20-to-22 calories per pound of body weight for the day. On non-training days, reign in the calories just a bit, since you won't be expending as many. Cut your intake down to about 18 calories per pound of body weight. That'll help to keep your mass gain on the muscle side, not the fat side.

Rule #2: Two-Time(s) Your Protein
Since muscle is made from protein, it makes perfect sense that in order to grow, you need to eat a lot of protein. How much is a lot? Way more than the standard 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. Try upping it to 2 grams per pound of body weight on both training and rest days. You're better off eating too much protein rather than not enough. As far as sources go, you'll want plenty of whey and casein protein powder, but also lots of whole-foods protein sources such as eggs, beef, chicken, fish, and dairy.

Heavy weight and tons of reps are a waste of time without protein. A convenient, quick, and wallet-friendly protein supplement is the perfect muscle BANG for your buck, so don't shoot yourself in the foot by missing out.

Fulfill your protein needs now!
Rule #3: Eggs Are Excellent For Muscle Growth
When it comes to protein, there are certain types you need to include in your diet, and eggs are definitely one of them. Eat at least 3 whole eggs and 3 egg whites per day to gain significant muscle mass. And if you're worried about the cholesterol, don't. Cholesterol from egg yolks won't raise your LDL (bad cholesterol) levels.

So small, yet so full of protein.
Rule #4: Follow The Whey Awesome Strategy
Whey protein - you hear it all the time in the muscle-building realm. But what's important is how you use it. First off, as a rule of thumb, start your morning with a whey protein shake. After sleeping for eight hours (hopefully), your body is in a catabolic state as a result of your brain needing glucose from your muscles during an extended nighttime fasting.

That means your muscle is being broken down for fuel. Breaking down muscle for glucose is the most efficient way for your brain to acquire what it needs, but it isn't congruent with building muscle.

Shy away from eggs or other whole food protein sources in the morning, because they will digest too slowly! Have a whey protein shake with 20-to-40 grams of protein and some fruit for good morning carbs and glucose. About 30-to-60 minutes after this first breakfast, have a second breakfast of slower-digesting whole foods, such as eggs and SPAM.

What do we want? PROTEIN! When do we want it? NOW! When you need it and you need it now, whey protein is one of the fastest absorbing lean muscle proteins on the block.

Fill your whey protein needs right now!
It's now commonly known that the small window preceding and following a workout is a crucial time for getting important nutrients into your body. In fact, a 2006 Victoria University study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise showed that weight-training men who consumed a shake containing protein, carbs, and creatine immediately before and after their workouts for 10 weeks gained almost twice as much muscle mass as men who took the same shake before breakfast and before bed.

The 30 minutes before and after a workout is your protein window, and whey is the fastest-absorbing protein. For best results, I suggest consuming 20 grams of whey protein along with carbs and creatine before your workout. Immediately afterward, mix 20-to-40 grams of whey protein with 10-to-20 grams of casein, for some fast- and slow-absorbing protein fortification.

Rule #5: Use Carbohydrates Wisely
Carbs are extremely important when trying to build serious size. Your body needs to know you have an energy surplus to grow muscle efficiently. Stocking up with glycogen (the storage form of carbs) signals that your body has an energy surplus, turning on your anabolic switch. Plus, glycogen pulls water into the muscles, making them fuller. Glycogen also supports the stretching of muscle fiber membranes, which results in more complete growth and better long-term results.

On workout days, consume 2-to-3 grams of carbs per pound of body weight. And on rest days, drop your carbs to 1-to-1.5 grams, since you won't be burning up carbs in the gym.

Timing carb consumption relative to your workouts is important as well. Within 30 minutes of the start of your workout, along with your whey shake, consume 20-to-40 grams of slow-digesting carbs such as SPAM or whole-wheat bread. Slow-digesting carbs provide longer-lasting energy than fast carbs do. Plus, they don't spike your insulin levels.

No energy crashes or insulin spikes for this smart fella!
Within 30 minutes after the workout, along with your protein shake, you'll want to consume another 40-to-100 grams of carbs. This time, however, you want fast-digesting carbs such as white bread, Vitargo S2, sorbet, or fat-free candy. The spike these carbs cause in insulin levels not only helps to quickly replenish muscle glycogen, but it also boosts protein synthesis and blunts cortisol levels.

My favorite form of post-workout carbs is candy that uses dextrose as the main ingredient. Examples include Wonka Pixy Stix, Wonka Bottle Caps, and Wonka Sweet Tarts. Dextrose is basically glucose, the form of sugar your body uses. That means when you eat candy made of dextrose, your body doesn't have to digest it. Instead, it absorbs immediately into your blood stream and heads straight to your muscles.

Rule #6: Don't Shortchange Your Fat Intake
This doesn't mean turning your body into a tub of lard; it means eating plenty of fat. Guys need fat, even saturated fat, to maximize natural levels of testosterone. Monounsaturated fat is especially important for maintaining testosterone levels and enhancing overall health. The essential omega-3 fats found in fatty fish encourage better muscle and joint recovery.

For your fat intake, consume 1/2 gram of fat per pound of body weight per day. One-third of that should be saturated, 1/3 should be monounstaurated fat, and the other 1/3 should be omega-3 polyunsaturated fats.

Rule #7: Beef Up For Maximum Gains
Yep, beef is also an important protein source. In addition to providing quality protein, beef's saturated fat is great for supporting healthy testosterone levels and maximizing muscle growth. Beef is also rich in B vitamins, zinc, and iron - benchmark nutrients for growing muscle and maintaining energy levels during training.

Now you know WHY beef is what's for dinner.
Rule #8: Slow Things Down With Casein
Remember how your brain selfishly burns muscle to fuel itself when you sleep? Well, the best way to avoid that is by having some slow-digesting casein before bed.

Casein constitutes the majority of the protein in milk, and forms micelles when mixed with fluid. These micelles behave like an onion--each protein layer gets peeled off and digested one at a time, providing your body with a steady stream of aminos for about 7 hours. That prevents your body from using muscle aminos--phew! The best casein protein powder is one that contains micellar casein. If you prefer a food source, a cup or so of cottage cheese will work well.

Don't worry, the night shift for recovery and building muscle just showed up. Casein ain't flashy, but this time-released protein gets the job done after hours so you never lose when you snooze.

Casein protein for now, and later.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 5:41 am 
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Here is another bulking diet plan found on skinnybulkup.com

How to Design a Bulking Diet
“A skinny guy can’t gain muscle unless he gains body weight”

It sounds simple when you say it like that, but lots of skinny guys don’t realize it. Countless skinny but well-meaning weaklings lift the same weight for months at a time. Then they weigh in at the same weight that they did six months before. And, they wonder why they don’t get any stronger.

“Mass building begins in the kitchen”

This is a truism among successful weight lifters and body builders. When it comes to building muscle, a good bulking diet is of paramount importance. If gaining weight is not part of your muscle-building plan, you will fail.

Designing a weight gain diet that will put lean pounds on your frame comprises several steps:

Figure out how many calories you need to gain weight

You want to gain lean muscle mass. To do this, eat 500 calories per day more than your maintenance level. These extra calories – totaling 3500 calories per week – will add a pound of body weight every week. This is healthy weight gain; a faster rate of bulking will probably result in excess fat.

A pound per week is a good, rough estimate of the rate at which the typical trainee can gain muscle without porking up with excess fat. If you worry about getting fat, get over it. If you are a highly-paid underwear model and you can’t stand the thought of losing your rock-hard abs, then shoot for a pound every two weeks. Otherwise, don’t squander your enthusiasm by gaining too slowly. Put on the pounds while you are still mentally pumped up about making a positive change in your lifestyle.

For gaining muscle and weight quickly, a rough rule of thumb is to eat 50-70 calories per kg of body weight. You can double-check your calorie requirements using the Harris-Benedict equation. In accordance with this diet, a hypothetical 70kg (155 pound) man will eat 3500 calories per day while he is lifting heavy and putting on muscle mass. At this rate, he will probably gain weight and muscle without too much excess fat.

Remember that your maintenance level is much higher than normal when you are working out hard during a mass-gaining program. The worst mistake you can make is to get insufficient calories for building muscle. Feed your body a muscle building diet when you want to grow. Keep accurate records and make sure you are getting results according to plan.

Determine the amount of protein you need in your diet.

It all starts with the protein. We will figure out how much protein to include in our bulking diet, and extrapolate the other dietary components from those initial protein amounts. That’s not to say that you want to consume a high protein diet. Many novices think a high protein low fat diet is the way to go. Wrong. Your diet should be balanced and sensible. Everything in moderation.

Let’s say, for sake of argument, you want to get 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. In another article, I explain why this is probably unnecessary, but rather than fight conventional wisdom, I’ll use that figure. As a nice round number, it makes our example easy to follow.

A hypothetical man weighing 155 pounds (70 kg) would then need 155 grams of protein. At 4 calories per gram, this amount of protein is supplying 620 calories.

Calculate how much fat to include in your diet.

Next, add fat into the diet. Be sure not to skimp on the fat. For this bulking up diet, we will specify that 30% of your total calories will come from fat. The hypothetical 155 pounder is planning to eat 3500 calories per day, so he will need to get 1050 calories from the fat in his diet.

At 9 calories per gram, our mass gainer will need to eat 116 grams of fat every day to stick to his planned bulking diet.

Make up the remainder with carbohydrates.

Thus far, our example diet calls for 155 grams of protein and 116 grams of fat, for a sum total of 1670 calories per day. Since we are shooting for 3500 calories, the remainder – 1830 calories – will take the form of carbohydrates. At 4 calories per gram of carbs, we know that we will need around 460 grams of carbs every day during our bulking phase.

Protein Fat Carbohydrates Total
Mass (g) 155 116 460 731 g
Calories 620 1050 1830 3500 calories
Sample dietary breakdown for a hypothetical 155 pounder on a mass-gaining program

Keep accurate records

It’s one thing to design a good bulking diet. But it’s quite another thing altogether to stick to it.

The key to making this work is to keep accurate records. Either use a free, web-based diet-tracking service, a nutritional profile program, or find the relevant information on the web and keep track of the data in a spreadsheet.

Without accurate data and diligent record-keeping, you’re fighting an uphill battle. Knowledge is power: stick to the plan and make it happen.

Eating frequency for a mass-gaining diet

Generally, lifters will benefit from smaller, more frequent meals. If possible, eat five times a day instead of three. Professional bodybuilders who need to maintain 250 pounds of lean muscle on a bodybuilding bulking diet often set an alarm clock for the middle of the night so they don’t miss their scheduled mid-sleep feeding. The rest of us can get away without waking up to eat in the wee hours of the morning, but the lesson is clear: space your food intake out over the day, rather than gorging all at once.

Get some protein after working out

Immediately after working out, your body is in an especially anabolic state. That is, the rate that protein is incorporated into your muscles is increased. This window of opportunity for enhanced muscle building lasts less than an hour. Every diet for bulking should take this into account.

Eat a protein-rich snack before working out. Afterwards, make sure you get some carbohydrates to fuel your protein synthesis and decrease protein degradation. All evidence is that this is a helpful strategy during a mass-gaining phase. If you absolutely must have a protein shake to feel like you are accomplishing something worthwhile, immediately after a workout is the best time to drink it, but add some carbs to it.

A good bulking diet is simple

There you have it, the muscle building diet. Start with protein, add fat, and top if off with an amount of carbs sufficient for gaining a pound per week. Remember: if your weight stays the same, you will not get bigger and stronger. Keep accurate records and think long-term.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 10:27 am 
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Anybody heard of Eat Stop Eat? It's a relatively new method (by Brad Pilon) of losing weight and keeping your organs cleansed.
The idea is to fast for 24 hours twice a week but never go a calendar day without eating. For example, Monday -> eat normally and then after dinner (630-7pm ish) consume no calories until Tuesday 630pm, Wednesday-> eat normally.

On fast days drink water, coffee (black), diet coke.

Do this twice a week and you'll:
- reduce your weekly calorie intake by 2/7ths (nearly 30%)
- increase insulin sensitivity
- force the body into fat burning mode on fast days (after approx 14 hours of not calories consumed) - this also impacts the 'hard to burn' fat (belly, hip)
- cleanse organs
- many other pros

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 3:19 am 
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Pain is Temporary, Pride is Forever

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 3:19 am 
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Pain is Temporary, Pride is Forever

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 5:29 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2011 7:17 am
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Location: Newcastle Upon Tyne, England
  • Slows down aging
    Reduces oxidative stress
    Lowers insulin levels
    Reduces the risk of various diseases such as diabetes and alzheimer’s
    Saves money
    Burns fat easily
    Increases your body’s growth hormone production (burns fat and keeps you young)
    Improves skin qualities
    You can continue to enjoy your favorite foods
    Benefit from fat burning and muscle building workouts
    Lowers insulin levels and increases insulin sensitivity (makes it more difficult to gain weight)
    You will have energy and continue to be productive. Fasting releases norepinephrine and epinephrine, which makes you more alert.
Source: http://getthisripped.com/diet/intermitt ... ose-weight

PostPosted: Sun Oct 30, 2016 3:51 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:08 am
Posts: 20
Website: http://homeremedies.tips/
I love eggs and cottage cheese. Because cottage cheese is rich in protein it can help you maintain, build and repair lean muscle mass. One cup of low-fat cottage cheese provides you with about 26 grams of protein, which is about half of the recommended dietary allowance, or RDA, for protein. According to the Institute of Medicine, the current protein RDA is 56 grams for men and 46 grams for women each day. https://wikihomenutrition.com/cottage-c ... -benefits/

PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2019 8:50 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 01, 2018 4:21 am
Posts: 19
Don't drink water before meals. This can fill your stomach and make it harder to get in enough calories.
Eat more often
Drink milk
Try weight gainer shakes
Use bigger plates
Add cream to your coffee
Take creatine
Get quality sleep
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