Biotest

FFB Wants to Add Carbs and Calories


#1

In general, I follow the so-called Paleo Diet (so my carbs intake is below 100 grams a day, like, around 50-ish grams of carbs. It comes only from veggies (spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts) and leafy greens. During the week my diet consists of protein, healthy fats and complex carbs from veggies and spinach. I do not eat any fruit, dairy, nuts or bread.

Saturday and Sunday are my cheat days during which I eat more carbs from bread and sweets. On a weekend, my breakfast consists of three pieces of fiber bread, each piece contain 5 grams of fiber. I put brie cheese and apple butter on one piece, peanut butter and some jam on the other, and cream cheese, dried cherries and some honey on the third piece. Lunch and dinner are healthy, but sometimes (usually once in two weeks) I go to In-N-Out or some other place. In short, I keep my diet very tight during the week, but on a weekend, I eat more carbs and might eat some junk food.

This way of eating works for me. My body fat is 9.5 percent. I feel great and look lean, but my current goal is to gain more muscle mass, a lot more than I currently have, but as a former FFB, I am wary of carbs.

I lift weights three times a week (4-5 exercises per session, 4 sets each. I do not do cardio) and I take one serving of Anaconda peri-workout (not two servings, just one serving of Anaconda and nothing else).

To gain more muscle mass, I need to add more calories and more carbs to my current diet, but, as I have already mentioned, I am kind of afraid of consuming too many carbs, which brings me to this question: For someone who follows a low-carb diet, is it better to consume carbs before or after a workout? I have heard different theories and I am confused.

It seems like the FINiBAR would be an easy way to add calories and carbs in a controlled way, but what is the best time to use it? Is it better to eat the whole bar before lifting or after, or maybe a half before and the other half after? Also, how does FINiBAR compare to SURGE Workout Fuel for what I am trying to accomplish? And finally, maybe there is a better way to add calories and carbs. I am open to any suggestions.

Thanks.


#2

For the FFB, the secret is keeping the extra carbs in the peri-workout period. Before, during, and after. FINiBAR is made for pre-lifting. Surge Workout Fuel for just before and during, and Surge Recovery for after. Any of those, or even all of them depending on your needs and goals, would work.

The rest of the day, keep carbs low-ish and you won’t gain unnecessary amounts of fat when in a mass phase. This plan would be much more effective than eating crap (bread) on the weekends. Think tactical carbs, not junk carbs away from the lifting session when they don’t do any good anyway.

Lastly, shoot for 800 cals a day over maintenance, maybe 1000. That’s all you need to add mass, assuming training is hardcore, recovery is in place, etc.

In the end, you can always adjust. I mean, if you start to get too fat, stop and adjust, right? You don’t have to keep going if it’s not working.


#3

On the days you dont train and use peri workout sups, what would you use for the 800 cals?


#4

[quote]Kungfushish wrote:
On the days you dont train and use peri workout sups, what would you use for the 800 cals?[/quote]

I’d go with fruit, good fats, and just more clean protein, from solid foods or protein shakes.

On old-school bodybuilding trick is to use heavy cream in shakes. It’s carb-free and calorically dense. I also like coconut oil, nuts and nut flours, whole eggs, red meat, etc.

See my no-grain oatmeal recipe for a calorically dense(ish) meal that doesn’t add lots of unneeded carbs on a non-training day: http://tnation.t-nation.com/free_online_forum/diet_blog_hammer_velocity_shugart/nograin_oatmeal

Metabolic Drive Muscle Growth formula instead of Low Carb would be a great addition too.


#5

I have read that it is important to spike caloric and carbs intake once or twice per week. Allegedly, this causes a host of hormonal changes that improve fat-loss, from increasing cAMP and GMP to improving conversion of the T4 thyroid hormone to the more active T3. In other words, it keeps your body guessing, plus you carbo-load for the rest of the week. Is it true?

What about going against the grain and consuming protein and fat post-exercise? That is what Robb Wolf, author of the The Paleo Solution, recommends. Specifically, immediately after an exercise session, he recommends ingesting 50 grams of whey with some coconut milk. Here is the link http://goo.gl/GbBpN to his article about it. What do you think, Chris?


#6

[quote]Chris Shugart wrote:

[quote]Kungfushish wrote:
On the days you dont train and use peri workout sups, what would you use for the 800 cals?[/quote]

I’d go with fruit, good fats, and just more clean protein, from solid foods or protein shakes.

On old-school bodybuilding trick is to use heavy cream in shakes. It’s carb-free and calorically dense. I also like coconut oil, nuts and nut flours, whole eggs, red meat, etc.[/quote]

Chris,

Would you bless using Metabolic Drive Low Carb instead of Grow! Whey post-workout? I have both but it seems that Metabolic Drive Low Carb is a better (more complete) protein formula, plus it tastes and mixes better, in my opinion.

Thanks.


#7

[quote]yustas wrote:

I have read that it is important to spike caloric and carbs intake once or twice per week. Allegedly, this causes a host of hormonal changes that improve fat-loss, from increasing cAMP and GMP to improving conversion of the T4 thyroid hormone to the more active T3. In other words, it keeps your body guessing, plus you carbo-load for the rest of the week. Is it true?[/quote]

Best to save that for the peri-workout period. And there is NEVER a reason to consume shit foods to do it. There is something to carb and calorie cycling and we have several good articles on that in the archives. But sadly that info is often used to justify choosing horrible foods that instill bad habits and damage long-term health.

[quote]

What about going against the grain and consuming protein and fat post-exercise? That is what Robb Wolf, author of the The Paleo Solution, recommends. Specifically, immediately after an exercise session, he recommends ingesting 50 grams of whey with some coconut milk. Here is the link http://goo.gl/GbBpN to his article about it. What do you think, Chris?[/quote]

I like Robb, but his body looks like a toothpick with an apple stuck on top. (His recent podcast guest actually teased him about it.)

Plain whey is okay, it’s fast absorbing, but a dedicated formula with extra aminos and carbs (Surge) is optimal.

You’re simply not going to build much muscle without being a higher insulin state. Do that with dedicated, tactical supps and only around the workout time, and there’s no reason to fear fat gain or health damage.


#8

[quote]yustas wrote:

[quote]Chris Shugart wrote:

[quote]Kungfushish wrote:
On the days you dont train and use peri workout sups, what would you use for the 800 cals?[/quote]

I’d go with fruit, good fats, and just more clean protein, from solid foods or protein shakes.

On old-school bodybuilding trick is to use heavy cream in shakes. It’s carb-free and calorically dense. I also like coconut oil, nuts and nut flours, whole eggs, red meat, etc.[/quote]

Chris,

Would you bless using Metabolic Drive Low Carb instead of Grow! Whey post-workout? I have both but it seems that Metabolic Drive Low Carb is a better (more complete) protein formula, plus it tastes and mixes better, in my opinion.

Thanks.
[/quote]

You don’t necessary want a "complete’ protein formula after training. You want FAST. And that’s whey. At every other time, you want a whey/casein blend, like MD Low Carb.

Of course, any protein after weight training is good and better than nothing, but we know exactly what’s ideal.


#9

Well, according to this http://goo.gl/PNST3 Post-workout carbohydrates have no impact or may even be counter-productive. Is this true?

Also, I am not sure I understand why, given a sufficient calorie intake, I am not going to build much muscle. Are those calories going to convert to body fat instead of muscle? Do not get me wrong, I am not arguing with you Chris, I am just trying to understand how this works. Thanks.


#10

[quote]yustas wrote:

Well, according to this http://goo.gl/PNST3 Post-workout carbohydrates have no impact or may even be counter-productive. Is this true?

Also, I am not sure I understand why, given a sufficient calorie intake, I am not going to build much muscle. Are those calories going to convert to body fat instead of muscle? Do not get me wrong, I am not arguing with you Chris, I am just trying to understand how this works. Thanks.

[/quote]

I think you’ll find this article useful: http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_article/most_recent/the_insulin_advantage_how_to_bulk_and_cut_on_the_same_day Now, if I had to choose one, I’d go with pre-workout carbs over post. But post certain isn’t counterproductive.

Keep in mind that while a total couch potato can build muscle lifting and eating just about any ol’ way, after that newbie-gain stage it’s not so easy. Proper peri-workout nutrition is needed then, especially for the natural guy.

Also, I find this odd: You’re really worried about peri-workout carbs and yet you eat sweets and bread on the weekends? Skip that stuff, add peri-workout carbs, and you’d be much better off.

Another article that supports sort of a Paleo + sports nutrition. Same thing, pretty much, that I’ve been preaching for a while now. http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_article/most_recent/warrior_fitness_who_or_whats_a_nate_miyaki


#11

It is a very educational and informative article. I have enjoyed reading it, thank you for the link. That having been said, it is too vague to be useful, in my opinion. For example,

How would I know if my insulin levels are high and what is “high” to be begin with? Without an actual number and an ability to test my insulin throughout the day, I am not sure how to use this information in real life.

Here is another example,

Again, “high” and “low” are too vague to be useful in a real diet. But even if there is a number, wouldn’t I need to actually test my glucose to know if my blood sugar is “high” or “low”?

Increase insulin by how much from baseline and what is the baseline to begin with? Again, not useful without actual numbers and testing.

That is a huge “if” gamble, in my opinion. Because “if” I have not depleted glycogen, glucose will be stored as fat, right? Without an actual test, how would I know how much glycogen I have left or if it has been completely depleted?

What is the definition of an intense weight-training session? I think it is a very individual thing. What does it mean to not be shy with carbs? What is the number? Again, it is probably an individual variable.

The funny (or odd) thing is, I actually have a blood glucose meter (WaveSense Jazz) that I use to check my blood sugar levels for time to time. I am not diabetic or anything, I just wanted to see what happens with my blood sugar when I consume different foods.

For example, today I took 3 capsules of Receptomax (30 minutes before my workout), had one serving of ANACONDA peri-workout and decided to try Robb Wolf’s post-workout shake (40 grams of whey protein (Grow! Whey) with 1/4 cup of organic coconut milk. 30 minutes after that, I took 3 capsules of Receptomax again and had a meal: 7 oz. steamed cauliflower, 3 oz. spinach, 1/4 cup wheat bran, 1 tablespoon chia seeds, 4 tablespoons olive oil, 4 tablespoons lime juice, 4 beef sausages, a bunch of green onions, and 4 fish oil capsules. About 1 hour after the meal, I checked my blood sugar. It was 96. Is it “high” or “low?” Would 150 be too high? What about 170?

Why pre-workout and not post-workout? It sounds like post-workout is more important for muscle grows. No?

I know, it sounds peculiar, but here is the how I look at it. Firs of all, I think it is important to follow a diet that one is comfortable with. Otherwise, the long-term success is very doubtful. I like eating low-carb, but eating protein, fat and vegetables is boring. It gets old after a while. I eat sweets and bread on the weekends because of the psychological benefits. I love sweets, but not just any sweets. I am impartial to ice cream and I do not like soda, for example. I do not think I would be able to be on a low-carb diet for as long as I have been on it (around 5 years) without allowing myself a few cheat meals that I really enjoy.

Second, I know that this way of eating works for me. I have lost 60 pounds and have been able to keep the lost weight off long term. My body fat (measured by DEXA) is 9.5 percent. My waist circumference is 29-ish. I have visible abs. I feel great. I am not bragging or anything, I am just saying that the way I eat now keeps my body in a pretty good shape, and I do not feel deprived.

In terms of psychological benefits, peri-workout carbs cannot be compared to my cheat meals. I do not enjoy drinking sugary water. Of course, Surge is not just sugary water. I am just saying that it tastes like one. In other words, just because it is sweet, it is not the same as eating my favorite sweets.

Third, I have tried gaining muscle by following the typical bodybuilding advice - i.e., do not be afraid of carbs peri-workout, etc. I have also tried, as described in the article, to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time. I did not work for me. In fact, I have used Surge in the past, but I just got fat without gaining a significant amount of muscle mass. I am not blaming Surge for it, by the way, it just seems that I do not do well on a lot of simple carbs.

This is my second serious attempt to gain a pretty good amount of muscle. I have been overweight twice in my life. First time, I lost 50 pounds on a low-carb diet. After that, I have tried to gain muscle. I failed. I got fat and tried to lose weight and gain muscle at the same time. As I have already mentioned, it did not work for me. I gained some muscle, but gained a lot more fat. Second time, I lost 60 pounds on a low-carb diet, and now I am trying to gain muscle again, but this time I would like to try to do things differently, hence my questions about carbs and gaining muscle primarily on fat and protein while keeping simple carbs under tight control.

I have seen some pretty big dudes on National Geographic and Discovery Channel shows (indigenous peoples) who pretty much eat only fat and protein, and it did not seem like they were consuming a lot of calories either, and yet most men had a respectable amount of muscle mass. How did they gain all this muscle mass without peri-workout nutrition and consuming a lot of carbs? I am just asking. I bet they eat less than 100 grams of carbs a day, probably a lot less than 100 and most of it is probably fiber. Any thoughts?


#12

Chris, I am sorry about formatting of my last reply. The quotes are there, but the quoted text does not display correctly for some reason. Maybe one of the mods can fix it.


#13

If I answered all those questions, I’d have to write a book, honestly. And that book has already been written.

Run some searches with our newer search engine on insulin and muscle gain and you’ll bring up dozens of articles to explain the insulin/muscle-gain connection. There’s a reason why pro-bodybuilders inject the stuff. I’d never do that, of course, but as a guy who eats low-ish carbs almost year around and mostly foods that fall into the “paleo-ish” category, I’d never miss my peri-workout nutrition, and that means some carbs.

It sounds like you’ve made up your mind, so all I can do is repeat my advice. If you’re ready to gain some serious muscle, drop the junk food on the weekends and “trade” those carbs in on tactical peri-workout nutrition. If you’re happy with where you’re at and what you’re doing, then that’s okay too.

PS: Another good article: http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_article/most_recent/pulse_fast_for_mass_phases


#14

Great idea. There are already Botox injection parties out there. I think we should start insulin injection parties. Joking aside, I think some of the pro-bodybuilders inject insulin because their own production of insulin (and other hormones) has been so screwed up that need insulin injections.

I have not made up my mind, yet. I appreciate your input and do not want to sound as if I am arguing with you, I am just trying to understand how this stuff works, and why eating more carbs in the past has not worked for me.

So, what should I use per-workout and how? One serving of Surge immediately after exercise? Half a serving of Surge during exercise and the other half immediately after? Metabolic Drive Muscle Growth Formula contains 24 grams of carbs. Can I just use one serving of Metabolic Drive Muscle Growth Formula immediately after exercise? What exactly do you recommend to maximize muscle grows while keeping the fat at bay?

Thanks.


#15

[quote]yustas wrote:

Great idea. There are already Botox injection parties out there. I think we should start insulin injection parties. Joking aside, I think some of the pro-bodybuilders inject insulin because their own production of insulin (and other hormones) has been so screwed up that need insulin injections.

I have not made up my mind, yet. I appreciate your input and do not want to sound as if I am arguing with you, I am just trying to understand how this stuff works, and why eating more carbs in the past has not worked for me.

So, what should I use per-workout and how? One serving of Surge immediately after exercise? Half a serving of Surge during exercise and the other half immediately after? Metabolic Drive Muscle Growth Formula contains 24 grams of carbs. Can I just use one serving of Metabolic Drive Muscle Growth Formula immediately after exercise? What exactly do you recommend to maximize muscle grows while keeping the fat at bay?

Thanks.
[/quote]

I think that with some experimentation, you’ll find your sweet spot when it comes to peri-workout nutrition. Some ideas:

FINiBAR 45 mins before lifting, 1 scoop Surge Recovery after (or MAG-10, which is carb free.)
1 scoop Surge Workout Fuel during, 1 scoop Recovery after
1/2 FINiBAR before, SWF during

There are dozens of other variations. I mean, some people are doing 3 FINiBARs before, SWF during, etc etc. I stick to FINiBAR before, 2 scoops Recovery after. Like you, I was wary of carbs being an FFB, so for a while I switched to Anaconda and MAG-10 only, both carb-free. I actually stayed leaner doing FINiBARs and Surge. It’s not that the other two are “fattening” it’s just that my body demanded more food/carbs later in the day using only carb-free peri-workout supps. The carbs, properly timed, made my metabolism roar!

Now, Muscle Growth Formula is fine too. It’s not specifically made for peri-workout, but it’s a good step towards it. Before or after would be fine. Remember, when peri-workout studies first began, all they did was drink an MRP (meal replacement powder) after training. Today we’ve refined that and know exactly what we need, and that’s what you see with the Biotest products like Surge Recovery, SWF, FINiBAR, Anaconda, etc.


#16

Chris,

What is your recommendation regarding taking creatine and BCAAs pre, post or peri-workout? I take one serving of Anaconda peri-workout, should I take creatine and BCAAs only when I do not take Anaconda?

Thanks.


#17

[quote]yustas wrote:
Chris,

What is your recommendation regarding taking creatine and BCAAs pre, post or peri-workout? I take one serving of Anaconda peri-workout, should I take creatine and BCAAs only when I do not take Anaconda?

Thanks. [/quote]

Yes, Anaconda has you covered.


#18

This thread is actually perfect for the question I was going to post today. How long is too long for drinking surge recovery after a workout? Every once in a while I forgot to pack my shaker filled with surge and so I have to wait until I get home to drink it. By the time I get home it’s just about a half hour after my lifting session. Is it pointless to be drinking the surge at that point? Should I just pick up something on the way to the gym that I can eat or drink immediately afTer my workout that will give me some carbs and BCAA’s?


#19

[quote]kingsley6 wrote:
This thread is actually perfect for the question I was going to post today. How long is too long for drinking surge recovery after a workout? Every once in a while I forgot to pack my shaker filled with surge and so I have to wait until I get home to drink it. By the time I get home it’s just about a half hour after my lifting session. Is it pointless to be drinking the surge at that point? Should I just pick up something on the way to the gym that I can eat or drink immediately afTer my workout that will give me some carbs and BCAA’s? [/quote]

The old rule of thumb was to drink Surge Recovery within an hour after lifting, the “window of opportunity.”

But I think the sooner the better. 30 minutes after is fine if you happen to forget to pack your shaker. Ideally, walk out of the gym drinking it, of course.