So, as I stated in my last post, I decided to switch things up pretty drastically and add some targeted carbohydrates to my diet, as well as be more conscious of protein intake. I still need to read through the LeanGains program some more – it seems awfully over-complicated, and some of it doesn’t pass the ‘smell test’. I’ve read enough about diet and real nutrition over the past year or so to know what to question (mostly everything), and I’m not sold on the strict protocol of LeanGains, particularly the fasting and the seemingly opposite macronutrient intake depending on whether you’re weightlifting or not.
I’ve been consuming most of my calories from fat for so long that it’s hard to find a lot of ‘healthy’ carbs (there aren’t many decent sources other than what I ate). Yesterday, I ate a LOT (at least it felt that way), but when I put in my info into FitDay.com, it really wasn’t all that much. So part of my problem may simply be that I only eat when I’m hungry, and I’m not hungry all that often now. That would be fine if I didn’t workout, but with my fitness goals I need to make sure I eat more. So yesterday and today I’ve done just that.
Today was my first weightlifting day on the new protocol. If following LeanGains, I would have eaten mostly carbs today, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. It just doesn’t seem right/healthy. So I’m going to go with more of a Primal Blueprint approach, with a couple of major exceptions from what I’ve been doing for so long:
1. On days where I’m lifting weights, I’m going to make sure to eat a large sweet potato or two within an hour of finishing the weight routine. Also on those days, I’ll add in one or two of ‘nature’s Snickers bars’, those lovely yellow sugar bombs – the banana! And I’ll make sure to up the protein, with an eye more towards leaner meats. BUT, unlike LeanGains, I’m not going to do low-fat on lifting days. I just don’t see why it would be necessary. It just runs counter to logic. We’ll see.
2. On non-lifting days, I am going to stick to a very low carb diet. I will likely add a sugar bomb (i.e., apple or banana) or something just due to the increased endurance cardio I am going to start doing, too, as I need to start training for a couple of 5k’s that I’m signed up for. I’m certainly no runner, but my daughter has been training as part of an after-school activity called Girls On the Run. It amazes me that 3rd graders can run 5k races! So later this month there is one and then another next month. I am certainly going to be the slowest there, but I don’t want to totally embarrass my daughter by walking the whole thing : (
So I started this program yesterday. Didn’t workout yesterday (by plan) but lifted weights today. I felt really weak – not ‘glycogen depleted’ weak though, which is good. I just clearly have lost muscle mass due to not working out much the last few months. I was struggling with some pretty wimpy weights today, but that’s cool. Aside from the dude with tourette’s hogging up the power rack (or whatever the barbell squat machine is called), it was a good workout to start, consisting of:
- treadmill warmup (10 mins walking fast)
- 3 x 8 chest press
- 3 x 15 crunches
- 3 x 10 squats
- 3 x 10 wide grip lat pulldowns
- treadmill cooldown (10 mins walking moderately)
For diet, here’s what I ate today:
2 eggs, 2 all natural sausage patties (the awesome ones that Costco sells for cheap!)
Banana (I said I would up the carbs on lifting days!)
Had a lunch + all afternoon meeting that was catered with the usual garbage – ‘healthy whole grain bread’ turkey sandwiches as the centerpiece, etc. I stuck to just a half a turkey sandwich but ditched most of the bread, and added a small side salad, and an apple. I then grabbed a bag of trail mix (not the healthiest stuff I know) from the vending machine).
I’m still stuffed from dinner! I came home from the gym and rushed to cook dinner so as to adhere to the ‘carb up’ within an hour of lifting. I grabbed the largest sweet potato ever from my cupboard and microwaved it for 3 minutes while the ole Weber grill was heating up. I then sliced it up into 3/4″ thick slices (about 6 total slices) and threw em on the grill.
I then threw a package of 4 chicken legs (minus the packaging!) onto the grill. The LeanGains protocol would frown upon the skin on the chicken but I left it on. I also added some melted butter to the sweet potato slices, along with some cinnamon. Awesome.
So how do I feel? I feel good. But the real test is how I feel in a few days, after the next lifting day. Tomorrow I’ll do some hard cardio and play time with the kids. Then on Friday I’ll do another compound lifting day (will likely add some to the routine though). If I’m not bloating up with belly fat from the added carbs and calories, and I’m still feeling good, then I’ll know I’m doing it right.