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Rack Chat: Hard Gainers

I wanted to revisit an article that Along the lines of posted years back regarding weight gain.  I am a hard gainer, and I know exactly where he is coming from when describing hard gainer questions about gaining weight. When I wanted to get bigger and was hovering around 170lbs soaking wet, I ate, and ate, and ate. I didn’t care what I ate, what was in it, how many calories it had, I just plowed through it. It a month or so I went from 170 to close to 200lbs. I think the moral of the story is, if you need to gain weight, eat foods that most people don’t eat because it makes them gain weight, and eat lots of it. Will you gain fat, yep, I did, and so did he.

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From the Article:

“I swiftly plumped up by eating copious amounts of breakfast food, my favorite food group.  I’ve talked to many “hard gainers” in my lifetime, each one proclaiming that they cannot gain a single pound no matter what they eat.  I usually have a hearty belly laugh.  Like this one.

Then I ask if they’ve tried eating large amounts of breakfast foods throughout the day.

“No.  How often?”

“Like all the time.”

“Won’t I get fat?”

“Yes.”

“But that’s not how bodybuilder’s do it.  I heard this bodybuilder friend that-”

“I don’t care.  You’re not a bodybuilder.  You just told me that you had trouble gaining weight, but now it sounds like you don’t want to do that.”

Yes, it would be great if we could all plan our meals well and eat clean and often like a bodybuilder.  But it’s expensive and time consuming.  Get the calories in.  Keep eating your fruits and veggies.  And have fun eating like a big guy.”

The Link:

http://alongthelinesof.com/2011/07/13/on-getting-fat/

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The Anabolic Diet

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If you have never heard of the Anabolic “diet” then go check out this interesting article from TNation.com. I did some cliff notes of what the “diet” entails below for those who are not into clicking links. If you are having a hard time making gains while staying lean on your current regimen, maybe you should give this one a go.

Diet Goals:

According to DiPasquale, the Anabolic diet will:

• naturally maximize production and utilization of the “Big Three” growth producers — testosterone, growth hormone, and insulin

• shift the body’s metabolism from that of a sugar-burning, fat-producing machine to that of a fat-burning, muscle-building machine

• decrease catabolic activity in the body

• increase strength and endurance

• help you avoid health problems and stay in shape year round

• increase energy and decrease mood swings

• decrease even “problem area” fat

…and perhaps most importantly:

• scare the living shit out of vegetarians!

How TO:

Monday through Friday

Eat a diet consisting of 60% fat, 35% protein, and only 5% carbs. You’ll get the fat and protein mainly from steak, hamburger, eggs, and fish. Turkey, chicken, and tuna are all okay, but the password here is red meat. You’ll also eat full-fat cheeses, pepperoni, sausage, and certain nuts. The key is to generally avoid carbohydrates, eating only around 30 grams a day.

Saturday and Sunday

Switch gears. On the weekends, eat 30% fat, 10% protein, and a whopping 60% carbs!

Strength Militia 30 Day Paleo Challenge

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I know it is super cliche to start a diet on the first of the year so hear me out. This holiday season was a complete and utter blowout for me. I literally held nothing back and went all in, at every meal. From Thanksgiving to New Years Eve, I had no filter and spared no cookie, brownie, pie or ice creams life in this time period. So, I decided that on the first of the next month (happened to be Jan 1st) I would push the refresh button and get back on track with my nutrition. Here I am almost a week into a full month of Paleo, struggling to avoid carbs like a kid in a candy store (get it, because candy is a carb and kids like candy). I don’t think anyone can really comprehend how much draw carbs have until they almost completely eliminate them from their diet. I really have to double-check myself at every meal, mostly at work but sometimes at home. It is very easy to slip back into eating shitty when in any given day, we are surrounded by food that isn’t good for us. At the end of the day though, I am being a very good eater and have stayed VERY strict with NO cheating and hope to continue this for the next 24 days. This is not my first time doing a session of strict paleo, and no I do not intend on staying strict all the time as I am human, and do live in Southern California (Mexican food is too amazing to avoid). However, most of the year we stay at around 80-85% Paleo, usually getting our cheat meals in on Friday night…YOLO (yep, I went there).

Cliff Notes:

  • I used the holidays as an excuse to binge on my homemade cookies
  • Strict Paleo is tough
  • Carbs are addictive
  • I am being a good boy – NO Cheating
  • I love Mexican food

Clean Bulk: I don’t think so…10lbs – One Month

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Happy Thanksgiving Ya’ll!!

I wanted to take some time, on this day when I will be carb loading like crazy, to go over my progress thus far. I weighed myself last night at the gym at I am finally pushing past the 180lb mark, tipping the scales at 182lbs. As you know based on my post below that my goal is 190lbs, staying at around 12-14% bodyfat for now. Having just got back into lifting (and eating) after three months off I am progressing at an amazing pace. In September of this year I was weighing in at my lowest weight in years, 168lbs. I was skinny, not eating, and not lifting; it was a nice break for my body but I missed everything I enjoy about eating, lifting, and getting bigger and stronger. I have officially gained around 14lbs from September and about 10lbs from just over a month or so ago when I started hitting the gym again. How did I do it? Well, there is no secret, I eat, and I lift about 3 times a week. I went ahead and posted a pic of the meals I have been eating over the course of the last month and there is a really solid blend of good, and shit food choices. But, my goal is to gain weight so I don’t let waffles, fries, and pancakes stand in my way…grab fork, shove down pie hole.

Meal Pic Choices:

  • Eggs and Bacon
  • Chicken – Shredded/Chopped
  • In and Out
  • Homemade Pancakes/Homemade peanut butter syrup
  • Homemade Waffles/Syrup/Whipped Cream
  • Ground Turkey – Patties and no patty form.
  • Squash
  • Spaghetti Squash
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
  • Oatmeal
  • Cheese
  • Avocado
  • French Fries of varying sorts

Yup, nothing about some of these choices screams clean eating and it shouldn’t…that isn’t my focus right now. My focus right now is to eat, lift, and get bigger and eating and lifting are going to get me there. If you are trying to lean out, I wouldn’t suggest French fries nor would I suggest anything above that has flower in it (pancakes, waffles, buns, bread, etc.). However, the rest is a pretty good choice in regards to eating clean (Meat, veggies, etc.). Anyways, take this day (Thanksgiving) as a time when you can’t feel bad about eating as much crap as possible…consider it your duty as an American and if you are not American, just go eat and lift, business as usual.