Friday, April 3, 2015
Cardio - Muscle - Dieting - Three common sense principles
If you really want to get fat off, you're going to have to do SOME cardio -
A dude I know wrote sometime back "if you don't want to show up shredded for a show, then by all means, don't do fasted cardio."
This was in response to a study done that showed that fasted cardio and cardio in a non-fasted state, showed no measurable difference in bodyfat loss.
Bodybuilders read this study, and because of their own trial and error, for the most part, dismissed it.
You know why? Because despite such a study, most of them had gotten ready for competition several ways. By doing both fasted cardio, non-fasted, and no cardio at all (relying purely on dieting alone).
And what won out every time?
I actually didn't start writing this part to debate fasted cardio, but kinda like how you don't plan on plowing that ugly chick from the party who won't stop hitting on you, after one too many Schlitz Malt liquors, hey it just kinda happens.
Look the point is this, for every one guy you know that is lean year round and eats Krispy Kream everyday, you're not that guy more than likely. And if you are, then yeah you don't need this part.
For the other 99%, diet alone is usually not enough to dip into the fat stores to get to a very low level of bodyfat.
I get it. You don't want to don the trunks and be a bodybuilder. This still applies to you more than likely. And I will tell you why. Because it's better to diet down to a lower percentage of bodyfat than to diet down to the one you want, because at some point, you'll eat "normally" again, and some bodyfat will pile back on. If you get below where you want, when that normal eating resumes (and by normal I mean NORMAL, not back in a god damn 4everbulk mode) you'll end up where you want to be. Not back in a state contemplating how in the hell you got so fat again after all of that work to get leaner.
Remember this, dropping down to a set point in bodyfat levels where you feel pretty comfortable isn't that difficult. You stop eating pop-tarts, whole pizzas, and drinking regular coke, and replace that with some decent food(s) and in a few weeks or months, that 20 pounds comes off. The problem is, most guys that are pretty heavy need more than 20 pounds off. Or to put it bluntly, even with that 20 pounds off you're still too fat.
A friend of mine told me "every powerlifter thinks if he takes 20 pounds off he's going to be lean. They all lose that 20 pounds and just sort of stop there. And most of em are still fat."
I can't argue with this. I know lots of guys that have done that exact thing. They drop the 20, and feel pretty good about it.
Well the fact is, if you're 275+ you're probably not that lean. So 20 pounds off really isn't a huge deal. Yeah, you'll look better and feel better than you did with that extra 20 on, but truthfully, you still probably have another 20 to go. And that 20 isn't as easy to get off.
And here is where doing SOME cardio comes into play.
There comes a point where lowering calories is not a great option. Not if you still need to train, and recover. So it's a better idea to create an energy deficit by doing more work, than lowering calories.
In fact, it's better to do cardio twice a day to get leaner, than to continue to lower calories. And stop fretting about losing muscle. This drives me crazy. So long as you are giving your body a reason to hold on to muscle, it will do so. Will you lose SOME muscle if you diet down into really super low levels of bodyfat? Possibly. But not enough to really destroy your reason to live. So take the shotgun out of your mouth and get a grip on something else. Like a protein shake or a dumbbell or something.
Conditioning comes easiest, strength is next, lean mass is hardest -
In the grand scheme of what is easy, harder, hardest, this is how these things all play out.
Getting into awesome condition is pretty easy. I'm talking from a running, jumping, fucking for 4 hours nonstop standpoint.
Building strength is harder. But it's not as hard as building tons and heaps of muscle mass. That takes much longer.
Now here is the thing, unless you're some crazy endurance athlete, most of your time for the year should be spent on gaining muscle.
That's it. That's all.
If you gain more mass, you can peak to a bigger strength total.
If you are in strongman, you can reserve just a few weeks before competition for conditioning blocks. This of course, gives you more time and energy in order to continue building muscle, or to focus those weeks on strength peaking.
Right back to square one, the more mass you have, the higher your peak will be for strength.
This gets lost on a lot of strength-only athletes. They shun bodybuilding all the while missing the boat that no one ever got significantly larger, gained more muscle, then said "oh man I got weak as hell after that."
NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON!
It's possible that their maximal strength output may have gone down temporarily because they have not been training for maximal strength, but again, simply peaking for maximal strength would have fixed that issue.
This is why I personally believe that most of the year should be spent on gaining mass, and injury prevention. If you gain more mass, everything else takes care of itself. If you aren't injured, you can train more optimally.
No one ever got bigger by NOT eating -
I'm using an absolute here by writing "no one" but in this instance, I'm fine with it.
So I will write it again.
NO ONE ever got big by not eating. This is why I don't understand the concept of using something like intermittent fasting (IF) as a means to add muscle mass.
It does NOT work for that.
Does it have merit in regards to getting leaner? Well, yes. It does.
I mean this is a simple concept. If you take someone's food away for most of the day, they will probably get leaner. This is not rocket surgery.
I really don't care about "lean gains" and other such nonsense. I also don't care about a single god damn study that says eating the same amount of calories in an 8 hour period shows no difference than spreading them out over the course of the day.
This is straight up fucking bullshit.
I don't know of a single hard clanging and banging mother fucker, that is jacked and strong as a mule's kick, that goes without eating before and after training.
"Well you can adjust it for...."
Stop. This is just flat out nonsense.
I don't care about some dude that's 168 pounds sporting rock-hard infomercial abs. I don't.
What I do know is, I've never met a single impressively large and strong dude that told me he got that way....by not eating. Or by eating in a small few hours window of the day. I know an inordinate amount of dudes that got big by eating a whole bunch of food at every meal many times a day. But not a one that did that in two or three meals in a day, in a small window.
It does NOT work that way. This is where "science" absolutely shits the fucking bed.
Maybe for some sedentary individuals, eating in an eight hour window showed similar body comp results as the person eating 5 or 6 meals, but for someone trying to gain new lean mass, it does not work. At least, not to any significant degree worth instituting such a ridiculous "dieting" strategy.
Eating is one of the main catalysts behind growing. So let's be clear here, if you don't eat, you're not gonna grow. And by "eat" I mean eating a lot, and often throughout the day. Do not expect to shovel down two large meals in eight hours and get massive.
That's like expecting a porn star to be celibate for five years and get their virginity back. It just doesn't work that way at all. It's illogical and flat out stupid.
Train for stimulus, eat and sleep to grow. Not "oh I eat...but only between the hours of..."
There are times when you have to put the textbooks and studies away and get back to working at the street level. Without street cred, no other G's are going to listen to what you have to say.
None of that had shit to do with what I just wrote but I wanted to work some gangsta thug stuff into this article as I don't believe I've ever done that before.
Get all LRB books on E-Junkie - http://www.e-junkie.com/263269
Follow LRB on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/LiftRunBang
Follow LRB on IG - http://instagram.com/liftrunbang