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Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2010 9:19 pm
by CezeN
No, your body doesn't break down its own muscle to feed its own muscle. That's silly.

Even if you feel you aren't getting enough protein, still work out. Your muscles will still repair themselves and grow. ... of-protein
Let me explain how this works:
Contrary to popular belief, you do not build muscle when you workout. When you lift weights, you are actually breaking down your muscle tissue. Immediately after working out, your body begins to repair and recover. It does this by taking protein and breaking it down into individual amino acids, then reconfiguring them and placing them wherever they need to go. Instead of just rebuilding your muscle back to normal, your body super-compensates. That means you will be gaining muscle. This is what happens if you have enough protein in your system. On the other hand, if you don't have enough protein, your body goes into a catabolic state.

Unfortunately, the catabolic state is what happens to most people. In this situation, your body does not have enough protein to rebuild, so it begins to break down your existing muscle to repair what was broken down in the gym. Obviously, this is not productive. It is also the reason why so many people don't get the results they want and get disillusioned with working out. Fortunately, you can avoid this common mistake by simply taking in an adequate amount of protein each and every day.
Ummmmmm....Are you sure?

Neo-dragon: I think that may be okay with certain body types, but not mine. I've been working out for a while now. I used to do a ton of pushups and other stuff back 9thgrade and 8th grade. Sophmore and Junior year, we worked out almost every other day during Track season.
My Senior year, I've worked out a lot on the days that I don't have a 6th or 7th period, which is 3 out of the 5 days of every school week.

My point is: I haven't gotten the results that I've worked for. Yet, I've been doing everything, and eating the average amount I usually do.

What I never tried to do was to take precious care that I get a significant amount of protein, after working out. I never cared for working on getting a huge amount of calories or protein... and simply working out hasn't worked.

So, I think I'm going to give it a try. I think I'm going to focus on the science of it, so that I just don't continue to blindly workout and keep getting weak results.

Posted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 11:21 pm
by Wil
Couldn't reply until I got back home tonight:

What I meant was that even if you aren't getting the 1g or protein per lb of (lean) body weight (or whatever it is they recommend these days), so long as you are eating SOMETHING, chances are you're getting enough amino acids to rebuild your muscles without tearing down more. You DO eat, don't you? Either way, don't ever stop working out. You stop working out, you start going backwards in any progress you have made.

Besides, you're insanely skinny with relatively little muscle mass to begin with, making you a probable ectomorph, or a "hard gainer". That is to say, most ectomorphs have a lot of difficulty putting on significant amounts of muscle without a lot of hard work at the gym with the proper equipment and eating pretty near perfectly every single day.
I never cared for working on getting a huge amount of calories or protein... and simply working out hasn't worked.
If I remember correctly, it isn't unheard of for ectomorphs to be eating upward of 5000+ good calories a day to put on muscle.

Posted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 6:29 am
by Satya
Good job making "good" the keyword. It's true, hard-gainers need the extra calories - so long as they're "clean" calories. Didn't I hear that Micheal Phelps, during a training period, would eat over 20,000 calories a day? See, he's obviously a hard gainer (tall, lanky) and during training he's exerting insane amounts of energy. But Wil is right - simply put, if you don't get adequate protein from nutrition/supplementation, you won't be gaining as much as you could - but you're still gaining, because while you might not have the "optimum" amount of protein and other nutrients your body wants in its recovery phase, you've still got some.

As for me, I've been increasing my cardio and intensifying my lifting by shortening rest periods and increasing weight. Sometimes there's too much crammed into a workout. Even though my 'short' days are still 2 hours plus, there's so much I wanna do. Yesterday was a prime example.

Date: 6/12/10 - Chest | Tricep | Cardio
Dumbbell Bench Press .......... | 5 sets / 6-10 reps / 2x 80lb dumbbells
Cable Tricep Pulldown ........... | 5 sets / 6-10 reps / 90lbs
Dumbbell Chest Flye ............. | 4 sets / 6-10 reps / 2x 50lb dumbbells
Overhead Tricep Extension .. | 4 sets / 6-10 reps / 65lbs
Dumbbell Incline Press ......... | 3 sets / 8 reps / 2x 70lb dumbbells
Lying Tricep Extension ..........| 3 sets / 6-8 reps / 65lbs
Dumbbell Close-Grip Press ... | 4 sets / 6-8 reps / 2x 65lb dumbbells
Tricep Isolation Pulldown ...... | 4 sets / 8 reps / 30lbs
Weighted Full Dips ................ | 3 sets / 6 reps / 45lb plate
Plyometric Pushups ............... | 3 sets / 10 reps / bodyweight
Gassers (Wind Sprints) ......... | 10 reps / 20 minutes
Track Jog ................................ | 20 laps (1 mile) / 8 minutes
Boxing drills ............................ | 4 rounds / 15 minutes
Spin bike ............................... | 4 miles / 15 minutes
Cooldown - Stretch

Posted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 11:34 am
by CezeN
Well damn, you guys make it sound like I have to eat like a bear.

Also, what exactly are "good" calories?
What qualifies as good?

Posted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:17 pm
by Wil
* Vegetables, fruit, nuts, and seeds (organic)
* Meat (free-range, organic, grass fed)
* Avoid starchy, sugary, processed, and refined foods whenever possible
Also read:

Posted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:38 pm
by CezeN

I guess I put both good and bad calories in my body. Oh well.

Posted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 2:39 pm
by Satya
Working out IS fun to do. Today I had a fitness assessment as part of a gym promotion/contest. A whole workup; aerobic/cardio testing, strength gauge, flexibility, blood pressure, heart rate, body mass, bodyfat percentage, body dimension measurements, and an overall fitness score. (The contest is that at the end of summer you take the assessment again, and the more improvement you make, you get a higher percent chance at a prize.)

My scores made me very happy. Under 8.5 percent bodyfat, 'excellent' ratings in flexibility, cardio/aerobic and strength, and a nice surprise was that apparently I have excellent left-right symmetry - same arm and leg measurements on both sides. Compared to last year's scores for a different contest, I shaved 2 percent bodyfat, cut my chest skinfold test in HALF and nearly doubled my aerobic fitness score and my overall fitness score increased by almost 20 points.

Posted: Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:55 pm
by Wil
Finished the second week of the couch to 5k jogging program... finally. I'm taking it at a slow pace because I'm both trying to adapt my feet/legs to running for longer distances on REAL surfaces (read: concrete, asphalt, grass, and running paths) and because I have no long distance endurance.

Also got back on to my previous awesome lifting program. :-D

Posted: Wed Jul 21, 2010 4:28 pm
by Young Val
skipping Zumba to cram some more for copyediting test and do laundry. feel guilty. trying not to. will do cardio tomorrow after interview even though tomorrow was supposed to be my day off to assuage my guilt. damnit.

Posted: Wed Jul 21, 2010 10:19 pm
by VelvetElvis
So I need to start working out. this whole "getting married" thing and all.

Posted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 11:03 am
by Wil
Can't really lift now that I almost cut my thumb off and all. In a few weeks it should be healed good enough to start slowly again. However, I CAN run. Before I went camping, I bought a pair of these to run in, making use of the POSE/bare foot running style and WOW do I feel awesome running in them. I've never felt so good running. That is, until the side stitch from hell hits me and I can hardly breath. But, still!

Posted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 12:36 pm
by megxers
I have been working out more and have amended my diet once again. This time we've taken out rice for the most part. On the bright side, I've lost a seemingly significant amount of weight this week & a half. For some reason I also have this itch to play basketball.

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:02 am
by CezeN
Yeah, this whole eat big to be big thing isn't working out.

I guess I'll do it on the days I workout, but not on rest days.

My body stored some of the fat - the great abs I was cultivating are slightly covered. Ugh.

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 12:15 pm
by Wil
You're going to put on fat by eating "big" no matter what; you're eating far too many calories per day for the body not to do that. People will put on quite a significant amount of fat in the off season (winter), and start cutting several months before summer so that they look good on the beach of whatever. The difference is, 1) Your metabolism is so ridiculous that you'll cut fat easily, 2) The added muscle you put on will make this job even easier, and 3) Your body's "normal" is that of having a low body fat, so you'll have an easy time of getting there. Bodybuilders' bodies, for example, are so used to cutting fat that they do it exceptionally well. Have you never seen what a professional bodybuilder looks like in their off season compared to them in contest form? Just ignore the fact that they look so stupid with that much muscle. :P

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 1:18 pm
by CezeN
Wait, what do you mean by cutting fat?
Like, how does the whole process work(the whole eating alot to help your muscles grow without retaining the fat)?

Maybe if I have a better understanding, I won't be so worried.

I mean, I worked out on Friday. Saturday and Sunday my abs looked awesome, but I was eating alot still. Monday, I wake up and my awesome abs are chubby. That made me "wtf".

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 1:35 pm
by Wil
You eat a lot of calories so that the body has ample supply to rebuild and create new muscle tissue. In doing this, your body also has the tendency to store fat since you are eating so many excess calories. This will continue until you decide that you would like to remove the excess body fat; typically before summer. This is the process of "bulking", or eating far above your caloric maintenance levels.

You will then eat far less, but still lift weights and exercise. Your body will then metabolize the fat that was stored, along with a little bit of the muscle you put on. This is the process of "cutting", or eating below your caloric maintenance levels.

During bulking, you WILL put on fat. This is why you later "cut" to get rid of the fat.

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:31 pm
by CezeN
Hmmm, that makes sense.

A couple of days ago, someone told me that I should alternate between 2 weeks of working out while eating alot of calories, and 2 weeks of working out and eating the amount that I usually eat to maintain my normal bodyweight.

With what you just said in mind, it all makes sense.

Two weeks of bulking, two weeks of cutting.

Got it now.

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:49 pm
by Wil
That's... a pretty terrible idea. But, whatever.

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:56 pm
by CezeN
Why is it terrible?

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:19 pm
by Wil
Because the act of cutting not only metabolizes fat but also muscle. Going a short two weeks will not build up any significant amount of muscle, and then cutting will then destroy any progress you've made.

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:25 pm
by Satya
You want to give your body enough time to build enough muscle to withstand the cutting period. You need your build time to be long enough make your body used to the idea of getting adequate calories for the work your putting in, and your cutting time has to be just long enough to make a nice sized dent in your bodyfat, but definitely not too long as to not enter a starvation mode where your metabolism slows because the body adjusts to getting fewer calories and starts holding on to them for dear life as a survival mechanism, so two weeks is not long enough.

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:47 pm
by CezeN

So you're saying I have to bulk up, basically becoming fat, for a long time - and then work out while lowering my calorie intake, to get results?

Btw- I'll relay his reply to what you guys are saying.

Posted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:56 pm
by CezeN
He said

"I'd be willing to bet that your friend hasn't tried the routine himself and
is simply regurgitating advice he heard from a friend of a friend, who heard
it from a friend of a friend...etc etc.

It's about shocking your body - you have to keep surprising it in order to
keep growing.

It's true that if you don't eat enough in the cutting part, you will lose
too much muscle. You still need to keep the protein levels high and eat 5-6
meals a day - just not as many calories as you normally would have.

Give it a go and make up your own mind."

I think I actually will give it a try.

Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 5:22 am
by Wil
It isn't so much 'shocking the body' as it should be 'shocking the muscles'. The body has a tendency to adapt only as far as it needs to adapt. For example, for lighter skin people, when the body tans the skin to protect against the sun, it will only tan dark enough to protect you against the most light you are ever exposed to. This same idea applies to muscles. For the muscles to be more inclined to grow, you must not only continually increase the weight, but you must also change the lift in which you do to target that muscle. The quickest and easiest way to do this is to essentially "shock" the muscles by never following an exact routine, changing it up every week, etc.

The body, when it comes to nutrition for muscle gain and fat loss, however, works on a very long-term approach. It uses insulin levels in the blood stream to keep track over the long term how much food it is getting. When insulin levels have been low for a longer length of time, the body's metabolism slows drastically and is less inclined to let go of fat, and when insulin levels rise again the body does all it can to store energy in case of another food shortage. However, insulin levels that are stable over long lengths of time make the body more inclined to give up fat and food energy to do other things, such as power you through an intense workout and feed muscle.

It just seems to me like you're ALWAYS trying to find the easiest way to do this, and yet here you are, so many months later, and you're still not seeing the results you want. No, I'm not regurgitating what a friend of a friend who heard from a friend told me. This is how world class athletes (body builders) have done it for the last thirty years, and there is a reason for that. Your metabolism is already so ridiculous, that you shouldn't be worrying about putting on a small layer of fat, because all you need to do is just stop eating for a couple of weeks and you'll have your skinny-enough-to-see-abs back.

In my opinion, you're not going to see any results by bulking and cutting every two weeks. Even if it did work, you would need to have a very, very good understanding of your body and the ability to keep track of exact macro and micro nutrient splits such that you are running just under a deficit for your cuts, and just over a deficit for your bulks.

Then again, who knows, sometimes the strangest things work for people. While people are largely similar, some people are just a little different and certain things work for them that are less likely to work for other people. I just know that I would take the fat gain from bulking to be a positive sign, to show that you're putting enough in your body that you're creating an excess of energy which is placing your body in the zone for muscle growth. You can't have your cake and eat it too, and that's what you're trying to do with your two week thing.

Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 6:31 am
by locke
So I'm taking advantage of a 7day pass to 24hr McGym and hitting it up when I get off work between 2 and 3:30. yesterday was the first day. They had swanky treadmills I'd never seen before, so I decided to do an hour of cardio. I did my favorite cardio warmup, a hill climb where I increase by one degree of incline every ten seconds. Except their treadmill went to 30 degrees. so I did my usual until I got to 18 degrees, then I jumped it in three degree increments (and 20 seconds in between changing until I got it up to 30 degrees), it reminded me of walking the trails at Yosemite the week before. I did that for a minute then dialed it back down in reverse. 10-12ish minutes of hill climb done, I started my 20 minutes of intervals. 1 minute fast, 1 minute slow, each new interval is .5 mph faster until I get to 10mph when I increase it increments of 0.1 or 0.2 depending on how I'm feeling. Lately I've been starting my intervals higher on my hill climb descent, so yesterday I started my first jogging interval (at 6.5mph) at a 4degree incline, then I keep decreasing the incline and increasing my speed until I'm at a 1degree incline which I consider a minimum (don't like running on the treadmill at flat, for some reason).
after a 10.2 final interval I only had 30 minutes to go. I took a few minutes of a breather just walking then began increasing my speed until I was at a light jog. I'd intended to keep that up for the remaining 30 minutes, but was pretty damned wiped out at 15 minutes to go, so I pushed through to 10 minutes left and then decided to go back to a walk. Then I noticed that this swanky treadmill could also go to a negative 3 degree incline, so I thought, "Hey! I'll walk 'downhill' my last ten minutes!" so that's what I did.

I hate the treadmill though because it doesn't have a key pad to key in speeds. It has usefull buttons for quickly changing incline and is the easiest treadmill to set for a preprogram I've seen (though I almsot always do manual anyways) it's more just for the novelty of using it.

Today was non cardio, but I like to warmup on cardio (and I couldn't find their rowers), so I did a quick hill climb to 18 degrees and back down, followed by about four intervals from 6-8mph over fifteen minutes. Really terrific warmup I think I"ll keep it. Then I did one of my strength circuits. Damned mcgym is hard to find anything. Impossible to do pullups there, either its a slick steel bar, or falling apart pads or an assist machine I don't need. squat racks are a joke, they have an elevated platform that I presume is for deadlifts but just makes deadlifts more dangerous. and everything is very spread out so I find it really hard to maintain momentum needed on a circuit. Plus their weights are polygonal not circular, and that's just wrong. practical, but wrong. ;) I only did two circuits because I was lazy and it was annoying wandering all over the gym having to pick up my phone and keys and wallet after every exercise.

I am so glad this place is NOT my gym. Though the pleasure of working out at 3AM makes me wish my gym was open from midnight-5am

Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 10:06 am
by CezeN
That's okay Wil, I'm not going to do that.
I'm not going to do bulking and ripping, at all.

I give up on my muscles growing big, and don't care anymore.

I'm going to work out. I'm going to rest two days between.
And, I'm going to eat a big amount of calories and protein, only on the days I workout. That's how my routine and diet is going to be.

If my muscles decide to grow, fine, if they don't, whatever.
I'll still get the health benifits and confidence boost from working out. Working out will still be fun.

Also, I don't see how I've been "always trying to find the easiest way". I've barely knew any way, till now. Anything I tried, I tried because I thought it would work - not because it was easy. Because its the only way I knew and understood. Whatever you say, though.

Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:56 pm
by Satya
Now that that's all settled...

UGH. My back is just NOT getting any better. Yes, it's my own damn fault and I know it. But I'd go CRAZY if I didn't rigidly adhere to my lifting schedule. While I change up the lifts and pacing and whatnot, if I don't get my 4-5 days in a week of strength and 4-5 days in a week of cardio, I would lose what's left of my f'ing mind. I'm the kind of person that can be very single-minded and doggedly determined in purpose. Effort is the currency by which dreams are purchased, and my dream of being a world-class athlete will be attained, one way or another. In the meantime I will have to suffer with this pain. I don't know if I just tweaked or wrenched it or whatever, usually I'm very conscientious about proper form and technique to prevent that; and I don't recall the actual instance of it happening. So it's not an 'injury' per se, just an f'ing annoying strain. Meanwhile my weight has stabilized again at about 178, and the next cut-period will likely see it at about 175 - my normal gym shuts down during the next two weeks (for employee further-education, refurbishment and installation of new equipment), and they give their members a two-week pass to other facilities. The other facility I'll be going to is pretty awesome, actually, and I expect it will help. They've got this awesome semi-football field with the regulation artificial-grass surface, a sprint track and good cardio equipment as well as a new Olympic weight room. And I've been feeling good about my strength gains. I stopped doing barbell bench presses almost entirely in favor of dumbbells - a much better range of motion and 'pump'. And of course, the psychological factor of heaving up a pair of giant-ass dumbbells is cool too. I love dumbbell shrugs, too - pretty much everything feels more badass with dumbbells. And I've made gains of a few reps in my weighted-pullups and weighted dips. You get some weird looks walking around with a weight-place dangling between your legs from a chain around your waist, but those weird looks turn to stares when you're pounding out sets that most people can barely do with just bodyweight. Lastly, I've been talking to some of the trainers about getting certified myself and working at a gym, seeing which organizations they like and are most thorough, accredited and worthwhile.

Posted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 3:16 pm
by locke
went back to the mcgym, ran on a regular treadmill.


it has a keypad like the treadmills at my gym, but unlike my gym, this keypad is only used for typing in age and weight, it doesn't control speed at all. That makes intervals very hard to do, and once I get past 8mph, I have to Jump to the sides so I can safely turn the treadmill back down to a walking interval speed.

looking forward to a rest day today after three tough workout days.

Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 10:44 am
by Ela
I really need to join a gym. Working out on my own is not working well for me these days. Complicated by the fact that I am having trouble with the knee I had surgery on a year and a half ago. Very frustrating.

Posted: Thu Aug 26, 2010 12:52 am
by Wil
Revamped my diet this week. Cut out all grains, dairy, starchy vegetables, and processed foods. So far I've noticed that I remain fuller for longer, I don't get this incredible desire to eat late at night, and it is extremely easy to eat too much. However, tonight's run was hell.

Posted: Thu Aug 26, 2010 1:17 pm
by megxers
Yeah, I've found that cutting out most grains helps a lot. I eat fruits/veggies, quinoa, tofu, yogurt, nuts, cheese, and sometimes corn & rice. I think I am finally "recovered" from my every-major-meal-involves-processed-rice problem of the spring, which was bad.

Posted: Thu Aug 26, 2010 1:25 pm
by CezeN
Worked out at my college gym for the first time, yesterday.

I was delightfully surprised to find that I could still bench multiple sets with 45s on each side - which is still surprising considering my size.

Did a whole bunch of stuff.

Ate a big meal at my cafeteria afterwards.

Posted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 2:36 pm
by CezeN
Has anyone ever gotten an intensely painful headache when working out?

For example, today and Wednesday, when I was doing tricep excercises - I forced myself to do one more despite what my body wanted. And, after the effort, there was a quick, sudden headache that gradually died down after a couple of minutes.

It's only happened twice, Wednesday and today, and after putting extra effort on the same machine excercise - so I'm wondering how common it is.

I expect that its from simply concentrating and putting so much effort into doing the last rep.

Posted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 3:31 pm
by Wil
Nope, never heard of that before. Probably what you said though, just focusing. Make sure to breath. Don't tense up and stay relaxed.

Yesterday I jogged for 20 minutes straight, which is quite amazing to me. Yay, endurance.

Today I squatted 155 3x5, which is decent for ATG back squats, but was difficult for me where I had trouble completing the last set. I also military pressed 115, which is pretty decent I suppose. My bench is at 125 at the moment but is still easy to complete. Deadlift is at 145 which is also very easy still.

Posted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 4:57 pm
by Satya
I have heard of exertion headaches, where exercise can induce a headache. Normally during exercise, the blood vessels dilate to increase bloodflow to the muscles to handle the exertion, but if the vessels don't dilate sufficiently then the increased blood pressure can cause a pressure headache. Make sure you're getting sufficient levels of magnesium and L-arginine.