Since I have been training every day for over 80 days I have decided to go for a phase of bulking before doing a drastic cut for my last 7 days (begins on day 84). This means that today and over the next few days I am going into caloric overload – also on known as bulking.
The reason for this is because the body adapts itself quite quickly to food consumption patterns and training demands resulting in the dreaded plateau. The caloric surplus will also enable me to build muscle and will give me a few extra pounds of weight to see me through the cut, in theory this should enable me to shed body fat and not muscle and stop me looking like Karen Carpenter by the time I’m finished. So here’s what I’m planning to do:
1. Up my Food Intake Considerably: I’ve already begun by having 2 breakfasts (pre and post workout) but while I would normally limit my carbs to a Friday (my carb-loading day) I’ll be having them throughout the bulk (nonetheless, I still endeavour to eat clean’ish but it will not be a major concern).
2. Cut Down on the Cardio: Although, I will still use Sunday (tommorow) as a cardio day I will aim to do no cardio on any of the other days.
3. Increase my Protein Shakes: I’ve gone from 2 to 3 a day, during the cut, I will not be having any shake at all.
4. Sleep More: Sleep is one of the most important things needed to build muscle and therefore, is a must for bulking (I normally get about 6/7 hours). Ever wonder why lions are ripped; loads of protein and loads of sleep (most of the time the lioness even does all the hunting, just saying).
Breakfast: a bowl of muesli and some yogurt, honey, cinnamon and mixed nuts
Morning Shake: whey
Snack 1: spinach and sun-dried tomato omelette
Snack 2: tablespoon of peanut butter and an apple
Snack 3: half a chorizo sausage
Lunch: noodles with spicy Korean chicken and Korean wings (top right of picture)
Snack: dried red dates
Dinner: homemade pepperoni pizza with salad
Smoothie: pineapple and red berry
Snack 1: a banana
Snack 2: peanut butter
Per 100g – 190 kcals – 7.8g fat (2.9g saturates) – 30g protein
Per steak – 168 kcals – 6.9g fat (2.5g saturates) – 26.4g protein
High protein diets are needed for muscle building (and can help with weight loss) but the problem is they can become repetitive and therefore, it is advised to have some variation: chicken breast, lean beef, fish and turkey all work well. But today, I fancied a change and decided to have a look at the pork steaks, not only was the nutritional value good but, at £2 per 500g (that’s 0.5 kg if your struggling to do the math 🙂 it is a bargain. A bargain that tastes great and helps keep the protein levels high.
(top 5 non-meat protein sources)
(top 5 meat protein sources)
YESTERDAY’S FOOD LOG
Pre-Workout: yogurt, cinnamon, mixed nuts and honey
Post-Workout: all-in-one shake
Breakfast: oat and sultana bagel (no margarine)
Snack: apple and carrot
Lunch: jacket potato, chilli and salad with 2 pieces of chocolate crunch cake and ice cream (I was away and lunch was provided)
Dinner: Italian meat balls in a tomato, garlic and low-fat mozzarella sauce with salad (recipe)
Evening Shake: whey
TODAY’S FOOD LOG
Pre-Workout: low fat mozzarella and sun-dried tomato omelette
Breakfast: porridge with banana and mixed nuts
Lunch: Italian meat balls in a tomato, garlic and low-fat mozzarella sauce with salad
Snack: a tablespoon of peanut butter and tangerine
Dinner: lean chilli and mixed veg
Evening shake: whey
Snack: 3 pork steaks with onion, tomato, garlic and chilli (I intended to keep one for lunch but hey)
If I’m perfectly honest I would have condiments with everything, lime pickle, tomato ketchup and chilli sauce, particularly. The only problem is, however, that since I’ve been logging my food I’ve come to notice how full of sugar, salt and empty calories this stuff is and whilst I’m still working my way through a 1 litre bottle of chilli sauce (3/4 the way through) I wanted to share with you a healthy alternative that I’ve started to use.
Well, I’ve begun to use a chilli and garlic spice grinder. What is good is that not only does it JUST contain dried chilli, sea salt and dried flakes of garlic but it comes in a variety of different flavours and can even be refilled with other herbs and spices. This then allows me to add some much needed flavour to the blandest of meals whilst still cutting out the normal rubbish that can be found in most condiments. So if you are looking at cutting or just interested in a healthy lifestyle it might be something you want to consider too.
Pre-Workout: a banana and a tablespoon of peanut butter
Post-Workout: all-in-one shake
Breakfast: porridge and mixed nuts followed by a tangerine
Snack: a tablespoon of peanut butter
Lunch: grilled spicy chicken with mushrooms and tomato
Snack: an apple and carrot
Dinner: white lentil and goats cheese tart with salad
Snack: a kiwi
Evening shake: whey
Snack: wholegrain oat and fruit bagel (I wouldn’t normally have carbs after mid-day but I was famished and couldn’t be bothered with protein).