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Diet and exercise advice?

Roober

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The other thread got me thinking about throwing a plan out their for the experts of SS to dissect. I will try to keep this high level and simple...

Diet - this is likely my biggest problem, but here is a general plan. With kids, housework, long workdays, and a fairly spotaneous lifestyle, meal prep and shopping is not always possible.

Additionally, my diet has been a bigger focus lately because there are some foods that mess me up (e.g. feel like I just went to a buffet). It seems to be breads, but not all of them. Sometimes sugar too. I know if I keep carbs down, I feel good. Ive considered an elimination diet to narrow it down...

Breakfast options
-3 eggs and greens
-overnight oats
-omellete with broccoli from local diner if I don't meal prep

Lunch options
-chicken or steak (1lb.) Spinach salad
-protein and veggie leftovers
-restaurant - deli nearby with meat and veggies hotbar

Dinner options
-greens and protein (2 chicken breast, steak, tofu or salmon)

Snack options
-blueberries
-almonds

Supplements
Morning - whey protein powder with 8oz milk
Night time - casein protein with 8oz milk


LIFTING PLAN
At home, I have the Bowflex adjustable dumbbells (10-95 lbs), a squat rack, bench, and 300 lbs Olympic weights. I also have a 24 hour fitness membership, but my availability during peak times means I'm waiting for the squat racks... And I hate wasting time waiting...

I used to have a 4 day split
Chest and Tris, back and bis, legs, core

I couldn't always hit 4 days a week, and would miss muscle groups, so I went to hitting the whole body every workout, rotate a low rep heavy day with a high rep light day, 3 -4 times per week

Dumbbell bench
Dumbbell or barbell row
Dumbbell shoulder press
Squat
Sometimes deadlift
Various ab exercises between sets

I also like running, even though I know it's not conducive to bulking. 2+ miles 2-3 times a week.

SUMMARY
I'm currently 6'1, 210, and would like to get rid of the belly fat and increase muscle tone. Any modifications to my plan would be helpful. I don't want to make excuses, but my life is anything but consistent, so rigid routines are not easily employed. Although, I feel like this applies to most people, hence the subsequent failure.

What are good snack options?
What are good meal substitutes?
What happens when you skip a meal because stuck at work or something else?

Any help would be greatly appreciated

@Staticus
@Infern0
@cola
@ImTheDoubleGreatest!
 

cola

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Diet: The diet is solid. You basically described a lite keto. One key with diet that a lot of people mess up is cheating. Once a week for one meal, have that burger and fries or pizza or whatever you are craving. It gives you something to look forward to and is a reward for following your diet during the week.

Cardio: I’m having tremendous results with playing full court basketball 3-4 days a week. Basketball is a form of HIIT. Periods of running, walking, full speed sprints and jumping. I could never get the cardio component down until I started playing ball because I hate running, but if I’m running with a goal it makes it so much easier. You can replicate this on a treadmill by during sprints. HIIT is king, it’s going to melt that fat like a hot knife through butter.


Jocko Willink: I bring up Jocko because I had a similar issue. Spontaneous lifestyle, sometimes having to eat what’s around because no time to meal prep. Jocko gave an answer to this question that was so simple and brilliant. Simply don’t eat. The fact is unless you have some underlying condition you can go days without food. No clean food around is no excuse. If there is no clean food around simply don’t eat till there is.

Time to workout: I have friends who say “I could look like you, I just don’t have time”.. I always look offense to that. What are you saying? You are a productive member of society and I’m not? There is no excuse. I have worked 16 hour shifts, crawled to the gym barely conscious and hit those weights. Are you really too busy or are you not willing to make the sacrifice?
Would it really kill you to wake up an hour and 15 minutes earlier to get a workout in? Probably not.
Kids, wife, jobs.. there are no excuses.

Mark Wahlberg is sleep at 7 pm every night so he can be up at 3 am and workout, spend time with kids and film. Are you busier than Mark Wahlberg? I doubt it. You have a home gym you should never miss a workout ever.
This is tough love don’t get offended.

No excuses! You either want it or you don’t.
 

ImTheDoubleGreatest!

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Like cola said, diet is key for slimming down. Keep in mind that certain foods are good for certain things. For example, vegetables that grow in the ground (e.g. carrots, radishes, onions, beets [beets are particularly good for your cardiovascular system; just cuz you like to run], etc. ) are good for increasing testosterone, while anything related to the cabbage family (e.g. broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, etc. ) are good for increasing free testosterone and preventing your test from converting into estrogen. None of these things are gonna make a huge difference, but the effect occurs overt time. Just an FYI, the best way to cook most veggies is steaming them (don’t overdo it though). Some are better raw, however (I believe radishes are one, but I could be wrong).

Furthermore, if you want to really see results fast, you gotta grind hard. Cola said to go for a cheat meal once a week, I don’t even do that. Sometimes I’ll steam some broccoli, throw them in a blender with some radishes, add some water and some olive oil, blend that **** tf up, and drink it. It’s fkn disgusting, but I see the difference lol. I’ve been doing that at least once a week, but I’m trying to up it to 3. Broccoli I eat almost everyday lol. I don’t eat for pleasure (although my steak and chicken is definitely on point though lol, and sweet potatoes are always delicious).

I’ve been slacking on this too lately, but I try to eat 4 cloves of raw garlic everyday. It brings blood flow your junk so it acts as a natural aphrodisiac, plus I think it increases test further bc of that.
~~~
If you’re doing deadlifts, there’s no point in doing barbell rows. Just do pull-ups instead. You get a greater stretch because it works through a much greater ROM than rows do. Try and incorporate some sideways shoulder raises too, it’ll make your shoulders look broader. And get your push-up game underway as well. You said you might miss some workouts bc your schedule is hectic—fine. But I assume that you have two arms, two legs, and a ground beneath ou everywhere you go. Can’t get a workout in? Make it up with pushups just to get the blood flowing.
Jocko Willink: I bring up Jocko because I had a similar issue. Spontaneous lifestyle, sometimes having to eat what’s around because no time to meal prep. Jocko gave an answer to this question that was so simple and brilliant. Simply don’t eat. The fact is unless you have some underlying condition you can go days without food. No clean food around is no excuse. If there is no clean food around simply don’t eat till there is.
I whole-heartedly agree with the above. One of my profs today cancelled class so this is why I have time to type this right now, but I could be out eating somewhere if I really wanted to. But I’m not. You know why, Roober? Because all of the food here at my uni is unhealthy as **** and fkn sucks (it’s also expensive too). Tuesdays & Thursdays I don’t eat till the evening. It’s not even intentional tbh, it’s just that I typically have all my classes back-to-back-to-back lol so it works out (but then again I structured my classes to be that way). From 14-16 I purposefully would chose to go hungry rather than eat unhealthy, and this was when I was still growing lol. I slacked off a bit after but still ate better than most. Now I’m back at it again. I can kill my self with starvation if I really wanted to. I’m hungy af rn even as I’m typing this. But **** it, will of iron. I don’t even drink water till the evening either just cuz.

If you can’t eat healthy, don’t eat at all. Most people are addicted to food, they’re not actually hungry. Look into fasting on days you’ll be super busy. Tons of benefits with it, especially for men. It’s the only way to really lose a lot of weight without having a ton of loose skin. It’s hard at first, but you get used to it. Right now I’m super fidgety and have a lot of energy and aggression bc I’m hungry lol. It sucks but it’s good for you; lowers risk of cancer, heart disease, prion disorders such as Alzheimer’s, diabetes, pretty much anything autoimmune, and it also increases your testosterone and causes your growth hormone levels to skyrocket, makes you more insulin sensitive (your insulin levels drop way down), and increase cortisol (which is normally not good, but in this case it is).
~~~
What are good snack options?
As for snacks—cans of tuna/salmon are good for a quick protein source. Beef jerky is another. Dark chocolate, guacamole dip with corn tortilla chips (or celery/carrots if not), yogurt, popcorn, nuts/trail mix, cheese, smoothies, hard-boiled eggs, pickles, olives, sandwiches, any type of fruit.
What are good meal substitutes?
Barley soup, stuffed zucchini (hard to make, takes a while), rice and ground beef, corned beef & cabbage/carrots/potatoes/celery, any kind of pot roast really (slow cook from morning so that it’s ready for dinner), tuna fish casserole, rice & chicken (the standard), succotash, Hoppin’ John, Maque Choux, dill mashed potatoes, jambalaya, cornbread, [chicken] gumbo, skirt steak w/ chimichurri, Texas caviar, any Louisiana/southern dishes, chicken Marsala, pasta e fagioli, scrambled eggs w/ cheese+potato+turkey bits, tons of vegetables in InstaPot w/ steak/rotisserie chicken (or rice instead!).

You can YouTube Alan Thrall videos for his tips on meal prep and nutrition, I think his stuff is pretty good tbh.
What happens when you skip a meal because stuck at work or something else?
You’ll have to make up for it. It’s better to not eat at all and gorge suddenly (i.e. fasting) than to just eat less bc then you don’t get any of the hormonal benefits.

Honestly man, I’d look into meal prepping. It’s just once a week, everything in a tupperware container (glass is better than plastic), and you’re good to go.

Other than that, workout hard.
 

Roober

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Diet: The diet is solid. You basically described a lite keto. One key with diet that a lot of people mess up is cheating. Once a week for one meal, have that burger and fries or pizza or whatever you are craving. It gives you something to look forward to and is a reward for following your diet during the week.

Cardio: I’m having tremendous results with playing full court basketball 3-4 days a week. Basketball is a form of HIIT. Periods of running, walking, full speed sprints and jumping. I could never get the cardio component down until I started playing ball because I hate running, but if I’m running with a goal it makes it so much easier. You can replicate this on a treadmill by during sprints. HIIT is king, it’s going to melt that fat like a hot knife through butter.


Jocko Willink: I bring up Jocko because I had a similar issue. Spontaneous lifestyle, sometimes having to eat what’s around because no time to meal prep. Jocko gave an answer to this question that was so simple and brilliant. Simply don’t eat. The fact is unless you have some underlying condition you can go days without food. No clean food around is no excuse. If there is no clean food around simply don’t eat till there is.

Time to workout: I have friends who say “I could look like you, I just don’t have time”.. I always look offense to that. What are you saying? You are a productive member of society and I’m not? There is no excuse. I have worked 16 hour shifts, crawled to the gym barely conscious and hit those weights. Are you really too busy or are you not willing to make the sacrifice?
Would it really kill you to wake up an hour and 15 minutes earlier to get a workout in? Probably not.
Kids, wife, jobs.. there are no excuses.

Mark Wahlberg is sleep at 7 pm every night so he can be up at 3 am and workout, spend time with kids and film. Are you busier than Mark Wahlberg? I doubt it. You have a home gym you should never miss a workout ever.
This is tough love don’t get offended.

No excuses! You either want it or you don’t.
Good insight and thanks for taking the time to respond.

Not eating is something I can totally do. Seems so simple and brilliant. I suppose it's all of those programs saying... "Eat every two hours" or whatever other nonsense.

The workouts isn't too much of a problem as I can do it even with kids, or in the evenings. Actually, my 6 year old is beginning to watch and participate, albeit with 5 lbs.

I have been doing a cheat "day", but that definitely seems like too much. One meal it is...
 

Roober

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Like cola said, diet is key for slimming down. Keep in mind that certain foods are good for certain things. For example, vegetables that grow in the ground (e.g. carrots, radishes, onions, beets [beets are particularly good for your cardiovascular system; just cuz you like to run], etc. ) are good for increasing testosterone, while anything related to the cabbage family (e.g. broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, etc. ) are good for increasing free testosterone and preventing your test from converting into estrogen. None of these things are gonna make a huge difference, but the effect occurs overt time. Just an FYI, the best way to cook most veggies is steaming them (don’t overdo it though). Some are better raw, however (I believe radishes are one, but I could be wrong).

Furthermore, if you want to really see results fast, you gotta grind hard. Cola said to go for a cheat meal once a week, I don’t even do that. Sometimes I’ll steam some broccoli, throw them in a blender with some radishes, add some water and some olive oil, blend that **** tf up, and drink it. It’s fkn disgusting, but I see the difference lol. I’ve been doing that at least once a week, but I’m trying to up it to 3. Broccoli I eat almost everyday lol. I don’t eat for pleasure (although my steak and chicken is definitely on point though lol, and sweet potatoes are always delicious).

I’ve been slacking on this too lately, but I try to eat 4 cloves of raw garlic everyday. It brings blood flow your junk so it acts as a natural aphrodisiac, plus I think it increases test further bc of that.
~~~
If you’re doing deadlifts, there’s no point in doing barbell rows. Just do pull-ups instead. You get a greater stretch because it works through a much greater ROM than rows do. Try and incorporate some sideways shoulder raises too, it’ll make your shoulders look broader. And get your push-up game underway as well. You said you might miss some workouts bc your schedule is hectic—fine. But I assume that you have two arms, two legs, and a ground beneath ou everywhere you go. Can’t get a workout in? Make it up with pushups just to get the blood flowing.

I whole-heartedly agree with the above. One of my profs today cancelled class so this is why I have time to type this right now, but I could be out eating somewhere if I really wanted to. But I’m not. You know why, Roober? Because all of the food here at my uni is unhealthy as **** and fkn sucks (it’s also expensive too). Tuesdays & Thursdays I don’t eat till the evening. It’s not even intentional tbh, it’s just that I typically have all my classes back-to-back-to-back lol so it works out (but then again I structured my classes to be that way). From 14-16 I purposefully would chose to go hungry rather than eat unhealthy, and this was when I was still growing lol. I slacked off a bit after but still ate better than most. Now I’m back at it again. I can kill my self with starvation if I really wanted to. I’m hungy af rn even as I’m typing this. But **** it, will of iron. I don’t even drink water till the evening either just cuz.

If you can’t eat healthy, don’t eat at all. Most people are addicted to food, they’re not actually hungry. Look into fasting on days you’ll be super busy. Tons of benefits with it, especially for men. It’s the only way to really lose a lot of weight without having a ton of loose skin. It’s hard at first, but you get used to it. Right now I’m super fidgety and have a lot of energy and aggression bc I’m hungry lol. It sucks but it’s good for you; lowers risk of cancer, heart disease, prion disorders such as Alzheimer’s, diabetes, pretty much anything autoimmune, and it also increases your testosterone and causes your growth hormone levels to skyrocket, makes you more insulin sensitive (your insulin levels drop way down), and increase cortisol (which is normally not good, but in this case it is).
~~~

As for snacks—cans of tuna/salmon are good for a quick protein source. Beef jerky is another. Dark chocolate, guacamole dip with corn tortilla chips (or celery/carrots if not), yogurt, popcorn, nuts/trail mix, cheese, smoothies, hard-boiled eggs, pickles, olives, sandwiches, any type of fruit.

Barley soup, stuffed zucchini (hard to make, takes a while), rice and ground beef, corned beef & cabbage/carrots/potatoes/celery, any kind of pot roast really (slow cook from morning so that it’s ready for dinner), tuna fish casserole, rice & chicken (the standard), succotash, Hoppin’ John, Maque Choux, dill mashed potatoes, jambalaya, cornbread, [chicken] gumbo, skirt steak w/ chimichurri, Texas caviar, any Louisiana/southern dishes, chicken Marsala, pasta e fagioli, scrambled eggs w/ cheese+potato+turkey bits, tons of vegetables in InstaPot w/ steak/rotisserie chicken (or rice instead!).

You can YouTube Alan Thrall videos for his tips on meal prep and nutrition, I think his stuff is pretty good tbh.

You’ll have to make up for it. It’s better to not eat at all and gorge suddenly (i.e. fasting) than to just eat less bc then you don’t get any of the hormonal benefits.

Honestly man, I’d look into meal prepping. It’s just once a week, everything in a tupperware container (glass is better than plastic), and you’re good to go.

Other than that, workout hard.
Thanks for taking the time to respond. That is quite the information bucket.

Its funny that you brought up T levels cause I just got a full blood panel. And I think I am definitely going to look into fasting more. I have to say, sometimes I don't even really feel hungry when I eat. Then I think, well, I'll be busy for a couple hours, so I better eat now. Probably not the right approach...
 

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Kotaix

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I think you have a solid plan as-is, but what really matters is constancy. Don't cheat on yourself and you'll eventually see the gains. You can't be doing this for anyone other than you.

I've been going to the gym pretty consistently for about 8 months now and I've never felt better or had more energy. For a while I was eating crappy and I've noticed a huge spike in energy when I eat clean. I have some foods that mess me up as well, bread and gluten in particular give me problems with an autoimmune condition. This puts almost all fast foods out of the running. The only fast food I have close to work that I can eat is Qdoba, with occasional trips to Panda Express. Otherwise I bring food from home.

Sugar is the devil. I only have brown baking sugar in my house and I never buy or drink soda anymore. I'd only drink it if there is nothing else and no clean water around, and the one time I've had one in the past few years since I quit them, it made me feel like sh!t pretty much right away.

Beer... well we have to have some guilty pleasures so that's not going anywhere.

Try skinnypop popcorn mini cakes as alternative snacks to crackers or potato chips. Also Larabars. Very clean ingredient labels on both and no gluten or wheat in them at all. Pitted dates make good natural sweet snacks if you're craving sweet, the bulk bins at the supermarket are your friend.

Cola is right about the cardio. My resting heart rate is down to 58 bpm from around 72 before I started. I never thought I could even do that considering how much I hated PE in school. I'm in the best shape I've ever been in and the performance in both sports and the bedroom has improved drastically.
 

ImTheDoubleGreatest!

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Thanks for taking the time to respond. That is quite the information bucket.

Its funny that you brought up T levels cause I just got a full blood panel. And I think I am definitely going to look into fasting more. I have to say, sometimes I don't even really feel hungry when I eat. Then I think, well, I'll be busy for a couple hours, so I better eat now. Probably not the right approach...
Hey no problem man, there’s so much more that I can say. A friend of mine and I constantly read into the published scientific research of everything related to fitness and we share a lot of stuff with each other lol. There’s so much more that I can say, but for the most part, just keeping a general mindset of “doing what you’re supposed to” is the most important thing, it’s just using common sense really. One more tip: don’t drink. Alcohol kills gains. A study I read way long ago showed that alcohol decreased protein synthesis (i.e. muscle-building) by 20%, which is honestly huge when you think about it. But oh don’t even need to read that stuff, just ask around for other gymrats have experienced, they’ll tel you first hand.
654A7D87-03E3-4F69-A985-EC8AAE8F4C94.jpeg
Made this just now. Broccoli, olive oil, water, and carrots. Drinking another that has radishes in there too lol
 

EyeBRollin

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99% of all lifting plans out there are too complicated. If I were you, start with Starting Strength. It uses only the most important lifts.

Workout A
Squat 3 X 5
Overhead Press 3 X 5
Deadlift 1 X 5

Workout B
Squat 3 X 5
Bench Press 3 X 5
Chin Ups 3 X 10
Back Hyperextensions 3 X10

Those are literally the only lifts you ever "need" to do. Just alternate Workout A and B, working out 2-3 times per week. Leave at least 1 day between workouts for rest. Older lifters (over 30) are fine with even 2 days between each workout, as the extra rest will help.

Don't bother working out more than 3 times per week. Unless you take steroids, you will over train.
 

Roober

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99% of all lifting plans out there are too complicated. If I were you, start with Starting Strength. It uses only the most important lifts.

Workout A
Squat 3 X 5
Overhead Press 3 X 5
Deadlift 1 X 5

Workout B
Squat 3 X 5
Bench Press 3 X 5
Chin Ups 3 X 10
Back Hyperextensions 3 X10

Those are literally the only lifts you ever "need" to do. Just alternate Workout A and B, working out 2-3 times per week. Leave at least 1 day between workouts for rest. Older lifters (over 30) are fine with even 2 days between each workout, as the extra rest will help.

Don't bother working out more than 3 times per week. Unless you take steroids, you will over train.
Thanks for sharing. Very similar to my workout. I'm just going to keep pounding away.

This seems like a stupid question, bit does one still take supplements on rest days?
 
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