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Low-carb strength training

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  • #16
    Originally posted by rockrunner View Post
    I've wondered about that, is it really paramount to over eat to gain strength? I can see over eating to be able to gain muscle size but just to get to somewhat stronger with a medium to minimal amount strength training I'm not sure you have to over eat for that. I don't know the answer to this since I'm orientated to a endurance exercise lifestyle but try to just get a bit of strength training in.
    depending on your definition of "strength" (mine is how much weight you can lift compared to your bodyweight) in order to gain progressive strength, you must increase the size of your muscles (myofibril to be specific). This requires a caloric surplus, period. You cannot expect to gain much feasible strength if you don't provide your body the materials to do so. It doesn't have to be much, and you certainly won't look like a bodybuilder after a few strength training sessions.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by rockrunner View Post
      Does it matter how much carbs you eat if your muscles are replenished with glycogen...isn't it just a matter of the time interval between workouts for glycogen replenishment?
      well of course, but even working out 3x a week with optimal rest the most you'd have is two days between... if you had post workout carbs (which you should) plus the two days rest worth eating at that level that is still only 150-180g carbs. Considering the average decently built person can store over 300g of glycogen in their muscles and ~50g in the liver, you'd still require a decent refeed once a week or you'd experience a pretty quick downgrade in performance, and over time a complete lack of it.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by dabears View Post
        depending on your definition of "strength" (mine is how much weight you can lift compared to your bodyweight) in order to gain progressive strength, you must increase the size of your muscles (myofibril to be specific). This requires a caloric surplus, period. You cannot expect to gain much feasible strength if you don't provide your body the materials to do so. It doesn't have to be much, and you certainly won't look like a bodybuilder after a few strength training sessions.
        My definition of strength is if I can do 4 - 5 reps of my body weight on bench press with less than 10 minutes a week of strength training I'm good and that's plenty. Endurance sports come easy for my body type and weight training is hard...I look for the least amount of time for the most strength increase without over eating.

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        • #19
          so you are comfortable with your current strength levels and don't want to get stronger (and you won't). if you are ok with that, great!

          bench press btw is probably the least useful indicator of overall strength vs. bodyweight

          I would say pullups from a bodyweight exercise perspective and deadlift/squat (very debatable) from a barbell perspective are the best indicators of overall strength levels vs. bodyweight.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by dabears View Post
            well of course, but even working out 3x a week with optimal rest the most you'd have is two days between... if you had post workout carbs (which you should) plus the two days rest worth eating at that level that is still only 150-180g carbs. Considering the average decently built person can store over 300g of glycogen in their muscles and ~50g in the liver, you'd still require a decent refeed once a week or you'd experience a pretty quick downgrade in performance, and over time a complete lack of it.
            Yeah I can see how you would have to increase muscle size to increase strength perpetually...but I guess it would come down to "how strong is strong enough" ? I'm way low carb except I have beer cheats on the weekends sometimes...so i have beer re-feeds some weekends.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by dabears View Post
              so you are comfortable with your current strength levels and don't want to get stronger (and you won't). if you are ok with that, great!

              bench press btw is probably the least useful indicator of overall strength vs. bodyweight

              I would say pullups from a bodyweight exercise perspective and deadlift/squat (very debatable) from a barbell perspective are the best indicators of overall strength levels vs. bodyweight.
              My strength is good enough for my everyday lifestyle...but I will get stronger some...how much not sure but the 10 minutes a week is more than enough time for me. I'm time constricted for everything work, play, training etc so I really have to be picky whats worth it time wise. Is it really worth it to spend hours and hours at the gym every week to get a little stronger that has no meaningful benefit in my everyday life...not really for me.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by rockrunner View Post
                My strength is good enough for my everyday lifestyle...but I will get stronger some...how much not sure but the 10 minutes a week is more than enough time for me. I'm time constricted for everything work, play, training etc so I really have to be picky whats worth it time wise. Is it really worth it to spend hours and hours at the gym every week to get a little stronger that has no meaningful benefit in my everyday life...not really for me.
                I go to gym for 30-45 minutes, 3 times a week and train squats, deadlifts, overhead press, bench press, chinups and pushups. Those exercises build pure total body strength that is absolutely applicable to everyday life situations. If my gym allowed it, I would do the olympic lifts which are even more effective for real life.

                It isn't "hours and hours"! If it doesn't fit your goals that is ok Everyone has different ones, but I think your assumptions are a bit skewed about strength training

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by dabears View Post
                  I go to gym for 30-45 minutes, 3 times a week and train squats, deadlifts, overhead press, bench press, chinups and pushups. Those exercises build pure total body strength that is absolutely applicable to everyday life situations. If my gym allowed it, I would do the olympic lifts which are even more effective for real life.

                  It isn't "hours and hours"! If it doesn't fit your goals that is ok Everyone has different ones, but I think your assumptions are a bit skewed about strength training
                  What would be these everyday life situations? I already chop wood, rock climb, paddle kayaks, yard work...maybe I need to fight somebody or wrestle alligators. I think you should do the gym workouts if its fun and recreational to you...that's more important than the exact place or plan.

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                  • #24
                    you'll be a better athlete, wood chopper, rock climber, paddler, jump higher... better at any non technical physical activitiy (which requires specific training in that activity for technique). it is general full body strength.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by dabears View Post
                      you'll be a better athlete, wood chopper, rock climber, paddler, jump higher... better at any non technical physical activitiy (which requires specific training in that activity for technique). it is general full body strength.
                      Say I added in 90 minutes of weight training a week above my 10 minutes a week...three 30 minute weigh training sessions and gave up 90 minutes of low heart rate running per week (about 10 miles of running)...that would make me a better athlete at all my everyday activities?
                      How would I know the difference?

                      I think I'll start a new thread on this.
                      Last edited by rockrunner; 05-24-2013, 01:00 PM.

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                      • #26
                        Thank you all very much for your feedback! The rest of this week went pretty well and I have picked up weight compared to last week and my workouts all went really well. I have increased my carbs to around 150-160 g/day, most of which comes before the workout as a banana, after the workout as a sweet potato, and the rest of the day through nuts, greens, etc... Total cals last week were around 3400-3500 kcal/day, but I think that may have been a tad steep and will prob be dropping a little this week.

                        Not on the rug, as far as why I went low carb in the first place, it was mainly an experiment. Several years ago I started to experiment with all of the different dietary choices out there (vegetarian, vegan, raw vegan, conventional, and now paleo). So far paleo has been my favorite and I've been doing it ever since I first started back in October. Usually when I try a different eating style I get over it within a couple of months. I started doing this because I'm very interested in my health and there's so much conflicting information out there about what's "right" or "healthiest" that I decided "what the heck? I might as well try them for myself!" The way I see it, you can't be sure Ďtil you try it. I try these things out and see how I feel.

                        Speaking of "how I feel", dabears, you are right/ I am a BIG analyzer; I always have been. Playing around with my eating and training like this is like a lab experiment to me and I get enjoyment out of it. That said, the one thing I've had trouble with regarding the paleo lifestyle is giving up that control/planning/whatever-you-call it that I've gotten used to. The problem I have is that I feel like if I "listen to my body" with the foods Iím eating, I won't eat enough (which is what got me to such a low weight in the first place).

                        As far as listening to my body, do I listen to my stomach or my energy levels? Sometimes my energy levels are low but my stomach just does not want food. Other times it's vice versa. For instance, I haven't been sleeping well over the past week or so (I know, I know, I really need to work on that) and as a result, I know some of the "appetite" I have is due just to that fatigue, and I may not necessarily really need that food. Any pointers as to how to gauge whether I really am hungry or not? I know Iím asking a ton of questions that seem silly, but I really like to learn from others and get insight from people who are more experienced than I am.

                        Thanks!

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