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What should i eat to keep/gain weight, lose belly fat, build lean muscles?

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  • What should i eat to keep/gain weight, lose belly fat, build lean muscles?

    Hi all. Im a very average Asian, about 62.5 kg and 165 cm. i used to eat a lot of rice and used to never exercise. I used to always feel hungry until my friend pointed me to try Primal. After learning the science behind it I have started to give it a try for about 2 weeks now. I have reduced my rice intake bit by bit and increased meat, dairy, eggs, veggie, and everything else. I definitely feel less frequently hungry than before, and I have rediscovered that I love to swim. So ive been swimming 2-3 times a week with medium intensity and some weight lifting about 3 times a week, usually in the same days that i swim. I would like to go everyday but unfortunately i cant. Anyway my question is Ive been gaining quite a bit of belly fat since i got married last year. Its not that bad but enough to make several shirts and jeans not fit anymore. I dont want to lose weight, in fact i wont mind gaining a couple more kilos, but i would like to erase the belly fat and build some lean muscles while im at it. Right now i eat less carbs on days im not active and more carbs on days i exercise. What is the optimal nutrition plan for me? Thank you

  • #2
    Sounds like you are doing good by replacing the rice with more meat and eggs. In general, if you want to build muscle, eat more protein. You still have plenty of time when good changes will occur if you only started Primal 2 weeks ago.

    And lift weights!! I really think that is more important than your macronutrient ratios for building muscle (assuming adequate protein intake). Heavy compound movements (squat, deadlift, press, pullups) are the best. Starting Strength by Mark Rippetoe is great. Be mindful of form to prevent injury.

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    • #3
      Get into big compound movements as stated above my comment (yodiewan).
      Eat at maintenance calories.
      Add SOME cardio to minimize/control fat gain. But you do need some fat to keep the muscle growing. (try sprints?)
      Then at one point you could eat at a caloric deficit and just focus on low heavy reps of compound movements to burn the fat and reveal the muscle you have gained.

      You could also look into calorie cycling, carb cycling, Intermittent Fasting...
      My Health and Nutrition Blog
      @ VIBRANTE
      http://viibrante.wordpress.com/

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      • #4
        Thanks for the replies guys. My cardio is swimming since my feet aren't very good at running. Sometimes stationary cycling too. I weight lift but not until I burn out my muscles, just enough for the day to get me to sleep early. I do squats, pushups, planks, but no pullups yet since there's no pullup bar at my gym. I do lifting with dumbbells as well.

        One question about this guy's experience: Quitting Rice | Mark's Daily Apple

        I think I have more or less the same type of body he does. What he did was cut out rice completely immediately after he went Primal. Although he did have impressive results just a few weeks afterwards, I think this is rather extreme. Personally I love eating rice, and I am afraid of losing weight if I do that. I personally think he's a bit too skinny in his last picture. His middle one would be nice for me. What do you guys think? Thank you

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Rabbid View Post
          Thanks for the replies guys. My cardio is swimming since my feet aren't very good at running. Sometimes stationary cycling too. I weight lift but not until I burn out my muscles, just enough for the day to get me to sleep early. I do squats, pushups, planks, but no pullups yet since there's no pullup bar at my gym. I do lifting with dumbbells as well.

          One question about this guy's experience: Quitting Rice | Mark's Daily Apple

          I think I have more or less the same type of body he does. What he did was cut out rice completely immediately after he went Primal. Although he did have impressive results just a few weeks afterwards, I think this is rather extreme. Personally I love eating rice, and I am afraid of losing weight if I do that. I personally think he's a bit too skinny in his last picture. His middle one would be nice for me. What do you guys think? Thank you
          I don't think you should stop eating rice if you love to eat rice.

          If you're trying to lose fat: ensure that you're in a caloric deficit, eating plenty of protein, lifting progressively heavier weights (this will ensure you get stronger and maintain/increase muscle mass). The rice will prove to be beneficial as it will fuel your weight lifting along with having protein sparing effects.
          My nutrition/fitness/critical thinking blog:

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Rabbid View Post
            Personally I love eating rice, and I am afraid of losing weight if I do that. I personally think he's a bit too skinny in his last picture. His middle one would be nice for me. What do you guys think? Thank you
            I agree that in the middle picture he looks better. But really, it sounds like if you were to cut out more rice and lose too much weight, you can always add it back.

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            • #7
              Rice is awesome, but I only eat it on the days I lift heavy. I don't really need it other days, but when I lift I will feel hungry until I get a massive intake of carbs.

              Your body can probably handle some rice, but your progress might be slow. It's up to you to experiment and figure out how much you can handle each day.

              Your lifting/swimming plan on the same days is actually pretty good- your body needs time to recover, and a full day of rest in between workouts is great.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by jakejoh10 View Post
                I don't think you should stop eating rice if you love to eat rice.

                If you're trying to lose fat: ensure that you're in a caloric deficit, eating plenty of protein, lifting progressively heavier weights (this will ensure you get stronger and maintain/increase muscle mass). The rice will prove to be beneficial as it will fuel your weight lifting along with having protein sparing effects.
                Ah so I do have to be in caloric deficit? I'm always afraid I would lose weight if I do so. Is this not true? It's hard for me to calculate how much calories I eat and burn. I live in Asia and we have totally different meals than what is listed on calorie-counting websites or apps. When I exercise I'm pretty tired but I'm not sure at all how much calories I burned. Any tips? Thanks

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by jfreaksho View Post
                  Rice is awesome, but I only eat it on the days I lift heavy. I don't really need it other days, but when I lift I will feel hungry until I get a massive intake of carbs.

                  Your body can probably handle some rice, but your progress might be slow. It's up to you to experiment and figure out how much you can handle each day.

                  Your lifting/swimming plan on the same days is actually pretty good- your body needs time to recover, and a full day of rest in between workouts is great.
                  Do you eat rice before or after exercise? I've read articles that tell me to eat it before to boost energy while exercising. I've also read others that tell me to eat it after to boost recovery? I guess eating both before and after is good?

                  Thanks!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by annypzt
                    Get into big compound movements as stated above my comment (yodiewan).
                    Eat at maintenance calories.
                    Thank you

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                    • #11
                      from my experience you could simply cut the carbs even on exercise days.
                      You may crave carbs for a few weeks but it'll go away if you just snack on something else everytime you feel the craving.
                      I usually snack on ham with fresh cheese and down a big glass of water or tea to fill the stomach and shut him up.
                      If I keep craving no end, I'll stuff 1-2 squares of 85% cocoa chocolate bar. That usually shuts the craving down till my next meal.
                      Some people handle well snacking on nuts but for me, the amount of nuts I need to eat to stop the cravings is so big I get fat on nuts instead!

                      (you can also use 70%+ protein shake, but those don't seem to work for me cos I can only find whey protein, and whey digests and processes way too fast. I'm trying to find a good egg protein powder but so far they all taste horrible, LOL)

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Belbe View Post
                        from my experience you could simply cut the carbs even on exercise days.
                        You may crave carbs for a few weeks but it'll go away if you just snack on something else everytime you feel the craving.
                        I usually snack on ham with fresh cheese and down a big glass of water or tea to fill the stomach and shut him up.
                        If I keep craving no end, I'll stuff 1-2 squares of 85% cocoa chocolate bar. That usually shuts the craving down till my next meal.
                        Some people handle well snacking on nuts but for me, the amount of nuts I need to eat to stop the cravings is so big I get fat on nuts instead!

                        (you can also use 70%+ protein shake, but those don't seem to work for me cos I can only find whey protein, and whey digests and processes way too fast. I'm trying to find a good egg protein powder but so far they all taste horrible, LOL)
                        I like this
                        100% Egg Protein Vanilla Ice Cream at Vitamin World

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