Primal Gain - Clean Muscle Mass Building Experiment (primal_matrix)
I'm 32, 5'11", 173 lbs, ~15% body fat.
I wasn't always like that. Many years ago I was a twig at 5'11" and 145 lbs. After several years of ever evolving workouts and constantly changing dietary habits that revolved around a 40/40/20 split I managed to put on enough weight and definition to bump me up to 195 lbs at ~15% at my peak.
I like what I achieved but I didn't like the consequences of how I did it. Constant IBS, mind fog, sleeping problems, mood swings, mid day crashes etc. were a daily reality for many months. I started searching for some remedies and after one thing lead to another I stumbled upon information about Primal life style.
I knew about and practiced low-carb diet with a great success for a while so seeing that Primal was very similar to what I already liked I decided to stick with it.
In few short months, following a strict gym schedule and high fat, moderate protein, low-carb dietary approach I managed to drop the body fat to a very comfortable almost 6 pack levels, keep my lifts strong, and improve the quality of my life 180 degrees around from what it was before. But I also managed to drop my overall body weight from about 195 lbs to 180lbs. Not my original goal.
Then when I was at my peak time, I had to start concentrating all my free time and effort into planning and preparing for the wedding with my wife. Less time for gym, less time to cook, more stress etc, things were starting to slip towards bad old habits. Then the wedding, remodeling our new place for 2 months, moving, helping my wife in her final months in school, lots of beer, snacks, social gatherings, all those things pilled up and threw me of the path.
I lost most of my definition, strength, stamina, gained a 'beer' belly, and some other side effects I tried to get rid of in the first place.
I tried to restart my proven good habits but to no avail. Almost like a smoker who quits for a day and gives in. I kept putting off getting back to Primal. Fast forward to September, I finally said enough is enough, cleaned up the fridge, pantry, threw out all sweets, sugars, cookies, finished all the beer etc. and since then kept eating Primal.
Only about 3 weeks ago I re-started my gym schedule. Broke through the initial 'delayed onset of muscle soreness', did it hurt, but was worth it. Now I see I'm back into my good old routine and I'm liking it a lot.
There's just one catch, I want to go back to my original ~190 lbs and original strength. I read tons of stories about people losing while being Primal. Let's see if the opposite can be achieved - gaining clean muscles, while maintaining or cutting body fat, and preserving body strength. I've heard it can't be done, let's find out.
My plan will be to follow Primal diet along with a strict 3 day full body workout split. I don't plan on keeping daily journal of calorie intake but I will once in a while count to see if I'm keeping a correct ratio of fats, protein, and carbs. My aim is to stay at 65% fats, 30% protein, 5% carbs. No food rationing. I will eat as I feel. If I'm hungry, I'll eat until I'm not. If I'm not hungry, I'll wait until I will be. I also plan on doing intermediate fasting once in a while, and consuming additional simple carbs pre and post workouts in the form of fruit.
- back pain
- vit D levels
Wow, I can't believe it's been almost a month since I started this thread, seems like yesterday. Up until last week I've been religiously following my gym schedule and overall it feels great. Not so great with my lower back, which has been hurting for the past 2 months, so I'm taking it very easy with anything involving that part of the body. I miss deadlifts and squats!
Recently, I went for an annual blood test, and as expected everything came out perfect. Except one thing: Vitamin D. I requested to have my vitamin D levels checked. I have been supplementing my diet with vitamin D for at least a year. I usually take between 8000 - 10000 IU a day. I was curious where my blood vitamin D level was and as it turned out it was out of range or rather above the upper limit. Not too much, the limit was something like 30-80 ng/ml and mine came out close to 100 ng/ml. That was good enough of a reason for my doctor to have a "talk" with me about the dangers of vitamin D supplementation. His alternative was to sit by the window to catch some daylight and stop supplementing with vitamin D because it will drive calcium out of the bones, and vitamin D is an industry hype anyway. Mind blown.
I had some cheat moments the past two weeks. I just couldn't resist some goodies at the Thanksgiving dinner. It's alright, the following days only reminded me why I follow primal life style in the first place.
Last edited by primal_matrix; 12-02-2011 at 10:43 AM.
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