CHANGES IN TRAINING?
I really enjoy your column and have learned quite a bit.
In BodyMuscle #7, you outlined your three-day per week
training program, training each bodypart once per week. I know
you're not only an expert, but also a student who is always
studying and evaluating the results of your training, nutrition,
and supplement programs. Have you made any changes to your
Thank you for the complimentary words. Following
my 2004 competitive season, I decided to compete as
a light-heavyweight in future competitions. In an effort to gain as
much lean tissue as possible, I dramatically increased my caloric
intake and embarked upon an ambitious off-season training program.
I still train three days per week; however, main muscle groups are
trained twice per week as whole-body sessions using a low volume
of sets and repetitions. The following is an outline of my current regimen
(sets in parenthesis, 6-8 reps):
DAY 1: chest (4), back (4), shoulders (4), bicep (2),
tricep (2), hamstrings (3), quads (4)
Supplementation is an integral component of my training routine. I
consume 40 grams of branch-chain amino acids during each session
and conclude each training period with an antioxidant supplement.
I will provide readers with an update in future editions of
DAY 2: off
DAY 3: abs (4), forearms (4), trapezius (4), calves (6)
DAY 4: off
DAY 5: chest (4), back (4), shoulders (5), bicep (2),
tricep (2), hamstrings (3), quads (4)
DAY 6/7: off
Q How much protein can a hard training bodybuilder
digest at one time? I've heard that you cannot digest
more than 30 grams at one time? Is this the truth?
FD Bodybuilding is replete with urban myths. The belief
that one cannot digest more than 30 grams of protein
per meal is one of those myths. The ability of an individual to digest
protein is dependent upon several variables which include
hydrochloric acid, gastric juice, and enzyme secretion in the stomach.
among others, determine
the amount of protein that
is digested per meal.
Since these factors vary
between individuals, so
does the amount of protein
digested. Other variables
which will influence
one's ability to digest protein
are the type of protein, ie, whey, casein, free-form amino acids,
etcetera, and in which form the protein is consumed (liquid or solid).
Before dietary proteins can be used to build muscle, not only is
digestion required, but also absorption and assimilation of the individual
amino acids. The rate in which these processes occur also
varies between individuals. The more important question for hard
training bodybuilders is the amount of protein to consume per day.
Approximately 1-1.5 grams of protein per pound bodyweight will be
sufficient to promote protein synthesis, positive protein and nitrogen
CONFUSING FOOD PYRAMID?
Q I am a bit confused by the types of foods often recommended
to bodybuilders and then I look at the Food
Pyramid and see that many of these foods are the ones I need
in the least amounts. Is there an explanation?
The familiar Food Pyramid was introduced in 1992 to
graphically illustrate what the USDA felt were the optimal
food amounts to promote healthy living. The pyramid was
designed to address the nutritional deficiencies plaguing over 50%
of Americans. The obesity epidemic which began in the 1980's
spawned a need for the USDA to provide dietary direction to
Americans. Though well-intended, the food pyramid is profoundly
flawed. Most forward-thinking nutritionists have sharply criticized
the current pyramid for a myriad of reasons. In fact, a newly revised
USDA Food Pyramid is scheduled to be released in early 2005.
Experts now emphasize the need to increase lean protein consumption
and decrease or totally eliminate the ingestion of refined
carbohydrates. Healthy fats and oils including monounsaturated fat
and essential fatty acids are important constituents in maintaining a
healthy body. Both
healthy fats and oils will
command a larger area
of the new pyramid.
While the amount of carbohydrates
one's daily diet continues
to be an area in dispute,
the need to increase the
ratio of low glycemic carbohydrates
is an accepted fact.
Most importantly, increased water intake needs to be reinforced in
the new pyramid. The majority of people understand the importance
of water, but the USDA did not depict water intake in the 1992
If one looks at the proposed changes for the 2005 USDA Food
Pyramid, one will find that the new design will look similar to the
nutrition programs of many strength athletes. I suggest continuing
with a program designed for strength athletes and leave the USDA
Food Pyramid for those who may not engage in regular athletic
FIT DOC's SECRETS?
Q I've watched your bodybuilding career (online) after
saw your first article in the No Nonsense Newsletter.
I know you've been bodybuilding since 1995. You keep
improving every year (even ten years later). What's your
FD I have no secrets, but I believe the following four factors
have been instrumental in my improvement.
Discipline: A system of self-control that promotes orderly conduct
and efficiency. Discipline applies to every aspect of my training,
nutrition, and supplementation.
Persistence: I not only look at bodybuilding for the competitive outlet
it provides me, but also for the promotion of lifelong healthy mind
and body. Develop short and long-term goals and persist in meeting
each of them.