Design me a diet to get a six pack, given that ...

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 17, 2008 2:57 AM GMT
    I'm 5'7", weigh 160 lbs, ~12% body fat.

    I do weights 3 times a week and I lift moderately heavy (4 sets of 10 reps; 2 warmups, 12, 10, 8, 6 reps, superset, burnout ... just to name a couple of variations). I usually work out between 1 hr and 1 hr 20 min (I try to finish in an hour).

    I do cardio 4-6 times a week, 1-3 hours, either by trail running (avg hr 160 bpm), rollerblading (avg hr 145 bpm), or doing gym elliptical (avg hr 100 bpm). Usually a week will be devoted to one I choose, though sometimes I'll do two types in a week. Trail running is pretty intense for me (sweatin' balls), rollerblading is relatively intense too (not as much), and elliptical still gets me sweatin though according to the heart rate monitor, I'm not working as hard.

    I know this seems excessive, but I'm willing to do cardio 5 times a week for 3 hours, if that's what it takes (and that's what I'm currently shooting for). I want that six pack now, and I'll do whatever it takes. I've been at it for 3 months now.

    If you want to see more of my progress including some of my nutrition, check out my profile. And if you want more info to help me out, I'll definitely be monitoring this thread. I appreciate advice from you six-pack gurus!!
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    Aug 17, 2008 4:34 PM GMT
    I'm not a six pack guru, but you might want to check out the abs diet program from Men's Health. I use their cookbook now and it's really helping me lose weight on a regular basis. It's also full of good information about healthy eating for life. So, I would highly recommend you check it out. There are several books on it. The program itself, cookbook, etc...
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    Aug 17, 2008 7:16 PM GMT
    muchmorethanmuscle saidI think the magic word is....

    Please design me a diet to get a six pack, given that ...

    icon_smile.gif


    Yes ... please, indeed ;)

    Pretty please?
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    Aug 17, 2008 7:34 PM GMT
    Just eat normal, ie high protein low carbs and high good fats (unsaturated) low bad fats (saturated). If you make a precise menu youll get bored and it will be harder to keep it up.

    Good foods: lean meats (sirloin tip steaks and lean beef), fish, chicken, almonds, avocados, whole grain breads, salads, fruit, no sugar drinks, diet iced tea, etc.

    There is a water retention element that you need to factor in as well, but remember that if you dont eat enough food then your body will stop metabolizing as fast, and youll not get lean.

    http://www.t-nation.com/readArticle.do?id=1957070

    I did what the article said and it worked for me. I would just look for a South Beach Diet cookbook and go with it, it's what Ive done for over 7 yrs and Ive kept all the weight I lost OFF! Good luck.
  • UncleverName

    Posts: 741

    Aug 17, 2008 9:16 PM GMT
    Something else to try is a GSD diet. I think it's also called the Refeed diet. It's described in detail in the Precision Nutrition diet plan. It's pretty extreme, but can work, and sounds like the only way to go for some people. I haven't tried it yet. For me, right now, I'm pretty sure that my ab muscles aren't big enough to show through, regardless of my bf%.

    So, the Refeed diet is pretty simple. You basically cut out all carbs for some period, and then just before your metabolism slows right down and your body goes into starvation mode, you do a 'refeed' where you load up on carbs. Then you go through another no carb period again. The idea is that the 'refeed' keeps your body from holding onto stored body fat. You can play with the time period between refeeds, and you can play with the quantities of the refeed carbs, but that's the basic idea. If you are interested, I have a PDF describing it somewhere that I could find for you. As I said, it sounds pretty extreme to me, but it has worked for some posting on the precision nutrition forums.
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    Aug 18, 2008 6:09 PM GMT
    Chuy2010 saidJust eat normal, ie high protein low carbs and high good fats (unsaturated) low bad fats (saturated). If you make a precise menu youll get bored and it will be harder to keep it up.

    Good foods: lean meats (sirloin tip steaks and lean beef), fish, chicken, almonds, avocados, whole grain breads, salads, fruit, no sugar drinks, diet iced tea, etc.

    There is a water retention element that you need to factor in as well, but remember that if you dont eat enough food then your body will stop metabolizing as fast, and youll not get lean.

    http://www.t-nation.com/readArticle.do?id=1957070

    I did what the article said and it worked for me. I would just look for a South Beach Diet cookbook and go with it, it's what Ive done for over 7 yrs and Ive kept all the weight I lost OFF! Good luck.


    Interesting article; yeah, I'm definitely a level 1 (no abs really visible yet). Too bad the bulk of the article is for level 2s and above and for that small period of time where you know you want to be showing off.

    I definitely eat good foods: chicken, lean pork, beef steak, salads, veggies (green beans, spinach, bok choy, snap peas), yogurt, cottage cheese. I don't drink anything other than water nowadays.
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    Aug 18, 2008 6:10 PM GMT
    muchmorethanmuscle saidBy the way, how do you have time to train with weights and then do 1 to 3 hours of cardio?


    On days that I do both, I do cardio first thing in the morning and I'll do weights much later in the day.
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    Aug 18, 2008 6:42 PM GMT
    muchmorethanmuscle saidMaybe you can go over your diet with us and tell us what you eat and we can help more.

    Sure (though I was hoping maybe if someone did it for me I could see more of my own mistakes). Let's see how do I make this concise ...

    I'm trying 30% fat, 30% carbs, and 40% protein daily. My daily calorie base I'm aiming for is ~1700 which amounts to 55 g fat, 125 g carbs, 181 g protein. I don't eat carbs last two meals. So this is my meal breakdown (cals:fat,carb,prot)
    Meals 1-4 - (9,31,30)
    Meals 5-6 - (9,0,30)

    Typical Day on weeks I don't travel (cals:fat,carb,prot)
    1 Yogurt (250:4,25,31) OR Cottage Cheese and Snap Peas (380:10,30,36)
    2 Meat and Veggies
    3 Meat and Veggies
    4 Meat and Veggies
    5 Fried egg whites (230: 9,0,25)
    6 Fried egg whites (230: 9,0,25)

    Meat and Veggies include some examples:
    Stuffed Pork Chops and Bok Choy (415: 18,31,33.5)
    Flank Steak w/Cheese&Spinach and Green Beans (295: 8.5,16,35.5)

    Ugh, that just took 30-40 min to hunt through my spreadsheet and put together all those values, I'm so sick of Excel.

    Yeah, I'm looking at all these numbers and I know they don't quite add up to what my target was. Could that be what's killing me? This is so friggin hard ... I wish I had better genetics ... sigh ...
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    Aug 18, 2008 10:54 PM GMT
    Dude go out and buy the South Beach Diet cookbook, that menu is boring and bland....plus you need more variety or your body adapts too much. Keep your body and the boys guessing or they adapt.icon_cool.gif
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    Aug 18, 2008 11:16 PM GMT
    I do very little cardio. The cave man diet with core training leaned me down.
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    Aug 19, 2008 4:56 AM GMT
    If you're that serious then look into the V-diet from T-Nation... http://www.t-nation.com/readPhysClin.do?id=1852678 - though you should first find out if it's right for your build etc. (ask muchmorethanmuscle icon_smile.gif)
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    Aug 19, 2008 5:31 AM GMT
    You need fats in your diet for endogenous (your OWN) hormone production, or else you're not taking full advantage of your body. Fats I LOVE: Avocado, almonds, sirloin tip steaks, hmmm. I love meat esp red LEAN cut meats.

    Then proteins you want VARIETY of meats and beans: chicken, sirloin tip steaks, fish, beans (black, red, etc) lentils, eggs (I eat them WHOLE fuck the yolk only thing), protein powder (I use Optimum Nutrition Whey).

    Carbs: good cereals (low in sugar but good tasting), whole grain breads, natural popcorn, whole grain snack crackers, key is find your fave snacks that are good for you (I love whole grain Goldfish! Sun Chips, natural popcorn (100 cal for small bag).

    Eat! The key to getting that 6 pack is to eat every 4 hrs minimum! So get your menu varied up and really get that South Beach Diet cookbook it breaks down the rationale behind the foods it recommends, great diet, worked for me perfectly and its FUN to eat healthy food.

    (Even includes an eat out at restaurants what to order part).icon_cool.gif

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    Aug 19, 2008 3:51 PM GMT
    Hey guys, I really appreciate the responses. It's hard going down a path that you've never been down that's different for everyone. I haven't had a chance to read everyone's response in the detail I'd like but here are some I can answer to:

    Chuy, I've been doing a lot of what you recommend. My 6 meals a day makes me never go without food for more than 2.5-3 hours. Goldfish Sun Chips? Sounds like junk food, but I never seen them before. I could add more variety, but I always change it up when I start getting tired.

    Muchmore, I don't have cravings at the end of the night. Cravings usually come during the day for me, but actually not too often either cuz the foods I've eating I've enjoyed. This last week was an exception cuz I cooked a whole bunch of green and yellow beans and they didn't turn out good at all, and I'm trying to eat healthy/not waste them.

    So my main question now is how much should I be eating? It almost sounds like people are saying to wing it and just eat more and don't worry about counting, which I know I've tried before and I think I do have to be a little more scientific about it.

    Also, my main goal is to get a six pack. I think for me that means losing the fat cuz I can barely seen anything. I'm not as focused on weight lifting; I do it cuz I know it'll help me lose fat.

    I'll get to reading over in more detail a little later ...
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    Aug 19, 2008 5:35 PM GMT
    Get yourself the "ABS DIET" book put out by Mens Fitness Magazine. Tons of information about what to eat and how to exercise.
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    Aug 19, 2008 6:45 PM GMT
    Chuy doesnt eat junk food, read the labels of the foods I posted. If you deprive yourself you will not grow as your body will go into starvation mode.

    I also eat Sugar Free ice creams, (hhmmmm Splenda!). Chuy has a 6 pack now and I eat the good foods I mentioned not junk food.icon_cool.gif
  • pelotudo87

    Posts: 225

    Aug 19, 2008 11:51 PM GMT
    This all sounds so interesting, the science behind abs, lol...

    BTW:

    Chuy and Muchmorethanmuscle, any books you'd recommend for someone who isn't a personal trainer to learn some of the more technical stuff?
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    Aug 20, 2008 2:43 AM GMT
    I recommend the South Beach Diet book. It explains how it works and it was designed by a doctor for overweight patients (not celebrities).

    In terms of overall concepts good fats are unsaturated and bad fats (always avoid) are saturated (read labels). High protein is good get them from lean meats, chicken, fish, beans. Carbs are not the enemy it is which ones and when you eat them that matter. I eat cereal, whole grain breads, healthy snacks (popcorn, goldfish, sun chips) but no carbs after like 6pm (i go to bed by 12am usually).

    Thems the basics, good luck.icon_cool.gif


  • Tyinstl

    Posts: 353

    Aug 23, 2008 4:57 AM GMT
    dr_jackl saidI'm 5'7", weigh 160 lbs, ~12% body fat.

    I do weights 3 times a week and I lift moderately heavy (4 sets of 10 reps; 2 warmups, 12, 10, 8, 6 reps, superset, burnout ... just to name a couple of variations). I usually work out between 1 hr and 1 hr 20 min (I try to finish in an hour).

    I do cardio 4-6 times a week, 1-3 hours, either by trail running (avg hr 160 bpm), rollerblading (avg hr 145 bpm), or doing gym elliptical (avg hr 100 bpm). Usually a week will be devoted to one I choose, though sometimes I'll do two types in a week. Trail running is pretty intense for me (sweatin' balls), rollerblading is relatively intense too (not as much), and elliptical still gets me sweatin though according to the heart rate monitor, I'm not working as hard.

    I know this seems excessive, but I'm willing to do cardio 5 times a week for 3 hours, if that's what it takes (and that's what I'm currently shooting for). I want that six pack now, and I'll do whatever it takes. I've been at it for 3 months now.

    If you want to see more of my progress including some of my nutrition, check out my profile. And if you want more info to help me out, I'll definitely be monitoring this thread. I appreciate advice from you six-pack gurus!!


    I'm too lazy to read the whole thread so sorry if I repeat what people have said.

    A six pack is more about nutrition than exercise; I'm sure you know about the protein stuff, drink water, etc.

    3 hours of cardio is WAY too much in my opinion. You can cut it down to 20 minutes of cardio, if you do interval training: warm up for 5 minutes, run as fast as you can for a minute, then walk briskly or jog for a minute, and repeat. This will rev up your metabolism after you're done so you'll burn far more calories during your downtime than you would have by just running.

    Oh, and when an ab exercise stops challenging you, add weight or stop doing it for a while. There's no point in doing an exercise if it's too easy to make an impact.
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    Aug 23, 2008 7:50 PM GMT
    cravings are happening as you are way low on carbs to fuel that moamoth workout with insufficient calories as well to keep that metabolism stoked

    Either up the cals or cut the cardio back
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    Oct 09, 2008 10:26 PM GMT
    I just created a post about this book I've been using, eating for life. It's pretty much inline with men's health and nutritionists.