Eating to get shredded

  • GoodManSD

    Posts: 9

    Jun 14, 2014 8:28 PM GMT
    So I'm fairly good about working out on a regular basis, but the last few months I haven't been doing so well. I want to get back on the horse and get shredded over the next six months. Right now I'm about 18-20% BF and want to cut that in half. My problem is probably mostly my diet and eating right. Current my daily routine is similar to:

    1.5 cups Special K protein, with 1% milk for breakfast

    1x Muscle milk pre-packaged shake (20g protein, 230 calories)

    Lunch varies each day since our company orders in but we can pick our food for 3 of the five days. Other days are buffet style (all free).

    Afternoon shake, which recently has been a second muscle milk shake

    Dinner is at home, and been lazy lately so mostly frozen dinners. But I can cook.

    Pre bedtime snack is 1-1.5 scoops of casein.

    Once I get back into my routine I'll be doing lifting 5-6 days a week, with some moderate cardio (probably 20 min a day).

    I need some help on the nutritional front to really get lean. The most difference I think will be at dinner, and probably have to start cooking. But short on good leaning up recipes. I'm OK with taking 4-6 months to get ripped again.

    Any input would be appreciated.
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    Jun 14, 2014 9:07 PM GMT
    Seems like a lot of protein consumption to me, if you aren't really sticking to your exercise routine at the moment. (Two shakes a day plus casein at night.). I'm also wondering how many hidden calories are found in the buffets/catered lunches and frozen dinners. Might be more than you need, especially if you are aiming for what seems like a significant weight loss goal in a short amount of time. If you end up cooking dinner for yourself aim for fish and salads if you are going light on the salads at lunch.

    My other suggestion: go through the pantry and fridge and remove any junk food that will be too tempting. I have zero self-control with cookies so I know to avoid buying or baking them until I start going bat crazy.
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    Jun 14, 2014 9:33 PM GMT
    Eat shredded lettuce and shredded wheat.
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    Jun 14, 2014 9:43 PM GMT
    To cut calories and get a sugar fix why not try smoothies. (60% fruit - 40% veg) Because the veggies are raw they're better than the cooked veg you might have with your lunch or dinner.

    I'm now addicted to smoothies and I feel so much healthier.
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    Jun 14, 2014 11:34 PM GMT
    The trick is in the insulin management (slower carbs and very little sugar), and small meals, often...6 to 10 daily. About 30 grams of protein per meal or even up to 50. Plenty of water. Make sure you get your poly and mono fats, for both saity and heart health. Mixed vegs, etc. Slow carbs. Read up on the glycemic index of various food. A low gylcemic index is good, and we will evoke less of an insulin response. The trick is in management insulin, and its effects. Keep the protein up to keep from losing muscle. HIIT is the most effective for metabolic activation and heart health, if you can do it. Keep lifting. You may have a few days where your body gets used to being near ketosis. Optimally, go to just above ketosis (you can get Ketostix to test). Depending on your activity you may need from 100 to 800 grams of carbs, but, the notion is to get your metabolism activated, manage your insulin response, and not lose muscle. Keep that protein up. Carbs slow and low. Good fats in abundance. HIIT to stoke the metabolic rate. Don't be afraid to eat. Avoid the high glycemic index stuff except post workout for reload. Don't be afraid of white carbs which have lower glycemic indexes and give you sustained blood sugar without evoking a strong insulin response. You'll notice being "carb sensitive" if you're doing it right, and might feel a bit icky as your body changes modes.
  • dj10001dj

    Posts: 21

    Jun 14, 2014 11:53 PM GMT
    whats always been my trick is to cut out ALL carbs after 3PM. I go down gradually thru the day until 3PM. The trick is though you have to work out in the morning if you use this.
  • JockNerd

    Posts: 89

    Jun 15, 2014 12:13 AM GMT
    Unfortunately, there is no universal answer to this, especially as you get older and your body resists change. Everybody has a different chemistry, physical activity level, amount of sleep...

    What worked for me is called Intermittent Fasting. I only eat in an eight hour window every day. I don't overly obsess, but I make sure I get a lot of lean protein. I make sure my carbs are complex, and I don't overdo them.
  • buddycat

    Posts: 1874

    Jun 15, 2014 12:47 AM GMT
    I am right to say that when cutting you need to take in less calories than you take in? In that case satisfying yet low cal foods are good for that. Are you eating enough vegetables and fruits. Apples and bananas can last you for hours without getting hungry. Hard boiled eggs have no carbs and are also satisfying. After a certain hour I switch to foods like hummus and celery, fat free cheese and salad, and low fat string cheese. Fruit is good when you want something sweet. Apples and bananas have little calories and no fat but have sugar and carbs. I shouldn't be eating Weight Watchers ice cream but they are small and don't have much carbs and fat. I eat Healthy Choice meals, the best one as far as nutritional values is Balsamic chicken steamer.
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    Jun 15, 2014 12:56 AM GMT
    GoodManSD saidSo I'm fairly good about working out on a regular basis, but the last few months I haven't been doing so well. I want to get back on the horse and get shredded over the next six months.

    I'm so glad to find out I'm not the only one who (regularly) doesn't achieve his beach body until summer's over.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19136

    Jun 15, 2014 1:10 AM GMT
    First thing you should do is cut out the muscle milk -- that stuff won't shred you, it'll make you fat
  • buddycat

    Posts: 1874

    Jun 15, 2014 1:44 AM GMT
    I have to check out the protein content of Kraft Fat Free Cheddar, Weight Watchers string cheese, and hard boiled eggs. They are low in carbs and not too much fat. Those Healthy Choice steamers are low calorie but not too satisfying, maybe some fruit and cheese to go with it. I did notice you not eating enough fruits and veges.
  • mybud

    Posts: 11837

    Jun 15, 2014 2:17 AM GMT
    Cut out the frozen dinners..They're high in fats,salts, and sugars.On your day off, cook or grill up some chicken breast,steaks..cook up some brown rice..add frozen veggies to individual containers.When dinner hits,pop a meal in the microwave. On Sunday,I cook up my meals for the week, and it works for me. The rule of thumb for protein intake is as follows, 1 gram of protein per pound of lean mass. You're 180 pounds with 10% body fat,170 grams of protein should be your goal.Good Luck.
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    Jun 15, 2014 7:47 AM GMT
    The frozen, processed, food just is not very much to eat, and is usually loaded with way too much sodium, and not enough protein.

    As I write this, I'm having 99% turkey, with balsamic vinegar (makes the turkey less dry and tells your stomach not to make a bunch more acid), yellow, green, and red peppers, and 3 tablespoons of Cream of Wheat, with fish oil and flaxseed oil caps with some Omega 3 spread, and some cashews.
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    Jun 21, 2014 5:28 AM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ saidFirst thing you should do is cut out the muscle milk -- that stuff won't shred you, it'll make you fat


    this.... m-milk is nice for bulking but won't help you get shredded
  • MrPeanut

    Posts: 11

    Jun 21, 2014 2:44 PM GMT
    You didn't really give enough information on your diet to offer specific advice but I'll try my best.

    Too much pseudo science revolves around diet. It doesn't need to be so complicated. You can lose weight on a diet of strictly McDonalds if you really wanted . It may not be the best thing for your body, but you didn't ask about a healthy diet you asked about losing body fat.

    First you need to figure out your maintance calories. How many calories should you consume each day to maintain your current weight. Stict to a diet where you consume about the same amount of calories each day, weighing yourself each day at the same time, in the same conditions. Average out the weight week to week and see where your weight is at. If you gain weight, cut some calories and vice versa. Once you remain the same weight for 2-3 weeks you've found your maintance level. Cut about 20% off that number (give or take) and use that as a starting point for your diet. Don't cut too much off or your risk serious health problems and slower results.

    One you have that, you need to decide what you want to consume. Since you want to lose weight but maintain muscle make sure you are getting enough protein. Start with about a gram per lb of body weight. Measure your body fat from week to week and adjust based on how things fluctuate.

    Now for exercise, I would stick with your current routine. I don't like the idea of high reps low weight. You want to continue to put tension on the muscles to prevent too much muscle loss but at the same time don't try and increase the weight either. Simply aim to maintain your current weight and rep count.

    I'm not a fan of too much cardio when it comes to weight loss. Its good for your heart, it's a good workout, but when you're cutting calories already cardio adds a variable that can be hard to factor in. You risk expending too much energy, and making it difficult for your body to recover between workouts. I'm not saying its impossible but when just starting out I would limit cardio and focus on perfecting your diet. Once you've gotten that down you can always add it in and increase your calorie intake. Also, cardio is not a good replacement for a sloppy diet.

    If you have any questions or need some more advice feel free to send me a message.
  • roadbikeRob

    Posts: 14372

    Jun 29, 2014 3:18 PM GMT
    MuchMoreThanMuscle saidIt's best to make your own food with simple natural ingredients. The less processed the better.
    Easier said than done. Who has time to make their own food in this rat race societyicon_question.gif

    Getting shredded is a largely time consuming and unrealistic goal. There is way too much emphasis on diet which is absolutely ridiculous.
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    Jun 30, 2014 8:23 PM GMT
    roadbikeRob said
    MuchMoreThanMuscle saidIt's best to make your own food with simple natural ingredients. The less processed the better.
    Easier said than done. Who has time to make their own food in this rat race societyicon_question.gif

    Getting shredded is a largely time consuming and unrealistic goal. There is way too much emphasis on diet which is absolutely ridiculous.


    Getting shredded is purely a personal thing, which may or may not be a waste of time.

    However, eating right isn't unrealistic in the slightest. Learn to cook some simple recipies, then do most of your shopping at the perimeter of the grocery store - done. It's a lot cheaper than eating out and when you take into account the time wasted getting to a restaurant, ordering, waiting for your food and waiting for a check, likely a timesaver as well.
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    Jul 12, 2014 1:25 AM GMT
    eagermuscle said
    GoodManSD saidSo I'm fairly good about working out on a regular basis, but the last few months I haven't been doing so well. I want to get back on the horse and get shredded over the next six months.

    I'm so glad to find out I'm not the only one who (regularly) doesn't achieve his beach body until summer's over.


    I'm going to peak in October...icon_neutral.gif