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Ironlifter36's 12 Week Transformation Log

Carmel cowboy

Active member
Member
I am trying to stay 200-300 over maintenance. Just as the metabolism slows during calorie deficits, it increases during Calorie surplus. I am just trying to stay 200-300 ahead of it. Right now I am in that range. I suspect in the very near future, I will need to increase calories to stay in that positive 200-300 energy range. Based on that, let's say in a perfect world, I was in a 300 calorie surplus all 7 days of the week. That would be 2100 calories per week, so a little over 0.5pounds. I realize the gains are slow and that there are more optimal approaches. However, my goals are different. I am not as concerned with an actual "Scale weight" as I am with how I look and my LBM number.

The scale weight can give you a better indicator of what your current maintenance calories are. LBM number isn't going to change much from week to week! I am sure you know this but body fat and lbm changes take time. For me during reverse dieting I use the scale to see if I am at a surplus maintenance or deficit. For me my maintence is always changing so I make adjustments accordingly! I agree the slower the better not only for not putting fat back on but for a optimal finctioning metabolism! Here is one last thing that I wanted to mention and it doesn't apply too much to reverse dieting as it does for cutting. For me and from my experiences and what studies have found, front and back loading carbs within a certain amount could be the deciding factor for preserving lbm during a cut as well as increasing lbm during reverse dieting. The muscle sparing effects of carbs when the body is in a low energy state it may try to produce energy by converting amino acids to glucose. Having enough carbs for you prior to a workout prevents this since they can readily be broken down to glucose. Another reason to front load carbs (prior to workout), when we lift heavy weights the primary pathway that is used to produce ATP is the anaerobic or glycolytic pathway. The only substrate for this pathway is glucose which can be used from what the carbs we consume prior to. Another reason carbs are important prior to workout is they increase cell volume. cell size is the indicator of the state that the body is in. When cells are at a large volume it signals that the body is in a fed state. Cell size also indicates the anabolic state and increases protein synthesis. If cell volume drops protein synthesis drops. For every gram of glycogen stores the body stores approx 2.7 grams of water and increase cell volume thereby triggering the forementioned responses. I will be using this principle for my mock peak week coming up. Another reason front loading (prior to workout) is important is workout intensity. If one can not maintain his or her workout intensity while trying to get lean or stay lean the have a greater chance at preserving lbm or increasing lbm! As far as post workout carbs in my experience finding the right amount to increase the rate of recovery! So in my opinion not only is the amount of calories that we get from pro, carbs and fat important but when we get them is also important and could be the deciding factor in lbm!!
Just my thoughts and experience bro!!
 

ironlifter36

Active member
Member
I'm curious where you got that number. I question how many calories are actually needed to build a lb of muscle. I know if you were break down a lb of muscle it's supposedly 2500 calories per lb, but I don't know that's how much it is to "build" muscle. It isn't like fat where the fat cell just absorbs the "calories". I haven't researched this much at all, but what I have always read always seemed questionable.

To be frank, I suppose I pulled that number out of my ass. That figure is based on 1lb of fat being 3500. I too have read/heard about 1 lb of muscle requiring 2500 cal., though until you mentioned it, completely forgot. However, I will say that at 200-300 calorie surplus, I am gaining on average of around 0.5lbs per week and my skin fold measurements are staying the same. Hard to say if I am in a 200-300 calorie surplus for sure as there is no way to really know. What I can say with a 100% certainty is that I am eating 2900cal on non-workout days, 3100cal on workout days, weight is increasing slowly at 0.5lb/week and skin folds are staying the same. I am not seeing any fluctuations in weight from day to day either...everything is very steady and consistent.
 

ironlifter36

Active member
Member
The scale weight can give you a better indicator of what your current maintenance calories are. LBM number isn't going to change much from week to week! I am sure you know this but body fat and lbm changes take time. For me during reverse dieting I use the scale to see if I am at a surplus maintenance or deficit. For me my maintence is always changing so I make adjustments accordingly! I agree the slower the better not only for not putting fat back on but for a optimal finctioning metabolism! Here is one last thing that I wanted to mention and it doesn't apply too much to reverse dieting as it does for cutting. For me and from my experiences and what studies have found, front and back loading carbs within a certain amount could be the deciding factor for preserving lbm during a cut as well as increasing lbm during reverse dieting. The muscle sparing effects of carbs when the body is in a low energy state it may try to produce energy by converting amino acids to glucose. Having enough carbs for you prior to a workout prevents this since they can readily be broken down to glucose. Another reason to front load carbs (prior to workout), when we lift heavy weights the primary pathway that is used to produce ATP is the anaerobic or glycolytic pathway. The only substrate for this pathway is glucose which can be used from what the carbs we consume prior to. Another reason carbs are important prior to workout is they increase cell volume. cell size is the indicator of the state that the body is in. When cells are at a large volume it signals that the body is in a fed state. Cell size also indicates the anabolic state and increases protein synthesis. If cell volume drops protein synthesis drops. For every gram of glycogen stores the body stores approx 2.7 grams of water and increase cell volume thereby triggering the forementioned responses. I will be using this principle for my mock peak week coming up. Another reason front loading (prior to workout) is important is workout intensity. If one can not maintain his or her workout intensity while trying to get lean or stay lean the have a greater chance at preserving lbm or increasing lbm! As far as post workout carbs in my experience finding the right amount to increase the rate of recovery! So in my opinion not only is the amount of calories that we get from pro, carbs and fat important but when we get them is also important and could be the deciding factor in lbm!!
Just my thoughts and experience bro!!

I agree with you 100% on all points. LBM is very slow to change and can not be used to measure progress on a weekly basis. Right now I am monitoring scale weight and skin fold measurements. If weight is going up, but skin folds are staying the same, then this is a good indication the weight is muscle. Obviously, some will be water, but I am talking the trend over time. I also agree with the timing of carbs pre and post workout. If your on a cut and your budget is 100 carbs, consuming 50 pre and 50 post workout is definitely advantageous. However, I have never had to worry about this as I have never gone below 175 carbs on a cut. My issue with carb front/back loading is when people put it as a priority over total calorie intake. I realize you do not do this, but I come across people all the time who do. They are on a cut, doing all this fancy carb front/back loading, carb cycling, low carb, paleo stuff, but have no idea where there total energy intake is because they don't track their food or have a meal plan. I try to explain the hierarchy of importance 1.) Total Calories 2.) Where those calories are coming from - Pro, carbs fats 3.) Timing of those P, C F. I tell them don't worry about #3 until you have #1 under control.
 
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RedMorkai

Active member
To be frank, I suppose I pulled that number out of my ass. That figure is based on 1lb of fat being 3500. I too have read/heard about 1 lb of muscle requiring 2500 cal., though until you mentioned it, completely forgot. However, I will say that at 200-300 calorie surplus, I am gaining on average of around 0.5lbs per week and my skin fold measurements are staying the same. Hard to say if I am in a 200-300 calorie surplus for sure as there is no way to really know. What I can say with a 100% certainty is that I am eating 2900cal on non-workout days, 3100cal on workout days, weight is increasing slowly at 0.5lb/week and skin folds are staying the same. I am not seeing any fluctuations in weight from day to day either...everything is very steady and consistent.

I think you're playing it smart. You'll obviously notice if something is amiss a month out, and it won't be by much if it happens. The 0.5lb/wk is what I've been aiming for as well.
 

RedMorkai

Active member
I try to explain the hierarchy of importance 1.) Total Calories 2.) Where those calories are coming from - Pro, carbs fats 3.) Timing of those P, C F. I tell them don't worry about #3 until you have #1 under control.

I'm in agreement with this for sure.
 

Carmel cowboy

Active member
Member
I agree with you 100% on all points. LBM is very slow to change and can not be used to measure progress on a weekly basis. Right now I am monitoring scale weight and skin fold measurements. If weight is going up, but skin folds are staying the same, then this is a good indication the weight is muscle. Obviously, some will be water, but I am talking the trend over time. I also agree with the timing of carbs pre and post workout. If your on a cut and your budget is 100 carbs, consuming 50 pre and 50 post workout is definitely advantageous. However, I have never had to worry about this as I have never gone below 175 carbs on a cut. My issue with carb front/back loading is when people put it as a priority over total calorie intake. I realize you do not do this, but I come across people all the time who do. They are on a cut, doing all this fancy carb front/back loading, carb cycling, low carb, paleo stuff, but have no idea where there total energy intake is because they don't track their food or have a meal plan. I try to explain the hierarchy of importance 1.) Total Calories 2.) Where those calories are coming from - Pro, carbs fats 3.) Timing of those P, C F. I tell them don't worry about #3 until you have #1 under control.

I agree with you bro but my order would be a little different. That's the great thing we all have different ways of attaining a similar goals!! I look forward to reading your post and seeing how you go about attaining your goal!
 

ironlifter36

Active member
Member
I agree with you bro but my order would be a little different. That's the great thing we all have different ways of attaining a similar goals!! I look forward to reading your post and seeing how you go about attaining your goal!

Thanks bro. That's my opinion and by no means constitutes as being "the right way" lol. I enjoy hearing other peoples thoughts, ideas and seeing what works best for them.
 

RedMorkai

Active member
I agree with you bro but my order would be a little different. That's the great thing we all have different ways of attaining a similar goals!! I look forward to reading your post and seeing how you go about attaining your goal!

Agreed. Definitely gained a lot of respect for both you and Iron during this contest. You guys have shown that you have your head in the game and I have no doubts you guys will be able to attain goals. I hope we continue to compare notes as I'm constantly making tiny adjustments to how I view training/diet etc.
 

Carmel cowboy

Active member
Member
Agreed. Definitely gained a lot of respect for both you and Iron during this contest. You guys have shown that you have your head in the game and I have no doubts you guys will be able to attain goals. I hope we continue to compare notes as I'm constantly making tiny adjustments to how I view training/diet etc.

I hope so to!! I think it's great to have educated people that have a similar goal coming together to make each other better!!
 

svanimost

Member
Member
Very nice Iron, glad to see your ahead of the game & way upped the calories in my opinion & your metabolism seems to be working accordingly. I'm choosing to raise my calories slowly, is this a bad approach in your opinion , I just don't want to rush & force my metabolism too fast like always . I've worked too hard to get to where I am & dont want to raise my bf% again like I've done in the past. My calipers are giving my abs a reading of 5-6mm, and I did the Omron thing at my gym & it's telling me I'm in the 8's. I just filled back with glycogen, now trying to harden back up before gaining again. Your doing great on your transform & on log Too !!! Hey & congrats on hearing bells ring soon.
 

ironlifter36

Active member
Member
I certainly hope so. As i mentioned in the beginning of my log, the main reason i decided to do this 12 week transformation was to get out and meet people on the forum in hopes of learning. You and CC are knowledgeable and detailed. Definitely plan to bounce things of one another in the future and follow both of you alls progress.
 

BigBusiness

Active member
Happy Easter my man God bless to you and yours. Just a friendly reminder 10 days left on the contest. Love your blog and your interaction with everyone and I love your approach to dieting and I'm looking forward to your final product iron!!

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
 

ironlifter36

Active member
Member
Happy Easter my man God bless to you and yours. Just a friendly reminder 10 days left on the contest. Love your blog and your interaction with everyone and I love your approach to dieting and I'm looking forward to your final product iron!!

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

Thanks BigB. Hope you two had a wonderful Easter.
 

ironlifter36

Active member
Member
Monday 4/17/2017 Update:

Weight 177lbs
Skin Folds - Stomach 8mm, Chest 6mm Legs 5mm
Nutrition 2900 Non-Workout Days / 3100 Workout Days

I saw a 2 LB jump in weight since last Monday. I attribute this primarily to the Easter Sunday meal I ate yesterday, which was epic to say the least. We had Ham so I am definitely holding some water due to the high sodium. Nevertheless, from monitoring progress earlier in the week, I can tell I am gaining weight slowly. Stomach skin folds are slowly starting to increase. Some of this is probably due to all the carbs, however the overall trend (increase in weight / increase in skin folds) indicates I am in a sufficient surplus at the moment. Having said that, I will keep my calories as is for the next week.
 

svanimost

Member
Member
Hey, glad you had a nice Easter. Your doing a great job with increase too, exactly my plan also. Slow & steady !!
Keep on killing it, and the log too, very informative regarding your methods.
 

ironlifter36

Active member
Member
Very nice Iron, glad to see your ahead of the game & way upped the calories in my opinion & your metabolism seems to be working accordingly. I'm choosing to raise my calories slowly, is this a bad approach in your opinion , I just don't want to rush & force my metabolism too fast like always . I've worked too hard to get to where I am & dont want to raise my bf% again like I've done in the past. My calipers are giving my abs a reading of 5-6mm, and I did the Omron thing at my gym & it's telling me I'm in the 8's. I just filled back with glycogen, now trying to harden back up before gaining again. Your doing great on your transform & on log Too !!! Hey & congrats on hearing bells ring soon.

When I clean bulked in the past, even though I ate healthy, I added calories to quickly and gained unwanted fat. I will admit, not all things were equal back then as they are now, however, when I cut all that fat off, I vowed NEVER to let things get out of hand again. I am not a big fan of cardio ( I do it because it's good for me ) and I am really not a fan of having to grind out 4 - 5 30min cardio sessions per week in addition to my lifting on 175 to 200 carbs per day. I do what I have to do to obtain a goal, but do not want to have to spend 3-4 months in a cut ever again. I use the calipers to monitor progress. I care very little what my actual body fat number is. For me, I like how I look when my calipers read (5mm Stomach, 5mm Chest 5mm Legs). That totals 15mm for all 3 points and I use that as a reference point. I have set a projected upper limit of 35mm total for all 3 points. When my skin folds total 35mm, I am going to stop bulking and not go any further. Obviously, if I ate like shit, I could hit this upper limit point of 35mm in a month or two in which case most of the gains in weight would be fat. However, my plan is to eat in a very mild surplus and try to extend this period as long as possible in hopes that the muscle to fat gain ratio will be better. Will this hold true, I don't know. I haven't done this before. I am still in the process of experimenting and learning my body. I do know from experience, that if I eat from the soul or eat intuitively, I get fat.
 
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ironlifter36

Active member
Member
Wednesday 4/19/2017 Update

Weight: 177lbs
Skin Folds: Stomach 8mm, Chest 6mm, Legs 5mm
Nutrition: 2900cal Non-Workout Days; 3100cal Workout Days

I have decided to switch my workout routine back to a 4 day split. I had changed to a version of Pull, Push, Leg’s to allow for flexibility during my recent business trips. New split will be as follows:

Mon – Shoulders & Traps
Tues – Leg’s
Wed – Rest
Thurs – Chest & Biceps
Friday – Rest
Sat - Back & Triceps
Sun - Rest

Cardio would be done on rest days. Since I am in a slight surplus, keeping cardio session to 1 per week. Either 30min of Cross-trainer / Stairmaster or 25min HIIT Cardio.
 

ironlifter36

Active member
Member
Last nights Leg Workout:

BB Squats - 235x10, 235x10, 235x10
BB Hip Thrust - 175x12, 175x12, 175x12
DB Lunges w/ 50lb DB's - 10, 10, 10 (20 Total Steps per set)
Leg Extensions - 140x12, 140x10, 140x10
Super set w/
Seated Leg Curls - 100x12, 105x10, 105x10, 105x10+(Dropset last set)
Leg Press Calve Raises - 90x15, 110x15, 110x15, 110x15 *****

*****Haven't done calves in 2 weeks because I tweaked my left foot somehow. When ever I point my big toe, I would get a tingle in the top of my foot. I had been doing lot's of volume on calves up until that point and think I may have aggravated a tendon or ligament. So I am slowly easing back into calves.

Also, last week I made note of how I felt the day following my leg workout. I felt much more sore last week having done BB Split Squats compared to today following BB Squats. I do BB Squats because "I am Supposed too" however, feel little activation and soreness the following day. The BB Split squats make my hamstrings and glutes feel like they are on fire both during and post workout. I really feel good activation during this movement. With BB Squats, I feel none of this.
 
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