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  1. #1
    Cartier1 is offline New Member
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    Why am i doing wrong to see my abs???

    Hi,everybody!

    I'm 29 years old,5'6" with 11% BF

    This is my diet plan,i can slightly se my abs sometimes,but i cannot get lower than the 11% or 10.8 BF

    I do cardio i mean 125-135beats p/minute according my age, 30 minutes 3days per week.

    9:00AM
    6 egg whites
    40grms oatmeal w/water
    Glass of milk

    12:00PM preworkout
    1 protein shake
    1 banana

    1:00 or 2:00PM postworkout
    1protein shake

    4:00PM
    6oz Chicken,fish or tuna
    2 cups Carrots or brocolli

    7:00PM
    6oz Chicken,Fish or tuna
    2 cups Carrots or brocolli

    10:00PM
    Glass of milk

    Does anyone can help me to find what is wrong on my diet plan to get ripped??

    Thanks a lot for your help guys!!

  2. #2
    Pinnacle's Avatar
    Pinnacle is offline AR-Hall of Famer ~ Cocky motherF*cker!
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    Simple....up the cardio. You aren't doing enough.

    You don't have enough carbs in your diet.

    Where's the healthy fats?

    You also might want to try cycling your carbs as to not allow your metabolism to get stagnant on set calories like you posted above. After a few weeks on a diet like that, your body will have caught on and slowed down your metabolism to adjust to the calories you are taking in. The idea is to coax the fat off without letting your body know it. You just can't eat low calories like you are doing. You'll never get ripped like that. You need to eat enough so your body won't go in starvation mode.
    If you don't know how to cycle carbs, at least get more calories in your diet via healthy fats/carbs to keep your metabolism trucking along and let the cardio take the fat off.

    Pinnacle

  3. #3
    FallenWyvern's Avatar
    FallenWyvern is offline Senior Member
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    My guess is that you aren't 11%

  4. #4
    Cartier1 is offline New Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinnacle View Post
    Simple....up the cardio. You aren't doing enough.

    You don't have enough carbs in your diet.

    Where's the healthy fats?

    You also might want to try cycling your carbs as to not allow your metabolism to get stagnant on set calories like you posted above. After a few weeks on a diet like that, your body will have caught on and slowed down your metabolism to adjust to the calories you are taking in. The idea is to coax the fat off without letting your body know it. You just can't eat low calories like you are doing. You'll never get ripped like that. You need to eat enough so your body won't go in starvation mode.
    If you don't know how to cycle carbs, at least get more calories in your diet via healthy fats/carbs to keep your metabolism trucking along and let the cardio take the fat off.

    Pinnacle
    Ok is that right if i do 5days at week 30mins cardio??or around 50mins 3 days at week???

    Also about the carb,is that right if i increase the carbs aroung 60g of carbs for everyday?? one week on and one week off??
    or 3days and 3days??
    how is that cycle???


    And thanks a lot for your fast fast replies guys!!! =)

  5. #5
    Phate's Avatar
    Phate is offline Got Diet? ~VET~ AR Hall of Famer~
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    try cardio 5-6 days a week for 30-45min per session

    use the search button and look up carb cycling, i guarantee there are some very detailed posted about it to help you

  6. #6
    Cartier1 is offline New Member
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    fromm what i'm reading is right if i start eating for exapmle around 200g carbs one day,the next day 150g and the other day 80g and then i star with the 200g or 150g, is that right???
    i'm 170 lbs

    that is the only carb cycling theme that seems to be official

  7. #7
    Pinnacle's Avatar
    Pinnacle is offline AR-Hall of Famer ~ Cocky motherF*cker!
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    Written by Twin Peaks

    Basic Definitions


    First, let's get some definitions out of the way. This is not a glossary but rather an explanation of a few terms that are often used in a variety of manners. If the definition of a word or term used can be found objectively, I expect that you know it, or you'll look it up, or you don't give a rat's ass.

    "Diet"
    A way of eating. Period. Unlike in common usage, it does not refer to the goal of "weight loss."

    "Cut" or "Cutting"
    A hypo-caloric diet where the goal is to decrease overall body fat, while concomitantly maintaining or even gaining muscle mass. Often, a small amount of muscle loss is expected and acceptable.

    "Mass Phase," "Bulk" or "Bulking"
    A hyper-caloric diet where the goal is to increase overall muscle mass, while concomitantly maintaining or even losing body fat. Some such diets indeed allow for, or even plan on, fat gain, albeit minimal (hopefully).

    "Recomposition"
    Coining a new phrase, Avant Labs style, the concept of a recomposition was previously unheard of. But essentially, it is a slow, yet steady body transformation whereby you seek to both lose body fat and gain lean body mass, concomitantly. Beyond "newbie gains," rapid changes in the extremely obese or with the use of androgens, it is widely believed that a recomposition is highly inefficient, or even impossible. It is not. Utilizing numerous nutrient-partitioning techniques related to training style, and proper supplementation, recomposition can be accomplished rather effectively.


    In The Beginning


    Carbohydrate cycling is something I stumbled on when I trained for my first bodybuilding contest in 1996. It was not something I heard or read about, specifically. While I am certain I did not invent this concept, and others probably had used it in some shape or form, I devised it of my own accord based on the "little" that I knew back then.

    How? Why? Well, I had struggled my whole life with being over-fat. Indeed prior to cutting for the show I was probably at around 20% body fat, and this was "thin" for me. I doubt I had ever been below 15%, and yet I committed to being on stage in posing trunks--in 16 weeks. Why? I had finally accumulated a decent amount of muscle mass, and well, why not.

    I "knew" then that I "needed" to keep my fat content low, and protein high (the quotes reflect that I have a generally different view now, though this certainly is not a high-fat diet). I also "knew" that I needed some carbs, but that my calorie reduction must come from this macronutrient (as I always kept fat low, and wasn't about to reduce protein intake), and I knew I needed (as a genetic endomorph) to keep insulin under control.

    I also knew that I hated calorie restriction, that I never stuck to a diet long term, and that I hated dieting monotony. I also hated (and still hate) counting calories -- I admit it, I am lazy. And despite this, and poor genetics with a high body fat setpoint, I needed to get to sub 5% body fat.

    Oh, for some context, back then I thought Hot Stuff was the bomb -- so except for protein, I didn't use any supplements; the point being, with the exception of a protein powder, no supplements are necessary to make this diet work. On the other hand, supplements have come a long way since the mid to late 90s, and so has my knowledge on this topic. Today, there are many effective products that will contribute to the success of the diet (or the speed at which you will achieve it), depending on your goals, your phenotype, and your wallet, of course. Again, we'll get to this in future installments, but for now, the diet beckons.

    So how could I, with my knowledge, genes, and personality traits, devise a plan that would be effective, and so user-friendly that even I would stick to it long enough that I could stand on stage, practically naked? Oh, and while 16 weeks may seem like a long cut, this time-frame did not allow any weeks to pass where I could simply maintain body fat. There was no margin for error. Nope, I needed to lose a steady 1 ? to 2 pounds of fat per week to attain my goal.

    The answer - at least the one I came up with - was "Carbohydrate Cycling." My plan was that if I cycled my carb intake, I would have some days that were unusually strict. This was not a problem for me (being super-strict for short period of times), especially if I had a reward. Enter, the high carb day, where I allowed myself to eat as much as I wanted. What's the catch? Well, we will get to that soon enough.

    But in the end, I would average out to a low carb intake level sufficient to remain hypocaloric, for the week. Or, at least, that was the plan. So yes, basically this was designed, originally, to meet my psychological needs. Oh, I also thought it a good idea to "keep the body guessing." Though I really didn't know what this meant. I had never heard of a refeed, and especially not of leptin.

    Hell, leptin was just being discovered back then. So many of the positive physiological benefits of cycling carbohydrates were unknown to me then, except that it "kept the body guessing." You see, while knowing very little about biochemistry and physiology, I had the general sense that we bodybuilders were always battling homeostasis. Other than this general belief, I had no idea why in 16 weeks I never got stuck or hit a wall.


    The Concept: Cycling 101


    There are three types of days while on this diet:

    High Carb
    Low Carb
    No Carb Days
    Generally, the three days are rotated, or cycled, equally. Again, I will stress that this can, and should, betweaked, based on the individual's goals, geno and pheno-types, and dieting history. Indeed, much of this will be discussed in future installments. Here, we will lay out the basic plan, which is designed for relatively rapid fat loss for most individuals and the one that got me into contest ready condition, twice.

    Carbohydrate manipulation is the key here, but we will back into this by discussing our protein and fat intake, which each remain constant. Bear in mind the multitude of goals and assumptions this diet balances.


    Nuts And Bolts: The Basic Plan



    Generally
    This plan is based on eating six times per day. An acceptable alternative is five meals daily, and if you so choose, be sure to keep the daily ratios consistent, as each meal will require more food.

    Protein Consumption
    Protein: the easy part. Actually, protein is the foundation of this diet. It is not to be skipped, skimped upon, taken lightly, or otherwise reduced simply because the diet does not focus on it. The significance of protein cannot be overstated, though such details are beyond the scope of this article. We shall not get into the minimum requirements for a bodybuilder, which types of proteins are superior to others, and the numerous other issues that have perplexed the scholars and been debated ad nauseam.

    Suffice it to say, that one gram per pound of bodyweight is the absolute minimum, and there is no maximum on this diet. In other words, at each and every meal, of each and every day, you can feel free to dig in to as much protein as you wish. Though there are some rules. Beyond these rules, and for simplicity's sake, I will assume you are eating a sufficient quantity at each and every meal and leave it at that.

    Assuming you are eating six meals each day, regardless of which type of day, you will eat a minimum of 1/6 of your total daily minimum requirement for protein at each meal. Thus, a 200-pound individual should eat at least 33 grams of protein at each and every meal. If five meals is the necessary course, the same individual should eat a minimum of 40 grams of protein per meal.

    You can eat more, but to overindulge at one meal, does not excuse a deficient amount at another. In other words, do not shortchange your protein consumption at any meal.

    Again, this is the minimum, so if you are still hungry eat up. Of course, like any other macronutrient, too much protein can hinder fat loss or even promote fat gain. This is another instance where I am putting some faith in the body's sense of self-regulation. For the few of you who eat too much protein and fat loss stalls, you will want to limit total daily consumption to no more than 1.5 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight.

    Most of your protein requirements must be satisfied from very lean protein sources. Indeed, four of your meals must use lean protein sources, while the remaining one or two may come from a higher-fat source. For our purposes, a "lean source" is one that has no more than 10% of its calories from fat. It is important that you look at the calorie breakdown here, as a product may say "10% Fat" but refer to the fact that 10% of its macronutrients are fat. And because fat is more than twice as calorically dense as carbs or protein, it will derive more than 10% of its calories from fat. Now, as I have stated, this is a simple diet, so if you don't want to figure out what you can and cannot eat, I have provided a list of generally acceptable lean protein choices.

    In addition, one or two meals should contain a higher-fat protein choice. Again, I have provided a list for easy reference, but for those of you with peculiar tastes, you can choose any protein that derives about 20-25% of its calories from fat. If, however, you'd rather eat a lean protein, then for that meal you should add about 10-15 grams of fat from the "Fat List" below, in the fat consumption section. For example, if you have six meals, and four have protein sources from list A and two from list B, you are fine. You cannot have more than two from list B. And if you have none from list B, and all six from list A, then two meals must have an added fat source from the list below.

  8. #8
    Pinnacle's Avatar
    Pinnacle is offline AR-Hall of Famer ~ Cocky motherF*cker!
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    Approved Lean Protein Sources (A)



    Chicken (white meat)
    Turkey (white meat)
    Tuna Fish (can)
    Fish (flounder, tuna (fatty or not), salmon, shark, etc.)
    Shellfish (all types)
    Protein (preferably whey post workout, and casein before bed; MRPs must be low-carb)
    Lean beef (including lean cuts of steak)
    Cottage Cheese (0 or 1% fat)
    Egg whites (egg beaters)
    Approved Higher-Fat Protein Sources (B)


    Chicken (dark meat)
    Turkey (dark meat)
    Eggs (half whites, half whole eggs)
    Steak and other meats (not exceptionally high fat cuts)
    Cottage Cheese (Whole Milk)
    Fat Consumption
    As for fats, this diet does not worry too much about them. Nor will we discuss them much, save for this brief discussion here. While this is not a high fat (or Ketogenic) diet, it certainly is not a low fat diet. When I first started cycling carbs, I kept fats to probably less than twenty grams a day. Here, I recommend keeping dietary fats on the low side, with the majority of fats coming from supplemented EFAs (essential fatty acids)-specifically fish oil (high in long chain ***** 3 fatty acids -- EPA/DHA).

    Why fish oil? There are so many good reasons that a detailed discussion can be an article unto itself. For our purposes, it is sufficient to know that it has all the benefits of other EFA sources (such as flax and hemp oil) and in addition, has been shown to increase leptin sensitivity and exert positive effects on body composition much more efficiently than other EFAs (this is one of the important nutrient partitioning "tricks" one must employ for a successful recomposition).

    Now, on to the practicality of it. First, you will be getting some fats in your lean protein sources (probably between 10 and 20 grams of fat) and a few grams from the carb sources (another 10 to 20 grams on high carb day). Second, at least two meals per day will include protein of the higher-fat variety. And if not, then you should add a fat source from the list below.

    Fat Sources (an amount equal to 10 to 15 grams of fat).


    (Natural) Peanut Butter
    Flax Oil
    Heavy Whipping Cream
    Mayonnaise
    Hemp Seed Oil
    Olive Oil
    Third, you will be supplementing with fish oil at 10 to 20 grams a day -- the more the better. This assumes you are using a standard fish oil supplement which, on average, contains one gram of oil and is 30% EPA/DHA. Should you choose the superior version, you may consume a bit less. I recommend you either split it up equally across all meals, or split it in half, and consume it with two meals. If you absolutely refuse to take fish oil, despite my pleas that you should (and the evidence that will be provided in the third installment), add in one to two servings of flaxseed or hempseed oil daily.

    Carbohydrate Consumption and the Cycling Process
    Ah, the carbohydrate. By now (if you haven't skipped ahead, and I know some of you have - shame on you) you are saying, "its about time!" Well, the protein and fat portions of this diet are relatively easy to follow, but that does not mean they are unimportant. To the contrary, they are critical. This diet is one, however, that focuses on daily manipulation of carbohydrate consumption. First, we will discuss how we do this; then we will discuss additional concerns important to this diet. As previously mentioned, in a future installment, we will discuss in greater depth the theoretical and scientific underpinnings of the carbohydrate manipulation.

    As mentioned, we have three types of days in the diet, and they vary only by the amount of carbohydrate that is consumed. They are the high carbohydrate day (high carb), the low carbohydrate day (low carb), and the no (approaching zero) carbohydrate day (no carb). Again, we are assuming six meals per day, so you will need to adjust if you follow a five-meal plan.


    High Carb Day


    On your high carb day, four of the meals (three if you are only eating five meals) can have as much carbohydrates (yes, they must also be from the approved list - we love lists) as you like. But remember, you must eat the minimum amount of protein at each meal as discussed above. So for you carb gluttons out there, you might want to make sure you eat your protein source before truly loading up on those carbs first.

    Also, each one of those meals must include a small piece of fruit (again, a requirement before downing enough other carbs to the point of no return). Almost any fruit will do (save bananas, kiwis, avocado, and other very high calorie or high fat fruits). We are looking for a small serving of fresh fruit, say between 50 and 100 calories worth. The fructose from fruit will help keep liver glycogen stores full and keep your body in the fed state as opposed to starvation-mode. And, if only consumed in small amounts, is not likely to spill over into adipose.

    Also --and this is important-- you can choose which meals (3 of 5 or 4 of 6) will have carbs and which don't, but the meal preceding and following your workouts must be a carbohydrate meal. Obviously, make sure you leave sufficient time between your pre-workout meal and your workout, or limit the quantity of carbs at this meal, lest your body succumb to reverse peristalsis. Other than that, it's up to you, as I don't want to bog you down with too many "rules" (we have plenty already). The other two meals will be made up of protein only, and, while there is a minimum amount, as always, there is no maximum.

    So to sum up, all but two of your meals will have a small piece of fruit, and as much carbohydrate from the approved list as you like. The goal is to eat until complete physical, emotional, and thus, physiological satiety. You are not expected to gorge yourself, nor are you expected to exercise the usual strict self-restraint.

    As I said previously, I am a big believer in self-regulation by the mind and body. You are not to worry or stress about whether you are eating too much, or too little. If you eat too many carbs one meal, you will probably eat less the next, as you'll still be full (just make sure you get the protein in). The beauty of this plan is its simplicity-you are not "aiming" for any number. Rather, you are aiming for the subjective feelings that I just discussed, a satisfied stomach and mental state. You should not "want" more.

    Nor should you eat more than you want. Relax and go with the flow; it is quite hard to mess up the high carb day, if you stick to the right carbs. And you will learn your body's response as you go on. Increase your carbohydrate consumption if you are not "satisfied." You want a constant feeling of fullness, all day, such that you don't want to eat further. You need to be in tune to your body, and this comes with practice.

    Most people find themselves looking forward to, if not salivating at the thought of, the upcoming high carb day. This is no surprise. Indeed, it is by design, and how I came up with the plan for myself. It is a psychological reward, satisfying your emotional need to eat. It makes the very strict part of the diet (which we will get to) bearable. It is a small but frequent reward to hang on to that also has these profound psychological and, equally as important, physiological benefits.

    However, some of you will have a difficult time with the high carb day. Stress and concerns of eating too much will plague you. Not counting every gram of carb, and every calorie consumed, will haunt you. For those of you with such concerns I remind you that first, you are supposed to eat a lot of food on this day, to make sure that your weekly caloric deficit is not too low, and second, that no one should ever dread high carb day. The point is to eat as much as you want; not stuff yourself like a Thanksgiving turkey.


    Low Carb Day


    The low carb day is a bit trickier. Actually, it's the most difficult of the bunch. The anal group out there will love it though, as there are specific macronutrient goals. For those of you who, like me, deplore counting, fret not. There is a way around it (we'll discuss this privately later my lazy brethren).

    Here, three meals (two if you are only eating five meals) may contain carbs. Again, one rule is that at least the meal following your workout must be a carb meal. The others you can schedule as you see fit. Here, carb amounts are limited, however. We are seeking to eat approximately one gram of carbohydrate (from the list) per pound of bodyweight each low carb day. So our hypothetical 200 pound dieter would eat about 66 grams of carbs in each of three meals of the day, and the others would be just protein. Oh, and don't forget your small piece of fruit, at these carb meals, as well.

    Now, recall that this plan is designed for simplicity. So it is best if you simply learn general portions of the carbohydrates you choose to eat. I'd prefer that you don't measure out your carbs strictly; but for the exceptionally anal, this is your chance to shine. For those like me, the goal is a satisfied, but not full stomach. The subjective feeling to strive for is where you'd like to have more, but know you don't need it.


    No Carb Day


    The no carb day is the simplest, yet most physically challenging day. For most, the cyclical nature of the diet will make this day a relatively easy emotional challenge, however. It also, I am willing to bet, will be the most controversial day, among the dieting community. Yes, I am prepared to be tarred and feathered. Hell, I may enjoy it. Regardless, it is the key to this diet. And it involves, quite literally, no carbohydrates. Okay I lied: a few sneak in with your green veggies; as with any good rule, there is an exception.

    Here, you will stick to your six (or five) meals, and only consume protein (and some fats); again from the list, and again, at least meeting the prescribed minimum. Unless "masticatory boredom" sets in, however, I doubt you will have any trouble eating your minimums, and you likely will eat far more. However, do not be surprised if you eat less than you expect, since eating protein alone can cause one to feel satiated more rapidly. This may seem like a painful or difficult day, but in practice it's not that bad. Trust me. And remember, a high carb day is just around the corner.


    Veggies


    No, I did not forget. You won't find veggies (except the truly calorically dense ones) on the carb list. And here, I am referring to green leafy, low calorie, fibrous vegetables. Things like salad (no dressing), cabbages, escarole, broccoli, spinach, zucchini, squash, and kale are appropriate. Generally, any vegetable that contains less than 50 calories per cup will suffice.

    Each and every day, whether it be a high, low, or no carb day, at least three meals, each and every day should include one cup of green veggies. It can be with or without your carb meals. I don't care, though you may find it more pleasing to the palate to consume your vegetables with your no carb meals.

    Now, on to the good stuff: the lists. Don't get overly excited because you aren't going to see most of your favorite goodies on here. Indeed, it is a relatively sparse list, given the plethora of carb sources found in grocery stores.


    Approved Carbohydrates:
    Brown rice
    Oats (Slow Cooked Preferred)
    Sweet potatoes or Yams
    Fiber One (All Bran) Cereal
    Starchy Veggies (corn, peas, etc.)
    Beans/Legumes
    Approved Yet Limited Carbohydrates**
    Whole-wheat pasta
    Whole grain breads, pitas, etc.
    ** These may only be consumed on high carb days, and only for one meal per high carb day


    Additional Yet Important Concerns


    Measuring Success.
    The old dieting adage that one should not weigh (or take measurements) oneself daily is perhaps never truer than on this diet. This is especially important for those of you fixated on the scale. Wild weight fluctuations will occur, as you deplete, and replete, glycogen stores daily. And remember that for every gram of glycogen stored (or lost), three grams of water are also retained (or lost).

    As well, you are likely to look and feel bloated at the end of, and the day after, your high carbohydrate days. This is normal and not an indication of lack of progress (as many an individual who were skeptical, yet tried the diet can attest to). To the contrary, it is an indication that things are moving along swimmingly. As well, if you try to measure progress in this manner, you will become frustrated after your high carb day.

    You may then come to the "epiphany" that the no carb days are doing wonders, and you will start adding in extra no carb days. Next, you will skimp on your high carb days, and all this will speed progress correct? Wrong. Rather, you will speed up your inevitable metabolic crash, as well as emotional and physiological discomfort and you will spiral into a pattern that's end is failure. Melodramatic? Perhaps, but I think I made my point.

    So, we resolve this by always taking measurements, and charting weight after the same type of day. Whether it is the morning after a high carb day, or the end of a no carb day, or whatever, consistency is key. Personally, for psychological reasons, I prefer the morning after a high carb day, but the choice is yours. Moreover, you should not be weighing in after a single three-day cycle. Weighing yourself once every other cycle is more than sufficient; so you are tracking progress every six to eight days, depending on your cycle length.

    Cooking and Food Preparation
    Ah, cooking. Before I get a zillion questions on this, let me try to head this off at the pass. This diet does not allow for calories (whether they be fat, sugar, or what-have-you) added at the preparation or cooking stage. Thus, you cannot fry, add butter, or oil. You cannot add salad dressing or breadcrumbs. You cannot add sauces or glazes. You cannot, well, you get the point, I hope.

    You can use no-cal or very low-cal substitutes. So vinegar, soy sauce, and mustard are fine. No calorie dressing works if you can stand it. You can get away with some keto products, or even a small amount of balsamic vinegar. Pam is your friend, as are most spices, grilling, broiling, boiling, and baking.

    While I don't necessarily recommend them, I don't shun things like sugarless gum, diet soda, coffee or tea (black or with an artificial sweetener only), sugar free jello, and crystal light, and other things containing artificial sweeteners while on this diet. With that said, one must be careful that an excessive amount of calories is not consumed regularly with such "low calorie" items. Likewise, one should be particularly careful on No Carb day with these items.

    Post-workout Nutrition
    While bodybuilders and non-bodybuilders can use this diet, most of us reading this perform some form of resistance training. For those that do, I assume you have a "typical" post-workout protocol, so I'll just give some basics. In conjunction with the Basic Plan (with fat loss being the goal), I recommend, at a minimum, between 30 and 50 grams of whey protein.

    This can be a protein only meal, and then followed by a carb meal on carb days, or can be taken with oatmeal (or another carb from the list) on carb days. On no carb days, obviously you'd just be having the whey. When using this diet to cut, we are not looking to create a post-workout insulin spike. However, a pure ectomorph looking to cut should probably consider it (by adding 30-50 grams of dextrose and/or maltodextrin).

    Water Consumption
    In short, you can never have enough. The ten 8-ounce glasses per day recommendation is easily a minimum. I recommend at least a gallon per day.

    A Word On Cardio
    Briefly: cardio sucks. Or, and perhaps more accurately, cardio is overrated. And, hence, it is over-utilized, to the detriment of the dieter-especially the muscular dieter. I expect this will be the second most controversial aspect of this article. Perhaps I'll add a section on religion, to take some heat of my views here.

    So for most people, unless "skinny" (as opposed to lean) is the look you are going for, or you just love your cardio, I'd suggest dropping it. Period. Resistance training can provide most, if not all, of the physical benefits of cardio, and can do so more efficiently. Benefits such as improved heart rate, reduced blood pressure and cholesterol levels, increased metabolism, and nutrient partitioning are generally more efficiently achieved with resistance training, and of course, resistance training carries the added benefit of muscle growth.

    With that out of the way, cardio does have its use. If you have been dieting for an extraordinarily long period of time, it may be beneficial. If you are already very lean, and still seeking to get freaky lean, that would be a good situation to add controlled amounts.

    A thorough discussion of different types of cardiovascular activity is well beyond the scope of this article. Generally, however, adding in a weekly session or two of high intensity interval training at the appropriate time is a good idea.

    Tweaking, Generally
    As alluded to above, this diet is rather malleable. It can be tailored to the individual's goals, genetics, preferences, lifestyle, or all of the above. We have already taken up much of your time today, so the next installment will discuss in greater detail how to apply the basic plan to a bulk, how to optimize it in relation to one's training, how to optimize it in relation to ones supplementation regimen, and how to arrange it to fit one's lifestyle (if you have a specific idea in mind, be sure to email me, and perhaps I'll include it).

    Here, I will state briefly, that the three-day basic plan will (or should) provide for rapid, steady fat loss. You can easily self regulate this. Should fat loss prove too rapid make no adjustments until at least three weeks or approximately 7 mini-cycles to attain a baseline (and know that you are losing weight as opposed to water). Then simply add in an additional high carb day. So the rotation can be, High, Low, High, No, and it is a four-day rotation. Conversely, if you are still not shedding fat quickly enough, you should add an extra no carb day, as such: Low, No, High, No. And, of course, this is not the only way to do this.

    Who can use this diet?
    Well, frankly, anyone. With any goals. With any genetics. As I said, the diet is malleable - such is its nature, by design. Who has used the diet successfully?


    Me (a ****/endomorph by nature) for two pre-contest preparations. I successfully got down to around 5% body fat each time, retained a substantial amount of muscle, and needed no tweaking of the basic plan, and no supplements, though I did do cardio. This was also the low-fat variety, which I no longer condone. I also did a "lifestyle version" just over a year ago simply to get "beach ready." I got down to about 10% body fat, retained all of my muscle, and did zero cardio. This time the diet was of the current moderate fat variety.

    In 1998, my training partner (a pure ****morph, the bastard) used my original, low-fat variety of cycling to prepare for his first bodybuilding show. He won. My training program helped immensely, as he gained 15 pounds of muscle, I'd wager, drug and supplement free, in the six months he trained with me prior to cutting. He retained nearly all of it, while cycling carbs.

    In 2002, a new training partner (an endomorph with slight ****morph tendencies) used a lifestyle variety of the diet, and went from a bodyweight of 228 pounds to 192 in ten weeks, without losing any significant muscle-mass; indeed, his strength increased in that time.

    Several females, in 2002, on-line, successfully used a third generation of the Basic Plan to drop a few pounds for summer. There progress has helped me tweak the Cycle to what it is today.

    A male personal trainer, who I coached on-line, used this diet both to cut and bulk. He was so pleased with his progress that he has spawned off many other on-line cutters to do the same.

    Most recently, a female figure competitor, who I trained on-line, used the Basic Plan "Plus" (we tweaked it regularly as she progressed, mostly for her psychological comfort) to prepare for her second show ever. She was more muscular this time around before the diet, and she successfully retained that size, while simultaneously coming in leaner. Of course, I am referring to Avant's very own, Leslie. That show was a springboard into another, where she seeks to maintain her leanness, and improve her lagging body-parts. While not technically using the cycle as a bulk, and with the most advanced supplements at her disposal, she is maintaining and improving her leanness, while simultaneously increasing strength, and improving her physique.

    Finally, as this article is being written, another female bodybuilder turned fitness competitor (and long time cutter who has never achieved the elusive "six-pack") has embraced Carb Cycling whole-heartedly. Because she is venturing into the competition foray for her first ever figure competition in a short preparation time (and we don't know exactly how her body will respond, though early reports show that the term "favorable" would be an understatement) she is on an aggressive version of the Basic Plan. Despite this, though again using a variety of synergistic supplements, she has been increasing strength during the cut.

    I also have two more tests I'll be running soon, on myself. The first is a cut. It will be a lifestyle variety, which I will discuss in detail next time. The goal is to lean out, while retaining muscle, while I am rehabbing. Once I am fully rehabbed, I will be using it to bulk, for the very first time. I will be pulling out all the stops, and we will see how she goes.
    The point is, with the proper guidance almost anyone can use this diet successfully. Indeed, I do believe almost anyone can use the Basic Plan successfully (for cutting), just perhaps not optimally, which of course is our goal. As an exception, I'd not recommend that a pure ectomorph (and perhaps even a pure ****) use this diet, or any variation thereof, while in a pure mass phase.

    Next time we will explore variations of the diet for different goals and body types, as well as discuss supplementation and advanced versions of the diet that can be achieved with supplementation.

  9. #9
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    Part 2

    Many people find a random three-day cycle as outlined in my first installment to be difficult, lifestyle-wise. If this is you, we can resolve this problem relatively easily. Here is one way:


    Monday, Wednesday, and Friday - No carb days
    Tuesday and Saturday - High carb days
    Thursday and Sunday - Low carb days
    This schedule assumes a "normal" life. Should your schedule vary, and for the gravediggers and college kids out there, you may want a different plan, but my hope is that this will appeal to the masses, while simultaneous teaching the rest of you how to properly manipulate the diet to match your lifestyle.

    Just keep the following concepts in mind:


    Try not to put two no carb days back-to-back
    Certainly do not put two high carb days back-to-back
    Maintain what amounts to (roughly) a weekly ratio of 1:1:1 of the three types of days; and error towards the lower calorie side rather than the high calorie side

    The Life-Style Cycle


    The Lifestyle Cycle is aptly named. It is designed for those who wish to "live life", enjoy the pleasures of food (and drink), friends, and social gatherings. It is a plan designed for maintenance, not body-fat loss, so you need to be "satisfied" with you current level of fitness. It can be used to get through an extended vacation or a long stretch of holidays (say from Thanksgiving until New Year) while you are otherwise cutting, or a period in your life when improvement is not a priority.

    Yes, unlike most authors on the topic of diet I am conceding that (1) there are times when it is acceptable (hell even desirable) to eat for the sake of enjoyment alone, and (2) it is okay to be satisfied and not always seeking to achieve an improved physical state (which is obviously doomed to failure and self-loathing). This Lifestyle Cycle is based on the "ordinary" lifestyle of an "average" individual.

    If you have a peculiar way of life or just specific plans on specific days of a specific week, feel free to adjust accordingly so long as you understand the principles at work, and keep the weekly ratios the same. Likewise, if you gain fat easily you may need to cut back some on the gluttony, and the converse is true if you don't.

    Here is a weekly cycle that should work nicely for most:

    Monday = No Carb
    Tuesday = Low Carb
    Wednesday = High Carb
    Thursday = No Carb
    Friday = Low carb
    Saturday = High Carb+
    Sunday = Low Carb
    Now, if you are paying attention, you are saying to yourself "WTF is high carb+?" And you are probably also thinking, "sounds interesting," as you lick your lips.
    Well, it is interesting, and I think you'll like it. It is like a regular high carb day except:


    Any carbs are acceptable for your carb meals
    You may drink alcohol during one of your carb meals
    You must keep fats as low as possible (except continue with fish oil supplementation)
    In addition, once every other week, your middle of the week high carb day can have one "high carb+" meal. Implicit in this statement is the fact that this middle of the week high carb day can also be moved.

    Wednesday is optimal, but if the big dinner you have planned, or the office party, or hot date, falls on a Tuesday or Thursday, fell free to swap days. I would only warn that if you moved it to Thursday, Friday should become a no carb day, as you'd want to buffer two high carb days with a small period of depletion. So, for example, let's say the hot date fell on a Thursday. I'd recommend switching it up as follows:


    Monday = Low Carb
    Tuesday = No Carb
    Wednesday = Low Carb
    Thursday = High Carb
    Friday = No carb
    Saturday = High Carb+
    Sunday = Low Carb

    The Bulk Cycle


    Can one bulk while cycling carbs? Of course. Why would one want to? Now that is a more complex question. Essentially, it is a method of bulking while keeping fat gain minimal. The diet is designed to keep your body in a Fed State much of the week, thereby keeping you (mostly) anabolic . Can anyone bulk while cycling carbohydrates? Yes, albeit differently depending on body-type.

    First, I am going to discuss how one would bulk if he or she has any endomorphic tendencies. For such an individual, which I expect will be most of us, I recommend three high carb days, three low carb days, and one no carb day. For a pure endomorph, or someone with extreme endomorphic tendencies (i.e. you add body-fat easier than a hypothyroid hippo) you'll want to add an extra no carb day, and eliminate a low carb day, at the very least.

    Tweaking for body-type, a pure ****morph would (typically) be better served doing three high carb days and four low carb days, whereas a pure ectomorph would be best off with the converse: four high carb days and three low carb days. Understand that these are general guidelines and recommended starting places. Few of us are purely any one body-type but rather a blend of the two. So you are best off if you monitor, and tweak, as you go along.

    When setting up such a plan for any body type, keep in mind the following principles:

    Try not to stack more than two high carb days back-to-back (save for the endomorph)
    Do not put no carb days back-to-back
    Put your high carb days on days with your most difficult, highest volume workouts
    Put your no carb days on your off days, to the extent possible
    Allow one cheat meal weekly, where you can eat and drink what you like-after all, this is a bulk

    Cyclical Diet & Training


    Most readers are not just dieting, thankfully. So it's high time we discussed optimizing your cycle with your training. One can tailor a cycle to training, or vice versa. Assuming that time constraints are not an issue, I recommend tailoring the diet cycle to your training when you are bulking, and your training to your diet when cutting. Why? Which takes precedent should vary depending on your (current) goal. When additional muscle is the driving force, training is of paramount importance. But when fat loss is the primary goal, diet drives the cart.

    Because of the numerous factors that must be considered when optimizing the two and the innumerable permutations that could result, I am not going to give specific programs. Instead, I will give general guidelines, and offer a single example, based on the standard three-day cutting cycle.

    When setting up your total program, use the following guideposts:


    Put your heaviest, hardest, and highest volume workouts on your high carb days.
    Where possible, put your heaviest, hardest, and highest volume workouts after a low carb day. This works well on a maintenance or bulk program, but not so much on a cut (where high carb days generally follow no carb days)
    Put your off days on your no carb days. Or, use these days for cardio work (if you insist on cardio) or you lightest low volume days. For example, active recovery workouts would be ideal here
    When cutting, keep the frequency of workouts, and/or the total volume lower than - you would when bulking
    Now, let's put this to practice. Assume one is cutting, and using the standard three-day cycle: no carb, high carb, low carb, repeat.
    I would recommend setting up a four-day or six-day split that is spread out over six days. So, for example, you could do the following:


    A: Chest and Triceps
    B: Back and Biceps
    C: Quads, Hams, and Calves
    D: Shoulders, Traps, and Forearms
    Learn all your proper exercise form, here.

    You'd then play this routine as follows:


    No: Off
    High: A
    Low: B
    No: Off
    High: C
    Low: D
    Good luck, and have fun. And remember, variation and experimentation are the keys to winning the long-term battle of health and self-improvement.

  10. #10
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    Supplementation


    Yes ladies and gentlemen, this is the point where I pimp some products. However, it is not pimping for the sake of pimping, but rather a discussion on products that can help optimize one variation of this diet or another. So, I will not outline the virtues of Avant products generally, or even discuss, for example, Lipoderm-Y or Ab-Solved (despite the fact that they can be used with this diet effectively). Rather, I will mention but very few products:

    LeptiGen - I am sure all the readers of this article are quite familiar with LeptiGen-its benefits use. Carb cycling will generally allow you to maintain a more aggressive cycle without killing your leptin levels as a Ketogenic diet might, for instance. So, even with moderate LeptiGen dosing one could increase the speed of fat-loss by doing a four day cycle such as: high carb, no carb, low carb, no carb. A higher dose would be necessary to offset anything more extreme. I would not even recommend a cycle akin to the one previously listed unless you are consuming at least two servings of LeptiGen per day.

    LeptiGen Mass - This will be hitting the market in the next few months, and will be beneficial to the bulker. You will be able to alter your cycle by performing less high carb days while still remaining as (or more) anabolic as you would had you kept them in your schedule. LeptiGen Mass will be particularly excellent for the endomorph on no carb days, and for all users on the low carb days.


    ICE - This premier BCAA formula by Xtreme Formulations gets top reviews and is an excellent addition to any carb cycle. I would highly recommend its use before or during training on no carb and low carb days.

    Now Foods Super EPA - This is a terrific product that allows a lower dosing of fish oil given its high EPA/DHA content.
    Again, many products can work nicely with this program, but it is beyond the scope of this article to address each and every one of them.

    Conclusion


    What is the point of all of this? Basically, it is what I initially stated in my first installment. This is a malleable diet than can be tailored to meet specific goals and specific body types. Do I know exactly how you the reader can optimize a cycle? No. But hopefully the above guidelines have empowered you to experiment based on past diet experience. I hope that this has empowered you to explore and understand what is working for you, and what is not, and how to adapt and optimize along the way.

    And as a bonus for reading this article, I am offering not one but two orange-juice juicers, as well as a handy-dandy convenient list of fibrous Veggies for your consumption. Corny pun intended.

    Fibrous Vegetables


    Alfalfa Sprouts
    Artichoke Hearts
    Arugula
    Asparagus
    Avocado
    Bamboo Shoots
    Bean Sprouts
    Beet Greens
    Bock Choy
    Broccoli
    Brussels Sprouts
    Cabbage
    Cauliflower
    Celery
    Celery Root
    Chard
    Chicory
    Chives
    Collard Greens
    Cucumber
    Dandelion Greens
    Eggplant
    Endive
    Escarole
    Fennel
    Hearts of Palm
    Jicama
    Kale
    Kohlrabi
    Leeks
    Lettuce
    Mache
    Millie lettuce
    Mushrooms
    Okra
    Olives
    Onion
    Parsley
    Peppers
    Pumpkin
    Radicchio
    Radishes
    Rhubarb
    Sauerkraut
    Scallions
    Snow Pea Pods
    Sorrel
    Spaghetti Squash
    Spinach
    String beans
    Summer Squash
    Tomato
    Turnips
    Water Chestnuts
    Wax beans
    Zucchini
    NOTE: This is part two, click here for part one!

    Thanks,
    Twin Peak

  11. #11
    Cartier1 is offline New Member
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    Wow Thanks PINACCLE!

    Seems like this is a thread closed,very explained!!!

    This is going to help others asking for this too!! =)

    I'm so happy about this,i'm going to change everything tomorrow LOL
    Again thanks a lot for all your help!!

  12. #12
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    Good read Pinnacle!

  13. #13
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    Holy Wow! Unreal bro! All that I needed and more. This NEEDS to be a sticky! I will be starting on Monday.

  14. #14
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    kick ass info! This helps a lot seeing that I am about to embark on carb cycling. Any additional info you have on carb cycling or what you have used to get shredded before will def. be appreciated. Have you used this particular program when carb cycling? Results? Thanks again Pinnacle!

  15. #15
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    like its been stated. up the cardio and tweak the diet more. youll get there.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by M302_Imola View Post
    kick ass info! This helps a lot seeing that I am about to embark on carb cycling. Any additional info you have on carb cycling or what you have used to get shredded before will def. be appreciated. Have you used this particular program when carb cycling? Results? Thanks again Pinnacle!
    There are several ways to cycle carbs. But the above article gives you a great starting point. After experimenting with this protocol, you'll be able to fine tune it to your own specifics. Pay close attention to how your body reacts during different phases, what type food agree, disagree with you.

    Just like with training, you need to experiment with dieting to find what works best for you. While cycling carbs, over time you might find different carb rotations work best for you. Some guys can go 1 high day, 4 low and repeat. Others need to go 1 high, 5 low, 1 zero carb day and repeat. It depends on your body type and metabolism

    I'm glad the article has given people clarity on cycling carbs

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by abbot138 View Post
    Holy Wow! Unreal bro! All that I needed and more. This NEEDS to be a sticky! I will be starting on Monday.
    yep.

    -CNS

  18. #18
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    Sticky!

  19. #19
    Narkissos's Avatar
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    I think it should be copied to a new thread...and then made sticky

    -CNS

  20. #20
    Gitlarge is offline New Member
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    awesome article thanks for the time you put in to writing that all down.

  21. #21
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    Pinnacle,how do you use this method of cycling when bulking. Not quite sure. Thanks.

  22. #22
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    Oh also,great article mate.

  23. #23
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    ThaNKS for sharing the detailed information with us!!!

  24. #24
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    damn Pinnacle AR-Hall of Famer for sure!

  25. #25
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    BUMP! Why isnt this a "carb cycling sticky" yet!?!?!?!

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by abbot138 View Post
    BUMP! Why isnt this a "carb cycling sticky" yet!?!?!?!
    True that!!!!

  27. #27
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    bump

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cartier1 View Post
    Hi,everybody!

    I'm 29 years old,5'6" with 11% BF

    This is my diet plan,i can slightly se my abs sometimes,but i cannot get lower than the 11% or 10.8 BF

    I do cardio i mean 125-135beats p/minute according my age, 30 minutes 3days per week.

    9:00AM
    6 egg whites
    40grms oatmeal w/water
    Glass of milk

    12:00PM preworkout
    1 protein shake
    1 banana

    1:00 or 2:00PM postworkout
    1protein shake NOT NEARLY ENOUGH CARBS FOR PWO


    4:00PM
    6oz Chicken,fish or tuna
    2 cups Carrots or brocolli

    7:00PM
    6oz Chicken,Fish or tuna
    2 cups Carrots or brocolli

    10:00PM
    Glass of milk REALLY?


    Does anyone can help me to find what is wrong on my diet plan to get ripped??

    Thanks a lot for your help guys!!

    first fix your cardio 45 min 5-6 times a week in the am on an empty stomach, if youre 11% (which i doubt) you'd be able to see your abs, in HS i was 13% and had no problem with seeing my abs second pelase work on your diet i put some stuff in bold ^^^^^ that i think you need to work on

    also have 8 meals a day and how mych do you weigh?

    OKAY:
    so basics: 1 to 1.5 grams of protein PER POUND OF LBM meaning if youre 200lbs and have 11% bf then you have 22lbs of fat and 178lbs of LBM so that means that you need at LEAST 180g of protein in your diet EVERY but prferably you would take in 260 aprox.

    sencond thing:
    you have WAYYYY too big of a gap between your meals like 3 hrs or so everybody on here will tell you thats not good,a chicken breast doesnt process into your body right away it takes about 10 or so hours (someone correct me if im wrong please) so that means that while that food is processing you need something else to ALREADY be in your system so your body can feed your muscles with so it has energy

    your meals should be as follows: (assuming youre 200lbs with 11%)
    9am: breakfast
    50g of protein
    40 g of carbs
    >15g of fat

    11:00am (assuming this is after your workout)
    40g of protein
    about 100g of carbs
    >10g of fat

    1:00pm
    50g of protein
    some simple carbs (green veggies)
    low fats

    3:00pm
    40g of protein
    simple carbs
    low fats

    5:00pm
    40-50g of protein
    low carbs
    low fats

    7:00pm
    30-40g of protein
    low carbs lowa fats

    9:00pm
    again about 40g of protein
    low carbs IMO


    this brings you at about 250-300 g of protein every day IMO its a perfect amount of protein
    low fats

  29. #29
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    ok i feel dumb now cuZ i didnt see everything that pinnacle posted lol

  30. #30
    Lifta's Avatar
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    Awesome article thanks for all the hard work!

  31. #31
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    Bump!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  32. #32
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    Im gonna keep bumping this till it becomes a sticky

  33. #33
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    ill help ya out bro!!



    BUMP-IZZLE in this SHIZZLE!!

  34. #34
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    Been around the board since 2000 but off for the last 2 years. Just registered again today to get some motivation back and to find a new training/diet idea. WOW, heres the diet portion I have been looking for. This is an incredibly detailed and thoughtful response. Thanks Pinnacle, I'll be starting this Thursday.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by testigator View Post
    Been around the board since 2000 but off for the last 2 years. Just registered again today to get some motivation back and to find a new training/diet idea. WOW, heres the diet portion I have been looking for. This is an incredibly detailed and thoughtful response. Thanks Pinnacle, I'll be starting this Thursday.
    He is a very wise man It worked very well for me, and was also quite liberating from writing everything I eat down everyday, lol. Enjoy!

  36. #36
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    Bump!

  37. #37
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    RC - you in the mood for bumping old threads today, or what!?!?

  38. #38
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    Start doing hiit cardio !! This steady pace cardio is for the birds if u want to get quick results do sprints.. Say 3 to 5 min warm up than do 10 sprint intervals consisting of 20 second all out sprints than 1 to 2 min rest in between each interval. Than a 5 min cool down just a light walk..what I typically do is.. Go to a soccer field sprint one way up..walk back than walk up than sprint back.. And I do this 10 times you will see great results.. I'm natural so I don't no how juice affects your cardio.. All the best !

  39. #39
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    ^^ ugh... this is what I was afraid of... newbs never look at dates. The thread is 4 years old (not taking away from the good info within however).

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by gbrice75 View Post
    RC - you in the mood for bumping old threads today, or what!?!?
    yup! it has some great info on how to carb cycle. i am thinking sticky for carb cycling

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