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  1. #1
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    Where to start with lean mass building?

    I am taking a human nutrition class next semester but that does not help me now.

    Where to start with lean mass building?-bf-guess.jpg

    My Stats:
    27yrs old
    5'11
    165lbs
    11-12%? bf

    My occupation is as a Furniture Mover. Typically 6 days a week I am up and down stairs all day with furniture in my hands. I always run up the flights of stairs when empty handed (literally run). Im pretty sure Im not eating enough but I am constantly eating all day. Usually some sort of fruit, along with turkey sandwhichs, chicken sausage, chicken breast, cashews, etc... I also eat 3-4 whole eggs, bowl of oat meal, and a waffle w/ peanut butter, with whey protein and creatine drinks every morning, some days I make turkey sausage with breakfast.

    Where would I begin figuring out my calorie expenditure to start getting my diet in check?

    I can't seem to get bigger than 160-165lbs no matter what I do. I also hit the gym a few times a week to hit all my major muscles groups hard. I.e. Squats and leg press one day, then pullups, rows, bent over rows another, chest another day with dumbbell press', pushups, chest flys. All exercises are done with free weights except for the leg press' ofcourse.

    All help would be appreciated. Thank You
    Last edited by overnightworker21; 04-10-2011 at 09:35 PM. Reason: edit breakfast items, not just shake in the morning.

  2. #2
    redz's Avatar
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    You likely need too up your calories quite a bit, having a very physical job makes you burn alot more calories and is likely robbing your muscles of what they need to grow. Try eating more red meat, protein shakes arent the best quality source of protein either.

  3. #3
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    Well Im heading to the grocery store this morning after my workout and am going to stock up on more meats and veggies.

    Been looking through the diet forum to get a kind of grocery list.

    I love sandwhichs cause they are easy and convenient but I should probably get away from so much wheat bread?

    I am going to pick up a few pounds of chicken breast
    a few pounds of salmon
    another 6 dozen eggs
    Should I stay away from the lean turkey sausage or is that ok for breakfast?

    Also going to get alot of veggies which I usually don't get at all except for asparagus.
    Should I leave out the fruits such as mangos and plums and peaches?
    And how about sushi? I enjoy all kinds of sushi, can I continue eating that?

    Because of my daily routine what should my macro %'s be around? I am a mesomorph body type, should I try to stay away from alot of the carbs even though I am burning alot of energy? Where should the main source of my energy come from during the day?

    Thanks for all input, I am really new to this clean diet. I enjoy all foods so it is hard for me to start leaving some of it behind.

  4. #4
    tbody66's Avatar
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    eggs and oatmeal for breakfast with protein powder added. Not only stay away from bread, but the lunchmeat is a poor choice as well. Sweet potatoes are a better choice for carbs and energy for the day.

  5. #5
    Nephets's Avatar
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    You need to figure out how many calories your eating now. Once you have that figure you can add 500 calories to it until you start gaining weight. If you add 500 to your diet and your still not gaining add another 500.

  6. #6
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    Aren't sweet potatoes full of sugar? I still have a lot of research to do to find the best energy source for me throughout the day while trying to build lean muscle. Off to the store to pickup some food. As much as I love my sandwiches I will leave the wheat bread on the shelf. I will start keeping track of my daily intake and start adding calories by 500 as needed. Feel so small!

  7. #7
    tbody66's Avatar
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    Not sure how to answer this, all carb sources turn into sugar basically, but sweet potatoes are on the good list of carb sources and not simple sugars like you imply.

  8. #8
    gbrice75's Avatar
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    Just post up a current or proposed diet - it'll be much easier to work with that way. Include time of day for each meal, where your workout fits into the schedule, and work out and include accurate macro nutrient info for each meal as well.

  9. #9
    tbody66's Avatar
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    And a specific workout routine with exercises/sets/reps/poundages and split.

  10. #10
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    I understand simple and complex carbs, just thought by the name sweet potatoes they where not on the complex side.

    My usual day of eating is

    6:45a
    4 eggs yolk included
    1 slice wheat toast or wheat waffle with peanut butter
    85grams of oatmeal
    creatine drink

    8:45a
    cashews
    peach or banana

    9:45a
    chicken breast
    asparagus
    apple

    11:45a
    salmon filet
    broccoli
    cashews

    1:45p
    Turkey sandwich on wheat w/ slice american cheese, baby spinach, vinegerette
    half an avacado (usually on sandwich)

    4p
    2 chicken sausage links w/ feta and spinach (about .42 lbs)

    6:30p-7p
    This is usually the last meal, dinner for me and its never set
    Usually either steak (filet mignon wrapped in jalapeno bacon) or a fish (mahi mahi, salmon, trout)
    green beans, corn, asparagus, spinach on the side.
    Glass of red wine (CHILLED!)
    0.6 oz of Belgian dark chocolate.

    That is a typical day of eating, some days I add a peanut butter jelly sandwich and eat that throughout the day with other smaller meals or as a snack (one bite here, then another in an hour or two.)

    On the days I do get into the gym it is usually either around 9am or 2-3pm those are the times I usually am there and the only thing I change about my eating is I throw in a pre-workout protein shake 30min before the gym.

  11. #11
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    I have no idea what my macro or calorie intake is but I am going to start weighing and keeping track of macros and calories so I can adjust as needed as I get better at eating clean.

  12. #12
    Nephets's Avatar
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    Sweet potatoes are complex, but regular potatoes are starchy carbs and break down much quicker. Maybe this is what you were mixing up.

  13. #13
    tbody66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by overnightworker21 View Post
    I understand simple and complex carbs, just thought by the name sweet potatoes they where not on the complex side.
    One would think, and since I used to eat mine with butter and brown sugar it would make even more sense!

  14. #14
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    My workout right now is as follows and I do not have specific days for specific muscle groups. I usually just work the group that is the least sore.

    Leg Day
    Squats Freeweight: 1 Minute Rest Between all sets. Last sets sometimes get upto 2min rest.
    Warmup - 135lbs 10 reps 2 sets
    155lbs 8 reps 3 sets
    185lbs 6 reps 2 sets
    135lbs 8 reps 2 sets
    Seated Leg Press:
    225lbs 10reps 1 set
    315lbs 10reps 1 set
    405lbs 8 reps 2 sets
    455lbs 6 reps 1 set

    Chest Day
    Dumbbell press (flat bench):
    Warmup - 60lb dumbbell 10 reps 2 sets 30sec rest
    65lb dumbbell 10 reps 2 sets 30sec rest
    70lb dumbbell 6 reps 2 sets 1min rest
    75lb dumbbell 6 reps 3 sets 1.5-2min rest
    Seated Chest Fly (Machine):
    200lbs 10reps 1 set
    250lbs 8 reps 3 sets

    Back Day
    Bodyweight pull ups:
    165lbs (bodyweight) 10 reps 10 sets -- About to start using my weight belt.
    Bent over rows:
    70lb dumbbell 10 reps 1set
    80lb dumbbell 10 reps 1set
    90lb dumbbell 8 reps 1 set; 6 reps 2 sets
    Don't know what to call the other exercise I do for my back but I lay under a low barbell on a squat rack and have my feet on a bench in front of me and pull my self up to the bar.

    I am thinking of adding dead lifts to my back day also.

    After every workout I do 10min of intense cycling.

    Any suggestions?

  15. #15
    Nephets's Avatar
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    Dead lifts are a must in my opinion.

  16. #16
    tbody66's Avatar
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    I would suggest making a set schedule. I notice some weaknesses in the program and would love to give some specific suggestions to help you improve. I'm a deadlift fan as well.

  17. #17
    gbrice75's Avatar
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    x3 on deadlifts.

  18. #18
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    dead lifts are great and all but i would add more volume to your leg day....legs are like half of our bodyweight and the biggest musclegroup on our bodys i belive and theres always room for growth there, more leg mass = more body weight so dont neglect them...good luck...

  19. #19
    tbody66's Avatar
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    anytime you train a large muscle group your body produces more growth chemicals for the overall benefit of adding muscle and burning fat. I have heard hundreds of lifters say that their bench press went up when they started doing squats or deadlifts that they had avoided previously.

  20. #20
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    I will gladly take all criticism on my workout or diet. Its hard to make a set schedule for my works out because some days I get off early, others I get off around 8-9 at night and on those days I am not going to the gym. I goto the gym at least 4 times a week.

    Maybe I should use the squat rack so I can throw a bit more weight on for my legs.
    ALL my workouts are by myself, I have no workout partners.

    Just came from the gym and did chest today
    65lb dumbbells 2 sets 10 reps
    70lb 2 sets 10 reps
    75lb 2 sets 8 reps and 7 reps
    80lb 2 sets 6reps
    80lb 1 sets 4reps

    Incline barbell press:
    135lbs 3sets 8 reps
    Decline press (machine):
    225lbs 4 sets 8 reps
    Chest fly (machine):
    200lbs 3 sets 8 reps

  21. #21
    Nephets's Avatar
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    Use the squat rack for sure. You want to be pushing yourself everytime you train. Squats are a great exercise and you won't go as heavy as you could if you're always thinking I'm sunk if I can't get it up. Use the rack, push yourself and keep increasing the weight.
    Last edited by Nephets; 04-13-2011 at 04:58 PM.

  22. #22
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    Besides adding weight and dead lifts to my leg day what else should I change besides upping my weight with everything every week?
    I just got back into the gym about a month ago after being out (lazy) for a year and half.

  23. #23
    tbody66's Avatar
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    Dead lifts are on back day, not leg day. Add stiff legged deadlifts on leg day. If you monitor your progress every week, go up in weight or reps every week on your lifts, stick with this program for two more months and let's re-evaluate everything. IMO

  24. #24
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    I meant to say add dead lifts on back day, sorry. I will check out stiff legged dead lifts cause I'm not sure exactly how to do those. I have started keeping a log for food and workout so I will monitor. I typically go up on weight on all my exercises every week. Thanks for all the input fellas.

  25. #25
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    I just watched a video on youtube for stiff legged dead lifts and it looks like an exercise that should be done on back day.
    But you say leg day. Is it leg day for sure cause it does not look like your using any leg muscles. Just stretching the hamstrings a bit.

  26. #26
    Nephets's Avatar
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    Leg day for sure. Give em a try. Great for the back of the legs.

  27. #27
    tbody66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by overnightworker21 View Post
    I just watched a video on youtube for stiff legged dead lifts and it looks like an exercise that should be done on back day.
    But you say leg day. Is it leg day for sure cause it does not look like your using any leg muscles. Just stretching the hamstrings a bit.
    That is pretty much what it is doing, however in order to raise the weight back up, if performed properly, the only muscle doing the work is your hamstring and your glute tie-in. I promise you there is nothing, absolutely nothing, that works the hamstring like stiff legged dead lifts. The most important part of the exercise is to lower the weight slow and controlled and at the bottom of the exercise do not let the weight touch and shove your butt as far back as you can, til it starts to bring your toes off the ground! Try this for two weeks and tell me how you feel!

  28. #28
    gbrice75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by overnightworker21 View Post
    I just watched a video on youtube for stiff legged dead lifts and it looks like an exercise that should be done on back day.
    But you say leg day. Is it leg day for sure cause it does not look like your using any leg muscles. Just stretching the hamstrings a bit.
    Do a few sets with perfect form, and tell me 24 hours later if you still don't think they're for legs!!

    My hams KILL the next day, every time I do em, and it sure ain't from being stretched! Definitely hits lower back and glutes as well though, without a doubt.

  29. #29
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    I did em yesterday and I can sure feel it today.

  30. #30
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    Great, Thanks fellas. I was going to hit the gym to do legs last night but didnt get off till 8 and headed back to work now. I will def. hit my legs hard today and do the stiff leg also.

    Because I move furniture my legs never really get a rest. How should I work that into my workout? Is there anything I should take to help recovery time? The only day I don't work is Sunday so should I just save my leg workouts till friday/saturdays? This "problem" of no rest wont push me toward overtraining will it? Maybe just slow progress a bit since they don't get all the rest they need? Same goes for all my muscles actually since I am constantly using them and not really letting them rest to much.

  31. #31
    gbrice75's Avatar
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    ^ ^ With all of this in mind, i'd suggest sticking with a split that has you working muscle groups one time per week. As for legs, yea, i'd work them on Saturday.

    You can't help your job, but what you CAN do is ensure you're getting plenty of sleep and plenty of good nutrition. Make sure the things you can do are in check, and that will somewhat offset the things you cannot help.

  32. #32
    tbody66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gbrice75 View Post
    ^ ^ With all of this in mind, i'd suggest sticking with a split that has you working muscle groups one time per week. As for legs, yea, i'd work them on Saturday.

    You can't help your job, but what you CAN do is ensure you're getting plenty of sleep and plenty of good nutrition. Make sure the things you can do are in check, and that will somewhat offset the things you cannot help.
    ^^^This!

  33. #33
    overnightworker21's Avatar
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    Thanks for the help and in my eyes encouragement! I have been trying to get my nutrition in check by eating alot of clean foods for pro/carbs/fat. Such as salmon, chicken breast, sweet taters, oats, eggs, tuna, etc...
    I usually get between 8-9 hours of sleep every night.

    Got to the gym after work and I feel like I beat the crap out of my legs. Let me know what yall think please.

    Squats (squat rack)
    185lbs 8 reps 1 set
    205lbs 8 reps 2 sets
    225lbs 8 reps 1 set; 5 reps 1 set

    Leg Press (did less weight this time compared to last leg day cause the squats kicked my a**)
    315lbs 8 reps 2 sets
    365lbs 6 reps 2 sets

    Stiff leg dead lift
    185lbs 8 reps 1 set
    225lbs 8 reps 1 set
    275lbs 6 reps 3 sets
    Last edited by overnightworker21; 04-16-2011 at 06:40 PM. Reason: Add sleep comment

  34. #34
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    Two days after my leg day and I didn't work my legs hard enough! They are barely sore. My back is pretty dang sore though from the Stiff legs.

  35. #35
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    ^ ^ Lack of soreness isn't necessarily an indication of a poor workout. You're like me, you NEED to feel sore to know you did something... it only seems to make sense and the opposite is counter-intuitive, but trust me there will be plenty of times where you won't get sore - doesn't mean you didn't stimulate growth.

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