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Getting enough calories around a full training day

Andi-in-BKK

Level 5 Valued Member
Here is my situation currently with regards to training and diet:

I am 34yo and weigh 196lb at an estimated 18% body fat (tape/Naval method with the same tape at the same reference points). I want to drop fat slowly to retain muscle that I’ve worked very hard to build over the last 6 months off from BJJ on account of C19. So I’m trying to stay at maintenance or slightly below. I’ve dropped 10lbs since the beginning of November and haven’t been hungry at all, literally eating when I feel like it. My cardio for rolling is coming back steadily and BJJ feels great.

Monday, Wednesday, Friday

I wake up at 5:30am to get kids ready for school and am home by 7:00am. I take a short nap and then get ready to head to the gym leaving around 9:30am.

It takes me 45min-1hr to make the drive through Bangkok traffic (sometimes up to 2 hours if I misjudge my route) so I’m usually at the gym/BJJ academy by 10:30.

I run a Kettlebell and barbell training program that generally lasts for about an hour including warmup and cool down. Squats, and OHP are the main lifts with Deadlifts being on Monday and Friday.

BJJ starts at 12:00pm and runs until 2pm generally. After which I’m heading back across town to pick up kids by 3:00pm and get back to the house by 3:30

The trouble is getting enough calories and enough protein around this schedule. I can’t eat much at all before BJJ, best I can do is some quick carbs, fruit or sugary cereal while the kids are eating breakfast at around 6am, any later and they will try to come up while I’m rolling. Dairy, heavier protein sources, or fatty foods are completely out of the question at any point before BJJ. This leaves me a window from 3:30pm to around 6:30pm to take in all of my calories for the day with the exception of sports drinks that I can take during training.

What I’m stuck with is a drastic calorie deficit (sub 2000cal) on heavy training days which isn’t ideal from a recovery or maintaining muscle standpoint.

Can I make up the difference on my lighter training days (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, kettlebell Swings, cleans, and snatches for 30 minutes)? Will that affect body composition negatively?

Any idea how to squeeze in extra calories and extra protein? I’m already trying to take in 60g of protein via whey shakes and creatine monohydrate and the rest through diet but I usually have trouble with my stomach afterwards (I’ve never been lactose intolerant but recently dairy has been killing me). I’m not trying to restrict anything except seed oils (not keto or vegan or anything like that). We eat a lot of ribeye and salmon multiple times a week.
 

PeterLuffman

Level 6 Valued Member
You can cycle calories through high and low days, and the results will be the same as having a consistent daily cal target. It sounds like that would be your best option. Eat up on days when you don't do BJJ.
 

Andi-in-BKK

Level 5 Valued Member
You can cycle calories through high and low days, and the results will be the same as having a consistent daily cal target. It sounds like that would be your best option. Eat up on days when you don't do BJJ.
Is there any risk/issue with recovery doing it that way? That seems like the most logical way to do it, but I was worried about excess fat gain trying to balance the week. For the record, I’m doing something similar with sleep at the moment, getting a 3-4hr nap on Tuesday and Thursday, but with a consistent 6-7 hours a night on account of the early mornings.
 

PeterLuffman

Level 6 Valued Member
"I can’t eat much at all before BJJ, best I can do is some quick carbs, fruit or sugary cereal while the kids are eating breakfast at around 6am, any later and they will try to come up while I’m rolling. Dairy, heavier protein sources, or fatty foods are completely out of the question at any point before BJJ"

So, just to clarify, you eat breakfast at 6am and you train BJJ 6 hours later, but yet you aren't able to eat something more significant at breakfast than what you currently do?

6 hours is a decent amount of time to digest a large meal for most people.
 

Andi-in-BKK

Level 5 Valued Member
"I can’t eat much at all before BJJ, best I can do is some quick carbs, fruit or sugary cereal while the kids are eating breakfast at around 6am, any later and they will try to come up while I’m rolling. Dairy, heavier protein sources, or fatty foods are completely out of the question at any point before BJJ"

So, just to clarify, you eat breakfast at 6am and you train BJJ 6 hours later, but yet you aren't able to eat something more significant at breakfast than what you currently do?

6 hours is a decent amount of time to digest a large meal for most people.
That is correct. If I have something like eggs or a protein shake, or even adding peanut butter to my oatmeal, I’m tasting it during warmup at 12. It’s been like that for as long as I can remember, at my gym in the States with 6pm training times, I would have to be super cautious about what I had at lunch or I had the same feeling.
 

PeterLuffman

Level 6 Valued Member
Have you ever looked into why that is? Some people don't produce enough bile which then negatively effects digestion of fats. Everything you're having problems with digesting is quite fatty food. I'm no expert, but to not have digested a meal fully within 6 hours is a bit of a red flag for me. I think it might be worth a blood test to check everything is cool.
 

Andi-in-BKK

Level 5 Valued Member
Have you ever looked into why that is? Some people don't produce enough bile which then negatively effects digestion of fats. Everything you're having problems with digesting is quite fatty food. I'm no expert, but to not have digested a meal fully within 6 hours is a bit of a red flag for me. I think it might be worth a blood test to check everything is cool.
What would I ask for in the blood test? I’ve had lots of physicals for insurance, wellness checks, and hormone checks and everything has always come back normal, but I’m not sure if they are looking for the specific thing that you are talking about.

I’ve always just assumed it was just the way I am, and I’ve had this as long as I can remember.

Side note, I’m also prone to rough heartburn, and since my 2nd Pfizer shot at the end of October, I’ve pretty much kept stomach issues continuously. I’m not sure if I’ve developed a food allergy with the immune response from the vaccine. I know dairy absolutely kills me now (I’ve tried to cut it out- probably need to cut out whey as well), but I’m not sure if there is something else that I’m overlooking. I’m considering doing an elimination diet to try to find the triggers.
 

PeterLuffman

Level 6 Valued Member
What would I ask for in the blood test? I’ve had lots of physicals for insurance, wellness checks, and hormone checks and everything has always come back normal, but I’m not sure if they are looking for the specific thing that you are talking about.

I’ve always just assumed it was just the way I am, and I’ve had this as long as I can remember.

Side note, I’m also prone to rough heartburn, and since my 2nd Pfizer shot at the end of October, I’ve pretty much kept stomach issues continuously. I’m not sure if I’ve developed a food allergy with the immune response from the vaccine. I know dairy absolutely kills me now (I’ve tried to cut it out- probably need to cut out whey as well), but I’m not sure if there is something else that I’m overlooking. I’m considering doing an elimination diet to try to find the triggers.
I'm not sure what test you'd need. Perhaps it'd be wise to speak with a nutritionist or dietician and get some advice. I'm sure they'd offer free consultations. Otherwise you're shooting in the dark. Heartburn can be a bile or stomach acid issue. Sounds like some possible correlation there though doesn't it?
 

Andi-in-BKK

Level 5 Valued Member
I'm not sure what test you'd need. Perhaps it'd be wise to speak with a nutritionist or dietician and get some advice. I'm sure they'd offer free consultations. Otherwise you're shooting in the dark. Heartburn can be a bile or stomach acid issue. Sounds like some possible correlation there though doesn't it?
Current plan is to schedule a visit with a GP after the Christmas holidays, but in the mean time, run an elimination diet to try to zero in on problem foods to have that information for the Dr. Hopefully I’ll be able to eliminate problem foods from my diet and symptoms will decrease in the meanwhile. If I can determine specific problem foods, and remove them from my diet, the problems could go away. If not, the Dr should be able to refer me to a dietician or gastro to get me sorted.

Another piece of the puzzle is the sudden onset of new sensitivities in the past few months. I have a family history of food allergies, peanuts, eggs, milk, soy, etc, but up until recently I haven’t had any issues. Can mRNA vaccines trigger an immunological response that brings out food sensitivities?
 

PeterLuffman

Level 6 Valued Member
"Can mRNA vaccines trigger an immunological response that brings out food sensitivities?"

I think the only thing that brings out the response is the offending food itself. Don't take my word for it though!
 

Andi-in-BKK

Level 5 Valued Member
"Can mRNA vaccines trigger an immunological response that brings out food sensitivities?"

I think the only thing that brings out the response is the offending food itself. Don't take my word for it though!
It’s probably just a timing coincidence. My dad had a similar adulthood onset allergy to some shellfish, so some of the gastrointestinal issues I’ve been having recently may be that.

I do plan on crossing food allergies off the list before I worry about more serious causes. I’ve had a pretty consistent diet through adulthood, only now with less junk food and sweets than I had in my early 20s. Everything could be stemming from some undiagnosed allergy that I’ve been eating regularly. My guess is dairy because butter, cheese, whey protein, and whole milk have been almost daily staples for a decade, and I recently had to stop drinking milk because of how bad I was feeling afterwards.
 

Andi-in-BKK

Level 5 Valued Member
A brief update:

I’ve played with eliminating some things from my diet and I think I’ve found at least one major problem area. Dairy, in all forms, seems to contribute to a good deal of gastric distress. I haven’t had cheese, milk, cream, butter, etc in a week and haven’t had any stomach upset in that time.

I may give it a go with breakfast just skipping dairy products entirely and see if I have better results.
 

PeterLuffman

Level 6 Valued Member
A brief update:

I’ve played with eliminating some things from my diet and I think I’ve found at least one major problem area. Dairy, in all forms, seems to contribute to a good deal of gastric distress. I haven’t had cheese, milk, cream, butter, etc in a week and haven’t had any stomach upset in that time.

I may give it a go with breakfast just skipping dairy products entirely and see if I have better results.
Always good to self experiment.
 

Kenny Croxdale

Level 7 Valued Member
Might need to look at pea protein or some other alternate.
Pea Protein Conundrum

It is one of the best plant proteins.

However, plant protein is inferior to animal based proteins.

That mean that a higher intake of a plant protein is necessary to elicit the same effects as a animal protein.

Plant protein Vs Animal protein? Which one is Better? -Dr BenBikman



"The average consumer has been lead to believe that a plant protein is equal or even superior to animal-based proteins
like whey, egg whites and collagen. And that is false on every possible metric by every objective measurement of human metabolism.

Animal proteins beat plant proteins every time.
There’s not a single instance where plant protein is superior to human health (unless there are legitimate allergies). You not only are getting an inferior source of amino acids, you are also compromised in your digestion of those proteins, because plant proteins are an odd source of protein for humans and you end up getting things from the plants that you don’t want."
 
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Andi-in-BKK

Level 5 Valued Member
Pea Protein Conundrum

It is one of the best plant proteins.

However, plant protein is inferior to animal based proteins.

That mean that a higher intake of a plant protein is necessary to elicit the same effects as a animal protein.

Plant protein Vs Animal protein? Which one is Better? -Dr BenBikman



"The average consumer has been lead to believe that a plant protein is equal or even superior to animal-based proteins
like whey, egg whites and collagen. And that is false on every possible metric by every objective measurement of human metabolism.

Animal proteins beat plant proteins every time.
There’s not a single instance where plant protein is superior to human health (unless there are legitimate allergies). You not only are getting an inferior source of amino acids, you are also compromised in your digestion of those proteins, because plant proteins are an odd source of protein for humans and you end up getting things from the plants that you don’t want."
I’ve heard that before as well. My primary choice was whey and I’ve got a big tub in my kitchen I’m going to be giving away to a friend at some point in the near future.

I really wish I could find one of the animal-based whey alternatives for digestive reasons. I’ve seen a carnivore one, where they claim it’s made from beef (I think) and egg white ones, but because Bangkok/Thailand is kinda weird on import laws, some stuff is harder to find.

The pea protein seems to be easier to get ahold of because of the large vegan community here. I would rather not choose that option if I could find another choice, but my choices for quick animal based protein are running slim at this point. I can only stand so many eggs and chicken breast and I can’t afford to eat steak more than about 3-4x per week. Having a shake was super convenient as I could bump from 100-120g to 180g with one to two scoops plus milk.
 

Kenny Croxdale

Level 7 Valued Member
I can only stand so many eggs
Whole Egg Mix

One method is essentially make to some type of Protein Shake with a raw egg or two mixed in.

Dr Mike T. Nelson-Raw Eggs

Cholesterol is essential and is associated with increased protein synthesis following exercise (Woock Lee, EB abstract 2011).

According to Hope BK et al. 2002, the risk of salmonella in conventional eggs is pretty low.

They showed that 2.3 million, out of the 69 billion eggs produced annually, are contaminated with salmonella. As a percentage, that is 0.003 % of eggs are infected.

Summary

Perhaps that crazy kook Vince Gironda and other old time strongman were on to something with the consumption of raw eggs.

While science shows that the assimilation of cooked eggs is about 30% better, the protein from raw eggs does not go to waste.

The risk of salmonella is low and the convenience factor is quite high with raw eggs.

I've personally been consuming about 4 raw eggs post training 3 days a week for 4 months without any issues. My recovery has been great and I am bit leaner too.

Whole Egg Vs. Egg White Ingestion During 12 weeks of Resistance Training in Trained Young Males: A Randomized Controlled Trial
J Strength Cond Res 35(2): 411–419, 2021

Post exercise whole egg ingestion increases knee extension and handgrip strength, testosterone, and reduces body fat percentage compared with post exercise egg white ingestion, despite no group differences in muscle mass, in resistance-trained young males.

chicken breast

Dark Meat

1) Dark meat has more nutrients which are in the fat.

2) Dark meat has more fat which means more flavor.

3) Nothing is worse, in my opinion that Chicken Breast, which is usually dry since there isn't much fat.
 

HUNTER1313

Level 6 Valued Member
I’ve heard that before as well. My primary choice was whey and I’ve got a big tub in my kitchen I’m going to be giving away to a friend at some point in the near future.

I really wish I could find one of the animal-based whey alternatives for digestive reasons. I’ve seen a carnivore one, where they claim it’s made from beef (I think) and egg white ones, but because Bangkok/Thailand is kinda weird on import laws, some stuff is harder to find.

The pea protein seems to be easier to get ahold of because of the large vegan community here. I would rather not choose that option if I could find another choice, but my choices for quick animal based protein are running slim at this point. I can only stand so many eggs and chicken breast and I can’t afford to eat steak more than about 3-4x per week. Having a shake was super convenient as I could bump from 100-120g to 180g with one to two scoops plus milk.
I believe Nutrabolics has a protein powder made from salmon or something.
 
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