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Everything posted by papaholmz

  1. Just out of curiosity, how many days a week do you work out? Does ABA BAB mean you work out 6 days a week? Or is that 3 days a week for a cycle of 2 weeks? Also, how often do you work out your legs? And what does your leg workout look like?
  2. I would say that all depends on your goals. Typically 8-10 rep sets are when you're trying to gain mass or "get a pump." If you're goal is to gain strength stay with sets of 5. I would also start learning about the difference between progressive linear loading (adding a fixed amount of weight every fixed interval) and non-linear programming (cycling your workouts to fatigue for a period followed by a period of recovery where you realize gains). You can only progressively load in a linear fashion for so long before you are fatiguing yourself beyond the point where your body can fully recover and at that point you can no longer make gains by linear loading. Personally, I don't directly train the biceps. I still consider myself a beginner at lifting and right now I'm focused on big compound lifts and training my CNS (central nervous system) or "muscle memory." So I'm not sure at what point it would be beneficial to start non-linear programming for the biceps. Hope that helps.
  3. Getting "ripped" or "cut" is all about calories in vs. calories out. I find that eating a lot of carbs makes it harder to control calorie intake, but carbs in and of themselves aren't bad. However, at 126 lbs and 5'6" I don't think you'll look very cut if you achieve a low BF, you'll most likely just look malnourished. Instead of trying to "cut" I would instead try to build muscle and strength. Have you looked into the StrongLifts 5x5 program? stronglifts.com I started the program 5 months ago and have gone from squatting 135 lbs to 315 lbs and have gained almost 15 lbs of which at least 10 is muscle. Check out that site and let me know what you think.
  4. That's the difference between being successful and failing. When you're tired, that's when it can be the most important to finish those reps. And with barbell curls, if 5kg isn't working, trying 2.5kg at a time. The bicep is a fairly small muscle to be progressively loading with 5kg at a time.
  5. If you want to gain muscle and lose fat, I would highly recommend you check out http://www.stronglifts.com Any beginner should do the stronglifts program. I am in the middle of it myself and have seen some really great results. The fact of the matter is, doing compound barbell movements with progressive loading will do more to change your body composition (muscle/fat ratio) than cardio ever will. Diet is important, but it is secondary to a proper strength training program if you're trying to build muscle and change your body composition. Hope that helps. Cheers, John
  6. EDIT: I noticed that he had posted up this thread twice with the 'other' one having a couple of responses in it. I merged both of the threads together to make it an easier point of reference MF. ____________________ It's been a while since you posted this (and since you've visited the forums), but I clicked on the "unanswered posts" button and saw it sitting here with over 600 views and no responses, so I decided to answer. In my opinion getting the "right" quantity of protein will not make a huge difference in muscle/strength building. For instance, if you get 1.2 grams/lb of body weight instead of 1.5 grams/lb it's not like you're going to never grow any muscle. I'm sure there is an optimal amount that needs to be taken for specific goals and there have been all sorts of recommendations from knowledgeable people. Robert says 1.2-2.0 per lb, Arnold (back in the 70's) said you needed 1.0-1.5 per lb. etc... However, depending on your goal, your training is much more important than exact amounts of protein intake. For example, if your goal is to gain strength and thereby gain muscle, it is more important that you are focusing on compound barbell movements with progressive loading and allowing yourself enough time to recover and consuming enough calories to build the muscle. In this instance, exact amounts of protein are irrelevant. Sure you need to get your protein in, but unless you're at the elite level of your sport, you will grow based on two things (training correctly and consistently, and eating enough calories) no mater if you're getting 1.0 grams/lb or 2.0 grams/lb of protein. Also, you don't need to be so strict that you always take in exactly 200 grams of protein a day. Some days it's ok to take in 170, some days 230, some days 200. Weekly averages are more important than exact daily numbers. Anyway, I know you were looking for a number, but I think understanding the broader picture is more important than a number. Hope that helps. As always, if anyone has a different/more informed view please chime in as I'm still new-ish to all this. Cheers, John
  7. I've always been able to eat/drink pretty much anything. Consistency and taste don't really bother me for some reason. I may not like the taste or consistency of something, but I don't have that strong of a gag reflex, so I can just force it down. With the juicing diet, I actually started liking the taste of the juices after about 2 weeks. Plus I always made a fruit-only juice once a day to help keep my sanity. EDIT: But if I had to give some advice on how to stick with it I would say to do the following: 1) always pour the juice through a hand colander to get any remaining sediment out 2) don't do what most people do and put it on ice and sip on it; instead, drink it with a straw and drink the whole glass in about 10 seconds, that way it's over fast. And no, my wife isn't vegan, but she eats vegan around me. She has her meat a few times throughout the week on her lunch breaks. But she was, and remains, very supportive.
  8. Thanks man! When I finished loosing the weight, my wife looked at me and said "There you are! Where did you go for the last seven years." It made all the sacrifice worth it.
  9. Last night I made tempeh tacos. They turned out pretty good. Here are the particulars... Ingredient: 1 large red pepper, seeded 1 large green pepper, seeded 1 large sweet onion, outer skin removed 1 clove garlic 1/2 tsp salt 1 tbsp + 1 tsp olive oil 1 package taco seasoning mix (low-sodium if possible) 2 packages of tempeh (8oz each) 1 can fire roasted tomatoes 1 can refried beans soft taco shells (I use gluten free soft shells) hard taco shells (I prefer blue corn, I think it's crispier, but that could all be in my head) Preperation: 1. Process peppers, onion, and garlic in food processor to desired consistency and set aside in a bowl (I personaly don't like big chunks nor do I like it pureed, but this is a personal preference) 2. Crumble tempeh into small chunks and set aside in a bowl 3. Mix taco seasoning per package directions and set aside Cooking: 1. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat (I use a non-stick Green Pan) and add peppers, onion, garlic, and salt; satuee until onions are translucent (about 5-7 minutes), set aside in a bowl 2. Add 1 tsp of olive oil to the skillet as well as the crumbled tempeh; sautee untill slightly browned (about 5 minutes) 3. Add the peppers, onions, and garlic back in, stirring to combine 4. Add the can of fire roasted tomatoes, stirring to combine 5. At this point, you can add a half cup of water if need be to get everything to mix well 6. Add the prepared taco seasoning mix, stirring to combine and then cover and simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated (about 3-5 minutes) 7. Bake hard taco shells according to package (usually 2-3 minutes in oven at 425 degrees F.) 8. Warm refried beans in pot on stove (or microwave) 9. Coat the inside of a soft shell with refried beans, then wrap the soft shell around a hard shell and fill with the tempeh taco filling 10. Enjoy! Variations: 1. You can use any combo of peppers/onions you want depending on how hot you want it 2. Instead of using a pre-packaged taco seasoning mix, you can use chili powder, cumin, and salt and make your own 3. Of course you don't have to make it a "double decker" by adding the bean coated soft shell 4. You can add any other toppings you want (salsa, fresh avacados, soy based "sour cream," etc.) Macro Counts: Will count and come back and add (still need to add them to my previous post). But the tempeh has close to 90 grams protein and the refried beans add a lot more protein as well. Sources: No source in particular. I've seen stuff like this before on websites, but I put this one together without a specific recipe. Cheers, John
  10. Awesome! I'm going to try a few of her recipes this weekend and see what happens. I know from the research I was doing, the vegan egg substitute only really works if the eggs are supposed to rise, not bind. I think applesauce can be used as a binder. Anyway, I'll report back my findings Cheers, John
  11. I grew up in a religious family too; I just remind my family that before the fall of man, Adam and Eve lived in... the garden of Eden. And they ate... the produce from that garden. It's wasn't until after the fall that God allowed them to eat meat in their fallen state. Anyway, I'm with you, I'm not here to debate religion. And my family loves me and supports my eating lifestyle, it just always stumps them when I remind them of that story. Cheers, John
  12. I know I'm a little late to this party, but here's my take on it (and I apologize in advance for the novel)... First off, I want to accurately portray myself... I am not a vegan. I don't claim to be. I also don't have a problem with people who are vegan; I just don't personally believe strongly in certain areas where a vegan might. That being said, I am a strict vegetarian, meaning I don't eat animals or animal by-products, so I often get lumped in with vegans when less-health-concerned individuals talk about me. Now, since I don't eat animal based food, I often get grief from co-workers and friends/family. However, it's all in good fun and I know them well enough to know that they not only respect my eating lifestyle (anytime we have a work lunch or food brought in, I'm always consulted to make sure there is something I can eat; family and friends do the same), but are also impressed by the transition and commitment I've made to eat the way I do. But that doesn't stop my dad from sending me pictures of shirts that have illustrated deer pooping on some foliage with a caption that reads "My food poops on your food," nor should it. It's actually a funny shirt, it made me laugh. I make fun of my friends for things they do that I don't, why should the way I eat be off limits? If someone had true derision for the way I choose to eat, then that's a different story altogether, but if a friend or family member is just poking fun at me, I just poke back. Believe me, everyone has something you can tease them about. From my personal experience, I've found that people usually won't respect someone’s decisions if they don't respect that person. And if they don't respect that person, there's usually a reason; I know it's a cliché, but it's true, respect is earned not given. If someone doesn't respect a decision you've made, it might be because you've previously conducted yourself in a way that makes it difficult for them to respect your decisions (I don't know you and I'm not saying this is the case with you). Now, since I'm not a vegan, I don't have to stand up for "everything I believe in" (as you put it) when it comes to the way I eat. It's merely a health decision for me. But there are other things I may or may-not feel strongly about (politics, religion, etc...) and discussing those topics has to be done in a careful and delicate manner. Too many people think that if you're not proclaiming your beliefs from the nearest mountain top, you're being a hypocrite (not saying that you're like that). My beliefs are my beliefs, they don't belong to anyone else, so I am very careful not to proselytize when unsolicited. There is a right time and a right way to share your beliefs, but when you order the garden burger at a restaurant and you ask for no cheese and your co-worker asks why you didn't want the cheese on the burger, that doesn't mean you are obligated to say "because I'm a vegan." You could simply say (and in most cases probably should if you're looking to avoid conflict), "because I don't want to eat it." Both are true, one is easier for "a regular guy" to digest. This is another cliché, but there's a time and place for everything. Man, I'm tired after this one... going to go take a nap Cheers, John
  13. Posted this in response to another thread, figured I'd add it here too. http://www.proteinpow.com The website is all about using protein powder in different ways. Lots of good ideas. Some of the stuff has too much sugar and fat in it, but a lot of the stuff is really good, like the cake sandwiches that have beets and spinach in them along with cashew butter. The author is not a vegan, but there are plenty of options that are dairy-free, nut-free, and gluten-free. Cheers, John
  14. I saw that thread and have read through most of it, lots of awesome stuff in there. I just didn't want to hijack your thread, especially since it's called "MF's Recipes..." I couldn't just go adding mine in there, that wouldn't be proper
  15. I've browsed this site a few times http://www.proteinpow.com The author is not a vegan/vegetarian, but she usually gives options to make her recipes vegan when available (i.e. sub almond milk for milk, or sub pea protein for whey protein). And here's the link specifically for her protein bar recipes http://www.proteinpow.com/search/label/Protein%20Bars Cheers, John
  16. I absolutely LOVE Charleston! I was there a few weeks ago for the day; great city!
  17. Fresh fruit, raw veggies, and nuts and seeds are always an option. Canteloupe, Cherries, Grapes, Apples, Bananas Baby carrots, Cherry tomatoes, Cucumbers Almonds, Cashews, Sunflower seeds, Pumpkin seeds I would image that any protein bars / meal bars you made would include a lot of those ingredients... why not just eat them whole and raw instead (less prep and cooking time), especially if you need you time for studying. You can alwasy had a Vega protein shake as well if you need more protein. Cheers, John
  18. I've seen threads like this on other forums/message boards. On a beer forum I frequented in the past, there was always a thread going where people posted what they were drinking that night. I figured this would be a bit more constructive and could help the community. Basically the idea is to post anything you're cooking/making whether it's something new-to-you or a tried and true go-to that you make all the time. Things you can include in your post... 1) Ingredients and amounts 2) Preperation and cooking instructions and times 3) Macro counts 4) Variations 5) Picutes (if you're so inclined; I'm a horrible photographer) 6) Source for the original recipe (if you remember where you got it from), unless you're gifted enough to create recipes yourself I'll go first... Ok, last night I made grilled portobello mushroom and zucchini sandwiches with homemade pesto (dairy-free). This makes 4 servings (we had my parents over). But I've made it before, and this stuff is just as good warmed up, so you can make the batch and get enough for 4 meals. Ingredients: For the mushrooms... 4 portobello mushrooms, tops scrubbed clean, stems removed 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar 2 tbsp olive oil 1 tbsp dried basil 1 tbsp dried oregano For the zucchini... 4 medium sized zucchini, ends removed 2 tbsp olive oil 1/2 tsp salt 1/2 tsp black pepper 1 large lemon (or 2 small lemons), zested juice from the lemon(s) you just zested For the pesto... 2 tsp pine nuts 2 tsp cashews 1 large clove garlic 8 tsp olive oil 4 tsp nutritional yeast 8 - 12 fresh basil leaves, depeding on size, more if needed 1/4 tsp salt 1/4 tsp pepper Preparation: For the mushrooms... 1. Place mushrooms in a shallow baking dish with the smooth side (cap) facing up 2. Combine the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, basil, and oregano in a small dish, wisk together to combine well 3. Pour mixture over mushrooms, making sure to spread the dried herbs around the caps and not just let them clump up 4. Let mushrooms marinate at least 30 minutes (or up to 2 hours if you have the time) For the zucchini... 1. Cut zucchini length-wise in 1/4 inch thick strips, or just quarter them into spears, 4 spears per zucchini (I find that the stips to better on the sandwich because they lay flat, but spears are easier to cut) 2. Combine lemon zest, salt, pepper, and lemon juice in a small dish and briefly stir to combine 3. Put the zucchini stips in a large zip-lock bag and drizzle in the olive oil and them lemon zest mixture; shake bag around until zucchini is well coated with oil and lemon zest mixture 4. Let zucchini marinate at least 30 minutes (or up to 2 hours if you have the time) For the pesto... 1. Put nuts in a small skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, untill they start to brown slightly 2. Add nuts, garlic, olive oil, nutritional yeast, basil, salt, and pepper to a food processor and process until smooth 3. Taste and add salt and/or basil leaves as needed Cooking: 1. Pre-heat grill to medium heat 2. Once grill is hot, add mushroom caps (smooth side facing up) and zucchini strips 3. Grill mushrooms for about 6-8 minutes per side, checking to make sure they don't burn 4. Grill zucchini for about 4-6 minutes per side, checking to make sure they don't burn (pull zucchini out of the bag as opposed to just dumping the contents of the bag on the grill, that way you leave most of the oil in the bag instead of dumping it all over your grill) 5. Add more time as needed depending on how soft you like your veggies 6. When mushrooms and zucchini are done, pull off grill and set aside in bowls, allowing to sit for 5 minutes. 7. Lightly toast some whole wheat bread (I use Rudi's brand as it's always dairy free) 8. Spread the pesto mixture on each piece of bread, add one mushroom, about 1/4 of the zucchini, and a few slices of tomato per sandwich 9. Enjoy! Variations: 1. If you're trying to watch your oil consumption, don't use any oil with the mushrooms, the balsamic vinegar will be enough 2. If you don't have dried basil and oregano, just use a total of 2 tbsp of whatever dried herbs you have 3. You can substitute other nuts in for the pine nuts and cashews if you like, or just use all of the same nut 4. You can substitute other fresh herbs in for the basil when making the pesto if you like 5. If you don't have a grill you can use a griddle or even a skillet and just watch the mushrooms and zucchini to make sure they don't burn 6. Once the sandwich is made you can lightly brush both sides with olive oil and put in a panini press if you have one Macro Counts: I'll come back and add them, I need to calculate them Sources: The mushrooms and zucchini are just something I came up with on my own (it's not too hard to through oil, vinegar, and dried herbs together, lol). The pesto is based on this recipe: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/yummy-vegan-pesto-classico/?scale=4&ismetric=0 Cheers, John EDIT: One additional thought. You can leave out all the oil (skip the pesto completely) if you're trying to watch the fat intake. I've done that many times and it tastes just as good. I made it this way last night because the parents were coming over and I wanted it to taste nice and rich.
  19. Thanks for the warm welcome Wendy! Where in SC are you located? I'm in the Greenville area.
  20. Thanks Debbie! Hang in there and just keep on keeping on! It can definitely been done; after seeing my transformation, my parrents both lost about 25 lbs each following a similar path. In addition, two co-workers and a friend each lost 30+ lbs doing the Juice Cleanse. You can do anything you set your mind to! Haven't seen "Hungry for Change" yet, but I will search it out. I absolutely loved "Forks over Knives;" great documentary. I even bought the FoK cookbook recently. And by the way, your avatar pic is awesome. I work every day toward obtaining the muscle definition you have! Cheers, John
  21. Ditto! The only good leek is a grilled leek
  22. Thanks for the warm welcome guys. I've been lurking for a few months, but I think it's time I started contributing to the community. Also, here's a picture of my before and after. I'm the one on the left in both shots. The other two are my brother and my wife. Cheers, John My before and after shots.
  23. Where to start? My name is John. I'm 32 years old. I've been eating a plant based whole food diet for about 7 months now. There, that gets the basics out of the way Here's my story: In May of 2012 I watched the documentary "Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead" by Joe Cross (I'm sure most of you have heard of it). My wife had been bugging me to watch it and just to get her to stop bothering me, I watched it. Five minutes in I was thoroughly engrossed; even though I still had no intention of going on a "juice cleanse" the documentary was well put together and Joe has a charismatic personality. Then came the second half of the documentary where it shifted focus from Joe to Phil (the truck driver). By the end of the documentary I said to myself, "if Phil can do it, I can." And I did. I started juicing the next day and did so for the next 60 days, loosing 67 pounds and 8 inches from my waist (along with other more important things like my blood pressure, blood sugar, triglycerides, and cholesterol dropping like a rock). Oh, and when I started the juice cleanse, I weighed in at a very bloated 265 pounds at about 6 feet tall. With the juice cleanse behind me, all I knew was that I didn't want to ever go back. I started eating a "balanced" diet that included what a typical American considers to be healthy, non-fat greek yogurt, chicken and fish, egg whites and goat cheese, rice, beans, and a decent amount of greens, fruit, and veggies. I started running a lot and continued to loose weight, loosing another 10 pounds over the next few months. All the while I was reading and searching out other like minded people (the ones I used to call health nuts). Eventually that led me to read "The China Study" near the end of 2012 (another one I'm sure you've all heard of). After finishing the book, I couldn't go back to eating a diet heavy in animal based products. So I decided to convert to a plant based whole food diet. Shortly thereafter, I stumbled upon this website (and others like it) and decided I wanted to put on some muscle (I had always been an athlete growing up, so it made sense). But I've found that "body building" is much like "eating healthy;" there's a lot of misinformation out there that's presented as truth. So i'm 7 months into my plant based whole food diet and body building lifestyle and I'm still trying to find what works best for me (which I'm beginning to suspect will be a lifelong pursuit). I'm happy eating the way I do, and I enjoy the challenge of transforming my body. Oh, and for the record, it's been a little over a year since I finished my juice cleanse and I am sill under 200 pounds. I'm trying to add muscle the smart way, without adding all the fat that most people do when they bulk up. It's going to be a long journey, but I'm glad there are others I can share it with. Cheers, John
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