A month long semi-bulk coming up…

Well, it’s official: I’ll be flying out to sunny Pensacola, Florida tomorrow afternoon for a month of work with the Navy, and that means the cut is over…at least for the time being. I’ve learned from bitter experience that when you are forced to eat out and be presented with the succulent deliciousness that is southern cooking for every single meal, dieting is nearly impossible. As Matt Perryman detailed in his excellent post on the subject, willpower is finite, and it’s best to figure out how to save it for when you really need it. Plus, I’m due for a diet break, I’m coming off a mild injury, and I want to chase PR’s again.
However, I’m not quite ready to abandon all hope, so here’s my plan of attack to reduce the damage as much as possible while still being able to fully indulge my gluttony.
First and foremost, on the exercise front, I’m going to try to hit it hard, fast, and heavy. I’m a little limited on time, since I only have a 30-45 minute window each morning before work to workout. This is not a huge deal, as my normal routine takes me about 45 minutes most mornings, but I’m going to increase the work sets back up to two, which potentially presents a problem. If necessary, I’ll push things around and lift 7 days a week just to get the volume in.
I’m also going to push every week to up the weight. I’m coming off an odd back injury from last week, so the first week will probably be a little light, but I’m going to push hard the rest of the time.
The final challenge to overcome here is the gym. The one the hotel has an agreement with is Omni Health and Fitness, which honestly doesn’t look real promising, but I’m going to do some recon on it this weekend and see what’s up. If it looks like the kind of place that is going to take offense to grunting and chalk, I’ll have to punt and dig up a real gym.
On the diet front, I’m going to approach this from a few angles. First and foremost, this ain’t my first Rodeo, and I’ve been on a few diet breaks already over the last year or so. I know from experience that my TEE ramps nicely with my intake, and I won’t gain as much as I would expect. However, worst case scenario, I’m going to put on 2 lbs of fat a week, which will take roughly 6 weeks to remove. So, all things considered, I’m not going to really worry about it. Still, here’s the plan:
First, I’m going to stick with IF using a leangains approach for the whole period. I’ll take my first meal at lunch, which will allow me to cut the damage down to a fairly small window (lunch and dinner). However, I will swap out BCAAs pre/post workout with actual protein shakes. This is central to the second part of the strategy, which is this: I’m going to try and get at least 150g of protein in before I eat my meals.
Basically, I’m going to drink one scoop of ON Pro Complex pre workout and two scoops post, to give me 90 g of protein in 405 calories. Then, before each meal, I’m going to eat one protein bar for 30 more g of protein in 270 calories each. So my total, before eating, will be 150 g of protein in 925 calories. This leaves me (roughly) 2500 calories to get another 100 g of protein in and just maintain my weight, or as much as 3500 more calories each day for a 2 lb per week gain. By getting my protein out of the way, I can make sure I am at least hitting that macro, and the protein pre-meal helps provide satiety and keeps me from overeating as much.
Probably 🙂
Anyhow, I’ll log what I eat and lift daily on Dailyburn, along with my weight (assuming the gym has a scale). I’ll also be logging my measurements weekly on Dailyburn, and taking photos for my Picasa web album at least weekly. Finally, when I return I’ve already got a DXA scan scheduled, which I can contrast nicely with my previous scan to see how bad the bulk hurt my bodyfat percentage. Stay tuned 🙂


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