You all know that I am a big fan of Martin Berkhan and the LeanGains approach. I have written a summary of the Intermittent Fasting lifestyle here.
Today I came across a really interesting read from reddit. A user named 31minutes described in detail his experience working with Martin along with his Reverse Pyramid Training program and diet plan. Below is a summary of his comments as prepared by user Xbudd. You can download this as a PDF here.
Material from /r/leangains “Former Berkhan Client. AMA”
Compiled by XBudd for /r/leangains
Counting Leangains Calories/Macros
- Don’t think in terms of percentages; think in terms of weekly deficits.
- I eat at maintenance on 3 workout days and want my weekly caloric intake to be ~4000 calories under maintenance.
- A pound of fat on me (I’m 200lb) and a pound of fat on someone who’s will take the same weekly caloric deficit to lose.
- I’m around -35% to -40% on rest days, 0 on workout days. But that only matters because that is what I need to get to my weekly 4,000 cal deficit.
- Take an hour to make my two diet days then use calorieking.com.
- Use the foods you love and make them fit your macros.
- After that, it’s just a matter of eating exactly the same thing each day.
- You won’t mind, because every meal is made up of your favorite foods.
- In response to current thoughts on macros: More protein on both days. Bottom threshold for fats should be higher on workout days, lower on rest days.
- These are the ones I started with and essentially the same as what
Martin recommends to his Leangains clients:
- Workout Day: 2756 Calories (Maintenance). 313g Protein. 274g Carb. 45g Fat.
- Rest Day: 1768 Calories. 259g Protein. 88g Carb. 74g Fat.
- That is for somebody at .
- To figure out your macros, adjust based on your weight. For example, you weigh and want to cut? Multiply my macros by 0.9 to fit your weight.
- This will NOT differ significantly based on your daily activity level
- Stressing about the perfect amount of calories is overrated. You start at a good estimate. This gives you that. From there, you adjust your intake based on your weekly progress.
- The adjustment is key
Creating a Meal Plan
- Create a Rest Day and Workout Day plan and use same plan always!
- 7 sticks lean pepperoni (840 cal, 98 pro, 21 carb, 56 fat)
- 700g egg whites (364 cal, 76 pro, 5 carb, 1 fat)
- 1 can tuna (90 cal, 20 pro, 0 carb, 1 fat)
- 10 liver tabs (80 cal, 20 pro, 0 carb, 0 fat)
- 680g soy milk (160 cal, 16 pro, 8 carb, 8 fat)
- 40g hershey cocoa (80 cal, 8 pro, 24 carb, 4 fat)
- 900g zucchini (154 cal, 11 pro, 30 carb, 3 fat)
- TOTAL: 1768 Cal, 249 Pro, 88 Carb, 74 Fat
- Note: The total for grams of carbs for rest day excluding insoluble fiber is somewhere around 30g. The number of carbs reported above (88g) factors in consumed insoluble fiber
- 1,890g soy milk (450 cal, 45 pro, 23 carb, 23 fat)
- 1 box kashi golean (980 cal, 91 pro, 140 carb, 7 fat)
- 1,500g greek yogurt (857 cal, 154 pro, 51 carb, 0 fat)
- 600g blueberries (290 cal, 3 pro, 60 carb, 4 fat)
- 10x liver tabs (80 cal, 20 pro, 0 carb, 0 fat)
- 11g coconut oil (99 cal, 0 pro, 0 carb, 11 fat)
- TOTAL: 2756 Cal, 313 Pro, 274 Carb (not counting fiber
- this time), 45 Fat
Diet for Bulk
- Use the exact same foods and exact same ratio of macros.
- Rest day was 100 calories over maintenance (~2856 cals).
- Workout day was 450 cal over maintenance (~3206 cal).
- That gave me a weekly surplus of 1750 cals. About 0.5 pounds gained per week.
What To Do After A Cut
- Look at your weight loss average over the last three weeks.
- That gives a baseline for what your running deficit is.
- For example, if you lost 0.8lb in week 14, 0.7lb in week 15, and 0.5
- in week 16, your total weight loss over 3 weeks = 2lb.
- One pound of fat is ~3500 calories. You lost two pounds over three weeks, so your deficit was 7000 calories spread over 21 days.
- That means your daily deficit averaged 333 calories.3
- Now, you know that you can add a total of 2333 calories (333cals*7days) to your week to switch to maintenance and keep your weight stable.
- Martin’s recommendation: “Think about the days you are more hungry and distribute calories appropriately.” stick to the same macro composition as before, but give yourself a 5% leeway to make adding foods easier. “5% leeway in the percentage intake, NOT the calories! For example, if your diet was 45% protein on your training days before, make sure it’s within 40-50% now that you’re maintaining.
- No food experiments, no changing the types of food you ate for two weeks. Martin: “Ideally, you should eat the exact same foods you ate during your fat loss phase, just more of them.”
I will transcribe more of this in the future, I thought it was an insightful look into the results a real client had and how he made progress on his cut.
Of course, I respect Martin and what he does so as always if you like something… Support it. Find out more about leangains at www.leangains.com