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  • Slow metabolism??

    I dont know if my metabolism is slow or what.

    I am pretty light, and actually ashamed to post my weight here on the forums lol. I was a cross country guy in high school and continued to run in college. Considering I ran anywhere from 50-100 miles a week for long times I definitely underate to some degree as well. I stopped running eventually but started lifting, however I still continued to under eat.

    I want to gain weight but dont know if being aggressive with that goal will be bad considering I may indeed have a slow metabolism, and just may become a fatter version of myself. Is there any way to systematically increase metabolism so a bulking phase would be good, or is a bulking phase itself along with some extra body weight what I need to increase my metabolism?

    I train 4 days a week using upper lower type splits. On the lifting days I will get in 18-20 times my body weight in cals, usually around a 35-40/35-40/25-30 split of protein/carbs/fats. On the off days I get in the same amount of protein, drop carbs to around 50-100 and increase fat, but still get in less overall calories (about 15x bw). I am also playing with the idea of making one of the lifting days a higher calories and carb day (kind of like a re-feed day).

    I have had blood work done and my free t4 looks good, tsh is fine, but my free t3 (the one that actually matters) is about 2.4 on a scale of 2 - 4.5. It isnt super low, and my doctor has said plenty of people with healthy metabolisms have that level of free t3. IS that a normal amount or is that pretty low?

    If anyone has any other questions that would help them give me advice shoot and I will answer as best I can!

  • #2
    Stats would be helpful, as well as pics...
    2014 NPC Mr MN State TBD
    2012 NPC MN state 40+ 1st and 3rd Hvy *Injury :frusty:
    2012 NPC Gopher State 40+ 1st and 1st SuperHvy
    2011 NPC Gopher State 40+ 1st and 2nd Open Hvy.
    2011 NPC Upper Midwest 40+ 1st and Super Hvy 1st
    2009 Gopher State 4th Hvy and 4th Masters 40+
    *11 Natural contest 1992-2000 placed top 4 of all
    88 Natural Mr MN 2nd Teen
    88 Gopher State 4th Teen Hvy Div 176lbs

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    • #3
      What's your basal temperature (measured in the morning while still in bed) ?
      True Protein 5% discount code: JVM902



      What we do in life... echoes in eternity !

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      • #4
        5 9, about 140 bf probably in the 8-12 range (I am actually pretty lean...cant say ripped cuz I am so light... in the morning, 8 pack, veins, etc, by the end of the day I am definitely softer/watery).....no pics

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        • #5
          Originally posted by boatman View Post
          Is there any way to systematically increase metabolism so a bulking phase would be good, or is a bulking phase itself along with some extra body weight what I need to increase my metabolism?
          -Get on a regular scheduled diet. Eat 5-7 evenly spaced meals at approximately the same time every day. Always eat right upon waking. Don't think of bulking, just eat clean to build muscle and stay lean. Focus on quality proteins in all meals, carbs in the meals before and after training, and unsaturated fats for all other meals.

          -Strength train, enough said.

          -Do cardiovascular work, do some high intensity work, and some lower intensity work...but no ultra-endurance work. Keep it under 40 minutes for lower intensity and 20 minutes for high intensity work.

          Assuming you don't have a medical issue, that should be sufficient to get your metabolism going.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by boatman View Post
            my free t3 (the one that actually matters) is about 2.4 on a scale of 2 - 4.5. It isnt super low, and my doctor has said plenty of people with healthy metabolisms have that level of free t3. IS that a normal amount or is that pretty low?
            my t3 levels are the same as yours. The PA put me on armour thyroid for a while, which helped with my energy, but i've since stopped taking it as I don't want to be taking pills for the rest of my life. I think the tiredness I was experiencing was really just from lack of good sleep. Since stopping the medication I assume that my levels are back down to the 2.4ish range and my energy is fine, and i'm not putting on any significant amount of fat.

            I personally wouldn't worry about your levels, especially if your not having other symptoms and your doctor isn't concerned. If your not gaining any weight over a 1-2 week span of time bump your calories up slightly until you start gaining .5-1lb/month...
            -2013 USAPL Michigan State Championships 198lb Raw Mens Open, 1st Place (1217 total)
            -2013 USAPL Texas State Championships
            198 Raw Mens Open, 2nd place (1216 total)
            -2012 USAPL Longhorn Open
            198 Raw Mens Open, 1st place (1177 total)
            -2012 USAPL Aggie Showdown
            198lb Raw Mens Open, 2nd place (1137 total)

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Knickerbocker24 View Post
              -Get on a regular scheduled diet. Eat 5-7 evenly spaced meals at approximately the same time every day. Always eat right upon waking. Don't think of bulking, just eat clean to build muscle and stay lean. Focus on quality proteins in all meals, carbs in the meals before and after training, and unsaturated fats for all other meals.

              -Strength train, enough said.

              -Do cardiovascular work, do some high intensity work, and some lower intensity work...but no ultra-endurance work. Keep it under 40 minutes for lower intensity and 20 minutes for high intensity work.

              Assuming you don't have a medical issue, that should be sufficient to get your metabolism going.
              The above is all very sound and good advice... Except for the bolded portion. You can take that approach if you'd like but it is not needed. Your meal time and frequency should be somewhat consistent, but there is no need (nor research backing up the claim) to eat upon waking or to more frequently. 2-3 meals is plenty. Just pick an approach that works with your lifestyle and schedule, get your calories and nutrients in and you will grow.
              -2013 USAPL Michigan State Championships 198lb Raw Mens Open, 1st Place (1217 total)
              -2013 USAPL Texas State Championships
              198 Raw Mens Open, 2nd place (1216 total)
              -2012 USAPL Longhorn Open
              198 Raw Mens Open, 1st place (1177 total)
              -2012 USAPL Aggie Showdown
              198lb Raw Mens Open, 2nd place (1137 total)

              Comment


              • #8
                a slow metabolism can always get faster if you train it to speed up. I always has that problem in my child hood, I ate just as much and played sports as other kids but my weight and bf% levels were a lot higher. It takes time to speeed up the metabolism and because you underate for those years your hormones are way down than they could have been if your intake was enough.

                Like previously stated, get on a weight-training program where ideally you will be training 4-5 times a week...each day a different group of muscles being it hard by heavy weights with strict form. Avoid running if you're trying put on mass, if you want to do cardio to stay lean do lighter intensity, less duration.

                Diet wise you will def need to get your calories in protein and higher in carbs and try to eat a meal high in protein and carbs and some healthy fats every 2.5-3 hours that you are awake until going to bed. You need enough food to not only support your bodily functions but also for your muscles to grow and recover. Refeeds and cheats will work great to shock your body into even more growth...they do for me that is

                Overtime, your body will adapt to the pattern of high calories coming with all the weight training and recovery you're enduring and the metabolism will be faster when it's on a consistent cycle like that. Also hormonally, your levels will be a lot higher then they are now.

                High Calories consuming+pretty High Calorie expenditure= faster functioning metabolism.
                Last edited by JKshredded34; 06-21-2011, 06:42 PM.

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                • #9
                  My schedule so far has allowed for 4 meals.

                  Ill give an example. I tend to do a shake with protein fat and fiber in the morning before training. I actually feel much better and have more energy as opposed to eating a bunch of carbs. Post workout is a shake with bcaa's and something like karbolyn. Then I eat a meal of potatoes, meat, and a small amount of fat. Dinner is usually rice and some veggies with meat and a bit of fat, and before bed is normally another protein shake mixed with some fat like coconut oil, raw cream, or some nuts, and usually a smaller portion of carbs like oats/SOS/fruit/etc. Sometimes I will use cultured coconut milk.

                  A non training days I just eat protein and fat at most of the meals. I probably only get in like 50 grams of carbs those days, 100+ grams of fat, and 1.5-2 grams of protein per pound bw. IS that fine or would a meal or two of carbs be better?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by bbjeff86 View Post
                    there is no need (nor research backing up the claim) to eat upon waking or to more frequently. 2-3 meals is plenty.
                    First, let me clarify a few things so we are all on the same page through this discussion, anything you eat I am considering a "meal", since I wouldn't include snack food on a nutrition plan. If you use set "snacks" outside of meals or shakes you may label things differently. So, for example a pre-w/o shake is a meal to me and would be one of the 5-7 meals I would recommend.

                    Now...to me the 5-7 meal/day strategy is less about physiology and more about psychology. While we may not have research backing up that more frequent meals is more effective (yet?) it is an effective strategy at controlling cravings.

                    If you only eat 2-3 meals per day, there are a number of challenges you may run into. One is you lose the ability the cater pre & post w/o meals. If you are eating only twice (assuming everything you eat is a meal) you eat before and after you train and that's potentially all you eat for the day.

                    Second, if you are only going to eat 2-3 meals you will need to eat fairly large meals if you are eating clean foods. If you are not one that can stomach a large volume of food at one sitting you will be at a disadvantage.

                    But, the most important thing to me is that for most when you following a structured nutrition plan you are likely taking out comfort/snack/junk foods or whatever you want to call it. Most people will at some point crave that stuff. So, if you only eat 2-3 meals you are likely going 6 hours or more in between meals. I find the times people are most likely to eat that junk food is when they get really hungry or have to go long periods in between meals. But, by having more frequent meal schedules, it's much easier to not eat junk. It's a lot easier to restrain for 2-3 hrs than it is for 5-6, and once you get that meal in you, you will be less likely to eat junk.

                    So, although there are other benefits, the biggest positive of a more frequent meal plan is it keeps cravings in check by being able to eat more frequently.

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                    • #11
                      Chris,

                      I understand where you are coming from, and you have some valid points/concerns. My point with the OP was simply follow a plan that fits with your needs/what is easiest to comply with. If that is 5-7 meals every 2-3 hours then fine. If that is 2-3 meals spaced evenly throughout the day or during a 8 hour feeding window then fine.

                      For the record I have much less hunger issues following a 3 meal/day plan (4 meals counting my intra workout concoctioin). Those meals are eaten within a 8 hour time period, with the other 16 hours of the day having 0 caloric intake. For me personally this controls hunger better, and gives me better energy. For my wife however she would be light headed, vomiting, and feel fatigued using using this approach. This is why I stress solid training plan, good nutrition, and don't worry about the timing and amount of meals too much. If having more meals helps him mentally fine. For me I prefer to eat 3 LARGE meals as opposed to my old way of eating 6 medium/small meals... that's just me though.

                      I just try to help break some of the bodybuilding dogma/broscience out there that isn't backed up by research or empirical evidence...

                      You have valid points, just wanted to give the OP all of his potential options.
                      -2013 USAPL Michigan State Championships 198lb Raw Mens Open, 1st Place (1217 total)
                      -2013 USAPL Texas State Championships
                      198 Raw Mens Open, 2nd place (1216 total)
                      -2012 USAPL Longhorn Open
                      198 Raw Mens Open, 1st place (1177 total)
                      -2012 USAPL Aggie Showdown
                      198lb Raw Mens Open, 2nd place (1137 total)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by bbjeff86 View Post
                        Chris,

                        I understand where you are coming from, and you have some valid points/concerns. My point with the OP was simply follow a plan that fits with your needs/what is easiest to comply with. If that is 5-7 meals every 2-3 hours then fine. If that is 2-3 meals spaced evenly throughout the day or during a 8 hour feeding window then fine.

                        For the record I have much less hunger issues following a 3 meal/day plan (4 meals counting my intra workout concoctioin). Those meals are eaten within a 8 hour time period, with the other 16 hours of the day having 0 caloric intake. For me personally this controls hunger better, and gives me better energy. For my wife however she would be light headed, vomiting, and feel fatigued using using this approach. This is why I stress solid training plan, good nutrition, and don't worry about the timing and amount of meals too much. If having more meals helps him mentally fine. For me I prefer to eat 3 LARGE meals as opposed to my old way of eating 6 medium/small meals... that's just me though.

                        I just try to help break some of the bodybuilding dogma/broscience out there that isn't backed up by research or empirical evidence...

                        You have valid points, just wanted to give the OP all of his potential options.
                        No worries Jeff. My initial post was in an effort to give short & simple advice to the poster. Sometimes the logic behind the advice is warranted which is why I went in a little deeper (which was probably more for us than the poster). But, there is always more than one way to skin a cat & I couldn't agree more with backing principles with research.

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                        • #13
                          Thanks guys. Just hoping that what I am trying to do is not hopeless lol. The biggest thing is it mat just take a lot longer to work out if I go it alone and dont get some help from someone, but dont even know if it is warrented. Would skips "economical" offseason package cover that?

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by boatman View Post
                            Thanks guys. Just hoping that what I am trying to do is not hopeless lol. The biggest thing is it mat just take a lot longer to work out if I go it alone and dont get some help from someone, but dont even know if it is warrented. Would skips "economical" offseason package cover that?
                            I believe this is the post below that I remember him noting the economy plan thing and the address below that is to his blog where he discusses it...not sure if he's still doing it. But, he's the only one that can answer your question...email him already!

                            http://intensemuscle.com/showthread.php?t=42425

                            http://teamskip.net/blog/?p=371

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by boatman View Post
                              My schedule so far has allowed for 4 meals.

                              Ill give an example. I tend to do a shake with protein fat and fiber in the morning before training. I actually feel much better and have more energy as opposed to eating a bunch of carbs. Post workout is a shake with bcaa's and something like karbolyn. Then I eat a meal of potatoes, meat, and a small amount of fat. Dinner is usually rice and some veggies with meat and a bit of fat, and before bed is normally another protein shake mixed with some fat like coconut oil, raw cream, or some nuts, and usually a smaller portion of carbs like oats/SOS/fruit/etc. Sometimes I will use cultured coconut milk.

                              A non training days I just eat protein and fat at most of the meals. I probably only get in like 50 grams of carbs those days, 100+ grams of fat, and 1.5-2 grams of protein per pound bw. IS that fine or would a meal or two of carbs be better?
                              If you are making progress, and you feel good doing this than I don't see any huge problems. There are things that I would probably tweak personally (such as not relying so heavily on shakes/supplements) but there is nothing horribly wrong that I can see with what your doing assuming you are getting the results you want.
                              -2013 USAPL Michigan State Championships 198lb Raw Mens Open, 1st Place (1217 total)
                              -2013 USAPL Texas State Championships
                              198 Raw Mens Open, 2nd place (1216 total)
                              -2012 USAPL Longhorn Open
                              198 Raw Mens Open, 1st place (1177 total)
                              -2012 USAPL Aggie Showdown
                              198lb Raw Mens Open, 2nd place (1137 total)

                              Comment

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