Is Your Eating Hardcore Enough?
The Truth About Getting Results
by Chris Kresser
The truth about getting results:
When I first started doing hardcore bulk, I was so excited to see my body change! But then when I saw how much fat had accumulated around my waist and arms, I realized that my progress wasn’t as fast or as dramatic as it could have been.
So what happened? Did all those supplements make me gain weight faster than normal? Was it because I ate too many junk food items? Or did something else happen?
I decided to do some research on the subject. After reading numerous books and articles, I found out that there are several factors involved in gaining muscle mass and losing fat. And here’s where things get interesting…
There are two types of hormones in your body: Growth Hormone (GH) and Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1). Both play major roles in increasing your body’s ability to grow and repair itself. When these hormones are high, you’ll naturally build muscle and lose fat at the same time. However, if either one is low, you won’t be able to achieve your goals.
If GH levels are low, your muscles will not grow as quickly or as large as they would without them being elevated. On the contrary, elevated IGF-1 levels will prevent you from losing fat.
Now I know what you’re thinking: “If I take some sort of supplement to increase either of these hormones, won’t I see better results when I’m dieting?”
Well, you might be right…but only for a little while. Because when your body realizes that it’s being given too much of either one of those hormones, it will eventually just stop reacting to them altogether. That’s right, you no longer get the benefits…or the side effects.
In addition to the two main hormones, there are a few others that play minor roles in your body. For example, Insulin is one of the lesser known ones. Its primary job is to shuttle nutrients into cells, mainly carbohydrates. When insulin is at optimal levels, it’s very easy to build muscle and lose fat. However when it’s too high, it causes “Spillover” (as it’s called) which means that some of the insulin starts transporting other nutrients INTO muscles that aren’t supposed to have them.
If this keeps up, you could end up adding a lot of unnecessary bulk to your body.
I’m sure you’re starting to get the picture: There is a “perfect balance” in your body that needs to be maintained if you want to achieve optimal results. When you’re eating a balanced diet with whole foods, your body has no reason to hold onto extra fat. It burns what it needs and uses the rest to provide energy.
The same is true when it comes to building muscle and strength. If your body’s in a positive nitrogen balance, then your muscles will grow as large as they should. But if you start messing around with one of the factors involved in weight loss, you could easily throw things way out of whack. Your body will start building muscles at a faster rate than it’s burning fat, thus making it very difficult to lose any weight.
But I’m sure you’re wondering if there is a way to achieve all of your goals without having to worry about your body’s hormones getting out of whack. Well, as I’ve already mentioned, the key is BALANCE.
For example, if you wanted to increase your muscle mass, you would need to make sure that you eat plenty of whole foods and lift heavy weights. If you’ve been doing this and you’re not seeing any results, then you might want to check your testosterone levels.
You see, when your body senses that it needs more testosterone, it’ll begin to shut down other unnecessary bodily functions in order to produce more. One of these functions is the production of IGF-1. This is why you’ll sometimes hear that heavyweights tend to have low IGF-1, while lightweights tend to have high IGF-1. The heavierweights are able to build up more muscle mass, while the lightweights have an easier time cutting weight before a fight.
So how do you increase your testosterone levels?
Well, if you’re already leading a healthy lifestyle, than your next step would be to check your diet. There are several foods that have been proven to increase testosterone production such as:
However, if you’ve already got your diet in check and you’re still not seeing the results you want, then you may need to consider taking a supplemental pill. Just remember: It’s all about balance.
Sources & references used in this article:
Why work sucks and how to fix it: The results-only revolution by C Ressler, J Thompson – 2008 – books.google.com
Hardcore Zen: Punk rock, monster movies and the truth about reality by B Warner – 2015 – books.google.com
The China study: the most comprehensive study of nutrition ever conducted and the startling implications for diet, weight loss and long-term health by TM Campbell II – 2004 – books.google.com
by Tom MacCormick| 07/06/18 by WAE Reps – t-nation.com
Shut Up, Stop Whining, and Get a Life: A Kick-butt Approach to a Better Life by L Winget – 2011 – books.google.com
by Bill Roberts| 07/28/15 by IGBMY Fat – t-nation.com
The Leader’s Guide to Negotiation: How to Use Soft Skills to Get Hard Results by S Horton – 2016 – books.google.com
by TC Luoma| 01/27/20 by JA Ray – 2008 – Hachette Books