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Old 08-30-2006, 04:47 AM   #1
Chris Fisher
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Several friends who do some serious weight lifting have been telling me that protein supplements are great, but you need 4-6 servings a day to have any real affect. Does this seem like over kill? I have ProLab Whey Protein blend, and they only recommend 2-3 servings a day.

Should I bump up my intake?

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Old 08-30-2006, 05:14 AM   #2
Cameron D. Hetzel Jr
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IMO it depends on your goals. Protein powder is just an easy way to get more protein. When power lifting i used to get in atleast 350 grams of protein daily (mostly from whole food) at about 215-220 lbs and never really noticed any fat gain from it. How many serving you have depend on how much is in each serving. What are you "stats" and what are your goals?

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Old 08-30-2006, 10:57 AM   #3
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Your better served getting your protein from real food sources, in modest levels (30g to 40g) placed throughou the day in about 8 servings. If you can't do that, then supplement with 2 or 3 shakes a day. To be blunt, assess you current real food protein intake by grams, look at your number of shakes. I've always read that 1gram of protein per kilo of bodyweight is all you need, but I think that's hogwash. I believe it's double that if you want to gain muscle mass, or your protein intake should be a one gram for each pound of bodyweight. There comes a point where you are consuming too much and your body will simply excrete the excess. I have had several urine sample taken to determine what was the most efficient use (gram per lb of bodyweight) of protein for me. I varied the imput and had the samples taken. the problem I had was that, in hindsight, I wasn't training each of the days I had the samples taken. I realized that after the fact. But I learned that my body used the higher amounts of protein much more efficiently on days I train than on days I didn't train. I also found that given my bodyweight (255 to 260) my body responds better to something a little less than one gram per pound of bodyweight.

The lesson I learned from my own little self study was that I need to take one to two more shakes a day on days I train.

I hope this makes sense? I know it's geeky, but It took this and several other things to understand how my body responded to certain things.

All the best,
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Old 08-30-2006, 08:52 PM   #4
Chris Fisher
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Thanks for the replies.

I'm 6'5" and only about 185 lbs. Been trying to get up to 200 lbs four nearly four years with almost no success. I've noticed a little weight gain with taking two servings of protein a day(24 grams each) one right after I work out and one late afternoon, but not much more.

Not sure what's a good method of determining my protein intake from regular foods; is there a website that can help you calculate this? However, if I had to guess I would say I don't eat that much protein. Prefer lots of carbs: pasta, potatoes, bread, scattered with usually chicken for meat.

Any further ideas?

Thanks again
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Old 08-30-2006, 11:59 PM   #5
Gorm Laursen
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If your urine is dark and foams like water with soap in it, your eating too much protein (or at least you're eating more than enough).

I personally have experimented a lot with protein intake, and have come to the conclusion that I grow just as much in periods of moderate ('normal') protein intake (1 gram of protein per kilo bodymass) as I do in period of heavy protein intake (2 or more grams protein per kilo).

Let's just do a quick estimate: You weigh 185 lbs. (I'll just convert that to kilos as I'm from Europe) = 84 kilo (almost the same as me). Then your powerlifting buddies would probably say that you needed at least 2 grams of protein per kilo bodyweight = 168 grams of protein. If you were to have that through lean meat you'd have to eat approx. 840 grams of meat. That's almost 2 pounds a day! If you'd settle with milk you'd have to drink almost 5 liters! If you went for peanuts, you have to eat approx. 700 grams! I think this is very counterintuitive. Nobody needs that much food!

Besides that your body is a very smart piece of machinery: The less protein you eat, the better your body uses it. That means that you body uses 20 grams of protein twice as good as 40 grams, which leaves you with the same result, no matter how you turn it around.

In my opion everything above 'normal' eating is an utterly waste of money, time and appetite.
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Old 08-31-2006, 04:01 AM   #6
Anthony Bainbridge
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Chris, check out to track your calories.

Bottom line, if you aren't gaining weight, you aren't eating enough calories.

So, track your calories for 1-2 weeks, find your daily average, then increase by 10-15% until you gain about 1 pound per week.

Here are some general guidelines that I follow, although they aren't exactly Zone:

1. Eat a minimum of 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight.
2. Eat a minimum of 0.5 gram of fat per pound of body weight.
3. Every meal has meat (beef, chicken, pork, or fish) or protein powder.
4. Every meal has veggies (spinach, carrots, broccoli) or fruit (apple, orange, banana, etc.).
5. Every meal has nuts (cashews, walnuts, almonds, peanuts).
6. Main meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner) have a complex carb (brown rice, pasta, potato, etc.).
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Old 08-31-2006, 06:32 AM   #7
Elliot Royce
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Although the content isn't entirely CF-approved, you could check out John Berardi's Scrawny to Brawny.

Get ready to eat a ton of food! At 6'5" and 180lbs, you've got potential to add 30-40lbs of lean body mass if you go about the right way.
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Old 08-31-2006, 08:29 AM   #8
Chris Fisher
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Thanks for the replies. I'll track what I'm eating and see where I'm at. Hopefully I can break 200 lbs by Christmas.

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Old 09-03-2006, 11:20 AM   #9
Frank Menendez
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Anthony, do you calculate your 1g/lb to include every bit of protein in your meals (from eggs, beans, veggies - no matter how miniscule) or strickly from your protein blocks (chicken, eggs, meat, etc. - disregarding the rest)?
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Old 09-03-2006, 12:58 PM   #10
Mike ODonnell
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I'd listen to Anthony's advice. Especially 1gram of protein per bodyweight being minimum. I do not get any size unless I go up to 1.5g/lb of bodyweight. I typically add in protein shakes just because of ease of use, but also try to get as much real food as possible. You can also try combining like 6-8oz chicken/veg/fat and protein shake. I'd figure out what number you are shooting for daily (such as 200g), divide that by the number of meals you plan on having (5,6,etc) and then you know how much protein you need per meal.
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