So we got down weeks 1-3 of this mass construction program, now it is time to amp up the weight and poundage! Few details left out of this program are the power-building nutrition rules! Let us go over them now!
While Josh Bryant, MFS, CSCS, PES, owner of joshstrength.com concedes that a higher caloric intake is necessary for performing at a high level during heavy workouts, it’s all done within reason, and protein, not suprisingly is the focus.
Bryant recommends 18-20 calories per pound of bodyweight per day for powerbuilders, with a large portion of these calories coming from fuel-laden carb sources, mostly slow digesting, like sweet potatoes, oatmeal and whole-wheat bread. Faster-digesting sources have their place though and don’t need to be avoided entirely. Of course, healthy fats to support joints, recovery and hormone production are also on the menu.
When it comes to protein, Bryant simply recommends getting enough of the stuff. “I don’t know of any powerlifter eating less than 1 gram of protein per pound of body-weight,” he says. For a 220-pound individual, this represents 220 grams (and 880 calories) worth of protein per day.
As strength is the priority, there’s no dire need for a meticulous logging of daily food intake (although it wouldn’t hurt). Rather, Bryant recommends that each powerbuilder again refer to his gym success. If you’re making incremental jumps in weight, you’re likely on the right track nutritionally. Falter for a workout or two and you may need to increase calories, carbs or protein. Joints sore? Might be time to increase your fat intake a hair.
The busiest bodybuilders in the industry are the ones who can be ready to shoot or guest pose on two weeks’ notice. The trick to that is to keep fairly lean on a year-round basis. Powerbuilders can have that “close to showcase” look while training if they mix in the right kind of cardio.
“To keep conditioning up and bodyfat down, a couple days of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is implemented,” Bryant says. “This can be strongman-type evens used as finishers, barbell complexes or things like farmer squats. These are very intense so they need to be done only a couple times a week. If you really need to get into shape, you can do things such as jumping rope and walking on the other days.”
Cardio on a powerbuilding cycle is entirely up to the lifter. Those looking to say a little leaner would be well served by performing 2-3, 20-30 minute sessions per week using their activity of choice. The key is to do it interval style, alternating extremely high intensity bouts with periods of recovery. This ensures you’re keeping your metabolism high and holding on to as much muscle as possible. After a short warm-up, try 10-15 cycles usings bursts of 20 seconds of explosive work followed by 40 seconds of down time.
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