Keeping Protein Constant

“I think that without sushi there would be no David Hasselhoff, because sushi is like the perfect way of describing the insides of David Hasselhoff. He is like a protein, clean and easy. That’s how I feel about myself.”
- David Hasselhoff

You’ll never look at sushi the same.

That’s a real quote, look it up…  If protein is that important to David Hasselhoff, it should be to you too.


 

Alright, so we’re a few weeks into tinkering with our food intake.  How are we feeling so far?

Ask yourself the following questions, let’s see if we’re on track:

  1. Am I addressing my “biggest struggles” with regards to food prep?
  2. Am I following the hand-based portion guidelines?
  3. Am I eating to 80% full?
  4. Am I improving the quality/maintaining a high quality of food intake?
  5. Am I becoming more aware of how I feel after my meals?
  6. Am I playing around with increasing fats or carbs?

Don’t beat yourself up on these.  Progress is a process, this stuff doesn’t need to be perfect.  But if you had to put a (Y) for yes, or (N) for no next to each one of those questions, how would that break down?

Let’s aim for mostly (Y)’s, and if we are already there, let’s aim to keep on keepin’ on.

Joe Dirt


In discussing this week’s lesson, Todd and I both related to having issues keeping protein constant as we increased fats or carbs in a hypertrophy cycle.  But, with this simplified approach to nutrition that we’ve taken on, that’s a thing of the past…
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Keeping Protein Constant

I almost feel silly writing something this simple, but stick to your hand-based portion guide for protein.  As we mentioned, these portion guides are a STARTING POINT, and obviously we are already having you play with increasing fats OR carbs based on how you feel…  But, this should NOT be at the dismissal of our protein needs.  So, here’s a few strategies to keep protein constant.

 

Use super shakes

In the case of shakes, stick to 1-2 servings of the recommended amount.  Super shakes are a great way to mix all of your needs into a quick, simple snack.

 

Eat your protein first

If you find yourself filling up with protein still on the plate, eat your protein first.  Further, if you’re full on protein alone, try and break up your portions to more frequent, smaller meals to build tolerance.

 

Keep a lot of protein prepped and accessible

Another seemingly obvious one, but I think we all need this reminder.  Protein can take a while to prep.

Grilling meats, opening/mixing tuna, cooking eggs, etc…

So prepare a bunch ahead of time!

 

Keep high protein snacks on hand

Sometimes we get caught up doing _________ and there’s nothing we can do about it.

Keep healthy protein snack options on hand.

Here’s a few ideas:

  • Super shakes (notice a theme?)
  • Meat sticks (we love Ostrim Bars and Epic Bars)
  • Cottage cheese
  • Greek Yogurt
  • Hard boiled eggs

[Obviously that's just a few ideas to get you started, and the last three need to be refrigerated- but build your stock!]

Still having trouble?

Maybe it’s not time to increase fats or carbs yet… and that’s okay.  It’s pretty damn important to keep dietary protein up there.

“Without adequate daily amino acid intake, small daily losses from amino acid breakdown will eventually put us in a net negative protein balance.  While carbohydrate and, and especially fat content of the body are fairly well maintained, it’s actually quite difficult to maintain a consistent amino acid pool without dietary intervention.  Maintaining the plasma amino acid pool is like keeping a sink full with without a drain plug.  Amino acids are constantly lost from the pool and therefore the only way to replenish them is to ingest protein through the diet.  If amino acid intake falls below daily amino acid degradation, things like enzymes and structural protein are cannibalized.  If this process persists for long enough, vital functions shut down.”

- Precision Nutrition

As always, basics first- then we refine.