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  1. #1
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    Have to eat Clif Builders (or something), what am I doing wrong?

    I eat a lot of meat. A lot. My food intake is either steak or chicken or lunch meat or tuna or something. Cheese. Eggs, Canadian bacon.

    Yet I build endurance and strength a lot faster if I frequently (like 3 days a week) eat a Clif Builder after a lot of work (fast cycling or excessive distance, etc).

    So, I eat a ton of protein, but I need a protein bar to build muscle mass?

    Anyone else see a problem here?
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  2. #2
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    Your body craves what it gets large doses of. Chocolate, beer, gummy bears, meat - if you go crazy with it you will adapt and that large amount becomes a normal baseline. Your perceived increasing of endurance and strength is a mostly-false justification.

    Try gradually decreasing the meat and increasing things like whole grain, leafy greens, etc. You'll find you can excel at a much lower rate of protein intake. A high recommendation for body builders is 2.5 g/Kg of body weight. So if you weigh 80Kg (180lbs), you should be eating 200grams max protein PER DAY. This equates to a couple eggs, a chicken breast and one moderate steak. PER DAY. Not counting nuts, milk, cheese, etc. If you are eating more protein than this, you are exceeding what bodybuilders take in. Throw a cliff builder on top and it's a complete waste.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by palesaint View Post
    Your body craves what it gets large doses of. Chocolate, beer, gummy bears, meat - if you go crazy with it you will adapt and that large amount becomes a normal baseline. Your perceived increasing of endurance and strength is a mostly-false justification.
    Lemme tell you something: when I push myself to the point of physical pain and then collapse 2/3 of the way into a push-up under controlled, timed conditions because my muscles just don't have the capacity, that is not "perceived." That is "measured." As I put the final sets up as exhaustion, I'm pretty sure I have a measurable baseline.

    When I bike, I notice what makes it easier/faster. Those days I suddenly find my commute far easier come in two forms:

    • When I'm munching a Builder every other day
    • After an extra long ride (i.e. a 30 mile ride one day, just because I have **** to do and it's a lot of miles between), I suddenly have extra endurance after a day's rest


    The second one makes sense. The first one doesn't because, as you say, protein intake isn't the kind of thing that demands maximization. I'm probably already up there... and yet when I throw a Builder bar on top, somehow it makes a visible difference.

    This makes no sense. Something else is going on here and I'm unsure what. What are these things made of? Soy and chocolate? Chocolate isn't nutrition.
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  4. #4
    Administrator CbadRider's Avatar
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    Carbs are quick energy, and Clif Bars contain a lot of carbs. Maybe you're feeling the effects of extra carbs in your diet on the days you eat the Clif Bars.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CbadRider View Post
    Carbs are quick energy, and Clif Bars contain a lot of carbs. Maybe you're feeling the effects of extra carbs in your diet on the days you eat the Clif Bars.
    Makes sense. I know I can push a little harder when I have sugar. I just don't see how stuffing that stuff down my throat right after helps build permanent muscle capacity. If the walls are being torn down, I've got to have holes in my diet, right?
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  6. #6
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Mostly what you need after working to exhaustion is carbs. Some studies say all carbs, some say 4:1 carbs to protein. The effect of the bar is because of the carbs. Of course you have extra endurance after a day's rest. You are catching up on your glycogen. Your diet is probably carb deficient and you may be continually in a glycogen deficit. And long rides do build endurance. Work up to 4 hour rides, once a week. That's how to build endurance. Rebuilding muscle is a long-term activity in the body. It doesn't happen immediately, whereas glycogen restoration does happen quite quickly, with the right nutrition.

  7. #7
    jmX
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    As others have said, carbs carbs carbs. Carbs are what run you. You just need a little bit of protein, enough so that as a meat eater you certainly don't need to go out of your way to find it.

    More carbs = better workouts = more training load = more improvements. Eat your meat after the workout if you wish.

    Try this book if you're interested in more info: http://www.amazon.com/Racing-Weight-...6405148&sr=8-1

    Sports nutrition research is constantly evolving, and it seems what we "knew" in the 1980s and 1990s isn't all turning out to be as cut and dried as it first appeared.

  8. #8
    Senior Member LeeRoySD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    The effect of the bar is because of the carbs. Of course you have extra endurance after a day's rest. You are catching up on your glycogen.
    Mostly this I would suspect... Carbs consumed (especially at times when the body is most primed to use them) to rebuild glycogen stores make a huge difference in anaerobic capacity the following day. IIRC Builders Bars have about 30g of Carbs in addition to 20g or so of protein.

  9. #9
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    You need a balance of nutrient types not an over abundance of one.

  10. #10
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    I don't think you need to eat more than 1g per kg (about 1g per 2 lbs). That's on the medium-high side of what's recommended for endurance athletes. Unless you're doing intense rides 4-5 days a week, I don't think you even need to eat that much.

    Short version is that if you're eating some meat everyday, you're probably getting plenty of protein.

  11. #11
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    I don't eat any meat and I get plenty of protein. 4.5 hr. intense tandem ride today, about 1.5 hours in the LT zone. We were still kicking butt (our own) on the final climb. Weekdays, did one roller ride, one intense spin class, and two intense calisthenic routines for skiing. Recovered well. 66 y.o.

  12. #12
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    I'm a vegetarian and I average around 130 grams a day in protein but I take a whey supplement twice a day. Low protein for me equates to GI issues but not as severe as trying to digest meat.

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