Friday, 25 February 2011


I was looking for a Maltodextrin supplement and this was the closest I could get. I tried loading carbs with it and it made me feel good running the next day.
I mixed at super high concentrations which made it gloopy and sicky, but I just wanted to down it and get the carbs in. 50g of carbs per packet took packets 2 at a time, 4 times over the course of one day, then one more pack in the morning followed by shotz every 30 minutes during a 28km run. Felt fine, the only noticeable affect was that I wasn't as tired as usual.

I'd recommend it but its just a tool to drink more carbs because its impossible to eat 800g of carbs in a day through refined carb foods.

I'd like to try some other brands next time I prepare for an endurance event in order to compare.

tokyo marathon plan

It's Friday and 2 days before the marathon. Little bit concerned about the dead-lift PB I did this morning, hoping my lower back muscles will recover in time for Sunday. On the other hand, if I can make a PB I must be in strong shape, my nutrition has been good leading up and my legs are fully rested after not running for over 2 weeks since the running experiment.

World record holder Haile Gebrselassie will be joining me to run this year's marathon, which is nice. Let's see how he gets on.

Same route as last year, big 'X' shaped jobbie. It's dead hot today so I'm hoping the temperature is going to drop a bit before Sunday. Have been chatting earlier with fellows runner Ed and Masaru about our build ups. Which has got me pumped to write down my plan this afternoon to get it clear in my head.

Full explanation of strategy is written in the running experiment. I am following this same plan this week too. Interesting that I did that experiment after deadlifts and am running the marathon after deadlifts too.

In summary: Keep the protein high all week, carb/fat ratio high on weight training days, carb/fat ration low on rest days. 16 hours of fasting per day, day before race day 5 minutes of intense cardio, followed by wholesale ingestion of high glycemic index refined carbohydrates over the course of the whole day. (Simple carbs being sugars, refined carbs being bread, complex carbs being tubers).

The difference between the running experiment and this time is that I kicked off the week with a 1 day fast in order to drop a little more weight before the start of the run in week.

The graph shows calorie intake for the week up until today. Feb 19 shows the fast with minimum calories from ingestion of BCAAs, the red line shows maintenance, with rest days and weight training days obvious from the bars below and above maintenance.

I spent the first 5 days of this week trying to keep carbs to a minimum, with a high fat, high protein diet.
NOTE: Calorie maintenance is 2200


8 hours sleep
Rest DayProtein 160g
Fat 85g
Carbohydrate 125g
Calories 1885

5 hours sleep
Fasted 6AM workout: 3x5 backsquats, 3x5 push-press, Run 100 Meter Sprints, Dumbbell Power Snatches, Pull-ups
Protein 200g
Fat 80g
Carbohydrate 260g
Calories 2478

6 hours sleep
Rest Day
Protein 170g
Fat 110g
Carbohydrate 90g
Calories 1892

8 hours sleep
Fasted 6AM workout: snatches
Protein 260g
Fat 90g
Carbohydrate 230g
Calories 2683

8 hours sleep
Rest Day
Protein 140g
Fat 80g
Carbohydrate 75g
Calories 1514

6 hours sleep
Fasted 6AM workout: 3x5 deadlift, Push-ups, Pull-ups, Double Unders, Dumbbell Thrusters
Protein 315g
Fat 65g
Carbohydrate 200g
Calories 2628

Saturday Plan
9 hours sleep
Fast 10AM workout: 5 minutes of high intensity cardio
Weighed in at 7?.?kg
Followed by ingestion of carbs all day. 
Rough plan for this is 200g vitargo, L size dominos hawaiian pizza, DVD, go and get my bib, 2 subways on the way back 200g vitargo, another DVD, L size dominos hawaiian pizza, DVD, 200g vitargo, bed.
Thinking of the Indiana Jones Trilogy for the DVDs (The fourth one does not count as a movie)

Sunday Plan
9 hours sleep
Weighed in at 7?.?kg

Hearty breakfast of cereals.
8AM Drink 50g of carbs, 20g of BCAA
9AM Marathon start
take one sachet of "Shotz" every 30 minutes

Expected Result
I am expecting to run fine up to Asakusa (28km), then start to feel wear and tear on the groin. At Ginza (36km) the calves will start to go and I'll be basically hobbling. If I have worked out the glycogen plan correctly; cardiovascularly I should be fine, and it will just be a question of sore legs to the finish.

Actual Result
Didn't manage to get through all the carbs I'd planned to eat on the Saturday. Here's what I got through:
Strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, Champion Nutrition Ultramet, Vitargo Final Energy 200g, 3 slices of Christmas cake with icing, a banana, an orange, BLT bagel, 15 slices of Shakey's pizza, bowl of spaghetti, raw cabbage salad, 3 krispy kreme glazed donuts, 200g of Vitargo Final Energy before bed.
I woke up on Sunday at 5am and immediately had a glazed donut, then started on another 200g of Vitargo Final Energy. At 7am I had another donut and some Purple Wraath mixed in a bottle of water before the race.

Felt fine for the 12km popping 3 "Shotz" as planned just needed a piss. 
Stopped for a piss and the toilet was like a sauna, the faster than usual pace caught up with me and my stomach started to feel weird like I needed a loose one.
Carried on and got stitches and felt full all the way.
When I could I forced myself to eat another "Shotz" but I didn't eat every 30 minutes as planned.
I was also throwing them away after one mouthful.
Legs went at 32km and the last 10 were totally painful like last year.
At no point did I feel tired though, even at the end my heart and lungs felt great, but my legs were wrecked.

So all in all the planning worked.
If I did it again I would refrain from using it as an excuse to eat rubbish, and stick to high glycemic index vegetables instead.

After I ate ribs, fries, coke and weighed in at 76kg.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

switching to coconut oil

i'm switching from virgin olive oil to coconut oil.

there's loads of reasons why its better, first off it has very little omega 6 whereas olive oil is loaded. everything I eat has to get me towards somewhere between 1:1 and 1:2 omega3:omega6 ratios. I need to find a graph comparing omegas in different oils.

here's livestrong's top 5 cooking oils. coconut is not even there.

what the helio is "helio rice bran oil"? its big selling point is this chart:
doesn't look very Paleo to me either. "Olive oil is mostly MUFA rather than SFA of course, but this shouldn't lead to too much of a difference in terms of cooking. After all, animal fat is often around 50% MUFA. The real problem with olive oil isn't the MUFA, it's the omega 6. By comparison, the much vaunted lard, is more MUFA than SFA and more omega 6 than olive oil. Olive oil also has a higher smoke point, drastically so if the ligter, rather than virgin oils. That said, cooking with olive oil, if you're going to consume it is a waste, if only because of the loss of the (possibly) beneficial polyphenols."

Marks Daily Apple has a great guide on oils, they love coconut the best.

I got this from an Indian Doctor's website:

Safflower (Omega6: 73; Omega3: 0.5; Ratio (6/3): 146);
Sunflower (Omega6: 49; Omega3: 0.3; Ratio (6/3): 163);
Corn (Omega6: 57; Omega3: 0.8; Ratio (6/3): 71);
Sesame (Omega6: 40; Omega3: 0.5; Ratio (6/3): 80);
Palmolein (Omega6: 9; Omega3: 0.3; Ratio (6/3): 30);
Groundnut (Omega6: 28; Omega3: 0.8; Ratio (6/3): 35);
Coconut (Omega6: 1.8; Omega3: 0.0; Ratio (6/3): 0); 
Ghee (Buffalo)(Omega6: 2; Omega3: 0.9; Ratio (6/3): 2.2);
Ghee (Cow) (Omega6: 1.6; Omega3: 0.5; Ratio (6/3): 3.2) and
Mustard/Rape (Omega6: 13; Omega3: 8.6; Ratio (6/3): 1.5).

Comparison in terms of MUFA (monounsaturated fatty acids), PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acids) and SFA (saturated fatty acids) content (%) in 100g of the oils is as below:

Sunflower (MUFA:84, PUFA:4, SFA:10);
Olive oil (MUFA:74, PUFA:8, SFA:14);
Mustard Oil (MUFA:59, PUFA:21, SFA:12);
Groundnut Oil (MUFA:46, PUFA:32, SFA:17)

looks like coconut oil is so busy being saturated fat, it's got no space left for omegas.

another interesting article here "Most cooking oils contain omega 6 fatty acids, something we get way too much of in the United States.  Our omega 6 to omega 3 ratio should be 1:1  but it is more like 50:1.  We need to drastically cut back our omega 6 oils and consume much more omega 3 oils to be healthy.  And coconut oil is filled with these healthy omega 3 fatty acids." really? The Indian doctor said there is zero omega 3 in coconut oil. "What is the amount of Omega 3 fatty acids in Coconut Oil?
None. Coconut oil is not a source of Omega 3 fatty acids. These need to be supplemented in the diet from elsewhere (such as our Cod Liver Oil). The primary benefits of coconut oil are the nutritive value of  medium chain fatty acids.""The healthiest oil to cook with is coconut oil.  Although olive oil has the popularity of being one of the healthiests oils, it health benefits are only attributed to the oil being 
used without heat.  The smoke point is the point at which an oil burns after being heated.  When oil reaches it's smoke point, it emits smoke to indicate that it is now burnt.  Olive oil has a low smoke point and burns almost immediatelt once it's placed in a hot pan.  Due to olive oil's low smoke point, olive oil should only be used in it's cold pressed form without any heat application.  Coconut oil is one of the most stable oils to use for cooking as well as in raw food preparations.  Coconut oil has a high smoke point and stays fairly stable during cooking.  Coconut oil also provides many health benefits that have been linked to the decreased risk of several illnesses 
such as heart disease and cancer.

It is best to select coconut oil that is both organic and virgin, as use for a natural treatment for eczema.
Organic Coconut Oil. Dry eczema skin can be a symptom of a highly toxic body. Hence, the last thing you want to do is to use a product that is not produced organically.
Virgin Coconut Oil. Virgin coconut oil is made by using fresh coconut meat with little or no processing, or what is called non-copra.
Most commercial grade coconut oils are produced from copra. Most of the copra, the meat of the coconut, is dried under the sun in the open air, where it gets exposed to insects and moulds. The standard end product made from copra is RBD coconut oil. RBD means refined, bleached, and deodorized. Both high heat and chemicals (e.g. solvent extractions) are used in this method.
A fragrant smell is characteristic of virgin coconut oils. Copra-based refined coconut oils have no taste or fragrance due to the refining process.
There's lots of opinions on coconut oil, i'm going out to see if I can find some and try it out.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Purple Wraath

Purple Wraath: Ergogenic Essential Amino Acid Matrix
Link to Maker's Site

Here's the blurb:
Discover the "Holy Grail" of bodybuilding and athletic performance enhancement: maximizing lean gains and fat loss while enhancing recovery and increasing strength, endurance, and energy. Purple Wraath was created to be the most complete EAA/BCAA product on the market; keeping your body in a constant anabolic state and keeping you training hard with its added super endurance complex. 

I've been getting tired of necking 10g of BCAA before fasted workouts on the leangains plan, they come in small 5g packets, it's expensive, and fails to mix in water. Reading through Martin Berkham's recommendations have decided to switch to Purple Wraath. It works out cheaper to buy in a big tub, mixes well in water, and "It contains beta-alanine as well, which gives me a nice little tingle and also seems to aid a bit with intra-set recovery and muscle endurance in the higher rep ranges" . The tin said to try half a scoop first time and see how it goes. I did that today before working out and I felt fine through the whole workout. My 5 rep max squat went up by 2kg and I also marginally improved my 5 rep max push press. Felt wasted as usual during the met-con, but that's what met-cons are for. Lemonade flavour tastes great and mixed in water easily. I could drink that on the cycle to the gym rather than necking it and wincing. Also when I switch to the new leangains PM eating plan next month I'll need an easy BCAA drink for mid-morning.

Will update on Friday when I try a full scoop.

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

The Running Experiment

Marathon is 3 weeks off and there's enough time left to attempt to emulate the Department of Human Movement and Exercise Science at the University of Western Australia Carbohydrate Loading experiment.

Cut a long story short, endurance athletes taper off exercise as the event gets closer, ending with 3 days heavy on carbohydrates to put more glycogen into the muscle and avoid "hitting the wall" after glycogen stores run out.

The Department of Human Movement and Exercise Science at the University of Western Australia tested athletes as in a different way: "On the morning the one-day high-carb diet commenced, the athletes had muscle biopsies performed on their quadriceps muscles (to assess glycogen levels), carried out a five-minute warm-up on a cycle ergometer, and then blasted through a sustained 150-second sprint on the ergometer at a very high intensity of 130% VO2max. At the end of this sprint, the athletes - without a second of hesitation - embarked on an all-out 30s sprint. Lactate levels at the end of this three-minute period of intense work soared to 21.9 mM/litre!

When carbo windows are open widest:Following a cool-down, each subject began the 24-hour high-carb eating plan, during which they ingested 12g of relatively high-glycaemic-index carbs per kg of lean body mass (e.g. 5.45g per pound of lean body mass and 4.6g per pound of body weight, just above the RRN recommendation). Crucially, the ingestion of carbohydrate was initiated within 20 minutes of the end of the exercise. (Remember that your muscles' carbo ‘windows' are open widest shortly after a bout of exercise ends; by two hours-or-so after exercise, they are open just a crack.) The participants ate high-carb foods they liked, including pasta, bread and rice but they also poured in extra carbohydrate in the form of the maltodextrose-rich drink Polycose, produced by Ross Laboratories in Columbus, Ohio. Indeed, about 80% of the carbs ingested over the 24-hour period came from this drink. The energy ingested as fat and protein, by contrast, was marginal - less than 10% of the caloric total for the day."


In my attempt to emulate this I spent the first 2 days of this week trying to keep carbs to a minimum, with a high fat, high protein diet.
NOTE: Calorie maintenance is 2200

5 hours sleep
Fasted 6AM workout: 3x5 backsquats, 50m sprints between kettle bell swings
Protein 200g
Fat 30g
Carbohydrate 130g
Calories 1720

8 hours sleep
Fasted 6AM workout: 3x5 pushpress, 50m sprints between burpees
Protein 170g
Fat 90g
Carbohydrate 190g
Calories 2213

On the day before the run, the diet changed to high carb and low everything else.

8 hours sleep
Weighed in at 76.5kg
Fasted 6AM workout: 3x5 deadlift, 30sec on 30sec off thrusters, burpees, pullups, sumo deadlift to high hangs. (in Australia they did only 3 minutes of rowing and sprinting, this was somewhat longer)

Protein 225g (ingesting this much carbohydrate you can't help protein getting in)
Fat 62g
Carbohydrate 760g
(400g of carbs come from 8 "Vitargo Carb Loader" drinks, 2 of which were taken 5 minutes after work out.)
Calories 4500

8 hours sleep
Weighed in at 77.9kg (making previous day's carb load a total of 1.4kg)

Drink 50g of carbs and go running
4AM workout: 28km jog taking one sachet of "Shotz" every 30 minutes.
Weighed in at 76.4kg

Expected Result
Compared to the Jan 29 fasted 19km run that ended on a subway train exhausted, I am expecting to jog all the way home at 28km feeling like there's a lot left in the tank.

Actual Result
Woke up feeling hot and sweaty, that's with a temperature of zero outside and no heater on.
Serious sore muscles in the back from previous days dead-lifts but I spent all day yesterday eating carbs and this experiment had to go on.
Few back stretches and out the door.
Warmed up faster than usual, felt fine all the way through.
I was looking forward to uphill sections that I used to dread to open up the legs a bit.
Around 24km I felt the right side groin but when I would have usually been cardiovascularly spent I was fine.
Jogged all the way home, could have gone on.
Weighed in at 76.4kg meaning the 28km cost 1.5kg.
Due to the ingestion of glycogen every 30 minutes I assume that all weight lost was water.
Therefore during the marathon I should drink 42ml/km or a pet bottle every 10km.
Will stick to BCAA drinks to avoid any possible gluconeogenesis.
Experiment was a success and I will be using this technique for the marathon.
Runkeeper link.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Grass fed in japan

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, 7 February 2011

ON Platinum Hydro Whey

Optimum Nutrition Platinum Hydro Whey 

I went for "Velocity Vanilla" (also comes in "Cookies and Cream Overdrive", "Turbo Chocolate" and "Supercharged Strawberry") I'm assuming the speed in the names refers to how fast insulin is able to shuttle the protein to the muscles.

Here's the blurb:
Platinum Hydrowhey is the fastest, purest, most advanced whey protein we've ever developed. In a word: excellence. By hydrolyzing the protein in this premium formula we've created our fastest-acting whey protein yet. Hydrolyzing breaks larger proteins down into smaller pieces that are able to get into your system rapidly, enabling your muscles to start rebuilding quickly. For added effectiveness, we've also enhanced this revolutionary formula with digestive enzymes and micronized branched chain amino acids (BCAAs). In addition to being fast, Platinum Hydrowhey is also ultra-pure. That's because it's made entirely with hydrolyzed whey protein isolates. So there's no excess fat, cholesterol, or lactose to slow down your progress.

Mixed perfectly, a hint of grit, tasted a bit milky plasticky, but then I've never like the vanilla flavoured ones.
Taken after 5-5-5 75% of 1RM squats.

2011/05/10 Update
Tried the chocolate one. Have to be careful not to use too much water because it doesn't mix well and leaves you with a shake bottle of bits and weak tasting chocolate water. Champion Nutrition does this so much better.

Friday, 4 February 2011

switching to macadamias

I was eating a handful of walnuts and beef jerky as my mid-morning snack on rest days. (good fats and plenty of protein). Since then I've been reading that walnuts have a high Omega 6 to Omega 3 ratio. So I'm switching to Macadamias which have just as much nutritional value, but contain hardly any Omega 6.

Omega 6 per (1/4) cup

Walnuts – 9.5 g
Almonds – 4.36 g
Cashews – 2.6 g
Macadamias – 0.5 g
Brazil nuts – 7.2 g
Hazelnuts – 2.7 g
Pistachio – 4.1 g
Pine nuts – 11.6 g
Pecans – 5.8 g


Thursday, 3 February 2011


List showing Omega 6 Content of Common Foods:

Better switch out Walnuts for Macadamias with my Jerky :-)

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

IDS Oatmeal & Whey Isolate Blend

The blurb
The ultimate in meal replacement convenience is finally here! Oatmeal & Whey from IDS Sports combines a synergistic blend of Isolate Blend Whey Protein with ultra-fine Premium Oatmeal powder to create the ideal meal supplement! IDS Sports Oatmeal & Whey contains 24 grams of premium isolate blend whey protein, with 16 grams of Oatmeal carbohydrates yielding an amazing 8.5 grams of complex carbs, 8 grams of soluble fiber, and less than 3 grams of sugar!
Over the years, in an effort to control sugar and fat intake many athletes have turned to the blender to make quick convenient meals. One of the most common of these food combinations is oatmeal and protein powder for a quick complex carbohydrate high protein meal. Using Oatmeal as a carbohydrate ensures a low sugar complex carbohydrate high in Vitamins and Minerals. While high quality Whey protein is a staple in every athlete's supplement arsenal.
Combining these two super foods in a blender for the ultimate clean meal sounds like a great idea, but drinking your way through the chunky bottom half of that glass of homemade brew can be a challenge. Most of the oatmeal resists breaking up in the blender and settles at the bottom of the glass, only to be chewed and choked down. Great idea, poor delivery. Until Now! Oatmeal & Whey looks and mixes like regular whey protein. It tastes great and quickly mixes in a shaker cup just like standard whey proteins! Oatmeal & Whey from IDS Sports is a quick and easy way for athletes to get the perfect meal!
I went for Chocolate Peanut Butter.
Mixes really well, tasted nothing like Chocolate or peanut butter, horrible gritty texture with a nasty after taste. Never again.
taken after 3 sets of man-makers, 2 sets of max-rep pullups and 2 sets of max-rep dips.