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February 26, 2015

The Mega Bodybuilder Meal Plan

bodybuilder meal plan
Photo courtesy of Pixabay

The Bodybuilder Meal Plan

The bodybuilder meal plan is a key to shaping an amazing body. You need to eat right – what is called eating clean. Eating for bodybuilding requires striking a delicate balance between providing enough good calories to build muscle, yet enable the athlete to lose fat.

Think about those competing objectives. Accomplishing such a balance is not easy. Today we discuss the bodybuilder meal plan.

How do you eat enough to grow and build muscle, yet lose body fat, without losing muscle mass? Here’s the reality. When you build muscle you will most likely gain some fat, too. Conversely, when you lose fat you will invariably lose some muscle.

And, even professional bodybuilders find this “build muscle, lose fat” goal difficult to achieve simultaneously so they break it down into phases. First they eat enough and workout intensely enough to add muscle invariably adding some fat.

Then, during the second phase they work on reducing body fat while maintaining the muscle they just built, though they will lose some muscle mass in the process. This is known as cutting.

Two vital meals for sculpting an incredible body are the pre- and post-workout meals. The importance of those two meals is frequently overlooked by the novice.

And, we will begin this discussion with those two meals. The timing of these two meals is nearly as important as the content of the meals – so keep that in mind. I asked Chris George his usual recommendations for the pre- and post-workout meals and to provide us with sample meal plan.

Chris trains bodybuilders.

Pre-Workout Meal

The purpose of the pre-workout meal is to provide your body with energy for the workout plus the necessary nutrients needed to make and grow muscle. The pre-workout meal should be eaten an hour before your workout. This allows GI tract enough time to break down the food allowing it to enter the bloodstream to be burned for fuel. And, at the end of the day that is what food is – a form of fuel.

Consume a meal that provides a 5:3 to 5:4 carb to protein ratio. Ok, but how many grams of carbs and protein? One quarter gram (0.25 grams) of carbohyrates per pound of body weight for carbs and 0.15 to 0.2 grams of protein for every pound of body weight. So a 200 pound male should consume around 50 grams of carbohydrates and 30 to 40 grams of protein in his pre-workout meal.

Post-Workout Meal

The purpose of the post-workout meal is to replenish depletion of energy stores and provide enough protein to repair and build muscle mass. Again, that’s going to be carbs and protein.

After you workout strenuously you have exhausted the storage form of energy in your muscles called  glycogen. Though you may or may not feel hungry, your muscles are “starving” for food immediately after a workout and it’s an ideal time to hit the body with some nourishment.

Immediately after a workout a protein shake that contains some carbs is recommended. The post-workout meal is then consumed 45 minutes to an hour after the workout providing a carb to protein ratio of 3:1.

Besides the pre- and post-workout meals the only other carbs that should be needed would come at breakfast. Between meal snacks should consist of.

Sample Meal Plan

Chris provides this sample meal plan for adding muscle mass. This is for a 200 pound male and provides 300 grams of protein, 244 grams of carbs, and 50 grams of fat. It’s based on 6 meals throughout the day plus a post-workout shake so that you are eating something roughly every 3 hours. So that’s 1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight – again that is for bulking up.

Most experts recommend at least one gram of protein per pound body weight to build muscle more than the 0.6 grams protein per pound generally recommended for the public.

  • Meal 1 (breakfast): 10 egg whites with 1/2 cup red mill rolled oat
  • Meal 2:  6 ounces of cooked chicken breast with 8 spears of cooked asparagus
  • Meal 3:  6 ounces of cooked chicken breast with 1/2 cup of brown rice and 30 almonds
  • Meal 4 (pre-workout): 2 scoops protein shake or 5 ounces of cooked chicken breast with 1 cup of red mill rolled oats.
  • Post-workout shake:  1 scoop of protein with 1/3 cup of rice flower
  • Meal 5 (post-workout): 4 ounces of chicken breast with 19 ounce of baked red potatoes or 14 ounces of baked yams.
  • Meal 6:  5 ounces of talapia with 40 almonds.

Note: there are no carbs after the post-workout meal. Hope you like chicken.



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Dr. Joe Jacko

Dr. Joe is board certified in internal medicine and sports medicine with additional training in hormone replacement therapy and regenerative medicine. He has trained or practiced at leading institutions including the Hughston Clinic, Cooper Clinic, Steadman-Hawkins Clinic of the Carolinas, and Cenegenics. He currently practices in Columbus, Ohio at Grandview Primary Care. Read more about Dr. Joe Jacko

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