Tag archive

muscle building diet

Protein Timing: Does It Really Matter?

Protein Timing

The protein timing question is huge for guys who want to pack on the most amount of muscle in the least amount of time.

It boils down to:

When is the best time to eat a high protein meal or chug a protein shake to build muscle as quickly as possible?

How often do I need to consume protein throughout the day so my workouts aren’t a complete waste of time?

These are the questions haunting you, right?

Ah, my lad. I was once in your position, asking the same questions. I remember tapping my foot and anxiously waiting to top off my post-workout shake behind a dozen other skinny guys in college.  I hoped and prayed the minute-long delay between finishing my last set and guzzling down a protein shake wouldn’t disrupt the holy anabolic window.

Muscle magazines made it sound like holy doctrine only heretics dare question.

You need to jam protein and carbs down your throat after a workout or you’ll miss the anabolic window, and muscle growth will become impossible.Protein Timing

But it just ain’t so. We know much more about protein timing than we did a few short years ago. In this article, I’ll break down the biggest protein myths. More importantly, you’ll get the low-down of what you need to know to build muscle and look great naked.

So How Much Protein Do I Need to Consume to Build Muscle?

I won’t spend too much time here, because the “how much” question isn’t what I’m looking to answer in this article. The “when” question is.

However, the “how much” and the “when” questions do have a small connection because every single day, you want to reach your “how much” which inevitably leads you to inquire about “when.”

Or in other words, to reach your minimum protein intake for the day, you need to eat protein during the day.

Common sense, right?

So, what is your target protein intake?

Well, as I mentioned in another post on protein, you want to shoot for a protein intake of somewhere between .82/g/lb. of bodyweight and 1/g/lb. of body weight.

The formula looks like this:

  •   Low-End Intake: .82g x (your weight lbs.) = Total Protein Intake
  •   High-End Intake: 1g x (you weight lbs.) = Total Protein Intake

So if you weigh 180 lbs., here’s the math:

  •   Low-End Intake: .82g x 180lbs. = 147.6/g/lb.
  •   High-End Intake: 1g x 180 lbs. = 180/g/lb.

Simple, right?

So, do you have your “how much” question answered? Good. Let’s move onto protein timing.

Protein Timing Studies

Let’s take a look at the most common time of day men and women alike chug down protein shakes and are hurrying home to pop open their Tupperware containers of pre-cooked grilled chicken: Post workout.

In a study published by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, six healthy young men reported to a laboratory on five separate occasions to perform an intense leg workout. In a randomized order, each of the men was given different amounts of whole egg protein to drink post-workout (0g,5g,10g,20g,40g). After four hours, protein synthesis and whole-body leucine oxidation were measured to see how effective the amount of protein was for each.

The study concluded 20 grams of protein directly following the leg workouts was the most effective in maximally stimulating muscle response and protein synthesis [1].

So the answer is obvious, right?

You need to get a protein shake in post-workout at least …right?

Before you bring your 5-pound bag of Gold Standard Whey to the gym with you, check out the following study.

A research analysis (a large grouping of studies unlike the six guys in the study above), published in the Journal of International Society and Sports Nutrition, saw over 1,000 subjects tested for the effect of protein timing on both strength and hypertrophy in subjects. Throughout the study, these dudes were required to meet a specific protein requirement each day.

The results were unsurprising. Researchers concluded, “protein timing has little effect on muscle and strength building.”[2]

Looking at the entire scope of how protein works within the muscle building process, this study refutes the widespread belief that drinking a protein shake intra- and post-workout is essential to building muscle.

So, how do we reconcile the two studies?

Well, it’s important to understand these studies are not really contradictory.

Even though protein intake directly after a workout resulted in greater muscle response than those who didn’t have protein post-workout the first study failed to examine if the subjects were reaching a target protein intake at day’s end.

What you can conclude from the first study is it’s a good idea to eat some protein within a few hours after your workout. You’re probably doing anyway, whether you’re a bodybuilder, athlete, or simply hitting the gym to look good naked.

My Take on Protein Timing

As long as you hit your minimum protein intake for the day, you’ll see similar muscle building results regardless of protein timing.

Have a protein-containing meal within a few hours of your workout, or sip a shake as you walk out of the gym.

What matters most is the amount of protein and frequency, not timing.

Sure, protein timing may make a very minimal impact on your physique, but it won’t make much of a difference overall. Especially if you’re a busy guy who doesn’t have a lot of time to devote to protein timing strategies.

Again, the most important aspect of protein intake how much you’re getting. Until your protein intake, calories, training, and sleep are in line with your goals, it’s foolish for most guys to obsess over protein frequency.

With that said, it’s important for you, even as a busy guy, to have an idea of how you’ll reach your optimal protein intake for the day.  If you don’t have a plan of action, you’re more likely to miss your goal protein intake than if you have at least a basic plan in place.

So here are some “protein timing” examples for you.

But first, one more time, with feeling:
It doesn’t matter when you consume protein as long as you get enough.

Divide your optimal protein intake the number of meals you eat each day:

  •    2 meals, 1 snack (shake) > Bach Performance protein shake recipes (recipes here)
  •    3 meals, 1 snack (shake) > Bach Performance protein shake recipes (recipes here)
  •    5 small meals throughout the day

The Bottom Line:

Don’t let the protein timing question haunt you any longer. Set your number. Eat protein. Hit your number by any means necessary. Call it a day and grow. Done.


Looking for a workout to pack on lean muscle in as little as 40 minutes per workout? Grab your copy of the Minimalist Muscle Blitz, the ultimate muscle building program for busy men.



[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19056590

[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24299050

Exotic Meats For Building Muscle and Saving the Planet


Introduction from Eric:

Today, I have an extra special, meaty, guest post from my friend, best selling author, and coach Mike Campbell of Unleash Your Alpha.

For those of you who don’t follow Mike, I highly recommend you check out his book here, and blog here to become a legend, and your ultimate alpha.

Beyond being a beast in a the gym and an awesome coach, Mike has an affinity for the meat-sweats unrivaled in the world. So much so, that Mike ate 52 different meats in 52 weeks and wrote about every experience.

I consider myself a good cook and fan of tasty dead animal flesh, but I bow down to Mike’s meat munchin’ prowess.

With that in mind, Mike was kind enough to drop by and explain the benefits of expanding your pallet to get you strong, shredded, athletic, protect the environment, and maybe get you a bit cultured with a few awesome recipes to try. Over to you, Mike.


Mike Says: First Things First – Beyond The Standard Cuts 

Steak, chicken breasts, sausages, steak, ground beef-anything… BACON!

These are a few ‘standard’ meats, cuts of meats and ways of cooking these meats that have cemented their way into the public cooking psyche.

Ease, taste, availability and ease have become the predominant options when it comes to getting protein into our meathead muscles these days. (chicken anyone?)

But…. is there more?

Are there other options that we may be missing?

Options that will not only add or preserve our precious muscle, but help performance, improve and aid our health, save us money, help the planet (bear with me) AND still taste AMAZING?!

Why yes, yes there is.

I’ve witnessed many disillusioned meatheads stuffing down plain chicken breasts far too many times.

You Can Do Better!
You Can Do Better!


Today, I’d like to introduce you to 3 options that will deliver on the promises made above: improve health and performance, help your bottom line, taste fantastic AND – get this – help the planet.

And with this, pay respect to more of those animals that have essentially given their lives so you can eventually greedily chew, swallow, burp and fart your way through the fussy-minded selection of their best bits.

Now, before you reel in anticipated disgust of eating your fill of little known body parts, let me state now:

 I am going to provide you with 3 (kind of 4 actually) recipes that you will LOVE, that also happen do all of the above.

There are a few parts of most animals we kill for food that we largely ignore these days. There are also animals that are largely getting ignored in the first place as well, all of which jam packed full of ready to be utilized nutrition and tasty goodness.
Namely; offal, bones, ‘cheaper’ cuts and wild meat.

Let’s look into these foods in more depth: what, when, why…

• Offal: why not start strong, hey?! Offal is one of those things that usually has people gag, or close to it, even at the suggestion.

So first off I would challenge this – have you even tried it? We’re not talking getting into the super ‘unique’ like tripe, pigs uterus or asshole, but a few simple standards – liver, kidneys & hearts – just to wet our appetites.

Exotic Meats For Building Muscle and Saving the Planet Differing in taste, but with flavor for days, done correctly these meats are loaded with beneficial nutrients that will help any diet (in fact I consider them to be part of the real super foods). Diced calf’s liver fried with garlic, mushrooms and wilted spinach. Lamb’s kidney done with bacon and onions.

Chicken hearts fried with ginger and soy sauce… these are a few simple recipe, but below I’ll provide an even more sneaky one.

Just think of all those animals you gladly eat selected meat from, and now think how many less you’d need if you also took these organs from them to fill up your diet…

• ‘Cheaper’ cuts: I used inverted commas here because they’ve only become cheaper cuts due to how we’ve slowly selected the more tender and quicker to cook meats. When we look at the cattle beast, a large amount of the animal can turn into sausages and ground beef, but a lot of this is in lesser know and used cuts such as blade, chuck and skirt steaks.

The kinds that if you threw them in a hot pan to fry, would soon turn to some akin to rubber.

Exotic Meats For Building Muscle and Saving the Planet
Which is why we utilize the ease of slow cooking (and slow cookers themselves – even easier) and turn these incredibly affordable AND flavor packed meats into dishes to die for. Slow cooking will release flavors and nutrients sometimes hard to come by through rapid cooking methods, all the while saving you money and better utilizing more of the animal.

Wild meat: This might seem a bit of an odd one, but bear with me here… for those that have enjoyed the delights of wild meat before, you don’t need to be sold on its immense flavor, so for those who haven’t – trust me – wild meat is some of the tastiest (and coincidently healthiest) meat one can eat.

{Eric’s Note: I concur, wild meat is awesome. }

The reason I’ve included it in this list to cover all of the bases above is because every day around the industrial world we are culling countless animals in order to ensure wild numbers don’t get ‘out of hand’.

This I can understand, having wild animals over running farms and towns could be somewhat of a problem. However, what I can’t get my head around is the waste-less culling.

Sure, if the animals are being butchered and eaten/used then awesome – bring it on! But sadly a vast majority aren’t, because they’re often in more remote areas, they’re simply left to rot and decompose.

To me, this is a travesty – perfectly healthy animals being killed and left, therefore, being totally disrespected. The least we could do for this animal is treat its life with some respect and actually utilize its body, not just leave it where it falls.

I’ll be honest, I haven’t quite worked out the solution here, but with millions of animals dying in this way and millions more hungry mouths to feed, I MEAN SOMEONE DO THE MATH ALREADY!

Plus did I mention the taste?! We’re going to use goat as a recipe, as these can be quite a common wild meat.

• Bones: This is at this stage a big of an afterthought, seeing as we were kind of talking about meat, but these will not only come in handy with some recipes above, but also if you think back 3 seconds to my big point around respecting animals that are killed to satisfy our hunger… not using their bones is to also disrespect them.

There is so much amazing nutrition in the bones of animals just waiting for us to benefit from, plus they’re also ‘as cheap as chips’, saving you at the bottom line.

What we’re mostly talking about here is making bone broths that not only contain loads of micronutrients, but also gelatin which actually acts as a protein sparer – essentially meaning that the protein you consume with them will be better utilized.

In effect meaning that you not only have to buy and consume less meat, but hey presto we again reduce the demand for meat with simply consuming more bone broths (and therefore gelatin) with our meals.

Right now there are millions of animals being killed each year with per capita meat consumption averaging around 42kg (92lbs).

Yes we could encourage some people to eat a little less and the immense effects on the environment would drop, however, if we educate people to start utilizing more of the animals that are already being killed, we could actually see a drop in the amount of overall animals having to be bred and killed for our consumption.

I know, I basically just solved global warming and global hunger. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves just yet.

Seriously though, if we can just get over our fussy need to only select the best parts of our favorite animals, we could actually make a dint in the global trashing of the planet and help feed a few more hungry mouths. Plus help your own pocket AND your health.

I mean, where is there a flaw in that?!

What it takes now is some motivation to do so, right? I know that. So here’s 3 recipes (actually 4, you’ll see) that will do all of the above, plus have you lining up for more.

Recipe One: Liver & beef meatballs on steamed broccoli with homemade tomato sauce

Exotic Meats For Building Muscle and Saving the Planet
You’ll need:
Meatballs :
• 3.5ounces/100g of veal liver
• 1.3lbs/500g ground beef
• 2 tablespoons tomato paste (use half and keep other for sauce)
• 2 cloves of garlic, crushed (use half and keep other for sauce)
• 1/2 teaspoon dried basil (use half and keep other for sauce)
• 1/4 teaspoon cumin
• 1 tablespoon grated parmesan
• 1 egg
• 1/2 cup of nut meal (make your own by putting almonds into the food processor, or buy from LSA meal) – you may need more here, so have 1 cup ready
• 2 tomatoes
• 1 small onion, peeled and diced
• 1/2 cup of red wine
• 1 head of broccoli, washed and chopped
You’ll do:
1) Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C

2) Cut 100g liver in small chunks and process in a food processor.

3) Add liver to a bowl and add ground beef (grass-fed etc). To this add the rest of the meatball ingredients and rock salt and pepper.

4) Next comes mixing it all together and rolling into small balls and place on a large oven tray and into the oven for 20-25 minutes.

5) To make a quick tomato sauce, add the tomatoes, onion, garlic, basil, tomato paste and red wine to the food processor. Once mixed, add to a saucepan and heat. You want to reduce this down to a thick sauce, so keep an eye on it over a low heat.

6) Once the meatballs and sauce are almost ready, boil some water in a saucepan over high heat and add the broccoli to a steamer to cook for 4-5 minutes.

7) Once done, put some broccoli into a bowl, top with meatballs and then sauce
This would make enough meatballs for 3-4 people. You may want to add more broccoli and sauce, or have left over meatballs.

Recipe Two: Man soup (with homemade bone broth)

Exotic Meats For Building Muscle and Saving the Planet
You’ll need:
1) Diced meat – such as blade, skirt or chuck steak – dusted in coconut flour
2) Beef or chicken stock (if you’ve made yourself, the volume will vary. If you have a lot, don’t worry, you’ll leave this to boil and reduce down for longer – you can also have done this beforehand) Check out an easy slow cooker recipe for your own bone broth here.
• Roughly 3.3floz/100ml red wine
• 1 stick of Celery, chopped
• 1 leak, chopped
• 3 tablespoons Tomato paste
• 1 medium sweet potato, chopped into 1-2cm cubes
• 1/2 teaspoon Turmeric
• 1/8 teaspoon Nutmeg
• 1/2 teaspoon Cumin
• Coconut oil
• Salt and pepper

You’ll do:

1) Heat a pan, add coconut oil and brown the meat for 2-3 minutes, stirring throughout. Once it’s ready, remove from heat and replace with celery, leak and shallots.Brown off for a few minutes then pour the red wine in to deglaze the pan and get all the flavour off. Gently pour this into a large pot with the meat.

2) At this point add your broth (or if the stock is in the pot already because you’ve followed the recipe at the link above and have reduced the point of reducing it down – add the meat to the pot)

3) Bring to the boil and then add the sweet potato, celery, tomato paste, spices and seasoning
4) Stir gently until mixed, return to the boil and lower to a simmer

5) Leave this for 45-60 minutes, stirring every now and then, If you have a very large amount of liquid, leave it uncovered to allow it to reduce down. If you have the right amount, cover gently with a pot lid

6) Once it’s ready it should have thickened up somewhat, the meat should be tender and the sweet potato soft. Add more tomato paste if desired and season to taste.
Note) You might want to serve this with a piece of quality bread, toasted and covered in butter
This should serve 4 people

Recipe Three: Wild goat curry

You’ll need:
• 2.2lbs/1kg of wild goat meat (shoulder would be ideal, but let’s not be fussy), diced

Meat marinade:

• 2 tsp garlic (minced)
• 3 tsp ginger (minced)
• 2 – 3 fresh green chillies (minced)
• 1/2 tsp chili powder
• 1 1/2 tsp turmeric
• 3 tsp coriander powder
• 2 tsp cumin powder
• 1 tsp garam masala
• 2 tsp salt

For the curry:
• 12 cloves
• 4 star anise
• 2 cinnamon stick
• 12 cardonom pods
• 45 curry leaves (roughly)
• 1 onion (diced)
• 2 cans of crushed tomatoes
• 4 tablespoons of tomato paste
• 1 tablespoon coconut oil
• 2 cups of stock/bone broth

• 2 cups of quinoa
• 1 cup of bone broth/stock
• Small handful of dried cranberries
• Handful of almonds
• Juice and rind from one lemon
• I bunch of fresh coriander, chopped

You’ll do:
1) The night before add all of the marinade ingredients to a bowl with the meat and nix about. Put in the fridge overnight, then remove from fridge 30-60 minutes before cooking.

2) Then when you’re ready to go, in a large pot add the oil. Once hot, add the spices let cook for a minute before adding the onion and leaving to cook for about 5 minutes.

3) Then add the, now close to 24 hour, marinated goat meat. Stir and cook all this meat for 10 minutes.

4) Then, add the 2 cups of stock, crushed tomatoes and tomato paste, mix and stir and put the lid on.

5) Allow to cook at a slow rolling boil, checking every now and then, for 1 and a half hours.

6) Once close to done, make the quinoa to accompany the curry, by adding the quinoa to a saucepan, add 1 cup of stock and 3 cups of water, bring to the boil then simmer, adding the cranberries, almonds, lemon juice and rind. Once cooked, remove from the heat.

7) When the curry is ready, add the coriander just before serving, with some salt and pepper.
This should easily serve 6 people (making a lot of this makes sense as you need all the spice ingredients anyway)

And that is how you push out of the ordinary and make meals that have added flavor, nutrition and ethical punch.

Muscles gained, money saved and the world basically saved.

You. Are. Welcome.


Exotic Meats For Building Muscle and Saving the Planet

From The Author, Mike Campbell: Unleash your Alpha to Eat like a man, train like a beast, operate like a gentleman & become a legend. A place for men to get motivated & informed, share & become the best man you can be here. Join the Community on Facebook for Daily Updates and Upcoming Events.

The Best Cardio for Skinny guys

What you Need to Know:

  • Neglecting conditioning might help you you grow a smidge bigger, but at the cost of poor athleticism, and gaining enough marbeling around your abs to make a T-Bone steak cringe.
  • Sprinting before lifting is ideal for improving performance in athletes and potentiating the nervous system for heavy lifts and explosive training.
  • Complexes use major movement patterns in succession to challenge the cardiovascular system and muscles under fatigue in ten short minutes.
  • Jumping rope is a low impact exercise to preserve muscle mass while improving footwork and conditioning.
  • Sleds provide additional training volume without undue eccentric stress, preserving your recoverability.

All you need to do is eat, hoist huge weights, and eat some more and you’ll build muscle and become a jacked and diesel beast, right?


As simple as it sounds escaping from hardgainer hell isn’t easy, especially if you want a body that’s athletic and shredded at the end.

Steady state cardio, endless exercises classes, and skipping cardio altogether aren’t options—they’ll just lead to skinnier with less muscle, and in the case of skipping cardio altogether, skinny fat and un-athletic and getting crossed over by 50 year old men at the local YMCA.

cardio for skinny guys

Contrary to popular media, your muscles won’t rot off at the mere sight of a treadmill. Your strength won’t erode and leave you crumbling under a barbell. Don’t be like most scraggly hardgainers who avoid conditioning like it’s an Ebola-laced napkin.

Conditioning is still vital to optimize athleticism, workout efficiency, and overall health.

In my latest article on T-Nation I cover the Best Cardio for Skinny guys to improve your conditioning, athleticism, and preserve your precious muscle.

 Continue Reading Here

P.S. Are you a Skinny Guy Looking to Gain Muscle? Here are Five Ways to for Skinny Guys to add Muscle

P.P.S. And here’s exactly How to Eat to Build Muscle: Escape From Hardgainer Hell Nutrition Guide



Go to Top