07 July 2011

You're Focused On All The Wrong Sort Of Details- Post- and Peri-Workout Nutrition

With the release of the DSM-5, which pretty much states that everyone on Earth is highly dysfunctional and in dire need of a variety of pharmaceutical aids to be "normal", it's hardly surprising that everyone who ever enters a gym expects there to be some sort of panacea to aid their training.  As such, the fact that I'll see 135 lb weaklings dicking around on machines for an hour a day and then scampering over to the water fountain mid-workout to fill their bottles with water to mix with some retarded concoction shouldn't really come as a surprise.  Unfortunately for me, however, it does, as I appear to have some hidden reservoir of faith in my fellow man backed by nothing but hate for idiocy and baseless hope.
Likely confused because she's not on the list, herself.

Digging a bit deeper, though, marketing plays a large part in the issue, as does the fact that taking supplements is a time-honored American tradition.  Especially in the information age, marketing is pretty much ubiquitous, and chases people from hill to dale on the tv, internet, radio, phones, snail mail, and random advertisements plastered on billboards on on peoples' tshirts.  It's unsurprising that at some point peoples' bullshit filters are eventually overloaded, and they cave to even the most ridiculous of ad pitches.  That, combined with what appears to be a uniquely American reliance on self-treatment, makes for a dangerous environment when one embarks on a workout routine, especially when everyone around us is fat, lazy, and mentally defective.
Well, it's highly unlikely this broad is preparing to deliver her dissertation on population genetics, but I'm hoping she knows the moon is larger than an elephant.

In the past, I've blogged about what I consider to be useful supplements, although a lot of you seem to have missed those blogs and emailed me questions about the same 5 supplements.  If you're interested, it's scattered throughout the blog, but the main treatments are here, here, and here.  As it stands, the only supplements I consider essential are a low carb protein powder and a multivitamin.  Just below that are test boosters/estrogen blockers (like tribulus), omega 3's, and ECA supplements.  Beyond that, in my opinion people might as well just set fire to their fucking money.  That doesn't stop the average assbag you see in any gym, though.

As I mentioned, it's not entirely their fault.  Americans in particular have been obsessed with vitamins the first appeared in the popular press in 1910, and their interest has only increased over time, in spite of the government's best efforts to stifle them.  I suppose the press was in large part to blame for this interest, but Americans have been concerned with what they perceived as a steady decline in the quality of their food since the early 1930s, and have sought ways to mitigate that decline as a result.(Vitamania 7)  Concurrent with that phenomenon has been the marked decline in faith in the medical profession, which is only exacerbated by the fact that doctors don't know their asses from a hole in the wall when it comes to training and nutrition.  Doctors will invariably spout archaic soundbites about the dangers of excessive protein consumption and the evils of heavy weightlifting, in spite of reams of studies contradicting their decades-old "common knowledge".  Their ignorance of these subjects parallels the government's famous ignorance of the same, which has manifested itself in the progressively more idiotic and hilarious dietary recommendations and the its periodic crackdowns on dietary supplement sales.  Think the latest round of prohormone seizures was a new thing?  Hardly- the government's been in the pockets of the pharmaceutical industry and pharmacy lobbyists for over a century, and have tried multiple times to ban the sale of non-prescription dietary supplements.(Vitamania 55, 131  Throw on top of that nonsense the post-modernist hatred and distrust of the establishment and you've got a recipe for self-medication the likes of which the world hasn't seen since illiterate savages roamed the prairie in search of megafauna to stab to death.
Of note is the fact that self-medication and lay surgery was apparently prevalent in the Ice Age.  There is evidence that Neanderthals utilized ephedra for energy (Rudgely 194), Otzi the Iceman's body showed evidence of acupuncture, and trepanning (brain surgery performed to relieve swelling of the brain) was bizarrely common in the Ice Age. (Acupuncture Today, Restak 165)
In our haste to throw a hearty "fuck you" at the medical establishment and the government, however, we've become so enslaved to scientific studies that we've started ignoring anecdotal evidence altogether.  As soon as a study shows a correlation between a substance and a net positive gain for the human body, it becomes a necessity, which is ridiculous.  The first instance of this appears to have been the result of a study on cod liver oil in the 1930s, wherein it was shown that there was a significant statistical difference in the frequency and duration of illness between those who supplemented with cod liver oil and those who didn't.  Subsequent studies on the substance showed that it had a positive effect on a variety of other systems, and supplement companies were off to the races.  Soon, print ads were run stating  that "No mother would willingly deny her baby the chance to develop a well-knit frame or a fine set of teeth... yet many mothers make this mistake without knowing it", insinuating that mothers who failed to feed their children that noxious substance were consigning their children to a freakish appearance fit only for carnival sideshows or a Roman emperor's court.
Phocomelia- not just the byproduct of thalidomide consumption!

The same shit goes on today on a wide variety of websites, wherein they insinuate that a workout is wasted if it's not followed by the "proper post workout nutrition" within 45 minutes.  This is of course patently untrue, but arises out of old studies that show that post workout nutrition aids muscular growth and recovery.  Luckily for us, newer studies show that the window is actually 24 hours, which seems to fall in line with the evidence presented by pictures of old-time strongmen, stone masons, iron workers, and virtually every muscular person on Earth who's not wandering around Gold's Gym with a fucking shaker bottle in hand.  (Tipton)
Tom Jenkins- turn-of-the-century ironworker, wrestler, and all around bad motherfucker, who was in no way concerned with his post-workout nutrition beyond getting as much beer and steak in his stomach as would fit.

The same goes for peri-workout nutrition.  Do studies show it's helpful?  Yup.  Do they show that it's absofuckinglutely necessary, as T-Muscle would have you believe with their ridiculous Anaconda protocol?  Fuck no.  If it were, anyone who'd lifted in an era prior to their invention of a need for a protein shake mid-workout would suck, and people with $400 a month to blow on bullshit supplements would lead the world in strength sports.  In case you hadn't noticed...  they don't.
Peri-workout nutrition does not a 400 lb two hands anyhow make.

In short, don't let yourself get focused on the wrong shit- there's no panacea for getting fucking strong, ripped, or jacked.  What there is is breaking your ass in the gym lifting heavy weights, eating as much protein as you possibly can, as often as you can, and getting a shitload of sleep.  It worked for Hackenshmidt, Goerner, Saxon, and a shitload of other guys before Wieder convinced everyone that they had to take three days off a week and before the government ordained that you should eat as much bread as humanly possible. We've only sucked since we stopped paying attention to what's in front of us and started listing to a variety of bullshit sitting atop a mound of shaky scientific evidence.

Do your research, question EVERYTHING, eat some meat, and lift.

"Ice Age Acupuncture?  Study of Mummified Body Raises Questions about Practice's Origin."  Acupuncture Today: June 2000 (01) 06.  http://www.acupuncturetoday.com/mpacms/at/article.php?id=27608
Apple, Rima D. Vitamania: Vitamins in American Culture.  1996.
Restak, Richard.  Mysteries of the Mind. 2000.
Rudgely, Richard.  Secrets of the Stone Age.  2000.
Tipton KD, Borsheim E, Wolf SE, Sanford AP, Wolfe RR. Acute response of net muscle protein balance reflects 24-h balance after exercise and amino acid ingestion. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2003 Jan;284(1):E76-89.


  1. Fuckin A Right!... & 1st! Ha ha

  2. I went to a meat buffet last night and I feel great. Thanks for making me feel even better for having gone last night,. Great article as par, thanks for the article, Jamie.

  3. "Do your research, question EVERYTHING, eat some meat, and lift."

    That's the money maker right there.

    Keep the good work.

  4. I've been experimenting with intermittent fasting lately and have been waiting about 2-3 hours after training to start my feeding window. Astonishingly my muscles haven't withered away from not utilising a whey/dextrose/creatine shake IMMEDIATELY after i set down the weights! Unbelievable i know.

  5. Jamie, tribulus has gotten a bad rap (in terms of lack of effectiveness) so I'm gonna start with your "question everything" call to action by asking for some tribulus evidence. If you've already posted that somewhere on the site, I apologize. Please don't eat my family.

  6. If only I could get everyone I know to read this article.

    Great stuff.

  7. Jamie, there has been buzz lately about John Broz, which methods remind me of your training style. Here are a few links a picked of a forum:

    Max Out on Squats Every Day, by Bret Contreras – 6/28/2011

    John Broz: A Response, by Jim Wendler - 07/06/2011

    Observations from Squatting Daily

  8. Relevant:


  9. woot woot reppn the ironworkers!

    local 725

    our day job is our gpp.

  10. I don't think that anyone will hold it against her if she doesn't know if the moon is bigger than an elephant though.

    I won't.

  11. Is that actually for real? I thought it was photoshopped! That is retardation on a whole new level haha and I thought my faith in mankind was already non-existent.

  12. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W8NlGayXO5g

    It's photoshopped, thank God.

  13. Who is the foxy blonde chick?

  14. Every day, I read one of your articles, then eat some meat and vegetables.