Today's workout was awesome and another “no mercy” type workout. Lately I've been thinking through pre and post workout nutrition. This leads me to today's article regarding hormonal influence on muscle building.
There are several hormones that have an effect on muscle building–either positive or negative. Today we will discuss insulin, glucagon, IGF-1, cortisol, testosterone and growth hormone. Each of these has some effect on muscle growth (or depletion).
Insulin's role is to reduce blood sugar levels. Insulin works both sides of the scale. At times, insulin promotes the growth of muscle and at other times it promotes the storage of fat.
When you eat carbs they are broken down into glucose. This release of glucose causes your blood sugar levels to rise. Insulin then comes into play, reducing your blood sugar levels back to normal. This is done as insulin shuttles glucose to the muscles and the liver for storage. However, once those storage areas are full, glucose is converted to fat and stored in your body in that way.
There are 3 times during a given day that muscle and liver storage are depleted: (1) upon waking up in the morning; (2) during your workout; and (3) after your workout. These workouts can be cardio or weight workouts. At these times your body takes full advantage of the anabolic advantages of alot of food in your system.
Glucagon has the opposite role of insulin. It raises blood sugar levels when they are low. If blood sugar levels are low, glucagon mobilizes stored glycogen from the liver and releases glucose for energy. If blood sugar is extremely low, it breaks down muscle tissue for energy.
IGF-1 causes increased protein synthesis. It is only released from the liver at times when insulin and growth hormone levels are high. Thus, when you have a particularly tough workout, growth hormone levels are elevated. This is the ideal time to have a meal with protein and high carbs to promote an insulin release. This will cause the relase of IGF-1.
This is the opposite of testosterone. Testosterone increases muscle growth and cortisol decreases muscle growth. Cortisol is catabolic. Cortisol needs to be limited. You do this by reducing stress, making sure to take a multi-vitamin, and getting enough rest.
Its primary job is muscle growth. This happens because testosterone directly stimulates protein synthesis. By increasing your level of EFAs, you will also increase testosterone levels. Some people believe that including EFAs in your post-workout shake will boost testosterone production.
Growth Hormone (GH)
GH promotes muscle growth and fat loss. High GH levels will avoid muscle loss. You can increase GH levels by training using powerful lifts (squats, deadlifts, power cleans), taking naps, reduce your intake of fructose, eating 5 to 7 times a day, wearing warm clothing, getting a good night's sleep, eating low glycemic carbs.
Paying attention to the hormons in your body and how they effect muscle growth is a subject that will enable you to get the most out of your workouts.
|Week Begins 2/17/2008|
|M1 *||5:30 a.m.||3:30 a.m.||3:30 a.m.||3:30 a.m.||3:30 a.m.||3:30 a.m.||5:30 a.m.|
|M2 *||8:30 a.m.||6:30 a.m.||6:30 a.m.||6:30 a.m.||6:30 a.m.||6:30 a.m.||8:30 a.m.|
|M3 *||11:30 a.m.||9:30 a.m.||9:30 a.m.||9:30 a.m.||9:30 a.m.||9:30 a.m.||11:30 a.m.|
|M4 *||2:30 p.m.||12:30 p.m.||12:30 p.m.||12:30 p.m.||12:30 p.m.||12:30 p.m.||2:30 p.m.|
|M5 *||5:30 p.m.||3:30 p.m.||3:30 p.m.||3:30 p.m.||3:30 p.m.||3:30 p.m.||5:30 p.m.|
|M6 *||7:30 p.m.||6:30 p.m.||6:30 p.m.||6:30 p.m.||6:30 p.m.||6:30 p.m.||7:30 p.m.|
|Water *||194 oz||220 oz||200 oz||240 oz||216 oz||194 oz|
|Post-workout nutrition *||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Pre-sleep nutrition *||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Cals within 5% (+/-) *||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Mission 2 Total Complete||222||237||252||267||282||297|
|Mission 2 Total Possible||225||240||255||270||285||300|
|* = Counts towards total|
|Mission 2: Day 20 of 100|
|Meal/Training Plan: Real-time accountability|
|Day 20: February 22, 2008|
|3:30 a.m.||Meal 1: Protein shake with banana and Udos and oatmeal and 3 glasses of water|
|3:30 a.m.||Supplements: Animal Pak, Glucosamine Chondroiten, calcium, chromium, glutamine, BCAAs|
|4:00 a.m.||Workout: Lifting|
|5:00 a.m.||Supplements: Protein shake, BCAAs, glutamine|
|6:30 a.m.||Meal 2: Chicken breast, oatmeal, large salad and 3 glasses of water|
|9:30 a.m.||Meal 3: Chicken breast, large salad, oatmeal and 3 glasses of water|
|12:30 p.m.||Meal 4: Chicken breast, cucumber and large salad and 3 glasses of water|
|3:30 p.m.||Meal 5: Chicken breast, baby carrots and large salad and 3 glasses of water|
|6:30 p.m.||Meal 6: Chicken breast, brocolli, large salad and 3 glasses of water|
|8:30 p.m.||Supplements: Casein protein shake, glutamine, calcium and 3 glasses of water|
|Exercise||Set 1||Set 2||Set 3||Set 4||Set 5|
|Heels-raised back squat, 1-1/4||260 x 8||260 x 8||260 x 8||260 x 8||260 x 8|
|Bulgarian split deadlift||135 x 8||135 x 8||135 x 8||135 x 8||135 x 8|
|Split good morning||100 x 8||100 x 8||100 x 8||100 x 8||100 x 8|
Until tomorrow…GET BACK TO LIFTING!