Sunday, September 1, 2013

What's in MY gym bag?

"What's in my gym bag?" post inspired by my buddy from IG @workout2eat 
1 ) Foam roller from DICKS Sporting Goods for self myofascial release/deep tissue massage to make muscles more elastic for greater mobility preworkout and for recovery post workout. 
2 ) Inzer Forever Lever 10mm Powerbelt from for stability and safety during lifts. (I care about longevity)
3 ) Harbinger gloves from 24hr fitness to reduce calluses.(gf doesn't like me holding hands with her with calluses)
4 ) Nike Romaleos from for solid stability, an increased comfortable and more natural depth and increased emphasis on quads. 
5 ) Precision Engineered portable funnel from Vitamin World to bring my preworkout with me.
6 ) 7th gen iPod from target and Kinivo bth240 wireless headphones from for music. 
7 ) Precision Engineered blender bottle from vitamin world for postworkout shake. 
8 ) Chalk for a strong and tight grip instead of using straps for a more natural feel and no readjustment needed if weights wiggle around, also easier to just grab the bar since no set up is needed. 
9 ) Harbringer dipping belt from to help me easily add more resistance on weighted dips and weighted pull ups. 
These are currently what I use for gym. I'll be ordering knee sleeves, a lacrosse ball and wrist wraps in the future. I have no problem with investing in myself if it helps me be safe, more mobile and perform better. #investinyourself


If you guys aren't following me on Instagram(@neilvegetadang), here are some updates of the things going on in my life.

Yes, I'm competing in my very first powerlifitng meet on September 14th, 2013 at Metroflex in Long Beach. I wasn't planning to at first, but my brother got me into it and one of my bestfriends Cal La(Chris) is doing it so I'm doing it. I'll be doing the 165lbs weight division in the 20-23 age group. I know I won't set any records, but I'm doing this to hit my own PR's and to beat my buddy Cal. ;)

Stocked up on LoA(Legends of Aesthetics) Stringers. I won't be wearing them till I'm shredded again though. Thanks Matt Ogus( and Chris Lavado( for these awesome stringers!

Oh, and got a new car. :) 2013 Scion FR-S.

^Poverty macros at it's finest. Thanks for viewing!

-Neil V. Dang

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Bulk is OVER! Let the shred begin!!

Friday, July 19, 2013

First off I'd like to's great to be back in California!! I was in Houston, Texas for vacation for the past 2 weeks and it just made me realize that I love living in SoCal!!

So my bulk has finally come to an end...I've stuck with Flexible Dieting/IIFYM(If It Fits Your Macros) throughout this entire bulk. In fact, It's been one year since I've done Flexible Dieting now! It worked on my shredding phase from last year and worked during my bulk. At the end of my cutting phase from last year I stood at 133lbs on September 27th, 2012. In my 42 weeks of bulking I have gained exactly 40lbs. This morning I weighed myself on an empty stomach and post-poop. Today I stand at 5'5", 173lbs.

My caloric intake during my final days of bulking were up to ~3450 calories with macros being at 95f/420c/225p. It might not be much to some folks out there, but for me I was getting sick of eating..

^You can see that I got pretty fluffy. Story for how I got fluffy towards the end of bulk is that from July 2nd - July 16th, I was in Texas for vacation with my girlfriend and I just started eating everything in sight because I had a hard time tracking everything since her family from Texas kept taking us out to eat and making home-cooked meals that I couldn't trace nor turn down because it's rude to turn down your girlfriends mother's

My reviews from my bulk - I felt I did pretty well staying at a consistent caloric surplus. Weight slowly/gradually progressed by about 0.5 pounds to 1 pound per week which is a great sign and was what I intended. Strength also dramatically jumped up for all my lifts as well. Joined the 300 club for squats, 400 club for deadlifts, and 100 club for incline and flat dumbbell presses for chest. I felt that the parts that made the most muscle growth were my back, chest, and hamstrings. Overall, I'm happy with my results in terms of strength and body composition.

My goal now is to lose 1-1.5lbs per week and maintain as much muscle mass as I can while shredding down. I will not make the mistake of pushing to failure during my training sessions again as I've learned from my previous cutting phase that it'll cause me to lose much strength in the long run and may cause me to lose some muscle mass. Basically when I'm at a caloric deficit, my body isn't getting in as much nutrition to recover as well as it would during a surplus. So when I push to failure on my training sessions during my deficit I won't be getting optimal recovery. *This is what I've learned about how MY body works. Not everyone is the same.

My new macros now for my deficit are 60g fat/350g carbohydrates/210g protein. I'll be sticking to these macros 6 days a week and have my refeed days once a week on Fridays. My refeed macros will be 60f/440c/210p. Setting my refeed carbs to ~25% of my deficit carbs. If these macros no longer work or don't work the way I want them to, then I'll just adjust them accordingly. Simple as that. :)

Supplements I'll be taking daily during this cutting phase:
1) Whey Protein Isolate - muscle maintenance and recovery
2) Creatine Monohydrate - strength and muscle support
3) BCAA's - muscle maintenance and recovery
4) Multi-Vitamin - heart health, organ health, immune system
5) Fish-Oil - heart, brain & joint health
6) Glucosamine - joint health
7) ZMA - recovery and healthy testosterone levels

^For those that are new to my blog, this was my journey from 163lbs-133lbs. I was able to lean out before, and now I'll do it again. Motivated and hungry for gains. 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


This isn't a post to be taken lightly. Serious topic. I have too many good friends and I know friends of friends that unfortunately deal with this. I'm also aware that there are "coaches" and personal "trainers" that take shortcuts to get their clients to get lean as fast as possible while neglecting their health and aren't even aware of what Metabolic Damage is, just to make a quick buck off their clients. So let's move on..

What is it?
It's exactly what it sounds like. Your metabolism has been damaged.

How do I know whether I have it or not?
If you're at a caloric deficit(eating less than what your body needs to maintain weight in order to lose weight) for a long period of time and your fat/weight progress slows down or if you're no longer getting leaner while at a deficit, you may have it.

What causes metabolic damage?
Metabolic damage can be caused by being at a deficit for too long without re-feeding or by being at a deficit & doing a massive amount of cardio(1-2 hours/500-1000 calorie sessions) a day for a long period of time. *Some individuals may have even been at a blind deficit and not know it(hence the word blind).

Example of someone who has metabolic damage:
Let's say an individual(we'll call him Bob) has a maintenance caloric intake(the amount of calories needed to maintain a certain weight) of 1800 calories a day.

Now, Bob wants to lose weight desperately so he puts himself at 1200 calories which is a 600 calorie deficit. So now Bob is consuming 1200 calories a day. (THIS alone is ENOUGH to lose weight. In fact, he shouldn't even be going more than 150-200 calories of a deficit for health reasons.) Bob is consuming 1200 calories a day and burning 500 calories per cardio session). Now because Bob is burning 500 calories, his body thinks it's at 700 calories a day for this weight loss to work. This is a total caloric deficit of 1,100 from his MAINTENANCE. Overtime the 700 calories will no longer suffice and he would have to consume either less calories or do MORE cardio(which will take quite a toll on your joints. Too much of anything can be bad for you) to get even leaner. This is probably the most common thing to happen to an individual to cause metabolic damage.

Overtime something known as Metabolic Adaptation occurs. This basically means that your body has adapted to a certain calorie intake so that it can survive on simply just that. 

Why is metabolic damage so bad?
Eventually, Bob will hit a wall and he will no longer be able to get any leaner. Or maybe he gets where he wants but what happens the moment he binges? All that weight will come back INCREDIBLY fast. Because his body was so used to eating so little and burning so much, that a binge day would be an absolute caloric surplus for Bob.

How do I fix metabolic damage?
You can start by bumping up calories VERY slowly. Layne Norton, PhD in Nutritional science, suggests that you should experiment by starting with as little as 5g of carbs per week while backing off training. If that alone is causing you to get fat already, take it even slower like 1-3g of carbs a week. This will take TIME to recover from. And the amount of calories an individual can bring up varies from one person to another. Take this process as slow as possible. The longer an individual has been suffering from metabolic damage, the longer it'll take them to crawl out of it.  When backing off training, cut down your intensity and days of training to half the amount so that your body can make use of the nutrients towards an optimal recovery. Slowly start to up your water intake as well and take in at least 15-20g of fiber a day to help your body digest and better absorb nutrients.

FORGET cutting anymore calories or doing more cardio. Focus on repairing and fixing your health and metabolism. Think about the bigger picture. Your dream physique CAN wait. Fitness is a lifestyle so there is NO rush. No one is sticking a dynamite down your throat forcing you to look good for them. Prioritize and invest in your health/well-being.

How do I PREVENT metabolic damage?
When you're trying to get leaner or going on a cut, take it SLOWLY. A deficit of 75-150 calories from maintenance ALONE is enough to make you lose weight. In fact, a deficit in general is enough. You do NOT need to do endless bouts of cardio. And if you crave cardio, try going no further than 15-20 minutes of cardio. But if you're weight training I suggest sticking to HIIT(High Intensity Interval Training) as your source of cardio but limit even that. Another thing to mention. When hitting your macros go no more than 5g above or below your macro needs as this will help to keep you towards your goals and prevent any massive unwanted changes in physique composition.

If you are being coached or trained by someone who is setting you at a blind caloric deficit for a long period of time and making you do a massive amount of cardio or work. Question them. Ask them if they are aware of what metabolic damage is. Try to track(refer to my "What is IIFYM" post) your calories and macronutrients for a week straight to figure out what you've been consuming. There are often too many times where a "coach" or a "trainer" will have you eating way too little and doing way too much because they don't care about your health. They just want you to get as lean as you can as fast as you can so they can get their money. This is almost a certain way to damage your metabolism.

If you guys need information on how to lose weight/fat, here's another post I made to help.

So that's pretty much it guys. Information provided is my own personal knowledge and understanding of it. You can go beyond and get different perspectives and approaches by simply researching.  Hope this helps. Thanks for reading. Remember, fitness is a lifestyle. Prioritize and invest in your health and well-being as well as you can.

-Neil Vegeta Dang

Push Day

Those who have followed me have known how I looked at my fattest and have seen me lean out while eating oreos, ice cream, chipotle and Carl's Jr. "Oh but that's because you have a high metabolism." No. If I did, I wouldn't have gotten fat in the first place. You want living proof of IIFYM? I'm right here. You CAN get leaner without sacrificing the foods you love. However I still recommend getting at least 70-80% of your macros from HEALTHY food. For obvious HEALTH reasons. Meal timing? Unnecessary. 5-6 meals a day? Unnecessary. Sacrificing yumz for the physique you want? Not the only approach in the world. F**k the broscience. 

Also got to watch Iron Man 3 over the weekend. $4 for a ticket at 4 Star Cinema and we got to watch it 3 hours before anyone else. :D

Friday, April 12, 2013

Quickie Update

Quick Update:
4/11/13. 156lbs. +23lbs since September and somewhat maintaining abs. Bulking with IIFYM/Flexible Dieting. Eating whatever I want as long as I meet my macronutrient needs. No need for meal timing, no need to eat the same meals over and over again. No discrimination between "clean" & "dirty" food. Forget the broscience. Forget the ones who feel a moral superiority over others by only eating "clean" foods. 10 more months of bulking to go before I start cutting. Going to make the old Neil look like crap. This doesn't mean I ONLY eat unhealthy foods. 60-70% of my daily intake comes from healthy meals. I'm just opening eyes to show that 6-7 "clean" meals aren't the only way to change body composition. Don't diss it till you've tried it. Experiment and try new things, stay open-minded. I'll continue to be living proof of it. 

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Improving on form and function

There's always room for improvement. I noticed I have loads of error with squats and deadlifts so from now on I'll be working on improving them. My mobility and flexibility could develop a lot more. I'm incredibly stiff...anyway these videos are just for me to study from. But I'll leave them here on my blog for those interested.

Improving squat mobility.

Improving deadlift set-up to perform better.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Some current PR's & updates of 2013 thus far

Current Weight during PRs: 150lbs @ 5'5"

Current Macros: 2750cals, 61f/344c/206p.

Current Supplements:
Pre-w/o: Muscle Prime by All Max
Protein: Syntha-6 isolate by BSN
Carbs: Carbo Gain by NOW
Creatine: Cell-Mass 2.0 by BSN
Intra/anytime BCAA's: AminoX by BSN

Comparison shots:

Left: September 27, 2012 133lbs, Right: January 27, 2013 150lbs.
+17lbs in 4 months using IIFYM. Ab lines still maintained during this controlled bulk.

Left: 150lbs in February 2011, Right: 150lbs in January 2013.
Same weight, different physiques. Holding much more muscle mass now compared to before.
Dirty "see"food bulk vs. Controlled IIFYM bulk.

2/6/13 405lbs deadlift x 1 first ever attempt. The session went like this:
Warm-up, 2 sets Lat pull downs w/70lbs x 8

Work sets:
bodyweight x 5
45lbs x 5
45lbs x 2, dropset to bodyweight by 3
25lbs x 5
25lbs x 5


Came into the gym thinking I was only going to do multiple sets of 315 for reps. But my buddy Arnold Hwang persuaded me to go for a 1mr. Glad I did!

2/5/13, First Day at Gold's Gym, Fullerton. Great leg daymy buddies Matt Rojana, Mark Sanchez & Mylene Montoya. PR'd 315lbs squat. Only had 3 hours of sleep the night before from 7am-10am. Was unable to sleep due to taking 2 servings of ON Platinum-Pre the night before when hitting chest with my buddy Jonny Cage. Never again..Only had 1 meal 6 hours prior to this attempt as well. If my tensor faciae latae wasn't injured along with adequate sleep and more meals, I know for a fact my mind and body would've performed this much better with a greater range. Next time!

January 22nd or 23rd.. 2013
Chest day w/Arnold Hwang. Arnold is a MONSTER!! Amazing chest strength. He reps 100lbs w/Dumbbells full range on incline & flat like cake..

1/19/13. Got to meet 2012 Mr. Olympia PHIL HEATH!! AKA THE GIFT!! He is HUGE and very humble! 

All them free samples from the LA fit expo ;)

That's pretty much all I've got to update with! :)

Saturday, February 2, 2013

What is IIFYM(If it fits your macros)

Today's Topic: I.I.F.Y.M. - If It Fits Your Macros
(AKA "Flexible Dieting")
Behold..the ability to CONTROL how your PHYSIQUE transforms. Bulking? Cutting? Maintaining? Want to gain or lose weight? Well here's the information you'll need!

(yes you will see some Q&As from my older my posts, but there are new ones as well!)

Those that follow me on Instagram, Facebook, or this Blogspot know that I've been doing IIFYM/Flexible Dieting and that I'm living proof that it works. I started IIFYM/Flexible Dieting at late June of 2012 because I wanted to see if it worked. And I am truly glad I have. I was going to make a video about this, but I've decided to make a blog about it instead. You all have the ability to read, otherwise you wouldn't be at my page in the first place. Before I go ahead, I would like for you to read this with an OPEN-MIND. Do not frown upon or diss it without first experimenting with it and trying it.

Disclaimer: I am NOT saying IIFYM is for everybody or that you HAVE to do it to reach your goals. There are plenty of other dieting methods out there. No one is putting a gun to your head forcing you to do this. If you wish to educate yourself on this lifestyle and topic, then proceed on reading. :)

Q: What is a calorie?
A: A calorie is a unit of energy.

Q: Is a calorie truly just a calorie?
A: Yes. Thermodynamics proves and dictates that a calorie is indeed just a calorie. Link to evidence provided here

Q: What is a macro-nutrient(macro)?
A: Macros are the main compounds that provide energy(calories). The three macro-nutrients are Fats, Protein and Carbohydrates

Q: What is a micro-nutrient(micros)?
A: Micros are vitamins and minerals. They are important in taking care of your organs health and function.

Q: What is a maintenance caloric intake?
A: The amount of calories you need to maintain your current bodyweight.

Q: What is a caloric deficit?
A: Eating less than the required calories to maintain your current weight. A caloric deficit will make you lose weight. *Do NOT put yourself too deep into a deficit as this MAY cause metabolic damage.*

*Some of you that have already gone through a fat loss through "clean" eating have blindly put yourself at a deficit without knowing so. The basic "clean" eating meals such as oatmeal, sweet potato, chicken, brown rice, are generally low calorie meals. This is why your weight loss was achieved.

Q: What is a caloric surplus?
A: Eating more than the required calories to maintain your current weight. A caloric surplus will make you gain weight.

Q: What is IIFYM?
A: IIFYM is a flexible form of dieting used to control your body composition. Simply put, it allows you to eat whatever you would like as long as it meets your macronutrient needs. IIFYM allows you to disregard what you believe as "clean" food and "junk" food. emphasizes the focus of meeting your macro and micro needs in regard to changing your body composition according to your desired goals. 

Q: Why should I do IIFYM?
A: Simply because it makes sense and it allows you to enjoy the foods you eat without feeling the guilt and stress of sacrifice all while helping you obtain and achieve your body composition/physique goals. It makes sense and it works. Now I know some of you guys are skeptical, I can relate. When I first heard of IIFYM I thought it was bull-poop and couldn't believe the things that I was hearing. But then I decided to be OPEN-MINDED one day and gave it a shot. It changed my life, for the better. ;)

Q: You're saying I can all the junk I want?
A: Yes and no. You will find that about 70-80% of your daily macros end up coming from "clean" & healthy meals once you start in order to get in your dietary fiber and micros. Plus fitting your macros all from junk is actually pretty hard..I've tried. You can CHOOSE to fit your macros through healthy or "junk" foods. That's the joy of IIFYM.

Q: Great! Now how do I start?
A: First off, you will need to figure out your maintenance caloric intake by using this calculator:

Now realize that maintenance number provided is just an ESTIMATE of your maintenance caloric intake. It doesn't know your exact metabolism so it doesn't know your true maintenance. This number is just a baseline for you to start with. Start by weighing yourself when you wake up on an empty stomach. Then try sticking with this number for a minimum of 1 week and reach that caloric intake religiously daily. At the end of the 7 days, reweigh yourself on an empty stomach first thing in the morning. If your weight goes up then you're at a surplus and would need to bring it down by accordingly to what you think will be your maintenance. If your weight goes down then you are at a deficit so you'll need to bring it up. The key here is to experiment and find your own personal maintenance number. 

Q: I got my maintenance, how do I gain or lose weight?
A: You'll be needing to put yourself at either a surplus or a deficit. Start by adding 75-100 calories above or below your maintenance according to your desired goals. Once again, weigh yourself on an empty stomach in the morning first, then stick with that religiously for at least one week and see whether it was enough of a surplus/deficit or not. Then re-adjust it accordingly until you find out whether it works well for you or not.

**NOTE: If you are gaining weight too fast, you may likely be gaining more fat than muscle(because muscle takes a very long time to develop unless you have god-like genetics or on prohormones/steroids. If you are losing weight to fast, you are most likely losing a lot of hard earned muscle along with that fat. Unless you're completely new to working out(shocking the body into newb gains) or you're on steroids, you would be losing fat and building muscle at the same time. Adjust your macros & caloric intake accordingly.

Q: How do I figure out my macronutrients?
A: Alright, so you got your maintenance number. Now how you decide to split up your protein, carbohydrates and fat needs are personally up to YOU. If you are someone who exercises regularly, I recommend getting in .80grams to 1.5grams of protein per/body weight to maintain and aid in muscle health. After you figure out your minimum protein needs, split your carbohydrates and fats up as you may please. Carbohydrates and fats are forms of energy that provide you fuel to last you through out the day. Carbohydrates are more of the "to-go" sources of energy because your body breaks it down quicker than fat. Fat is a form of energy that breaks down slower in the body.

You can use this calculator to give you an idea of where your macros will be set at. Punch in your daily caloric goal according to whether you want to be at maintenance, surplus, or deficit and it will split the difference to your desires:

1g of fat = 9 calories
1g of carbohydrates = 4 calories
1g of protein = 4 calories

Q: How can I TRACK my macros?
A: There are apps and websites out there that will aid you, the only one I currently know of and personally use is MyFitnessPal. You can use the phone application for it or go to

It's a very easy to use and self explanatory app. I HIGHLY recommend it for ANYONE using or want to use IIFYM/Flexible Dieting. If you don't know how to use myfitnesspal, there are plenty of How-To's on google and youtube.

Now I know that there will be foods that you won't be able to find on myfitnesspal, if you can't find the exact food but know the macros or want to guesstimate the macros, just type in "macros - carbohydrates" , "macros - fat", or " macros - protein" and just punch in the serving size as the amount of grams of the macro.

Q: How & why will IIFYM work?(Source for this answer from and
How can a burger from McDonalds be equivalent to a meal of chicken, brown rice and cashews? It’s quite simple, your body does not recognize whether the food your eating is ‘clean’ or ‘junk’. It will only recognize food’s for it’s nutrients, such as proteins, fats or carbohydrates. For example; a McDonalds Seared Grand Chicken Burger is worth 501 calories which consists of 35.3g of protein, 15g of fat and 53.4g of carbohydrates. Whereas, 130g of chicken, 25g of cashews and 120g boiled white rice is worth 520 calories which consists of 16.5g of fat, 55.2g of carbs and 37.9g of protein. When you consume either of these meals, your body processes the food based on the macro-nutrient values (which you can see are extremely similar) and will yield the EXACT same effects on your body composition. These results are solely on body composition and do not take into account the micro-nutrients which your body needs in order to maintain your health. You can always opt for a multi-vitamin or try to fit foods into your macros with higher micro-nutritional values to help balance the ‘processed’ or ‘junk’ foods consumed. Now, I’m sure that some of you will be asking, “What about the different types of fats in these meals? The burger will be higher in unhealthy saturated fats while the traditional meal will be much higher in the healthy unsaturated fats.” (Probably not in so many words, but you get the picture) However, recently in the U.S, a professor of human nutrition decided to lose weight purely through calorie counting disregarding the rest of the nutritional values of the foods he consumed. He spent 10 weeks in a caloric deficit and consumed “a steady stream of…Hostess and Little Debbie snacks…Doritos chips, sugary cereals and Oreos.” Here’s the most interesting bit of all, “You might expect other indicators of health would have suffered. Not so. Haub’s “bad” cholesterol, or LDL, dropped 20% and his “good” cholesterol, or HDL, increased by 20%. He reduced the level of triglycerides, which are a form of fat, by 39%.”² His results clearly showed that being overweight is what causes the majority of these effects, rather than the nutritional value of the foods consumed. ((Source for this answer from and

If you're still reading, then I guess you're really interested! Well now you know what IIFYM/Flexible Dieting is about and how it works.

That pretty much sums everything up. You guys have the ability to educate yourselves. So if it's something you guys really want to jump on, then don't wait for someone to spoon feed you. Look up as much information as you can on your own! :) Thanks for reading, and I hope this helps many of you out there!

Also wanted to share a great video here! It's long but worth the education and information

and another

Thursday, January 3, 2013

"Neil, HOW DO I LOSE FAT / TONE UP?!?!!?"

Happy 2013!

**I created this Blogspot a few years back with the purpose of tracking my progress and following others to stay motivated. If you guys decide to create one, follow me and I'll follow back. Having partners and friends to share this journey will keep you motivated and consistent. Have fitness be a mandatory part of your lifestyle. :)

My basic recommendations on ridding unwanted FAT and TONING UP
(Earn that beach body NOW, don't wait!)

1. Aim for 35-60 minutes of physical activity throughout the day for 3-6 days a week. Preferably a form of weight/resistance/strength training and cardiovascular activity such as running, jump roping and elliptical. When doing cardio or aerobics, be sure it's intense enough to keep your heart rate up. Change up your training methods every now and then so you don't get bored! The higher the heart rate, the better!(Not to the level of a heart attack however.) But remember, it's 80% Diet, 20% Exercise that creates results.

2. Losing weight is all about putting yourself at a Caloric DEFICIT(eating less than what the body needs to maintain weight)

So use this calculator.
The reason to use this calculator is to help you get an IDEA of how many calories you should eat a day to maintain weight or to lose it. The number may or may not work for you depending on your current metabolism. To find out if it works for you, start off with the FAT LOSS calorie daily intake provided with that calculator. Stick with those numbers STRICTLY and consistently for 1 week. If you're not making progress, subtract that number by 100 and use that number strictly for another week. If that doesn't work, repeat. Most likely however, it will work. You should also download an app called MyFitnessPal on your smart phone if you have one. If you don't have a smart phone visit It's a very functional and a great app to use. You can scan the foods you eat or search it up and the app will calculate everything for you. It's a very simple and easy to understand app.

3. Get a minimum of 7 hours of sleep a night. Sleep is when your body goes into fat burning mode. Try to sleep around the same time every night.

4. Resist eating things that you can't calculate or things that you KNOW will screw up your progress. Remember, you're not taking 2 steps forward only to go backwards later on. It all goes down to how bad YOU want IT.

5. Results take TIME. People quit when they don't see what they want within a week or two. Stay consistent, give it a minimum of 6-8 weeks before giving up. If it's not working, you're doing something wrong. Common things that hinder progress include over-eating or eating tooo little, lack of sleep or skipping gym. If you've been losing weight consistently but then it suddenly stops, it means your metabolism slowed down and you've hit a plateau. Break this plateau by doing what is known as a refeed day. Refer to my FAQ post a page or two back from here to learn more or click here to go to page .

7. Drink plenty of water. Aim for about 64oz of water a day minimum which is about 4 water bottles. Water helps to lubricate your organs so that food can better digest and flow through your stomach.

8. Stick to the SAME scale, different scales may tell you different answers because of how they are constructed or set. Weigh yourself first thing in the morning and weigh yourself once every 7-10 days. Do NOT weigh yourself everyday because it may screw you up mentally and may cause you to give up since numbers fluctuate in short periods. Also keep in mind the scale may not always be accurate because you may be bloated, holding poop or full from a meal. The scale doesn't know this. Don't let it bring you down and cause you to lose motivation. You will notice your results in 4-6 weeks. Friends will notice in 8 weeks. The world will notice in 12 weeks.

9. Healthy meal examples:
a) 2 slices whole wheat toast, 1 tbsp peanut butter, 1 tbsp sugar free jelly. 3 servings of egg whites
b) 1 cup brown rice cooked, 3oz chicken breast, 1/2 cup vegetables
c) 5oz sweet potato, 4oz tilapia, 1 cup orange juice
^these are just examples so you get the idea of what you can eat. You can also supplement with Green Tea Extract. It helps in increasing your metabolism and burning fat.

10. Try out Flexible Dieting also known as "If It Fits Your Macros"(IIFYM). Information of IIFYM/Flexible Dieting can be found here: This is the method that I use.

*The information I provide you all WORKS. Slow progress is better than NO progress. Just stay consistent with it. Take a "Before" picture TODAY. Don't lie or cheat yourself! Remember, the mirror will show you how much it means to YOU. Good luck! You got this!!! :D

If in the past you've done a massive amount of cardio and eat very little. You may have metabolic damage. This is when you're unable to get any leaner now matter how hard you try and you put on a lot of weight the moment you allow yourself to slip. If this sounds like you, please check out my blog post on metabolic damage here:

Living proof of that I'm not feeding you crap:

My progress.

FAQ Repost from old post
Frequently asked questions:

Q: What are macronutrients(macros)?
A: Macros are the main compounds that provide calories & energy. Such as Carbohydrates, Protein & Fats.

Q: What are micronutrients(micros)?
A: Vitamins & Minerals from vegetables and fruits.

Q: What is a caloric surplus?
A: It is when you are going above your daily caloric needs in order to gain size whether it'd be fat or muscle. Just depends on how you set your macros.

Q: What is a caloric deficit?
A: The opposite of a surplus. When you are getting in less calories than your maintenance caloric needs.

Q: What is IIFYM?
A: Simply put, it's a way of eating whatever you want, as long as it fits your macronutrition(carbs, fats, protein). Learn more at You will be at a caloric surplus if you're bulking, and a deficit when you are leaning out. More details linked here:

Figure out your maintenance with calorie calculator:

Your macros with:

Also I highly recommend using to keep track of your macros. It is truly the simplest way you can keep up with your macros and watch what you eat. If you can't find nutrition facts for what you're eating on myfitnesspal, don't bother eating it. But it usually has everything you need. There is also a myfitnesspal app for smart phones. Be sure to download it. 

IMPORTANT: When your weight goes UP or DOWN, you will have to update the calculator so that you can find where you're supposed to be for calories. So keep track of your weight! Get your bodyfat checked every 10-14 days!

Q: How do I figure out how much of a surplus/deficit I need to be at?
A: This really depends on an individual.
For those trying to bulk, I say 150-300 calories above maintenance caloric needs. The faster you're gaining weight, the more likely that you're weight is actually coming from fat. So the slower you take it the bulking process, the better.

For those trying to lean out, 150-200 calories under maintenance if you're trying to maintain muscle mass while losing fat. The faster you're losing weight, the more likely you're also losing muscle mass.

Q: How do I know what percentages to set my Protein, Carbs, and Fats at?
A: Truth is, there is no magic percentage. Different things will work for different people. This is something you really need to figure out through trial and error and find out what works best for you. Personally for ME. I'd like to have carbs at 45%, protein at 35%, and fats at 20% during a cutting phase. This is what I found to work best for me. I haven't started my bulk phase yet so I don't know how these percentages will be for me once I start. But like I said, Trial & Error.

Q: Are supplements necessary?
A: No. They are exactly what they are. a SUPPLEMENT to your diet. If you're lacking something that you need, they will help you. They are also VERY convenient to use for meeting your macros.

Q: Why do you add carbohydrates to your post-workout shake and what kind do you use?
A: I do it to replenish my glycogen stores and for better recovery. I have used Waxy Maize, Dextrose, and Carbogain(maltodextrin). My favorite has been Dextrose because it mix's easier with my protein shakes and it sweetens it a bit.

Q: What brands of protein do you buy and why?
A: Optimum Nutrition 100% Gold Standard Whey because it's the best bang for your buck.
 BSN Syntha-6 or Intek Evolution because it's delicious.

Q: Is it necessary to do cardio to get leaner?
A: No, I am living proof that you don't need cardio to get leaner. Just putting yourself at a caloric deficit and working out is enough. Cardio however is good for your heart and for building your endurance. More endurance = better weight training performance.

Q: How long do your workouts last?
A: 40 minutes minimum, 60 minutes maximum.

Q: How often do you hit abs?
A: Maybe once or twice a month. I don't do them often because I don't like them being sore on days where I squat and deadlift.

Q: Isn't ATG(ass to grass/ground) bad for your knees?
A: Stop believing in broscience. The people who tell you this are people with big egos who try to go heavy and don't want to go lighter to achieve full range of motion. Everyone I've trained with including myself has gone ATG with our asses right beside our ankles. No knee issues. Even in the olympics and SOME powerlifting contests have athletes going ATG. So the answer is, quit being a lil bish. Drop the weights and your ego. You'll get more respect going full range with lighter weights than going heavy and not even getting parallel.

Q: Does weight lifting stunt growth?
A: ....Once again, broscience. Do you realize that there are many bodybuilders over 6 ft tall? Arnold Schwarzenegger himself has been lifting since he was 15 and Jeff Seid has lifted since he was 12. Seriously, do research. Stop believing in broscience and use your head. Your height is given to you by genetics.

Q: Is touching your chest with the barbell/dumbbell while benching necessary?
A: Not exactly. But the more the stretch the better in my opinion. And my mentality has always been, "If you want to be strong, be strong throughout the full range rather than just a portion of the range." I would recommend at least going pass 90 degrees just to activate more fibers.

Q: Why do you do weighted dips instead of decline presses?
A: I don't like feeling light headed and having a lot of blood rushing to my head for lying on a decline. Plus I get a better range and stretch from my dips. Both exercises are excellent for building lower chest though.

Q: How often do you workout and how many days do you rest?
A: I train for 5 days a week and take 2 days off.

Q: What is your training regimen? Sets & Rep range?
A: I'm always changing what I'm doing to fit my goals. Heavy weights with low reps for strength training and muscle density. Higher volume sets & reps for hypertrophy. And there are days where I combine Heavy loads + hypertrophy. It's changes every few months so I can't give an exact regimen. 

Q: How long have you been lifting?
A: On & off since August of 2008. But I didn't know what I was doing until September of 2011. I've been consistent since September of 2011. I still have a lot to learn but I've learned a lot.

Q: How should I approach a bulk phase?
A: I personally would only start a bulk phase if I had a single digit body fat. (5-8%) Otherwise I recommend stripping as much fat as you can first until you're at a single digit bodyfat %. That way when you begin your bulking phase, you can bulk with a leaner frame which will in turn make you look more aesthetic and you will know how much muscle you've actually had on you to start off with. You would need to be at a caloric surplus for a bulk phase and you will be needing a lot of protein(1.2-1.5g x bodyweight is recommended). Count your macros but don't go to high on your surplus otherwise you'll just create additional fat soluble cells which basically means your body will be able to carry and hold more FAT(not what you want.) When fat soluble cells are created, they are there FOREVER. Which means you'll be able to store fat faster and easier than someone who has always been leaner. This is why I recommend bulking with a low bodyfat %. Weight training should be kept short because you don't want to be burning as much calories. Longer weight training sessions = increase in cortisol = decrease in testosterone = hinder full potential of protein synthesis. This is why I keep my workouts within 40-60 minutes.

Q: What do you think of pre-workout supplements?
A: I love them. Don't NEED them, but they do help. Gives me the energy and focus that I need and really good pumps. I've been working 11 hours straight a day for the pass 5 days and I immediately head to gym right after, so the extra kick comes in handy.

Q: What do you think of BCAA supplements?
A: Some of them taste good. But you don't need them. There's already added BCAA's in protein supplements.

Q: What is leptin and what does it do?
A: Leptin is a protein produced by fatty body tissue. It regulates hunger, food intake and energy expenditure. When you're on a cutting/leaning out phase, the caloric deficit will eventually slow down your metabolism. Leptin sends the signal to you by having you feel cravings and hunger. When leptin levels become really low, you'll end up making little to zero progress on your fat loss. A refeed day should be taken place to kick start your leptin and bring your metabolism back up. I do this once a week. It works, it's science, it helps.

Q: What is a refeed day?
A: A refeed day is a day in which you up your carbs and put yourself at a caloric surplus to bring leptin levels back up and get your metabolism going again. There's been a debate between bringing up your carbs by 20-50% or by 50-100% of your carbohydrate macro needs in order to kick leptin levels back up. I personally do the 50-100% I've had no problem with it and it allows me to enjoy my pop-tarts and fat free+sugar free angel cakes. So for example if my carb macros were set to 250 for my deficit. I would eat 375-500g carbs on this day. I bring my fat grams down by 10 and protein down by 5g on this day as well.

I will update more Q & A when I remember what others have asked me of when I get new questions. Please read my blog before you ask me questions. I don't like repeating the same thing over 9000 times to every message I get. If you can't find the answer you need here, ask me at Also, subscribe to my blog here and comment below. You all have the capability to read, otherwise you wouldn't be using the internet. Doing research does wonders. There's always a lot to learn so keep an open mind, experiment around, try new and different things, find what works best for YOU. Because different things work better for different people. If you've been hitting a plateau, you need to figure out what you're doing wrong. Whether it is lack of sleep, improper dieting plan, not counting macros, doing the same workout routine over and over, lifting the same weights, etc. Get your bodyfat and weight checked often(Every 10-14 days). I recommend getting your body fat checked by the same trainer or same system everytime you check it. Because sometimes different trainers and different machines have their own method of doing things. Stay consistent, train hard, be healthy, be happy.