Food FAQ

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FAQ v1.1
By Gant
with Justin (Last updated 11-30-09)

Questions that are frequently asked…or those that should be.

Which diet should I use to get 70’s Big?

Any “diet” that has a name won’t get you to the top of the mountain. If you’re counting blocks, forget about it.

The first order of business is getting your protein squared away. Your diet is pass/fail depending on your protein intake. You should consume at least 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight each day if you want to grow (1.5-2 g/lb BW or more may be necessary).

What about carbs and fat?

Listen to me now and hear me forevermacronutrient ratios are largely irrelevant if you’re above 15% bodyfat.

Assuming you comply with the first rule, total calories are your major concern at this point. If you have a compelling need to be lean (e.g. you’re a weight-class athlete) you can start tweaking once you go below about 15% bodyfat mark.

I’m going to ignore your advice and ask about macros anyway.

There are hundreds of books, articles, and blogs out there that discuss this crap. We’re not going there. But here is a simple guide to macros. It is not completely technically correct, but it gives you an idea about the concepts. Protein is for building and maintaining muscle mass, carbohydrates fuel your efforts, and fat fuels your recovery. If you’re falling behind in any of these areas, increase the appropriate macro.

How much do I need to eat?

1) More

2) There is an old business adage, “don’t dress for a job you have; dress for the job you want.” Apply this to your eating. If you want to be 215, you need to eat for 215, not for your 165 pound sprint-Tri doing self. You won’t get 70’s Big by pushing bird seed around your plate at your local hippy bistro. Start with 125-150% of what you’re eating now and see how that goes for a couple weeks.

I can’t eat all the food. Can’t I just train harder?

Eating is training. Beowulf had Grendel. We have Mongolian and Chinese buffets. If you don’t have at least one dining experience every couple of weeks that resembles an epic struggle worthy of telling over beers, you’ll be putting from the rough for the foreseeable future.

We understand that eating for size and strength, especially if you have a high metabolism, is not easy. The body is very good at adjustment to small increases in caloric consumption. You may have to double your current intake to make appreciable gains. That’s why the gallon of whole milk a day works so well for the lean guys.

What about new age diets?

I don’t care if you know a friend of a friend who got “swole” on a raw food vegan diet. It doesn’t matter that your tofu-eating emo buddy finally pulled 205 off the pins. The rules apply, and you must obey them. Whole milk and hamburgers build a sturdier foundation than sprouts and soy.

What do I eat?

Anything that has a face and can run/swim/fly away from you. Anything that comes from such animals. Pretty much anything that grew in the ground, on a vine, or in a tree. Use some common sense, but select the most caloric dense items you can find.

Hey, what about us fat guys?

If you are a bigger guy with a high body fat percentage already, then your approach will be slightly different. A diet consisting of milk, meat, vegetables/fruit, and fat will do the trick — this is essentially a “Paleo”-type diet with milk Your protein requirements are the same (but obviously more), and more of your calories will need to come from fat. Olive oil can be added in to do the trick.

Do you have any example of 70s Big meals?

Of course. This will be updated as time goes by. Here are a few samples.

Three of the basic food groups.

Three of the basic food groups.



3/4 lb. PWO for deadlift days. Not picture: large vanilla milkshake.

3/4 lb. PWO for deadlift days. Not picture: large vanilla milkshake.



This is what your freezer should look like.

This is what your freezer should look like.



Two days’ worth.

Two days'' worth.



Mongolian BBQ is proof that God loves us. Pictured- 1.5 lbs. of steak, chicken, sausage, pork, and other stuff.

Mongolian BBQ is proof that God loves us. Pictured- 1.5 lbs. of steak, chicken, sausage, pork, and other stuff.



K.I.S.S.

K.I.S.S.



Breakfast foods are excellent for getting 70sBig.

Breakfast foods are excellent for getting 70’s Big.



8 eggs. 1/4 lb. bacon. 1/4 lb. brisket. Pico, cheese, and salsa.

8 eggs. 1/4 lb. bacon. 1/4 lb. brisket. Pico, cheese, and salsa.



70’s Big meals can still be presentable for mixed company. Pictured: 3/4 grilled chicken, apple wedges, blackberries, and salad doused in feta cheese and EVOO, all covered with a raspberry glaze.

70’s Big meals can still be presentable for mixed company. Pictured: 3/4 grilled chicken, apple wedges, blackberries, and salad doused in feta cheese and EVOO, all covered with a raspberry glaze.



Back to the basics.

Back to the basics.



Meat sides are a good compliment to meat entrees. So is beer.

Meat sides are a good compliment to meat entrees. So is beer.



The Hill Special: 1 lb. of brisket, ham, sausage.

The Hill Special: 1 lb. of brisket, ham, sausage.



1-lb. hamburgers never get hold.

1-lb. hamburgers never get old.



Rest days=cooking days.

Rest days=cooking days.



Even young girls appreciate 70’s Big. She can lift it AND eat it.

Even the young look forward to 70’s Big.



A meat feast should be properly presented and honored before being consumed.

A meat feast should be properly presented and honored before being consumed.



Intermittent carb feeds are sometimes appropriate for the ketogenic diet crowd.

Intermittent carb feeds are sometimes appropriate for the ketogenic diet crowd.



Rip grabbed me in a bar in 1996 and expressed displeasure at my mug of Bud Light. He said "it’s not beer if you can see right through it." He bought me a more suitable replacement.

Rip grabbed me in a bar in 1996 and expressed displeasure at my mug of Bud Light. He said "it’s not beer if you can see right through it." He bought me a more suitable replacement.



My favorite 70sBig dessert. Fudge brownie, chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream, strawberries, 1/2 bottle of Magic Shell. I DARE you not to grow.

My favorite 70’s Big dessert. Fudge brownie, chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream, strawberries, 1/2 bottle of Magic Shell. I DARE you not to grow.


Leave a Reply

  1. I myslef have never personally bothered too much with p/c/f – just made sure i”ve eaten around 200g of protien as in 1g per lb of bw (I weigh damn near 200lbs – sadly i”m 6”2 so not 70”s big yet! ) and made sure i”ve eaten enough fat by snacking on nuts and eggs.

    Never been a big starch fan myslef either and most of my carbs come from fruit and veggies.

    As for genetics, there are so many varibles its impossible to really say, although I would imagine a big broad shouldered guy could would have an easier time than some skinny narrow dude.

  2. Hey I just finished my first workout. My muscles are still sore, and I see that I still have to do square tomorrow. Would I have to do this despite the soreness in my muscles? Should I just work through it or is this because I haven””t recovered properly? Thanks. Also I am not able to do many chinup so what is the substitute for this exercise.

    I bought rip””s book yesterday as well but I don””t see any workout plan, where is this in the book?

    Cheers.

    If it was your first workout, you won’t have much of a choice but to be sore. Warm up and you’ll be fine. This happened because you are in an unadapted state.

    And if you look closely, there is an entire chapter on programming.

    –Justin

  3. Just did the Crossfit Football Cert this past weekend and John Welbourn (who is definitely 70”s big!) had some good nutrition advice for gaining mass. He recommends 20cal/lb body weight, a minimum of 1g protien/lb body weight and to have a meals worth of whole milk immediately post workout minimum 48oz of the good white stuff and to follow that up about 45-60 minutes later with a full solid food meal. Ha also added that growing up his mom made him pancakes with every meal he ate to help him get big and that to add extra calories he drinks straight olive oil with just about every meal.

  4. okay since I””m under aged Milk is all I need to drink right? I””m pretty sure I have my question answered already. also how many calories would a 16 year old training at least three times a week normally heavy three weeks out of the month? 5,6000 calories?

    You did not give a whole lot of information, but for skinny kids GOMAD and 4 meals a day will usually work.

    –Justin

  5. Man… all this tasty food. In statesboro, GA, most of my food comes from walmart, and since I don”t have loads of cash it means I have to live on hormel chili cans and pre-cooked sausage patties.. damn those patties are nasty. Every now and then I”ll get the dollar BK burgers though… theyre really good!

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  7. Most of us have to prepare our meals in advance. How do you make meat and chicken taste good? A good grilled steak cooked to med rare and then reheated a couple of days later tastes like total shit to me. Chicken is more bearable but I dont look forward to eating. I love meat abd chicken but not leftover/reheated, and certainly not cold.
    thanks all.

    Seasonings and marinades are your friends. Gant will help more, I am sure.

    –Justin

  8. aramirez, start slow-cooking your meat. Look up “braised chicken,” “braised ,” etc on google for recipes. Look for videos if you”ve never braised stuff before. Or PM me and I can give you some starting tips.

    Slow-cooked stuff tastes better when reheated: you”ve already cooked the hell out of it, so reheating it doesn”t really change the flavor. Plus slow-cooked stuff is damn delicious.

    I have a slow-cooker (crockpot) and it”s awesome. Wouldn”t want to do the 6K/day thing without it.

  9. Who”s man enough to try this 70”s Big meal plan ?

    I”m just starting Starting Strength and just eating the 4 to 5,000 calories a day is quite hard.

    I can”t even imagine how hard this would be.

    To become the strongest powerlifter in the world, Larry Pacifico decided to become the biggest.

    In the 1970s, he ate enough to feed a cavalry, horses included.

    His breakfast: 15 eggs, half a loaf of bread, one pound of bacon, a half gallon of whole milk.

    His lunch: three entire chickens.

    His dinner: two pounds of steak, plus potatoes.

  10. This is cruel and odd punishment. I”m sitting at a college in New York, waiting for my friend to get out of class, and I’m STARVING. Lucky for my there”s an ihop located right down the road. And yes sir, I believe it’s all you can eat pancake week. Definitely getting my 4,000 calories today. Hopefully my lifts don’t stall. I”m getting close to my threshold for this run.

  11. Has anyone been to a Roscoe”s Chicken and Waffles? You will definitely get some calories there. you can get half (or more) of a fried chicken, waffles with butter and syrup, numerous sides of variety including mac n cheese, beans, grits, chicken livers,…

  12. If you wanna put on mass then you should eat some lasagna. It”s packed with protein, fat and carbs and it”s high in calorie. If you like italian food then go ahead and eat till you drop.

  13. Favorite high calorie high fat high protein breakfast. Buy a block of sausage (comes in the nice wax paper) cut off a chunk about 2-3 inches thick and brown it up in a pan. Once its almost done and there”s all that grease runnin” round in the pan, crack 6 eggs in there to soak up all that flavor and just cook all that shit together. Then heavily butter some toast and put some of the egg/sausage mixture on there with a handful of cheddar cheese. Make a second sandwich if you”re feelin” up to it, or just eat the rest as is. G”dam delicious and easy.

  14. as a fat guy, will I be able to lose fat if I follow the eating rules here? Or will it only prevent me from getting fatter?

    Also what are you guys” views on cutting?

    thanks

  15. @Hookguy-
    You can lose fat eating like this if you”re training hard enough. Do what he says in the “hey, what about us fat guys?” paragraph–it”s also been discussed in a few other posts on the site. You”ll want to be a little more concerned with food quality and not just with eating everything you possibly can. So in your case, lots of protein and fat and go easy on processed carbs. In other words, along the lines of Paleo+milk, similar to what Welbourn recommends for CF Football.

    I don”t know much about cutting, other than it will cost you strength because you can”t lose a lot of fat without some muscle going along with it. Plus with less mass you”ll lose some leverage and the benefit of IMTGs in regards to strength. What”s your reasons for wanting to cut? GPP? Aesthetic purposes?

  16. @Eric

    thanks for the reply, my reason for cutting is so I can actually fit into clothes, (having to wear loose and baggy ones because my thighs are too big for standard clothes, it is getting qutie annoying!)and I”m hoping to try and enter a contest.

    So when you say cut down on processed carbs what percentage of my calories should be from carbs? And can you recommend me nay foods high in fat and protein but low in carbs (so many foods are carb rich!). I”ll give paleo a go.

    I”m currently at 18% body fat and I think I”ve lost about 2% since starting Rippetoe”s 2 months ago.

    And when you say quality of food you mean no McD”s right? :)

  17. I think the 70s Big theme song should be “Eat Steak” By the Reverend Horton Heat.

    Eat steak, eat steak eat a big ol” steer
    Eat steak, eat steak do we have one dear?
    Eat beef, eat beef it”s a mighty good food
    It”s a grade A meal when I”m in the mood.

    Cowpokes”ll come from a near and far
    When you throw a few rib-eyes on the fire
    Roberto Duran ate two before a fight
    ”Cause it gave a lot of mighty men a lot of mighty might

    Eat steak, eat steak eat a big ol” steer
    Eat steak, eat steak do we have one dear?
    Eat beef, eat beef it”s a mighty good food
    It”s a grade A meal when I”m in the mood.

    Eat meat, eat meat, filet mignon
    Eat meat, eat meat, ear it all day long
    Eat a few T-bones till you get your fill
    Eat a new york cut, hot off the grill

    Eat steak, eat steak eat a big ol” steer
    Eat steak, eat steak do we have one dear?
    Eat beef, eat beef it”s a mighty good food
    It”s a grade A meal when I”m in the mood.

    Eat a cow, eat a cow ”cuase it”s good for you
    Eat a cow, eat a cow it”s the thing that goes “Mooooo”

    Look at all the cows in the slaughterhouse yeard
    Gotta hit”em in the head, gotta hit”em real hard
    First you gotta clean”em then the butcher cuts”em up
    Throws it on a scale throws an eyeball in a cup

    Saw a big Brangus Steer standing right over there
    So I rustled up a fire cooked him medium rare
    Bar-B-Q”ed his brisket, a roasted his rump
    Fed my dog that ol” Brangus Steer”s hump

    Eat steak, eat steak eat a big ol” steer
    Eat steak, eat steak do we have one dear?
    Eat beef, eat beef it”s a mighty good food
    It”s a grade A meal when I”m in the mood.

  18. I’m usually good for blasting 4000-5000 calories a day however, usually after my workout I hit a high quality protein shake like Progenex and some Cytomax. Then 1-2 hrs later 1lbs burger with a chocolate shake.

  19. Where can you order boxes of meat like in the “this is what your freezer should look like” picture for good prices? Even COSTCO is too expensive for that much meat.

    Texas?

    –Justin

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  22. Pot roasts, london broils, and the cheaper cuts you can get for a great price and they taste just as good, just have to be prepared differently. I know I can find pot roast on sale for $2.50-$3 a lb so I can buy a 3 lb roast for sub 10 bucks and then throw it in a crockpot with ample veggies and that’s at least a day’s worth of food.

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  26. Hey Guys,
    I really just wanted to thank you for having a great site with truly great advice. Being a hard gainer, I followed your advice and have been on a steady diet of burgers, ice cream, 1 gallon of RAW whole milk and pretty much anything else I can get into my stomach, for a little over 4 weeks now and have gone from 172 to 203.5. My goal of 210 is just another week or so away. Thank you again for your articles and a great blog. Keep it up.

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