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Gaining Muscle
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I am new to gluten free and bodybuilding, and trying to figure some things out. I diagnosed myself celiac in Sep. 2010 and quit gluten (no official medical diagnosis), and I've always been a little scrawny. I'm 25 years old, 6'3", and averaged 170 lbs. for years, but little muscle mass apparent. So now that I actually CAN, I want to start gaining some muscle mass (and burning the small amount of flab hanging around). I've figured out the gluten free diet pretty well, and got a good workout plan. I have a few questions if anyone could help.

I just got glutened figuring out I can't eat gluten free oats, and I just started loading creatine. Should I keep on with the creatine even if I have to miss a few workouts (because of the reaction)?

During a gluten reaction, does it do any good to keep working out? (Assuming I'm capable.) I'm just thinking of absorption problems.

I've read you should eat some extra calories when you work out, but I can't figure out if you're supposed to eat extra calories on your off days. Any suggestions for off day consumption?

All the workout plans I've seen say to do them three days a week. Is it okay to sandwich different workouts on the in between days? What do you do on the off days to keep from sitting around?

Thanks!

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I'm a fitness instructor & avid exerciser (runner, swimmer, lifter). Any advice I can give you is from my experience & may or may not help you !

Can't help you with the creatine - I'm not a supplement person (other than vitamins). I am a strong believer in eating clean - eating food that is pretty darn close to how it originated & a diet that is 90-95% clean. My cheat foods are gluten-free chips/crackers and my own gluten-free goodies like chocolate chip cookies. As you can imagine, being very active does require a lot of calories and sometimes just eating cleanly doesn't give me enough! I also try to eat several times a day to keep my energy up - and include fat/protein/carbs in every snack. For example, egg/tuna salad & rice crackers, banana or apple with peanut butter spread on it. Supper leftovers are easiest. My go to breakfast is a mix of brown rice & quinoa with an egg & dried fruit & nuts mixed in (microwaved)- keeps me full and lasts longer than cereal or toast. I just steam the grains & keep them in my fridge.

Tailor your calories to your activity. I don't count calories but if I'm not working out much in a day or at all I will eat less - maybe not snack as much or snack lighter. Eating this way has really gotten me in tune with my hunger cues so on light days I actually find myself not so hungry.

If I am having a gluten reaction, I usually do still workout - but I give myself permission to have a lighter day...though honestly, I tend to still go hard after about 10 minutes in ! Having said that, I probably won't run if I am having a reaction just in case (no toilets handy and if I feel really bad I'm out there somewhere, away from home, & gotta get back !). Running seems to be the worst on my digestive tract - all that bouncing !

Always drink lots of water ! Most of my classes are taught at a pool, where I also lifeguard. We always carry water bottles around and drink a lot ! I do the same at home, sipping regularly. Hydration is big - esp. if you are having a gluten reaction.

How often you train in a week is dependent on your time, your current activity level, and how much recovery you need from what you have been doing. I workout typically 6 days a week, aiming for one rest day or light day (walk or yoga). Recovery is important, as is good sleep, to keep going. Of course, with weight training specifically, you need to rest trained body parts approx. 48 hours before you hit them again. Some people train full body in a session (I do) or splits - back & legs one day, arms & shoulders & chest another...or whatever. With splits you can train consecutive days because you are hitting different muscle groups. So - you can sandwich a run or cardio day inbetween a weight training day - go by how you feel.

I hope some of this at least has helped you out. I have a real passion for fitness and try real hard to make it work. Like you, I'm pretty sensitive to gluten (couldn't do gluten-free oats - could hire myself out as a gluten detector!) but I make this work because it's my escape I guess, my sanity ! Good luck !

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Hehehe... "light day (walk or yoga)". Clearly, you haven't taken my yoga classes. :P

I don't have a lot of advice for the OP other than what northernelf already said as I don't bodybuild. Good luck!

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LOL....well there's yoga....and then there's yoga ! ;) Was thinking more stretch yoga (I have dvds) - not so much the power/ashtanga stuff...though I like that too.

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Hey Katharos:

Although you didn't specify, I'm going to assume that you are a male due to your height. If that is not correct, please let me know.

If that is correct, please keep in mind that males require quite a deal more protein if you want to build muscle. With that said, try and incorporate LEAN animal protein into everyone of your eating incidences. (Chicken breasts, pork tenderloin, egg whites, turkey breast, fish, flank steak, lean lunch meats, etc.)

And I agree with ELF, try and keep all of your food "All Natural & Organic". It pays off to stay away from the preservatives and fillers. And if you do some research, you will find plenty of gluten-free protein powders to accentuate your day -- that are all natural and preservative free as well.

As for the work outs, you will always want to rest a day in between weights. And on those days that you do lift, try and incorporate two different body parts. Here's an example of how ten days go for me.

DAY

1 - Chest/Triceps

2 - Cardio/Abs

3 - Shoulders

4 - Cardio/Abs

5 - Back/Biceps

6 - Cardio/Abs

7 - Rest

8 - Legs

9 - Cardio/Abs

10- Chest Tri's

Remember, you are BUILDING muscle when you rest/sleep. So, get plenty of rest in between free weigh days and at night when you are sleeping.

Once you absorb the basics, let me know and I can email you a more detailed power point for circuit sets and "bulk and cut" 90 day windows.

One last point, I do like creatine. Continue to take it pre and post work out.

If all goes well, perhaps you too can put on 26 pounds of muscle.

Good luck,

The GlutenGladi8or

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Solely in regards to whether you should work out after you've had a reaction, I would say: see how you do.

I have had to learn the hard way that if I work out within a few days of getting glutened, especially anything aimed building muscles, I injure myself much more frequently. I don't know if it's coordination related (I have some balance issues when I get glutened), but honestly, it's almost like my body can't cope with building the muscle and keeping it flexible, so I keep getting muscle pulls for those few days.

I don't believe this is everyone's experience, but I would think at the very least, your muscle building will have the most success when you have the resources needed, yes? So perhaps just doing maintenance level exercise for a few days after being glutened might be better?

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T.H.- I have a similar experience, my muscles just seem to fatigue quicker and don't perform like they should when I have a reaction. What would be maintenance exercise? Some light cardio?

Gladi8or-Thanks for the input. Yes I am male. My diet is already pretty high protein and natural, I made huge adjustments when I went gluten free. We have our own chickens, going to start raising rabbits (any info on the value of rabbit meat?). I don't actually have any weights, I mostly do stuff that uses my own weight; push-ups, squats, planks, etc. My wife has some training experience from her basketball days, she thought it was okay to work the same area 2 days in a row as long as you did different movements, like push-ups one day and pull-ups the next. Is that not accurate? I don't know how much time you spend working out, but I'm married with kids and don't have a ton of extra time, so this is just what can I get accomplished in the time I can give to it. I don't know if I would be able to do those 90-day windows you offered.

I do have a good gluten free, clean(as far as I can tell) whey-protein powder, do you use it after cardio as well as weights? Also, any suggestions for at-home indoor cardio? I do run, but sometimes it's hard to spare that big a block of time.

Thanks Elf, that actually sounds pretty similar to how I eat, it's good to know I'm doing it right!

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I guess creatine is a personal choice, I personally say it's a no-go. I used it for a few years in my late teens.....when I stopped, I lost a lot of the gain I got with it. From what I understand, it really just added water bulk to my muscles, but didn't really help with extra muscle mass.

If you want to get that ripped mass that so many of you guys crave, I would recommend NOT wasting your money on supplements, instead spend it on quality foods. LOTS of protein in the form of meats, seeds, nuts, etc and LOTS of fruits and veggies. Don't even bother shopping the inner isles of the grocery store while trying to cut. Get all your carbs from fruits and veggies and don't eat fruit without a protein in the same sitting. Keeping your blood sugar level will stop cravings and fat storage issues.

And my favorite after workout recovery drink? A glass of low fat organic chocolate milk......it's really my only caffeine cheat in my entire diet and gives a great balance of protein and carbs for after a hard workout. Eat and drink real food - not food flavored chemicals and you'll be amazed at your results.

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she thought it was okay to work the same area 2 days in a row as long as you did different movements, like push-ups one day and pull-ups the next. Is that not accurate?

You actually want a day of rest between working any muscle groups. Remember, you don't BUILD muscle by lifting weight... you build it when your body has time to rest and sleep. That's why you want to alternate days and do cardio on your off days.

And even though a pull up may differ from a push up, you have a tendency to use some of the same muscles.

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I am new to gluten free and bodybuilding, and trying to figure some things out. I diagnosed myself celiac in Sep. 2010 and quit gluten (no official medical diagnosis), and I've always been a little scrawny. I'm 25 years old, 6'3", and averaged 170 lbs. for years, but little muscle mass apparent. So now that I actually CAN, I want to start gaining some muscle mass (and burning the small amount of flab hanging around). I've figured out the gluten free diet pretty well, and got a good workout plan. I have a few questions if anyone could help.

I just got glutened figuring out I can't eat gluten free oats, and I just started loading creatine. Should I keep on with the creatine even if I have to miss a few workouts (because of the reaction)?

During a gluten reaction, does it do any good to keep working out? (Assuming I'm capable.) I'm just thinking of absorption problems.

I've read you should eat some extra calories when you work out, but I can't figure out if you're supposed to eat extra calories on your off days. Any suggestions for off day consumption?

All the workout plans I've seen say to do them three days a week. Is it okay to sandwich different workouts on the in between days? What do you do on the off days to keep from sitting around?

Thanks!

I dont bother with creatine. Tried it but never got much in way of results. The ethyl ester gave me stomach problems so I would stick with monohydrate.

Training when glutened. I would either wait until I was OK or just do a short light session.

It doesnt matter if you train alternate days or consecutive days so long as you get enough recovery. If training consecutive days then work different muscle goups each day. I prefer a rest day, or 2 or 3, between sessions but sometimes will do legs one day and then upper body work the next day. I have plenty of things to keep me busy during rest days.

Eat enough calories daily, rest days or training days, to enable you to gain gain weight. If you gain fat then cut down your calories. If you lose weight then up your daily intake. Eat a balanced diet with enough proteins and vegetables and fruit.

I would be interested to see your good workout plan, especially as you are not using weights.

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I usually train right after being glutened. And, I funnel all of that anger toward gluten and the result is an intense work out. I probably tell myself "HEY Gluten.... you think you're going to get the best of me? Think again!!!" And I keep repeating it.

PS - Protein shakes before AND after work outs. And do you ever get that late afternoon "blah" where you feel tired. Opt for a protein shake rather than coffee/energy drink. It will pick you right up.

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Thank you for putting this question out there. I appreciate all the responses about types of workouts, foods to eat, etc but I have a specific question regarding my bodies ability to build muscle when my body is not absorbing nutrients?

I was just diagnosed so have only been gluten free for 5-days and still learning. If I weight train (not how or when, but IF), is my body actually able to build muscle given that I might not be absorbing all the protein and nutrients I am ingesting? I mean, what's the point, if my muscles are not receiving the nutrients they need to actually get bigger. Am I on the right track? Please help clarify!

Thank you,

Seattleglutenfreegal

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If gluten has caused inflammation in your intestine, disrupting your ability to absorb nutrition from food, removing gluten will reverse this and your intestine will absorb nutrition properly.

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Thank you for putting this question out there. I appreciate all the responses about types of workouts, foods to eat, etc but I have a specific question regarding my bodies ability to build muscle when my body is not absorbing nutrients?

I was just diagnosed so have only been gluten free for 5-days and still learning. If I weight train (not how or when, but IF), is my body actually able to build muscle given that I might not be absorbing all the protein and nutrients I am ingesting? I mean, what's the point, if my muscles are not receiving the nutrients they need to actually get bigger. Am I on the right track? Please help clarify!

Thank you,

Seattleglutenfreegal

Look at it this way, now that you have eliminated gluten your villas are in repair mode. And the only way to go is up! I have actually had several private messages sent to me with the same situation as yours.

While your body is repairing (and getting ready to absorb protein and nutrients), you should try to drink at least 70 ounces of water per day. Secondly, start eating protein and MORE of it. That is what's going to grow muscle.

Your gains will be very small for the next few months and then BAM... you'll see some very nice gains in about 3 months. You'll have healthy villas looking to absorb protein, vitamins, nutrients, and minerals.

You'll get there eventually, just start making a plan now.

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I usually train right after being glutened. And, I funnel all of that anger toward gluten and the result is an intense work out. I probably tell myself "HEY Gluten.... you think you're going to get the best of me? Think again!!!" And I keep repeating it.

PS - Protein shakes before AND after work outs. And do you ever get that late afternoon "blah" where you feel tired. Opt for a protein shake rather than coffee/energy drink. It will pick you right up.

Glutengladi8or, what types of protein shakes would you recommend?

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Glutengladi8or, what types of protein shakes would you recommend?

Many people have a milk intolerance, and luckily I do not. Therefore, my choice is a Whey Protein Isolate. Try and find a protein powder that has BCAA (Branch Chain Amino Acids) in it as well.

Believe, me I just got back from an All Natural & Organic trade show and there were dozens of vendors who had exceptional items. Just make sure that they don't have preservatives or fillers in them.

If you send me a PM, I'll let you know what supplier I have been using for years and have not been disappointed in the slightest.

I, literally, have about 3-4 shakes per day. One first thing in the morning, one or two mid day, and one just before bed to give my body some fuel for 8 hours of sleep.

Let me know what you decide.

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