Nutrition & Supplementation
Questions and Answers
I eat chicken breasts and take protein shakes. I have also been eating soy pasta and it tastes absolutely nasty. Do you have any other suggestions on what I could eat to get my proteins in? Is it o.k. to eat extra lean beef while trying to cut or is the saturated fat still to high?
For protein I eat lean beef, lean pork, chicken, turkey, all kinds of fresh fish, canned fish (tuna, sardines, etc.), egg whites, fat free cottage cheese, protein drinks, and occasionally Iíll have some low fat ham or low fat turkey bacon as a treat.
I'm 18 yrs. old i've been lifting for about 8 months and I cant seem to get any bigger doing anything. I recently purchased a creatine supplement and have been using it for a week and have a couple of questions. How often should I work out while using the creatine, whats the best way to make the creatine work, and when should i use the creatine before a workout, after, or when I'm not working out, does it really work, will it hurt me in any way, and my brother whom is 16 wanted to use the supplement would that be okay?
If you could help me out I would greatly appreciate it.
You can follow your regular workout routine while using creatine. I personally like to take 5 grams of creatine in the morning and 5 grams of creatine in the evenings. You can mix it with water, juice, protein drink, etc. Take creatine everyday, even on the days you do not workout. You should download the Creatine Report this will answer all your creatine related questions.
A friend of mine told me he puts raw egg whites in milk shakes as a
protein supplement. He has used as much as 12 egg whites in 1 shake.
He said he started doing that after seeing the movie "Rocky". What is
your views on using raw egg whites as a protein source? Have you used
that form of protein supplement?
The human body cannot digest a raw egg white. So, if you like to do the
"Rocky Routine" with raw eggs or raw egg whites in your drink, you are
wasting your time. Because of the Avidin found in a raw egg white, your
body cannot digest a raw egg white. Not to mention the threat of
Salmonella. You must cook the egg white to neutralize the Avidin and allow
your body to digest the protein. Too much Avidin in your system can cause
a Biotin deficiency.
I personally use pure liquid egg whites that are pasteurized and
salmonella tested. The pasteurization process heats the egg white to 126
degrees for 3.5 minutes. This heat kills the salmonella and neutralizes
the Avidin to allow it to be digested by the human body. Pure Liquid Egg
Whites are liquid but not raw, making them the purest form of protein.
You can read more about this at:
I have a question about protein and muscle growth. How long does
creatin, or any source of protien stay in your system after you take it?
Would it benefit me more to take whey protien before a work-out or eat a
protein packed meal or snack post work-out, I need more muscle growth and
i'm looking for tips. Thanks Lee.
You should eat some protein every 3 hours during the day. If you don't supply
protein throughout the day your body will break down muscle tissue to use for
the protein that it needs for daily functions, etc. So it would be a good idea
to have a light meal consisting of protein and complex carbs about 1 hour before
your workouts and right after your workouts have a protein and carbohydrate
drink. One of my favorite post workout drinks is vanilla whey protein mixed
with orange Gatorade powder this tastes good and provides excellent post workout
Thanks so much for your help Lee. I know you have had a lot of experience with strength training and bodybuilding so I definitely respect your opinions. Are there any other supplements out there that you have had great experience with? I'm just trying to get
the best edge possible without putting my body in any harm by using dangerous
supplements or steroids. If there are any other really good supplements
out there that you would recommend to me, please let me know what and where to
buy it. I appreciate your advice.
A great supplement that many people do not use, but really should use daily is Greens. This is a powder that you can mix with water, juice, etc. Greens are very nutrient dense and good for the body. They help to detoxify your system, increase energy, and improve your overall health. While it is not a muscle builder per say, the health benefits of Greens will make your body more efficient at building muscle and recovering from your workouts.
You can get Greens at:
i have a question for you, when you stop taking creatine did you notice
all your gains go away? i no that if you stop taking creatine you will lose
size do to water retention but do you lose any real muscle or strength?
aresponse would be greatly apprreciated.
No, you will not shrivel up and waste away if you stop taking creatine. You
can still make gains in the gym without using creatine. But if you don't
take creatine you won't be able to reap all the benefits that creatine
offers. Creatine does a lot more then simply increase muscle size and
strength, it is good for your overall health as well.
You really should download and read the creatine report at:
This Free Report will answer all your creatine related questions.
I am learning so much from your website, it is great. I have a
couple of questions you have probally answered a million times.
I am 6'1" about 190 lbs. I just started lifting heavy. I am currenty
taking Optimum 100% Whey Protein 3 time a day. And Betagen creatine once a day.
When should I take protein before workout or after. When should I take
creatine before workout or after.
I am getting ready to start your 12 week program.
Could you give me example of how much to eat through out the day. Carbs
Thank You Very Much For Your Time
I suggest that you have a protein drink with your breakfast, another mid
day, and another one right after your workouts. You can mix your creatine
with your post workout protein drink, after you exercise your muscles will
absorb the creatine better.
I personally vary my protein powder intake based on how much high protein
foods I eat. For example, if I had steak and eggs for breakfast then
obviously I wouldn't need a protein drink. But if I was in a hurry and only
have time for a bowl of oatmeal then I would also have drink a protein shake
to provide a good source of protein for that meal. You can also do this
during the day, anytime you don't have time to eat a high protein meal you
can have an extra protein drink to make up for it.
There is a sample daily eating plan outlined at the bottom of
hey lee, hows it going?
I visited your site and i loved it.
I have a question. I am lifting weights 3 times each week. I do biceps, triceps, shoulders, forearms, and traps.
I recently purchased the power bar protein plus bars. I am wondering, in order for me to gain mass should I eat the power bar before and after a workout? just before a workout? or just after a workout?
thanks for your time, and your site rocks.
First off, you need to focus on training your total body if you are going to build any muscle. Training just your arms and shoulders will not build much muscle nor will it make you very strong. I have a great training article that you should check out at: http://www.leehayward.com/workout_programs/index.htm
You need to constantly eat protein with your meals during the day. Protein bars, protein drinks, etc. are just easy ways to get extra protein in your diet. I personally have a protein bar or protein drink when I don't have time to eat a full meal. I always keep a few bars in my car, in my gym bag, etc. and when I am hungry and want a high protein snack I just eat a bar.
They are great for a quick snack before a workout, after a workout, or any time during the day. I usually have 1-2 protein bars, 2 protein drinks, and 2-3 food meals everyday. I eat every few hours during the day to keep a steady supply of protein and nutrients in my body.
I'm considering taking creatine to boost my muscle gaining. However, i've
heard that creatine may lead to kidney damage and muscle tear, which worries
me. Do almost every bodybuilder inculding yourself take creatine? Is it
Is it safer to have a on-off period while taking creatine? (ie. one month of
taking creatine followed by a month without creatine). Lastly, what do i
need to look our for while purchasing creatine since there're countless
brands available in the market? Kindly advsie.
Despite what rumours you have heard about creatine it is very safe to use and
actually has numerous health benefits. Your body needs creatine to for good
health just like it needs vitamins, minerals, amino acids, etc. Almost every
bodybuilder uses creatine because it works and it is good for you.
I personally use ProLab Pure Creatine Monohydrate. This is one of the best deals on creatine. You get 200 servings for only $24. Works out to only 12 cents per serving.
You should download The Creatine Report. This is a free report that will answer all your creatine questions.
I find your website very informative. For the
longest time I have been wanting to calculate my
caloric intake. However I do have a question
for u. On a bag of potatoes a 150 gram potato total
calories should be
600 grams. But on the bag it measures 109 calories &
460 kilo joules how is this possible???
Your information is Kindly Appreciated
Not every gram of the potatoe is carbohydrates. There is water in the
potatoe that makes up the majority of the weight and water has no
calories. Fruits and vegetables contain water, fiber, etc. and very
little fat which is the reason why they do not have as many calories
gram for gram as most processed foods.
I have a question regarding when and how often to take
supplements. Regarding a whey & creatine mix shake, I usually take
one serving of each after my workout 4 days a week (mon, tues, thurs,
fri) I do not take any supplements on Wednesday, Saturday or Sunday.
Is it counterproductive to not supplement on my days off? Should I
take supplements every day or only on training days. Second question
is about carb intake post workout. I have heard over and over about
consuming some carbs after a workout to help protein synthesis. So
why don't whey shakes or any shake for that matter have any carbs to
speak of? Is there a carb supplement for this? How much should
someone take post workout? Third question is about creatine cycling.
They say one should stop taking it for a month after using it for two
or three months to prevent the body from ceasing its natural
production. But if I'm only taking 5-10 grams four times a week, does
this rule still apply? Last question, I am looking for a pre-workout
supplement for energy, strength and endurance. There is nothing worse
than being tired and unmotivated at the gym. Do you have any
Thanks for your help-
Here are the answers to your questions:
Q: Should I take supplements every day or only on training days.
A: Yes, you need to eat lots of protein and nutrients everyday, not just
on the days you workout. Even on your days off from the gym your body
is still recovering from your previous workout and needs extra nutrients
to help build and repair muscle tissue.
Q: I have heard over and over about consuming some carbs after a workout
to help protein synthesis. So why don't whey shakes or any shake for
that matter have any carbs to speak of? Is there a carb supplement for
A: Protein powders do not contain carbs because they are protein
supplements, not carb supplements. To get protein and carbs in the same
supplement you can use weight gainers such as ProLab's N'large2.
You can also mix your protein powder with fruit juice, Gatorade, or
other high carb drink for after your workouts. You can also have a
protein drink along with some fruit to get extra carbs after a workout.
A good guideline to go by is to have 50 grams of protein and 100 grams
of carbs right after your workouts.
Q: They say one should stop taking it for a month after using it for two
or three months to
prevent the body from ceasing its natural production. But if I'm only
taking 5-10 grams four times a week, does this rule still
A: There are several different opinions on how to use creatine for best
results. But you can use 5-10 grams of creatine daily non stop with no
Q: I am looking for a pre-workout supplement for energy, strength and
endurance. There is nothing
worse than being tired and unmotivated at the gym. Do you have any
A: Good ol coffee. I always have a cup or two of strong coffee before
my workouts. I need the caffeine kick in order to get my butt in the
gym. If you take anything in your coffee, just use low fat milk and
My name is Armande I live in Edmonton Canada. I have wrote into you
before and I must say very helpful advise. I have managed to get my
body fat down, I am now a very content 134. So now I am just curious,
everywhere I read someone is mentioning the glycemic index. I
understand what it is, I just dont know how to figure out how much is
in what foods. I really want to start applying those values into the
foods I am consuming I am just a little confused on where to look for
it. Thanks alot,
I personally don't worry too much about the exact glycemic index values
for the foods that I eat. The main things to remember are natural
unprocessed carbohydrates are healthier and digested more slowly then
processed carbohydrates. Another thing the glycemic index is not totally
accurate because most of the times we eat a combination of foods (i.e.
protein and carbs in the same meal) and this will affect the glycemic
index. Portion sizes also greatly effect how foods effect blood sugar
Focus your diet mainly around complex carbs such as: potatoes, yams,
fruits, veggies, beans, oatmeal, high fiber cereals, whole wheat bread,
brown rice, whole wheat pastas, etc. basically just focus on eating good
wholesome natural foods. Avoid eating processed foods and junk foods.
This is all you really need to focus on for bodybuilding purposes.
But if you really want to read up on it, just visit your local book
store. There are lots of books available on the glycemic index, most of
them focus on diabetics, because they are the people most effected by
the glycemic index.
just saw your new pictures in the bodybuilding competition, man, you look a lot bigger than before. Congratulations on all your accomplishments.
I just have a couple of questions for you. The first one's probably going to sound dumb, but bare with me, I'm new to dieting. You said take one gram of protein per pound you weigh. Ok, how do I count the grams, do I look at the back of the label? Let's say on the back of a protein shake label it says, 22 grams of protein per scoop and I take two scoops worth, is that considered 44 grams of protein so far? And how about chicken, meat and beans, how do I measure the amount of grams there? There's no label telling me how much protein these foods contain? You see, I weigh 170 pounds and I want to get bigger and more defined, but I know my diet is failing me. My last question is, what exactly does Creatine do? I mean, I hear all kinds of different stories like, it makes you stronger, you burn more fat, you have more energy. You see that's why I'm so confused about it. So can you tell me what it's for and recommend a certain brand. Thanks a lot for you time and I hope to hear from you soon.
When you start feeding your body the right amount of protein, carbs, fats, and calories you will make faster gains in the gym. Bodybuilding champions are made in the kitchen :-)
A good book to help you learn how much protein, carbs, fat, and calories are in the food you eat is "The Complete Book of Food Counts" you can get this at www.amazon.com This book is 800+ pages and has nutrition info for practically every single food you can think of.
You also need to get a food scale such as the one at: http://totfit.safeshopper.com/194/1544.htm so you can weigh and
measure how much you are eating. Simply guessing or eating until you are full is not good enough. You need to measure exactly how much you are eating and write it down. This will make gaining muscle a lot easier. Most guys fail to make gains in size and strength simply because they don't keep track of their nutrition. I know because I was like this myself when I started. It was only when I started keeping track of my food intake that I was able to make some solid gains in size and strength.
To gain muscular size you should eat:
200 grams of protein per day
500 grams of carbohydrates per day
100 grams of fat per day
(This will equal approx. 3700 calories per day)
Eat 5-6 times per day so each meal should contain 40 grams of protein, 100 grams of carbs, and 20 grams of fat. Some of your meals will be bigger then others, but these are good numbers to aim for with each meal.
Protein powders such as Optimum Nutrition Whey protein will make it easier
and a lot cheaper to get extra protein in your diet.
I have a good article about creatine at: http://www.leehayward.com/art4.htm
Dear Mr Hayward,
i am 16 and i want to get bigger arms and a good body shape. i am a
vegetarian and i want to know if that will stop me in getting big.
Also could you please tell me if you hve to go on a bulking diet to
get big since i have abs now and want to know if i have to lose them.
What kind of vegetarian are you? If you just avoid red meat, but still
each other sources of protein such as chicken, fish, dairy products, etc.
then you will not have any problems eating a good high protein, muscle
building diet. But if you don't eat any high protein foods at all then
this will be a limiting factor in your muscle gains.
You do not have to get fat in order to gain muscle. But if you gain any
amount of size, chances are some of that bodyweight will be extra
bodyfat. But this is really not a big deal, because it is much easier
and quicker to lose bodyfat then it is to build muscle. Most anyone can
get lean within 6 months or less of dieting and doing cardio. But it
takes several years of hard training to build a really thick muscular
I was just wondering what is the rule of thumb about creatine how long
should I stay on and how long should I go off and what time of day is best
to take creatine I take it in the mourning about 6am then between 10 and
12am and then once more a half hour before I work out at about three thirty
pm is this ok.
There is not really any rule of thumb per say about how to use creatine. But I
make sure to take it when I am in a heavy training phase (i.e. if I were
preparing for a powerlifting meet) to help maximize my strength gains. I also
make sure to take it when I am dieting for fat loss (i.e. if I were preparing
for a bodybuilding contest) because taking creatine while dieting will help to
maintain lean muscle and keep your strength up on a calorie restricted diet.
But you can't train all out for ever. You do need to ease off the intensity at
times to give your body a break. It is during these phases when I am not
training for competition and really pushing myself extra hard in the gym that I
will take a break from creatine supplements.
Even if you are not a competitor you can still make up your own training cycles
based on your fitness goals. For example, right around the holiday times a lot
of people will back off a little in there training. And focus on other
priorities in life such as spending time with family and friends, etc... During
these times like these when you are not really pushing yourself in the gym is a
good time to take a break from the extra supplements such as creatine.
So you have to use your own judgment on this one based on your training. If you
are are going to buckle down and get super strict with your diet, training, etc.
and focus on a particular training goal for a few months then this is the time
to take creatine to help maximize your training efforts. If you know that you
won't be able to be 100% committed to super strict training and eating for a
while for what ever reasons (i.e. extra demands at work, school, home, etc.)
then there is no need to take creatine. Basically, what I am trying to say is
only take creatine when you need it :-)
You can mix a teaspoonful of pure creatine powder with a protein drink, glass of
water, juice, etc. I mix mine with my protein drinks. I usually have 3 protein
drinks per day and I will mix a teaspoonful of creatine with each of my protein
drinks. I will have a protein drink in the morning with breakfast, another in
the afternoon, and another in the evening. On the days that I workout I will
always have one of those protein drinks right after my training.
My personal favorite brand of creatine is ProLab Pure Creatine at:
http://totfit.safeshopper.com/89/654.htm this is an excellent creatine product and it is well priced (200 servings for only $30 bucks).
I have read alotz of the Q and A's and have a couple myself. I am
using red potatos in my lunch and dinner meals along with chicken and a
green vegetable, are the potatos ok? and I have never seen anyone ask, what
do you use in your oatmeal as sweetner?
Potatoes are a great complex carbohydrate. I eat them regularly.
In my oatmeal I usually mix in Atkins Maple Syrup this tastes just like pancake syrup,
but it is made from artificial sweeteners so it contains 0 carbs. I will sometimes also mix in 2-3 fat free cheese slices with my oatmeal as well.
I'm 18, 5'9 about 180lbs. I've been lifting on and off for a couple years now. I've had some good gains. I take protein supplements, usually a shake 3 er 4 times a day. At breakfast, then again at about 4, then again after a work out and again before bed. Is this amount good or too much? I'm not sure I get the full 1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight so I supplement alot.
Also, I'm very interested in taking hydroxycut but I'm told the newer ephedra-free version is pretty useless with the ephedra, is this true and if not, how well would it work?
On the bulking side, I want to take creatine but I hear so many mixed opinions about it. The generally consensus on sites and such that sell it say its so good but anyone I talk to usually says its uselss. In the sense that the gains you see are nothing more than extra water retention and that you get less defined due to it. Also the biggie is that you lose all your gains that you got from taking creatine, once you stop using it.
Sorry this is so long, but another thing. You said to someone in your Q&A that you can't lose fat and put on muscle at the same time. So I can't get more ripped while gaining size? Also, if I still wanna get bigger I shouldn't bother taking hydroxycut?
Thanks for your time.
Basically the more protein you eat the better your muscle gains will be. Protein is the raw material needed for muscle growth so you are doing good by having 3-4 protein drinks per day in addition to your regular meals.
You can't bulk up (gain weight) and get ripped (lose weight) at the same time. You will make much better gains in the long run if you focus on one thing at a time. That is why bodybuilders have phases where they bulk up. And phases where they diet down for a contest.
Some of the ephedra-free fat burners do work rather well. I am using one now called Nutrabolics CLENbutical and I find that it works really good for curbing my appetite while I am
dieting. But again if your goal is to bulk up your don't want to take fat burners because they supress your appetite, and in order to bulk up you need to eat a lot.
Creatine is a great supplement to use for both bulking up and dieting down. I personally use ProLab Creatine. Creatine will help increase your strength and muscle fullness. This will help with gaining weight when bulking up. And it will also help to maintain muscle size and strength when getting lean on a low calorie diet. Muscle is naturally made of 75% water, so when you gain any muscle at all the majority of the weight gain is water weight. So yes most of the weight you gain from creatine is water. But this is also true if you gain weight with out using
First off let me tell you how much I enjoy your site. Its the best site that I have been to
that that average lifter can relate too. Keep up the good work. I am 5'7 175 and on a cutting
phase. I have a quick question in regards to L-Arginine. I just bought a bottle of L-Arginine 500. Its says to only take one capsule a day but I heard other wise.
I was thinking about taking 6 capsules a day for a total of 3 grams a day 1 gram each
serving. 2 pills at breakfast, 2 a lunch time and 2 pre workout. Should I be taking more such
as after my workout as well or should I be taking less. Will 6 pills a day hurt me? Any
suggestions will be greatly appreciated. Thanks alot.
Taking too much L-Arginine can lead to diarrhea, weakness and nausea. So start off with just 2 tabs per day for a few days, then up it to 3 tabs per day for a few days, 4 tabs per day for a few days, etc... Build up gradually and give your body a chance to adjust to it.
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