Two things I’ll admit here before we get into this: 1) I’m not advocating that you eat a poor diet all the time, and 2) I do indeed love pizza and craft beer (aka: high quality beer).
Pizza and beer is something I typically partake in on the weekends. I know some of you may frown upon this, and that’s okay. I’m truly passionate about building muscle and helping others do the same, but I also enjoy many aspects of life in general. That said, pizza and beer (not necessarily always combined) is something I have about once a week. Now that we’ve covered that, let’s move on to why I’m posting this blog.
Carbing Up the Day Before Workout
What prompted me to write this is I’ve noticed that my workouts have been phenomenal the next morning after having pizza and beer the night before (no, I don’t do this every night). Since I train early mornings, carbing up that evening prior to my workout seems to give me loads of energy.
It seems Sunday evenings are the norm for me to have pizza and beer. I usually train back on Monday mornings. That’s a large body part in which I train with more volume. Those extra carbs and calories have proven to be beneficial to my back workouts.
Again, this is obviously not something I do often. And I don’t generally take in a lot of carbs at night before bed. In fact, I usually have dinner with a minimal to a moderate amount of carbs, and right before bed I slam a protein shake (whey only).
But there’s something interesting I’ve noticed. About every second or third evening I’ll bump up my carbs a bit. This seems to be more appropriate the night before training back or legs. Training those muscles require more energy, so in essence you need more nutrients.
Now these higher carb meals aren’t always pizza and beer! As I mentioned earlier, that’s saved for the weekends. In all honesty, I’m not super strict with my diet. I know what foods work well for me and which one’s do not. And I know when I’ve had too much of a good thing. We have to be honest with ourselves. I know what to stay away from or at least reduce when I want to lean out. But overall, I find that carb cycling is very effective.
Here’s a quick display of a carb cycling plan:
- Sunday: Lenient diet (perhaps pizza and beer)
- Monday: Sensible diet
- Tuesday: Sensible diet with a little more carbs in the evenings (the next morning is leg day for me)
- Wednesday: Sensible diet, sometimes more carbs in the morning
- Thursday: Sensible diet
- Friday: Semi-lenient diet
- Saturday: Lenient diet
This is my personal diet plan, for the most part. I’m not saying it’s good or bad, nor am I saying you should or shouldn’t follow this. It’s simply what I stick to. For my own goals, it seems to work just fine. Again, I don’t compete; however, I do go through different phases throughout the year. If I need to lean up, I’ll tighten up the above diet plan.
Pizza and Beer – Just Because You Can…
Just because you can doesn’t necessarily mean you should. I’m by no means suggesting that you start drinking beer or any type of alcohol if that’s not your thing. And if you’re prone to alcoholism, I certainly don’t recommend my pizza and beer night (perhaps just pizza if this is the case for you). Again, be honest with yourself.
To add, if you struggle with being overweight, this isn’t something you need to partake in either. And of course if you’re training for a bodybuilding or physique competition, well, you know what you can and can’t do. Although I do know some people that have had a couple of glasses of wine prior to a physique competition. This obviously wasn’t to get drunk but the sugar made their muscles quickly fill out. There’s a science to this for those that compete.
Moderation, Especially Pizza and Beer
For me, balance is key. Most of you know that I don’t compete (I’m more of the artsy type, class D personality – not competitive at all). I lift weights 5x a week and run this site purely because I love it and have a passion for this stuff. I choose to share that with you.
On the same token, I also have other passions and things in life that fulfill me aside from weight training. Yes, I pour a lot of energy into my training and I’m very conscience of everything that may impact that, whether positive or negative. But hey, I enjoy some craft beers now and then as well. Yes, these are loaded with calories (I don’t drink the cheap crap…if you’ve read this far down, you know what I’m talking about). I do have a slight passion for the brewing process and the different formulas of craft beers. And I enjoy supporting local breweries (here in Tampa we have Cigar City, Tampa Bay Brewing, just to name a couple).
My wife and I also have a love for mom and pop restaurants. These types of places are usually a bit more healthy than chain restaurants as most of them use fresh and/or organic (homemade) ingredients. We’re big small business and community supporters so this is another passion of mine.
Our absolute favorite mom and pop restaurant for pizza is Sally Oneal’s here in Tampa! Everything is made from scratch and it’s downright delicious. And they always have good craft beers on tap, which is a plus for me.
I hope you enjoyed this write up. Though there’s a comical side to it, I feel sometimes our society is so extreme one way or the other. My views tend to be somewhere in the middle. living a balanced life is important to me. I don’t live in the gym 24/7 and eat nothing but chicken and broccoli. And I d0n’t sit around eating pizza and drinking beer all the time. A little of this, and a little of that. Everything in moderation.
Train (and eat/drink) with Passion,