AtA: Macro-split 40P/40F/20C vs 40P/40C/20F

Posted May 7th, 2010 in Uncategorized by Clint

What’s the difference with going with a diet that is 40 pro / 40 carb / 20 fat? If I read correctly, I think Alfalfa’s nutrition thread ( recommended that, while you recommend the 40 pro / 40 fat / 20 carb. Are there advantages with one over the other? Is there a situation/goal where one is better, or are they pretty much the same.

The 40P/40F/20C is just a loose guideline, but in following the exercise concepts it tends to hit pretty close to the mark. Since the Peak/Base Meal design only has significant carbs being consumed after a workout, even an active person working out twice a day will still need around 4 Base meals that are low-carb. So even at this top end with a 2:1 ratio of Base:Peak meals, you’ll find that the calories have to come primarily from protein and fat (people who work out less often may only eat 1 or even 0 Peak meals on an off day).

It’s the division of carbs from fat that (in part) requires less strictness and structure in the tracking of calories, which serves three major purposes:

  • To allow for the differences between individuals, as when looking at raw numbers, one person may do with 2300 calories what the next person would like 2800 for, other factors being equal. By putting the focus on the meal composition rather than math, it allows people the wiggle room necessary to eat comfortably without significantly impeding their results.
  • The avoidance of math. While I know some individuals who love nothing more than plugging ounces of chicken breast and water chestnuts into a spreadsheet and dancing as the calculations rain down, I’ve found the average person finds such tracking at best distracting and cumbersome, and at worst daunting and frustrating. While food logs can be incredibly useful devices, it is often easier to just say “ok, here’s a framework: oreos don’t fit into it. c’est la vie.”
  • The average diet is swimming in excess carbs. A young lady I’ve recently been working with had a starting diet closer 5/10/85:
    breakfast: bowl of cereal
    lunch: white rice
    dinner: pasta
    dessert: candy

    But you can see french fries and sandwiches and bagels and pizza and soda and so much other stuff easily filling in there. And this high-carb nutritional profile is by far the most common starting point I see. By redirecting the focus to fat and protein, and making carbs a ‘reward’ of sorts for physical activity, I find it helps people make a clean break from that carb-saturated lifestyle.

This certainly doesn’t invalidate other methods, but I find this approach works for the plan I put forward, in the most number of cases, with the greatest number of people. But individuals aren’t statistics, so I’d recommend if what someone is doing is working well to keep at it, provided they are both healthy and happy.

We Have Lift-off: 10,000 downloads of the e-book

Posted April 28th, 2010 in Uncategorized by Clint

So I missed refreshing at exactly the right moment and thus didn’t get a screenshot of 10,000 even, but here’s a nice one of 10,004, which means (I hope) roughly 10k people are now have read, are reading, or intend to read Brain Over Brawn (I’d like to to think the people who have downloaded it more than once are balanced out by the people sharing the book itself rather than the link).

10,000 downloads, holy bejowly

Go Team Venture! o/\o

If you enjoyed and/or benefited from the book, if you have a story to tell about how it helped you or someone you know, or if you just want to say hi, feel free to drop me a line. Readers like you are the reason I’m doing/have done this in the first place, and I am delighted to hear when it’s made a difference for someone.  And feel free to keep giving that link to anyone you think it might benefit (hint: it’s good for just about anyone, and it’s not a “hey you are fat maybe this book can help” sort of thing; everybody wants to be ‘healthier’ no matter their current condition). I’ve got the bandwidth, let’s do this thing.

Brain Over Brawn on Facebook

Posted March 8th, 2010 in Site Update, Uncategorized by Clint

I (am pretty sure that I) have created a facebook fan page for the book.

Since you can read it for free, it’s fairly easy for you to decide if you are likewise a fan. Feel free to “share” it, join up as a fan, or whatever else people can do with this thing.

I confess I don’t know a lot about the whole social networking scene as yet, so if you want to e-mail me regarding what I might have done wrong or other things I might do right to help get the word out regarding my book, you have my appreciation in advance.

Quacks II: Beyond Chiropracty and Personal Trainers

Posted February 22nd, 2010 in Uncategorized by Clint

Lately, the fact has come up that I had carelessly namedropped “reflexology” in an otherwise (hopefully) respectable and science-driven book. In retrospect, this was probably an error. On occasion, I let myself get excited about various pilot studies that come out with quantifiable results from deep tissue massage as complimentary therapy, and the NIH (and science in general) tends to classify foot and/or hand massage as ‘reflexology’. So that’s what I call it. However, I do not take any stock in the “Reflexology” as in a systematized practice of massaging pressure points in an effort to cause internal responses in the body and organs or redirect energy or chi or ki or whatever you want to say.

I don’t mean to simply to distance myself from it. I expect any ‘science’, especially medicine or wellness related, to apply the scientific method to its study and findings as strictly as is possible (I understand fields that aren’t “hard” science like sociology and political science have a tougher time adhering, but I respect those that do their best). Disregard for scientific method is often because the systemizers wish the results to reflect the theory and not the other way around.

I used to be ambivalent to quackery; live and let live, if it makes someone happy then great, whatever. But apathy is not suitable, since if someone profits by pushing quackery it not only encourages more ‘believers’, but putting money and thereby ‘success’ into such a practice also perpetuates by convincing some said believers (or less scrupulous hucksters) into following suit, buying the books, practicing, preaching, and perhaps believing whole-heartedly in the schtick themselves.

Reflexology, astrology, phrenology, magic spells, power crystals, magnets, gimmick diets, all junk. All claptrap and hokum designed to sucker in the gullible for a dollar. Science has enough work to do actually figuring out what’s going on without the necessity of fighting against all the silly crap we’ve accrued over the centuries and millenia. That’s the same type of misinformation problem “Brain Over Brawn” itself was written to address, and I have no intent of feeding into it, even with a single careless sentence.

While I am open to the possibility there are bits and pieces of Alternative Medicine that may be useful as complimentary therapy, there are two very real dangers from any kind of such practice: The first is if they provide false information, such as saying that someone doesn’t have a problem in an area they actually do. The other and worse is when it is substituted as “real” treatment and a person forgoes (or forbids another) from receiving scientific medical care in favor of some ‘mystic cure that the fatcats in Washington don’t want you to know about’. There are certainly flaws with the current state of health care, but overall it does an incredibly greater amount of good than harm. The same cannot be said about any ‘alternative’ medicine… at least not in any way verifiable by a double-blind study.

Donating Blood: Change the Oil, Save a Life

Posted February 16th, 2010 in Uncategorized by Clint

I donate blood. I do it every time the Red Cross calls, which is usually as soon I’m eligible again (56 days I think, 8 weeks), which means well after I’ve regenerated all my plasma and red blood cells. Why do I do it? Well, something like 5% of people donate, and if we were at 10% we (theoretically) wouldn’t face blood shortages. And 1 in 3 people are eligible to donate (if you aren’t eligible, hey you tried. but most people don’t even know). Trying to help bridge that gap I guess.

Sure, I could talk about my overactive imagination and how around the world we face constant blood shortages due to lack of donors. How there’s some 6 year old kid being wheeled into an emergency room, fresh out of a car wreck, covered in lacerations and clutching a blood-soaked teddy bear. Sorry kid, you gonna die because Clint’s too busy watching reruns of Metalocalypse to have gone to the clinic. Or he doesn’t care for needles. Or some other sorry excuse. Naw, I can’t do that.

But I also do it for the most self-indulgent of reasons: my own health. And I’m not even talking about how it’s more likely than not I’ll need a transfusion at some point in my life. Though I live what I consider to be a fairly healthy lifestyle, I indulge on occasion. And even at 100% healthy intake, the body isn’t 100% efficient. There are wastes. There’s dirt. There’s wear and tear. Processes break down and are imperfect. So I get rid of that stanky old blood and make myself some fresh, clean, new and shiny blood to replace it. So some cancer patient or burn victim gets my hand-me-down blood, fine. Go team. But what it means for me is freshly-squeezed handcrafted blood in the tank.

Plus, every blood donation center I’ve seen has free snacks and juice. And I donate at the Red Cross, and those guys have Nutter Butters on hand. If donating blood ain’t reason for a little cheat snack, I don’t know what is.

Brain Over Brawn: now on Old Man Bezos’ little online store

Posted January 22nd, 2010 in Uncategorized by Clint

Brain Over Brawn is now up on

Here’s that earl: