To some, the operative word in the term “diet” is “die” as in death! This should not be the case. Think of a diet as nutrition re-engineering for a purpose. This is a program made for strength athletes, meaning people who must minimize body fat while elevating performance and lean muscle so they can fit into the most competitive weight class for their sport. I have perfected various nutrition systems by working with a wide variety of strength athletes ranging from powerlifters, bodybuilders, weekend warriors, and elite professional athletes. The strategies presented below will help you form a base of success while taking into account your performance needs. This is not a program for Joe average. However, it’s easy enough for anyone to follow.

Spending thousands of words on why other plans are wrong isn’t worth your time. I’ve come to several conclusions over the last ten years that we must get out into the open. Low-refined (man-made/packaged goods) carb plans are great for fat loss. Calorie counting is for aerobics instructors. Dietary fat makes your testosterone levels increase, and tofu is what we should be feeding enemy combatants in Iraq!

Where most fat loss plans go wrong!

Let’s face it. Strength athletes aren’t the core audience of the many dozens of nutrition books stuffing bookstore shelves. These plans are designed for largely sedentary people and definitely not those wanting to break personal records in a variety of lifts or elevate performance in any area. The plan herein takes into account the energy needs of strength athletes. To ensure a high energy output, make sure you don’t cut food intake drastically in a short period of time. Instead, replace bad food choices with good items and gradually adopt the necessary habits to be effective. Remember, starvation type plans may yield some short-term results, but they will zap your strength quickly while burning a combination of hard-earned muscle and body fat. Fuel the muscle and starve the fat with frequent feedings of nutrient dense food. This makes more raw materials available around the clock and supports a steady energy level throughout the day, which can be directly tied to performance.

Dietary fat is not the enemy

A common reason why athletes see big drops in strength and muscle during a fat loss effort is tied directly to a reduction of dietary fat intake. The appropriate dietary fat sources are precursors for testosterone production and an important part of a healthy nutrition plan.

Not all calories were created equal

Let’s start with calories. Yes, they are a consideration but not the overriding factor of success or failure. Focus on consuming the right foods in the right combination and at the right time. The calorie issue will take care of itself. After all, would you consider 2,000 calories of corn chips to be equivalent to 2,000 calories of lean protein? The answer is no because each would have a distinctly different impact on your hormonal environment that governs fat loss, muscle growth, and performance.

No need for a Ph.D. in mathematics

I can tell everyone to consume six meals per day with exactly proportioned macronutrients using mathematical precision that would rival even the best bureaucrats but that isn’t realistic. Instead, get an idea of how many grams of protein, dietary fat, and carbs correlate to certain food choices based on your weight.

Moving forward, estimate your portion sizes or, for the best results, use a scale to determine what you’re eating once a week. I wouldn’t bother counting the number of carbs from green vegetables sources. Concern yourself with getting enough because it’s highly unlikely that you’ll eat too many green vegetables.

Three meals may be enough for some but not for most. Spread out your nutrient intake as much as you can without it taking over your life. Amino loading with 100 percent MR and muscle synthesis between meals helps a great deal to extend the amount of time you have between feedings while still being productive. Many people set themselves up for failure by not making good food choices available. Bring your lunch to work because it will save time and money and ensure that you can stay on track. Take an hour or two each week and cook in bulk so you don’t have to worry about it daily.

Eat like a caveman and look like a REAL man

It seems many elements of the media are attacking the mindset of aggressive men who seem to be the source of every problem in our society, according to some who broadcast daily on the numerous women’s entertainment channels. This is a conspiracy to drop testosterone levels by forcing alpha males to consider tofu and diet soda as a good snack. Yes, they’re great snacks if you want to rule the aerobics studio!

According to anthropologists, our digestive capabilities have changed less than one-tenth of a percent over the last 5,000 years. Five thousand years ago, there weren’t any fast food stands, bread, potatoes chips, or other packaged foods that are highly refined and stuffed with numerous items to preserve shelf life (trans fats). Our digestive systems aren’t well-equipped to handle these items, and as a result, obesity rates are at an all-time high. Focus on food choices that were available 5,000 years ago such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, and all sorts of dead animals (not road kill—although it’s inexpensive, it can be dangerous!). No, there is no such thing as a pastry tree or cookie plant so dump those items 6.75 days per week and you will be able to get ripped FAST!

The carb controversy settled

We’re aiming to manage blood sugar and ultimately insulin by using superior nutrient timing, choices, and combinations. Blood sugar levels have a huge impact on energy. When they’re steady, you will feel better, which will be apparent. However, when they make large swings due to poor eating habits, your insulin levels will surge. Yes, insulin is the most anabolic hormone, but it’s also a potent fat storage hormone that can’t be elevated all of the time unless you want to look like a sumo wrestler.

Many things elevate cortisol, which is a perfectly normal stress hormone. Cortisol naturally elevates during exercise, traffic altercations, or any other stressful incident that you can imagine. Why is this important to you? As a strength athlete, I’m guessing you aren’t trying to increase the “tone” of your glutes like one of the ladies at the 15-minute workout centers in a strip mall but rather you’re trying to chop down the fat that sits on your mid-section. Cortisol lights up fat receptors in the mid-section like a lard storage Christmas tree, and in the presence of elevated insulin, you have the ideal situation for pouring on the fat. Moral of the story? Keep cortisol in check, and you can reduce your body fat faster!

Yes, it takes some time to successfully transition to a low carb intake from an energy perspective. It can take up to two weeks for the body to make this shift to using fat as a fuel source instead of carbs. If need be, you can make this a gradual approach and reduce your carb intake to one-third of total food volume. However, you must eliminate all of the refined items that we mentioned before right away if you want to earn an accelerated rate of fat loss.

Those seeking the fastest results with no interruptions in performance should amino load with 100 percent MR and muscle synthesis around training and between meals. This powerful stack of anti-catabolic (cortisol lowering) and anabolic elements provides an alternative energy source during training while forcing the body to use more stored fat as fuel during exercise. Your low carb transition will be very smooth with the implementation of amino loading.

The real fat loss MRP

Another ace up the sleeve of strength athletes wanting to lose body fat fast is to amino load between meals. In addition to providing potent raw materials to keep muscles full all day long, the signals sent to the brain during ingestion kick start metabolism because the aminos mimic the presence of food in many respects. As a result, a raging metabolism has nothing to burn except stored fat since the amino loading combo has little caloric value. Amino loading is far more effective than using protein shakes between meals, which have a caloric burden, little net amino acid retention post-digestion, slow delivery of nutrients, and potential for food allergies that are highly problematic when aiming to lose body fat and maximize performance.


Protein power: Use 1.5–2 g of protein per lean pound of body weight per day split over your meals. If you want to be more technical, stay on the higher side during days that you train to meet the higher energy demands. Amino loading regularly with 100 percent MR and muscle synthesis allows for a protein intake on the lower side of the spectrum because the supplementation is so powerful. As the day moves on, go for leaner sources such as fish and seafood for dinner. Red meat is best consumed early in the day, and organic beef has many advantages because it contains naturally occurring fats with less troublesome hormones, antibiotics, and other crap that we shouldn’t be ingesting.

Rotate your protein sources frequently to avoid food allergies and boredom. Good sources include whole eggs, lean beef, buffalo, chicken, turkey, ostrich, fish, seafood, lamb, pork loin, and duck but again, no road kill!

Dietary fat: Take 0.5 g of dietary fat per lean pound of body weight per day split over your meals. These include nuts but not peanuts. Instead, go for the raw variety of nuts that are minimally processed. Also try avocados, organic beef, and extra virgin olive oil from a dark bottle or can.

Minimize flax when aiming to reduce body fat because those over the age of 35 lack the enzymes needed to convert raw materials from flax into viable fuel sources. This can be problematic from a fat loss perspective. We get enough omega 6 out of the food supply creating a greater need for omega 3. You want to improve your omega 3 to 6 ratio to support optimal performance. Because flax is high in omega 6, go for an essential fatty acid supplement like Dr. Eric Serrano’s, Alpha Omega.

Omega 3 supplementation is crucial for managing insulin sensitivity along with proper rest, diet, and exercise. Again, as mentioned before, hormones govern fat loss, and success will be hard to come by when insulin is consistently elevated.

There are many essential fatty acid supplements (fish oil) on the market, but many are high in toxins, which nullify the effectiveness of ingredients, because manufactures choose cheaper raw materials to lower price points. Alpha Omega goes through an elaborate filtration process to address this important issue. You get what you pay for when it comes to supplement ingredient quality, design concepts, and technology. Let’s face it. A small margin differentiates the champion and second place. You owe it to yourself to use the best supplement tools to get the job done.

Carbs: Consume an unlimited amount of green vegetables each day—the more the better. While not green, this does include onions, cauliflower, and peppers. The obvious choices are broccoli, asparagus, green beans, and spinach. Avoid peas, corn, carrots, and potatoes.

For maximal fat loss in the shortest period of time possible, don’t’ consume any carbs that don’t come from green vegetables for 14 days. For days 15–28, consume 0.5 g of carbs per lean pound of body weight only on weight training days and within two hours following your workout. The best sources are sweet potatoes, rice, low glycemic index fruits, and oatmeal. No sport drinks! Repeat the cycle following day 28.

Pre- and post-workout nutrition

One of the worst things that you can do is go into a workout session hungry and low on energy. It’s best to have a meal 2–3 hours before training so that your food is fully digested and the nutrients available for use. You don’t need a significant amount of carbohydrate intake during the meals before training to impact your training session. Contrary to popular belief, very little glycogen (stored carbohydrate) is used during anaerobic exercise. The best time to replenish is during the meal post-workout when muscles are primed for new raw materials to be stored.

The use of properly proportioned amino acids within the 100 percent MR and muscle synthesis will prime the body for exercise by optimizing the hormonal environment and forcing the body to use more stored fat as fuel. You will notice increased rates of recovery within a week or two of amino loading around workouts, and body composition improvements will show up soon there after depending on how well you execute training and diet.

Skillfully designed by retired powerlifter, Dr. Eric Serrano, MD, the 100 percent MR and muscle synthesis represents years of hard research including real patient trials. Dr. Serrano, who practices in Pickerington, Ohio, doesn’t use Joe average off the street as a test subject. Rather he has a selection of patients including top powerlifters, bodybuilders, and professional athletes around the country who have proven the value of his supplementation protocols. The research conclusively showed that peak power and power endurance of elite athletes was significantly increased.

“The faster muscles recover, the greater the ability for the nervous system to positively adapt to training, facilitating larger increases in strength.” —Eric Serrano, MD

The post-workout meal should be your largest serving of food each day and should be within 1–2 hours following training. Amino loading immediately post-training buys you some extra time to eat but the sooner the better following the training session.

I’m not a chef, and I also don’t do windows so don’t ask me for recipes. However, there are many great books with recipes that exclude sugar and refined carbs. Be a man and eat more dead animals. After all, that’s what we were designed to do! Rotate your food choices often to prevent boredom and food allergies. Yes, it’s a problem to consume the same food choices daily. If you’ve had eggs for breakfast every morning over the last ten years, you may notice yourself feeling sick an hour later. This is a sign that something isn’t agreeing with you, according to the mad powerlifter, Dr. Serrano.

Choose to be successful

Remember, you’re a strength athlete. Use that strength to impose your will on everyone around you. Get the people you live with, co-workers, family, and friends to understand that you’re on a mission to lose body fat. If they have a problem with you doing that, then that’s not your problem. Let them stay fat, but tell them not to bring junk food into your home. I always say you wouldn’t surround a recovering crack head with a bunch of crack, would you? Well, at least I wouldn’t so don’t make bad food choices available for you to munch on in the middle of the night. If they aren’t there, you can’t eat them.

Don’t fall victim to the idea that kids need junk food in the house. It isn’t good for you or them. Don’t buy into the myth that American kids are strong and healthy. I watch these fast food commercials where dad comes home with a bucket of chicken for his attractive wife and perfect kids. In the real world, the family eating that bucket of fried chicken each night doesn’t look like that! The real scene features a fat wife, fat kids, and you in a wife beater with stains all over it!

Refinement tools

You’ll have to measure your progress regularly to know how to adjust your plan. However, don’t call me seven days after you started and complain that you have only lost two pounds. That isn’t accurate data because the scale weight can also shift upward when muscle mass increases. A body composition test using calipers, a body pod, or hydrostatic weighting should be done every 4–8 weeks so that you have an objective way to measure progress. Aim to keep all measurement elements as consistent as possible (i.e. time of day).

What level of progress should you expect? This is hard to say because the variables impacting each person’s situation differs. However, the more compliant you are, the better you will do. Remember, if you aren’t 400 lbs with 30 percent or more body fat, you can’t expect to lose 10 lbs in a week. Make sure your expectations are realistic, and rely on a body fat percentage test, not the scale.

Taking some notes daily or weekly is very helpful. Is your energy low? If so, what time of day? This may lead you to discover that there’s too large of a gap between your meals or not enough food. If you find yourself starving, increase your food intake by 10 percent while boosting your green vegetable intake.

Example of an Elite Nutrition Plan

Adjust portion sizes and macronutrient percentages based on body weight and activity levels.  Those performing active work such as construction, manual labor, etc. will be able to get away with a higher carb intake than relatively sedentary workers.

The plan below is appropriate for a 200–220 lb man.

Breakfast, 7–8 a.m.

4 whole eggs and 4 egg whites

4 slices lean turkey bacon

2 cups green peppers and onions mixed with eggs

3 alpha omega

No trans fats sprays for pan

Mid-morning, 9–10 a.m.

Amino load

1 scoop 100% MR

5 Muscle Synthesis Caps

Morning snack, 11–12 p.m.

½ cup deluxe mixed nuts

Lunch, 1–2 p.m.

8–10 oz 90% lean ground beef or steak

2 cups green vegetables

1 apple

Mid-afternoon, 3–4 p.m.

Amino load

1 scoop 100% MR

5 Muscle Synthesis caps

Late-afternoon snack

2 buffalo burger patties

1 orange

30 minutes prior to training

3–4 scoops 100% MR

15–20 Muscle Synthesis caps

Immediately after training

3–4 scoops 100% MR

15–20 Muscle Synthesis caps

Dinner within 1 hour of training

8–10 oz fish or seafood

1–2 cups brown rice or 1–2 sweet potatoes (only on days following training)

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

3 alpha omega