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The Story Of Carbs And Energy

It was late 1982. My new friend, dedicated bodybuilder Dusko Popovski, and me were spending hours trying to discover the secret of muscle growth and strength increase. We would sit in my room, and with the heating all the way up, in the winter days, reading and translating bodybuilding magazines from all around the world.

The dominant information that you could have learned from those magazines regarding nutrition, and in those days undisputed truth, was that energy equals carbohydrates. The message was clear; if you want to become stronger you will have to eat lot of carbohydrates! And if you want to become even stronger you will have to really get serious and try to staff yourself with carbohydrates until they start purring through you nose! Since every one in those days, and probably now to, wanted to get as strong as possible, the outcome was easily predictable. On the end of the day, food rich with carbohydrates was and still is very chip, and if it gives you so much energy and strength, bingo! Magic answer was there, available for every one.

After long hours and many months of discussions we have concluded that carbohydrates are the way forward. Complex and simple, rice, potatoes, bread, sweets, cakes, ice cream; that would mean more strength and ultimately more muscles. Once mathematically proven, the theory had to be also proven in practice. And the ordeal started. 5 slices of brown bresd in the morning, big portion of rice for lunch, 20 scoops of ice cream after training, cereals with nuts and raisins in the after noon, potatoes in the evening and more cakes late at night. There were a lot of eggs, meat, fish and chicken too. Add time factor on top of that and try to guess the results after 6 months.

My bench press went from 80 kg to 120 kg, shoulder press from 35 kg to 50 kg, squats from 100 kg to 150 kg; biceps curls from 35 kg to 50 kg. That was great! Strength went up! What about my body weight? From starting 85 kg I ended up weighing astonishing 112 kg in 6 months! I was gaining in average 4,5 kg per month. And everything would be absolutely perfect if we ignore the major reason of getting involved in bodybuilding; getting bigger, stronger and LEANER! Not to mention proportions, which are only visible once your body fat level becomes very low.

I have achieved everything planed, apart from getting leaner. For the first time in my life I gained fat tissue around my waist, my buttocks were beyond recognition, and I had no trousers that I could have wear. After reaching that weight of 112 kg and my new shape, I become suspicious about the whole energy myth. On the end of the day that was undisputable truth! Carbohydrates were energy. More carbohydrates mean more energy, more energy means more strength, more strength means more muscles, so what I did wrong? At that stage and that point of time I couldn't find an answer. I thought that getting 'bigger' was the first stage in bodybuilder's carrier and that the time will help me find the right answer, and still indulging tasty carbohydrate foods get in shape and proportion that I wanted. Full of optimism and belief I continued with my first stage for next 3 years.

Than came March 1985.

There was a bodybuilding show in near by town that was expected to attract top competitive athletes from all around the country. My friends and me decided to go and see it. For me that was the first bodybuilding show, I haven't seen anything like that ever before. My expectations were huge, I was expecting lot of big guys, lot of big muscles and I already have made a picture in my mind how would they look. Fanny enough, the picture in my mind wasn?t that different of my than current shape. Tough I was big, my massive 18 stone physic wasn't really perfect, and I new it. Still expectations were that those top guys wouldn't look much different than me.

The start of the show was a complete shock! All of those athletes were in amazing shape, very defined, every one of them had six pack very refined and sharp, and the most striking discovery was that all of them seemed to know how to exercise properly and how to eat properly! Otherwise, I thought then, it would be impossible for them to end up with such great look. But, still, the heavy weight category was the one that I was anxiously expecting. Those were the guys of my weight, my height; this was the class that I will compete in eventually. It seemed to me then that I would have to wait for that at list another 3 to 4 years?

And than, the host announced the most popular, heavy weight class, with some 15 competitors. Since the moment the guys started walking out on the stage I had my ayes wide open, I don?t event think that I was blinking for next 20 minutes. The biggest guys in the show, were in the same time the hardest, the most refined, their waistlines were so small, shoulders so wide and big! The condition of these guys was so striking, they were looking totally unreal to me and most shockingly, they didn't look anything close to me! If I considered myself big, then I thought they are giants. Being big and defined with very little body fat on them those guys looked like out of this world!

And to come back to our 'undisputable' source of energy, the mighty carbohydrates that are, according to medical and sport establishment, responsible for your energy and strength. Let see what happened to that blind believe whose most devoted follower, at that time happened to be nobody else but me!

I was lucky enough to speak to few of the top guys after the show. Regarding training intensity, frequency and selection of exercises I wasn?t far from most of them. But than, confusing enough why on earth didn?t I look like them? It didn?t take long for the conversation to switch to nutrition. And it wasn?t me who initiated it, it were the big and hard guys who started asking each other about the most difficult, exiting and challenging issue of sport in general; food. It was the competitive diets that steal the show. And when they started talking about all those protein food, fresh vegetables, fruit, and lot of water I almost exploded from anxiousness to hear a word about rice, pasta, porridge, and potatoes.

I needed it beadily to justify my world of carbohydrates, my realm of energy and strength. And guess what; none of them mentioned any of that food! Then I started asking them about the great benefits of starchy foods, and high levels of strength and energy that are unimaginable without that type of food. The answer to my religious obsession came in form of friendly laughter from my new friends. They all had one thing in common; non of them was eating starchy carbs, and diet high in protein and vegetables with a bit of fruit in combination with high intensity daily weight training was every one's recipe for top condition.

The ultimate shape only comes from ultimate approaches in diet and training.

Although not the happiest person after all that experience, I managed to put myself together and decide to strip of my old, ignorant and single-minded skin and try something new, something different! On the end of the day, you can criticize theories but you cannot deny reality the ultimate power of convincing. And especially when the reality is so big, hard and extremely good looking.

Once on the right pat, eating more fresh vegetables then ever, making fish, chicken and lean steaks my priority protein food, I ended up on the stage within 8 months! Some 4 stones lighter, with the 6 pack that I couldn?t even dream about, and the waist line smaller than in my wildest dreams, I started my competitive carrier that culminated with 17 victories in 46 shows. Time and consistency in right diet and right training brought my competitive body weight to 17 stones with extremely low body fat level.

So if you are ready to shade some pound or stones of fat reconsider your understanding of healthy eating. They may be tasty, but foods rich in carbohydrates are not the best choice to give you consistent level of energy throughout the day, and definitely the worst when it comes to lean, shaped and defined body. Ultimateshape.com is welcoming every one who cares about the quality of life. And don't forget; every body can!

This Article was written by Nash Jocic, Fitness Guru. Visit his website at http://www.ultimateshape.com

Nash Jocic

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