So you’ve dieted hard, and trained even harder. Your mind and your body have been battered and depleted from the high volume of training. It’s time to reap the rewards by allowing your body to recover, and super-compensate for the work you have done.
They key is giving your body the bricks it needs to rebuild and then some, as well as satisfying your well deserved indulgences. Here are the things you need to understand:
Post Overreach Condition:
- High inflammation
- Low testosterone
- Fatigued adrenals
- Low nutrient reserves (minerals, enzymes, antioxidants, vitamins)
Goals for Supercompensation:
- Decrease inflammation and increase repair
- Increase testosterone and grow
- Revive the adrenals
- Restore nutrient reserves
Decreasing inflammation and increasing repair:
You best anti-inflammatory is sleep. Without getting adequate sleep, you can forget about skin stretching gains during your super-compensation. Because of the hard training ahead, sleeping may be eluding you. Some tips for improving sleep and repair during this time:
- Increase your magnesium intake up to double
- Use 10g of glutamine before bed
- Use 2-10g of Inositol powder
- Increase your prescribed sleeping supplements by taking a second dose 2 hours before bed.
In addition to sleep, you should also be sure to get in your fish oil, and you can add a product like CL-Ox before bed that will help decrease inflammation before sleep. This will allow for improved growth hormone release overnight as well.
Increase Testosterone and pack on muscle:
Testosterone production will benefit from increasing sleep and decreasing inflammation, but to optimally grow during this period, it is important that we increase FREE TESTOSTERONE. A protein called SHBG, steroid hormone binding globulin, binds up testosterone. Lowering SHBG and increasing free testosterone is easily accomplished by increasing insulin. During the supercompensation period, eating medium and high glycemic carbs can help increase muscle gains and fat loss. For optimal results, continue to eat a low carb breakfast, and try to finish your last carb meal 3 hours before bed. This keeps elevated insulin levels from interfering with growth hormone release.
Revive and repair your Adrenals:
Once again, sleep and rest is a necessity for your adrenals to recover. A 3-5 day break from training is also a must. Remember gains are not made in the gym, but in during the rest and recovery periods between workouts. In addition to a 3-5 day hiatus from the gym, a 30-50% reduction in training volume for an additional 3-5 days on top of that is recommended, for a minimum total of 6-10 days of decreased training. During this period it is best to eliminate all stimulants with the exception of green tea.
You want to increase adaptogenic herbs, or herbal tea can improve recovery as well. Drinking calming herbal teas the last 4 hours of the day is a great approach. A mix of calming amino acids between your last 2 meals and before bed is great for rebuilding the brain and adrenals alike.
- Glutamine 5g
- Taurine 2g
- Lysine 2g
- optional 1-2g of Inositol
Restore Nutrient Reserves:
Overtraining depletes vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are important for repair and enzyme production. Taking 1.5 servings/day of your multi-vitamin/multi-mineral and additional zinc and magnesium will cover most of your basis. To replenish antioxidant reserves take up to 6g of vitamin C in divided doses and at least 6 serving of powdered greens per day. Since the holidays are usually a time of gathering and family meals, you may find it easiest to increase. Alkalizing with some glutamine between heavy meals will help keep blood-sugar levels stable. Making sure you get in your multi’s, zinc, and magnesium will help with insulin sensitivity.
The easiest insulin sensitizer you have on hand is cassia cinnamon and resistant starch.