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Favourite Supplement Stack

By | Strongman | No Comments

I do get many questions on what supplement(s) I use and what works best for recovery for pre, intra and post. So lets just start on that and these are the products I use daily on training and non-training days. Please do also note that I’m a sponsored athlete with Optimum Nutrition and the answer is pretty obvious what supplement brand I prefer. So how I’m going to break it down how I use it on training days with food (Food will be stated as a meal or will be noted as meal replacement – MRP)

Training Days
1st Breakfast (MRP)
3 scoops ON Pro Complex Vanilla + 5g ON Glutamine + 5 g of Physillum Husk

9.00am –
2nd Breakfast Meal
1 scoop ON Pro BCAA + 5g Glutamine + 2.5g Physillum Husk

10.00am to 12.00pm
Pre-training – ON BCAA tabs, Amino 2222, Fish Oil, Tribulus, HMB
Intra-Training – ON Pro BCAA + ON Amino Energy + 5g Glutamine + 2.5g Physillum Husk
Post Training – 3 scoops ON Pro Complex Vanilla + 5g ON Glutamine + 5g of Physillum Husk (MRP)

3rd meal

4th Meal

5th Meal

6th Meal

7th Meal
Supplementation – Pancakes made with ON Casein / Pro Complex Whey Ice Cream

Supplementation before bed
BCAA, HMB, ZMA, Vitamin C and Hyaluronic Acid

As above, my supplement of choice is Optimum Nutrition’s Pro Series products which are Pro Complex and Pro BCAA. ON Pro Series is just for athletes who “Demand More”. Thats what the slogan says anyway.

Let me start on Pro Complex first. Pro Complex is a blend of protein contains hydrolyzed whey and egg protein you know you are getting super high quality with minimal lactose or other impurities. Whey Protein Isolates, Hydrolysed Whey Protein Isolates, Egg Protein and Hydrolysed Egg Protein to be exact and is the highest serving of protein when you compare it to all the other protein powders on the Optimum Nutrition product range. Why have 25g of protein when you can have 60g of protein per serving? Even if you break it up into scoops it’s 30g protein per scoop.

I consume 3 scoops which is 90g of protein per serving for me. Optimum Nutrition has been amazing with the other types of whey protein products like the Platinum Series and Gold Standard, but the Pro Series is by far in my own opinion are the best tasting and works really well for me! It doesn’t hide the fact that its simple and it works, especially for athletes that demand more

The Branched Chain Amino Acids Leucine, Isoleucine and Valine are valued for their anabolic and anti-catabolic properties. Used in the 2:1:1 ratio before and/or after endurance exercise they may help spare muscle tissue. Used after strength training, BCAAs help kick-start protein synthesis which plays an important role in muscle growth. There is already 5g of glutamine in Pro BCAA but because of the demands of my training (there are heavy days and there are heavier days, some days they get really intense), I add an additional 5g of glutamine into mine just because I want to recovering fast is really important to me. If you have to pick a flavour, peach mango is the way to go. Trust me on this…

ON Glutamine
Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the body and plays an important role in muscle. During prolonged periods of intense exercise glutamine levels can be depleted which may limit protein synthesis. Glutamine Powder is a simple way to supplement your diet with this amino acid. Many studies have proven that glutamine to improve your immunity system. I abuse myself during training because it just how things are when it comes to prepping for a competition, that also means that my immunity system takes quite a beating. Glutamine really helps with improving a battered immune system from training especially during long and intense training days.

In my next post about supplementation I will cover on the supplements essentials like HMB, ZMA and Fish Oil

In the meantime train hard and injury free!


Strongman Nutrition

By | Eating for performance, Food for thought, Health Tips, Nutrition, Strongman | No Comments

I’ve been asked many times in terms of nutrition, what do I eat when I’m preparing for a competition? How many calories do I consume a day? How many times do I eat a day? Do I enjoy eating donuts? There is no hard and fast rule for nutrition especially in strongman. Of course we have heard that the Pro athletes are eating 10000 to 12000 calories a day.  So I’m going to take some time to answer these questions and share with you my daily nutrition when I’m preparing for a competition.

What do I eat when I’m preparing for a competition?
Mostly animal protein and vegetables with some carbs. I used to be on a “seefood diet” where whatever I see I will eat it. This was fun while it lasted but this wasn’t very beneficial for performance especially if you are eating junk. I knew I needed to fix this, so I worked with a nutritionist, because I know NOTHING about nutrition. I’ll share my nutrition plan later on during this article.

How many calories do I consume a day and how many time a day?
Some professional strongman do eat 8000 to 12000 calories a day, but nutrition is not a one standard plan that fits everyone. Like in my earlier article that even hydration for performance is different for every athlete. Because each strongman athlete are different in size, weight and type. I consume 4800 to 5000 calories a day over 8 to 10 meals during the whole day

Do I enjoy eating donuts?
No, I do not like donuts at all. I think they are excessively sweet and too rich but I have a soft spot for ice cream and waffles. To be exact… Salted Caramel ice cream from my favourite ice cream parlour.

Best thing I’ve done for myself
One of the best things I’ve done for myself is to work with a nutritionist. If i wanted to be serious about my performance and own personal development, I need to take care of the little things. But nutrition is not little, it’s actually quite a big portion of being an athlete and shouldn’t be taken for granted. Initially I was skeptical because I love my food full flavoured and I’m pretty sure I don’t like dry and tasteless chicken breast. So let’s just dive into the diet then, the first two weeks was just an observation of what I ate on a usual day, this was done in a journal and was constantly reviewed daily, with 5-6 meals a day.

And the one take away was that my diet was lacking in greens and leafy vegetables.  So from 3rd week onwards is just tweaking of my diet with more vegetables. Only restrictions I had were no processed food(anything out of a packet, can or tin) and no carbonated drinks. So after a while this was how my daily nutrition looked like

Pro Complex Protein Shake 3 scoops + Glutamine + Physillum Husk

5 eggs omelette with mushroom, capsicum and cup of spinach
2 toast with no butter

10.00am to 12.30pm (This was my training time)
Pre training –  2 Bananas, Handful Almonds and Raisins
Intra training – ON Pro BCAA, Glutamine
Post training – Pro Complex Protein Shake 3 scoops + Glutamine + Physillum Husk

3 roast chicken breast, 2 hard boiled eggs, 1 cup basmati rice and 1 cup of stir fry Chinese Kale

1/2 roast chicken, 1 cup of arugula and baby spinach with shredded sour mango

1/2 roast chicken, 1 cup of arugula and baby spinach with shredded sour mango

1/2 roast chicken, 1 cup of arugula and baby spinach with shredded sour mango

250g of lean beef topside with mushrooms, capsicum and 1 cup arugula

1 scoop of ON Pro Complex Whey Ice cream

After a few months or so, I discovered that my body responded better when my carbs intake are after training, protein high and fat intake lower. This was actually a trail and error and it’s never a one solution fits all. You just have to be patient,  trust the person you work with, keep an open mind and make adjustments or tweaks as you go along. I struggled with the new plan because it’s really a lot of food and by 5pm I was so full that I didn’t even want to be in the kitchen or have food in front of me.

But then some things started to happen

  • I started feeling less sore even after heavy or double training sessions days
  • I woke up feeling rested
  • Had more energy during training, I was able to push myself harder and longer
  • I looked different and my body was going through a recompositioning
  • My shirts got tighter while my pants got looser

After 3-5 months, I started to see more muscular growth in my shoulders, thighs and I had an outline of abs! “What scocery is this???” I thought to myself. Then it hit me…. I’ve been consistent with my training and been taking care of my nutrition. My weight has been the same but I feel stronger, sleep better and just feel way better! Who would have thought that stuffing my face with vegetables would make magic happen! If you look at my nutrition intake, my main source of food is FOOD! Supplementation is about 20-30% of my nutritional intake. Operative word… Supplement

Now before you get adventurous and tell yourself “If Taufiq can do this and eat this much… I can do this too!”. Before I got into this whole nutrition process. I had a full comprehensive blood work done just to make sure my body could take the load of so much eating. This was by order of my nutritionist, so that we could eliminate some food that would not work for me. Always get yourself checked out first and always consult a credible sports nutritionist to work with.

In the meantime, train hard and stay injury free.