After reading about a half dozen bodybuilding magazines, I became convinced that in terms of a bodybuilding program, nutrition is at least as important to me as a good workout. But how does one really get started on an effective program for bodybuilding nutrition? As one solution, online I found Dave Ruel’s Anabolic Cooking Cookbook. So, I decided to purchase this program. What follows are my own opinions of this set of bodybuilding cookbooks.
Now, I am even more convinced of my initial premise. Even a casual glance at this book and accompanying guides would lead one to conclude that the author’s years of experience in his own bodybuilding program (10 years of trial & error, 4 years of research and a successful career) and the nutrition advice, are thoroughly researched and afford an outstanding value to the user. The materials outlined below reflect a very ambitious goal, and accomplishment. This is valuable nutritional advice, including meal plans, along with cooking and nutritional ‘must-knows’ for those serious about fitness.
What You Get in Dave’s Muscle Cookbook
For reference, this is what you get with the Anabolic Cooking Product:
- “Anabolic Cooking – The Cookbook” – a cookbook with more than 200 Anabolic Recipes . This contains over 200 great-tasting, easy-to-prepare recipes for building muscle and losing fat. With each recipe, there is a breakdown of the amount of protein, fat, carbohydrates, and calories in the meal.
- Meal Plans for Lean Muscle Mass Gains and Optimum Fat Loss - Pre-written Lean Muscle Gains Meal Plans and Optimum Fat Loss Meal Plans for a wide range of diets – from 1200 to 5000 calories. With these sample plans, it’s easy to recognize what to eat each day and also to customize your own meal plans, so as to get results.
- The Complete Nutrition & Cooking Quick Start Guide - Here, the fundamental concepts of bodybuilding cooking and nutrition are explained to readers. First, the kitchen guide explains the usage of basic cookware, and reviews general cooking and recipe terminology. If you have only limited kitchen experience, this guide will get you up to speed quickly, on the techniques of how to cook.
- Optimum Maximizer Advanced Calorie Calculator - With this calculator, you can determine the amount of calories, carbohydrates, protein, and fat you will require each day in order to fulfill your muscle building and fat loss goals
- Virtual Cooking Class
- Post-workout Nutrition Tactics & Secrets
- Time-Saving Tips
- Money Saving Advice – how to prepare bodybuilding cooking on a budget
- A valuable ‘Cheat Sheet’
- Done-for-You Meal Plans
Also, several bonuses are included. The Bonus List includes:
- Anabolicious Post Workout Shakes
- “The Ugly Truth About Supplements”
- Muscle Cooking Training And Food Log – This log is a technique to enable you to keep track of your calories and nutrients consumed. Once deciding upon a meal plan, tracking your food consumption is the most important item towards a bodybuilder’s goal of creating the perfect muscular figure. This simple, yet effective tool is intended to keep this task both simple and effective.
- Members Area with Videos
A Wide Variety Of Savory Recipes
A muscle building diet plan normally calls for eating six (6) times a day, so it’s important to keep meals varied and of interest. The bodybuilding cooking recipes do include breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. The recipes are of wide interest, covering from dinner entrees to healthy desserts to small, good tasting snacks. Also, these meal plans run the gamut from American, to European, to Mediterranean to Asian cuisines, thus catering to a large variation of tastes. A sample of the kinds of dishes you can enjoy are:
- Peanut Butter Protein Energy Bars
- High Protein Granola Bars
- High Protein Chocolate Crepes
- Sun Dried Tomato Salmon
- Beef & Spinach Lasagna
- Baked, Crispy Chicken Nuggets
- Shrimp and Avocado Salad
- Grilled, Sirloin Teriyaki
You don’t need to be engaged in a bodybuilding program to benefit from these healthy meals. The majority of these meals will also work well for everyone in the household.
What I Like About Dave’s Nutrition Program
For bodybuilding, many nutrition experts suggest you eat many small, frequent meals throughout the day, rather than just 2-3 meals. This is done so as to speed up your metabolism. Well, how exactly do you do this? As a practical matter, Muscle Cooking is very effective. You can create your own nutrition plan, since the Muscle Cooking guides you in making decisions on which foods are best for muscle building with or without fat loss, and how to make a delicious, enticing meal out of these foods.
The cookbook is very well written, and has well organized sections for breakfast, chicken & poultry, beef, seafood, salads, soups, and snacks. If – and I emphasize if – you have the commitment to embark on a bodybuilding program which may last several weeks at a minimum, the Cookbook is for you. The major premise of this program ties in with recent research findings that prove nutrition is paramount to an effective bodybuilding effort. One cannot just focus on hours of bodybuilding with expensive gym equipment, and neglect nutrition. So, given this background, Dave Ruel has provided a practical, useful cookbook to complement bodybuilding efforts. The recipes are simple to prepare, not time-consuming, yet they act in an anabolic fashion. Just because many of the recipes are simple and easy, does not mean they are ineffective. Dave has accomplished his goal of creating a “bodybuilder’s cookbook.”
What I Don’t Like About the Muscle Cooking Guides
The author never calls out the need to use these recipes for any prolonged period, which is key to implementing a successful bodybuilding program. Although a meal planner with nutrition data is provided, some indication of the need for a somewhat lengthy program, and smart timing of meals, is not mentioned.
This cookbook attempts to be all things to all people. It is a list of recipes intended for universal bodybuilding appeal. Yet, what is really needed is a sliding scale, which adjusts ingredients based on one’s current weight, desired rate of weight loss, etc, namely a personalized ingredients scale.
There is no printed manual. I guess this package is good for an iPad or a laptop, and one could always print out the Cookbook at home. Still, it would have been nice to have the option of ordering a DVD or hard copy book.
Also, no effort has been made to present the metric equivalents for the recipe ingredients.
Below, we see Dave Ruel preparing one of his Anabolicious Blueberry Oatmeal Breakfast meals.
From my viewpoint, I needed some basic guidance from a “Pro” on how to get started with a good nutrition program to accompany my bodybuilding efforts. For example, I was impressed by the simplicity of the high protein pancakes, made with entirely wholesome ingredients. Both recipes for pancakes are high in protein and just have healthy complex carbohydrates. It won’t do to have complicated instructions for a bodybuilding recipe, so Dave Ruel gives the community of bodybuilders simple instructions, in the case of these pancake recipes it is simple enough that anyone can make it. Dave Ruel is a practical kind of guy. For the pancakes the recipe says “mix all ingredients in a blender” – That’s Dave – just do it.
For the video above, here is the corresponding meal plan in Dave’s Cookbook for the Anabolic Blueberry Oatmeal recipe. It gives you an idea what to expect in this cookbook and nutrition guide.