In this question, the accepted answer for daily protein needs cites, "0.8g/lb ... (body-building)", meaning that if one is body building, one needs 0.8 g of protein per day per lb of body weight. I'm not trying to be a "body builder" in the sense of competitions, but I am trying to build my muscles, strength, and endurance, and so I used this figure. (Perhaps that is inappropriate?).
The problem: I am largely vegetarian (much of which is vegan), 170 lbs, and find that getting 0.8 * 170 = 136 grams of protein, each day, into my diet seems very tough--particularly since I am trying to lose fat while gaining muscle, and so am trying to keep calories low enough to lose fat. I generally don't eat breakfast and my lunch is about 20 g of protein, so this leaves a 116 g at dinner....nearly impossible for me based on my typical diet.
Although I've been lifting weights on and off for about a year and a half, I'm sure I've rarely if ever hit that 136 gram amount. I have clearly made some gains over that time (going from 0 pull-ups to 11), but generally am dissatisfied with my strength and endurance progress. Part of that is clearly an insufficient training regimen, which I can work on, but I've wondered if I am working at a sizable disadvantage by not consistently hitting this 136 grams.
- So, first, to be clear: is that full body weight or only lean body mass?
- As someone who wants to do a modest-medium transformation (lose 20 lbs of fat, gain maybe 10 lbs of muscle?...within 6-10 mos?), is the 0.8 g/lb of body weight the right value?
- To what degree could "under-proteinizing" my diet be holding back progress?