1st Diet reveals poorer than thought physique

Discussion in 'Dieting / Supplement Discussion' started by RedRover, May 15, 2014.

  1. RedRover

    RedRover Orange Belt

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    I'm about wrapped up with my first real disciplined effort with a diet. I'm 28 and thought myself to be a fit guy for a long time but working out regularly wasn't enough, so I went to a friend for advice and he recommended carb back loading as something i should try.

    Background:
    I peaked 209# body weight at 6' around Christmas time(near 20% body fat). The highest I had been in my life was 7 years ago when I was in a World of Warcraft body type, 207# and est. 25% bodyfat, and going over that number knowing it wasn't mostly muscle really bugged me.
    I started working out more regularly and I joined a yoga studio because I had stopped training MMA summer of 13(local club closed) and needed a group activity to fill that hole. That got me down a couple pounds but something was missing; a diet. I really wanted to get lean, my lifetime low was around 12.5% back when I was 23 and working out with friends during the summer regularly.


    I started the diet in the beginning of March with the intentions of doing it for 12 weeks and re-assessing my progress/goals at the end of that window. My 2 goals were:
    1.)stick with the plan and stay Ultra low carb except for back loads (PM, PWO only)
    2.)10% body fat at diet finish (I thought this goal seemed ridiculous but my friend insisted it was possible)

    I went from eating 5000-6000 calories a day with many of those calories coming from gas station food or fast food regularly, to roughly 3000-3500 calories a day, very high in fat/protein, and very low in carbs/sugar.
    I'v had the same guy at a complete nutrition store do a 3 site skin fold test each time(realize after reading i should have been recording the readings not the BF number)

    PROGRESS/Results:
    START Begin 12 week period.......(2/27/14): 203.0#, 17.8% bf
    MID 6 weeks down 6 weeks to go..(4/10/14): 192.5#, 12.8% bf
    near END - 1 week to go..............(5/14/14): 186.5#, 10.3% bf

    This is all great, I'm thrilled (It's not bad news to get lean and maintain your strength) to successfully hit my goals (only .3% to go in 1 week, no problem). However, there is some things that aren't turning out like I had hoped/planned.


    Disappointment:
    I "expected" I would have abs showing at around 10%. I don't. I expected a lot of things, I expected my muscles to have a lot more "pop" than they do. I have been watching videos of bodybuilding as motivation for my resistance training sessions and perhaps my expectations weren't properly managed.
    In reality, the fat has melted quite a bit, in my chin and neck, around my midsection, my love handles, had to drill 2 more holes in my belts, my pants don't fit properly.
    My body generally speaking looks pretty average. I have some decent arms, and my overall shape is fairly balanced and symmetrical but I am very disappointed how not muscular I am, compared to my expectations of trimming the fat. For whatever reason I thought there was a UFC fighter physique underneath my 18% bodyfat, and there certainly is not. As I lost each %, I thought wow, this is awesome, but now that I realize 10% is basically achieved (even if i'm 12 with a margin of error) and I'm no where near what I thought I would see.
    I am not the only one guilty of this. I have a lot of friends and acquaintances who were formally in shape and athletic and are now overweight. All of them have the impression that if they just got disciplined and ate well for a few weeks that they would look like the guys we watch in the cage. I was this delusional as well. I really thought I would look close to a carlos condit or a rory macdonald if i could cut the fat and keep my muscle. As you can see from the pic; this is not the case.

    [​IMG]

    Am I the only delusional mofo out there that thought/thinks leaning out reveals a bodybuilder underneath in each of us?
     
  2. grndzro

    grndzro Green Belt

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    What suppliments are you taking?

    3500 calories? There is no way you need that many. That's your problem right there.

    Drop your calories to 2k.
    Further cut back on all carbs sugars.
    Eat healthy fats
    Eat beef/take Carnitine
    Take at least 1g Vitamin C a day.
    Switch your workout to many reps vs weightlifting.
    Stay hydrated
    Do not eat huge meals. Only eat when you are starving.

    The fat will not come off if you are at a caloric surplus.
    This means you will be hungry unless you go Keto.
    I would reccomend
    40% Protein
    50% Fats
    10% Carbs
    That should activate your fat burning if you work out regularily. Basically a mild keto diet.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2014
  3. StupidityKills

    StupidityKills Green Belt

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    What does your strength training routine look like?
     
  4. Sarumyan

    Sarumyan Green Belt

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    I am a keto sympathizer, but its just not for everyone. You can also eat a lot of veggies and not be hungry all the time. Simply eating clean while being in caloric deficit might be enough in most cases. I am losing weight now without being hungry at all - and my macros are actually around 60% Carbs, 25% protein 15% fat.
     
  5. grndzro

    grndzro Green Belt

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    Everyone's metabolism and activity level is different. I just threw that up as a sure fire way to skin the fat off him.
     
  6. Seriously-Dead

    Seriously-Dead wubbalubbadubdub

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    Most of this is generally terrible advice.

    First: Gauging from the picture you are not at 10% bodyfat. Probably +15%. Don't trust skinfold measurements, they are a good gauge of progress but they are not an amazingly reliable indicator of body composition.

    Second: Look at the reality of the situation. You lost ~17lbs in 12 weeks. That is essentially on point - completely normal rate of weight loss. You did great. For a guy eating 3000kcal/day, that is exceptional. You should be patting yourself on the back. Nice work buddy.

    Third: Manage your expectations. The longest part of the journey is ahead of you. You do not get a rippling six pack in 12 weeks unless you're starting from a very good point and likely in a sizeable calorie deficit. You get that after a long time of being disciplined, being smart, eating well, and training hard. You need to put on more muscle and lose more fat, and this means many more weeks of work. Actually, don't even look at it like work - this is your new normal if that's what you want.
     
  7. grndzro

    grndzro Green Belt

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    What part of it is bad advice? From the looks of the picture he has some skin fat which is usually really stubborn to lose.
    By cutting his caloric intake it will deplete his glycogen faster and force the body to use fat metabolization.
    That cellular machinery only develops when the body runs out of Glycogen.

    Carnitine is responsible for transporting fat.
    Vitamin C is a precursor for turning Lysine into Carnitine.
    Those together will help your body burn fat.

    So what exactly was the bad advice I gave? I lost 20lb in one month while gaining muscle.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2014
  8. monkeyrhythm

    monkeyrhythm Orange Belt

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    What SD said. The main thing that's 'wrong' here is that your current body fat percentage is higher than you think it is. I'm confident as you get closer to 10% you'll be happier with what you see in the mirror.
    You've made excellent progress. Longer term you'll want to put on a bit more muscle but I think you should just keep going for a while longer, 'tweaking' things as fat loss inevitably slows.
     
  9. monkeyrhythm

    monkeyrhythm Orange Belt

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    He's losing weight at a really healthy rate doing what he's doing? The only 'problem' at the moment is one of perception; he's not as far along as he's been lead to believe. At some stage the OP may need to reduce his calories a little but IMO, there's no need to change anything until he stalls. I appreciate you've had a really positive experience with keto which is great but at the moment your recommendation is coming across as a "You could have a Lionel Blair cut, like mine".

    [YT]2Tc2K4j4iqs[/YT]
     
  10. grndzro

    grndzro Green Belt

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    My 2nd post was responding solely to SD.

    As far as calories go take a look at this list for calories burned.
    Unless he is burning himself out every day which from his physique is highly unlikely he does not need 3500 or even 3000 calories a day.
    http://www.statisticbrain.com/calories-burned-during-exercise/

    He is clearly concerned about the rate of fat loss so I gave some tips to speed it up while maintaining muscle mass. I don't really care how I come across. I do a lot of research and try to help people the best I can. I am happy to provide links for the things I post and am equally happy to be proven wrong.

    I don't subscribe to "if it's not broken" mindset. There are always things that could be improved.
    It's better to help people with their goals rather than just give generic support and opinions.
     
  11. monkeyrhythm

    monkeyrhythm Orange Belt

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    The one responding to Sarumyan?

    Anyway, appreciate you mean well but it appears to me like you're interpreting the OP's thread in such a way as to give your stock recommendation of a keto diet.

    Your answer: You sir, should go keto.
     
  12. grndzro

    grndzro Green Belt

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    I guess I am. IMO use it to cut the weight first then switch to a more conventional workout diet. It sounds like he is pretty close to a keto diet already. Just too many calories, and mabye not watching the hidden crap in foods closely enough. Upping his Carnitine levels and taking VC would help a lot though.

    The more I learn about Keto the more sense it makes in more situations. Personally it has cured my ADD, my depression, my IBS, my energy levels, my fibromyalgia. I can think more clearly. I need less sleep. I gain muscle easier. Almost never hungry. No more back pain. My cysts are shrinking.
    So ya I have a pretty high opinion of Keto :)
     
  13. monkeyrhythm

    monkeyrhythm Orange Belt

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    You can be forgiven for being a little evangelical about something that's benefited you so profoundly. I'm sure keto is a great fit in some circumstances.
     
  14. StevenCrowder

    StevenCrowder wiener

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    This times a million.

    Listen, you've done really well kid.

    But you don't have a diet problem, you have a lifting problem.

    You've provided all of these details on your diet, yet skimmed over the training with "I exercise more and do yoga." Ever see a yogi with the physique that you want?

    If you want to put on muscle, you're going to have to start lifting very intensely, heavily and eat a lot. Then go back on another cut to see what kind of gains you've made.

    "Excercising" is not at all the same as lifting with intent. Despite what people on this board will tell you, when it comes to building muscle, the training accounts for a much greater percentage of gains than diet.
     
  15. RedRover

    RedRover Orange Belt

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    First, thanks for all the meaningful replies.

    As for the keto: The diet I am doing is very much keto. I only have carbs (with the exceptions of under 30g throughout the day) up to 2 hours PWO. I try to have bigger back loads when I know I'm working out big the next day; smaller carb meals when the next day is a lighter day, and if I'm disciplined enough no carbs if the next day is a rest day.

    Work/ Activity Level: My avatar is a tractor, guess what I do for a living? I farm. My daily work load at my job is fairly inconsistent. Some days I am somewhat sedentary (spend a lot of time behind a steering wheel or in meetings) but some days I am assembling a new piece of equipment and i might lift things and run wrenches for 10 hours that day pretty much without breaks. This makes my training difficult as you can imagine following one of these days. On average I am on my feet usually about half the day, with moderate to high physical activity (I run around a lot similar to a waitress, but I pick up things that are heavy much more often).

    Workouts: For the last few years I have lifted weights in my basement(Home gym 400# oly set, dumbells, pullup bars, cable machine etc) with regularity. I have dropped to as low as 1-2x / week frequency in the past but I've always done something above and beyond my normal job. I used to keep a log on here in the S&C but I faded away from it mostly because it was annoying typing for 30m after each workout.
    I'll give a rough timeline of what I have done lately:

    Winter (Nov-Jan):
    -Lift 1-2 times per week, averaging approx. 1hr
    -"Power" Yoga (hot, lots of body weight resistance) 1-2 times per week
    This was a weak phase, and my body weight peaked during this time.

    Ramp up of activity(Feb):
    I started to notice i looked fat in the mirror so I increased my activity level.
    -Lift 2-3 times per week, ~1 hr
    -Yoga 2 /week
    -HIIT 1/week

    Diet Start: (Feb 27): I was only eating carbs PWO and i had huge cravings for them so i would work out nearly every day sometimes half assed though just for an excuse to eat.
    -Lift 2-4 /week 1 - 1.5 hr
    -Yoga 2 / week
    -HIIT 2 / week

    Reformed, Last few weeks: (Mid April - current): My friend who is a "diet expert" told me I should only be doing back loads after a big resistance training day, not after yoga or hiit.
    -Lift 4-5 / week 1.5 - 2.5 hr
    -Yoga 1-2/ week
    -HIIT 1 / week (i injured my quad during a sprint so the last couple weeks I haven't done any)

    What I'm doing in my lifting:
    I know you all will want to know what program I am doing and this will sound pretty rookie but I am doing a split that takes elements of Starting Strength and a few Bodybuilding programs I have done in the past.
    Specifically
    -I do a 3 day split : Push/Pull/Lower body
    -I warm up (bag work, jump rope, something for 3-5 min to get heart rate up)
    -I ALWAYS do a big compound lift for each workout (typically bench, deadlift, squat). I alternate between ~3x12 for about 2-3 weeks, and 5x5 for about 2-3 weeks with this big movement. Sometimes I only get 3 reps on a set on strength days but you get the idea.
    -I usually do 1-3 minor compound lifts that accompany the major one (incline bench, Barbell OHP, some kind of Row, lunges, etc) usually i do these for 3 sets of whatever (my target range depending on strength weeks or hypertrophy weeks is between 3 and 15 reps.)
    -I usually add in 1-3 isolation type exercises (concentration curls, rope pull downs, arnold press, calf raise, lateral dumb bell raises, etc) and i do them also for 3 sets of 5-15.
    -I Journal EVERYTHING in a notebook, every set, how many reps i did, how i felt if i didn't complete the reps, etc.
    -I have a built in progression model. If I completed towards the higher end of the rep range last workout I will add weight in small or medium increments depending on what i think my capability is. Since the ramp up of activity I have progressed 5-10% in weight done in virtually all lifts. (still not at PR levels in most lifts, 2 or 3 years ago at 200-205# BW [6k cals / day] i had a lifting partner and did Starting Strength, was at almost 1000 in the big 3)
    -Over the last few weeks I have been putting in much longer lifting sessions, usually do about 7 "things" which takes me 2-2.5 hours. I have somewhat long rest periods when I'm going heavy in the compound lifts sometimes up to 5 minutes so my workouts take a long time.
    -Training to failure; I try to limit my failed reps to 1 or 2 per week. I listen to my body and instead of doing burn outs every single session where I can't lift my arms I save it for an isolation movement usually or if it happens unintentionally I try to avoid over-doing it.

    What I do in Yoga (for those interested)
    I had never done it before 5 months ago but I really like how it makes me feel, not juts the physical but the mental side as well. We do a lot of static stretches but also there are a lot of poses where you hold difficult positions balancing on one foot for example. You also get some upper body stimulation with push up like movements and balancing on one hand. You hold a lot of positions and the core really gets taxed and strained to maintain the position. Some of the classes (they are structured differently from Power 1, Power 1.5, Power 2, Power Sculpt, Power Bar) have items you use to assist you like foam blocks, dumbbells, balls, and a bar along the wall. For example I just did a Power Bar yoga session 2 days ago and we did about 200 variations of body weight squats. My legs hurt worse from this than my lower body day. It is common to do sit up like movements until complete exhaustion (it's normal for people in the classes to stop completely because of the difficulty).
    It's an underrated form of exercise, but you don't probably get the Huge loads that really give you that power/strength/bone density that you do from Dead Lifts. One thing is the scenery kicks ass compared to my basement ;)

    I hope i answered at least the first wave of questions. I was kind of planning on stopping my keto diet in favor of convenience. It's frustrating to often turn down people when they offer food to me because "I'm on a diet I can't have carbs". Maybe I should re-consider though if I want to keep progressing.
     
  16. RedRover

    RedRover Orange Belt

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    Almost forgot, someone asked about
    Supplementation/Diet

    Upon Waking:
    Fish oil Omega 3 & 6,
    10g whey isolate protein
    1 tbs MCT Oil
    multivitamin
    caffeine anhydrous pill (200mg?)
    coffee until lunch

    Lunch time, salad with no carbs.

    3pm 10g whey isolate or 1/2 cup almonds

    pre workout (optional- work out in the evenings usually between 6 and 10pm)
    10g Whey Isolate
    5g Creatine Monohydrate

    mid workout (lots of water, and sometimes 5g creatine/3g Leucine)

    PWO
    20g Whey Isolate
    20g Casein
    10g dextrose
    5g Creatine Monohydrate
    3g Leucine

    Meal with high carb foods IE pasta/sandwich/pizza


    Before bed: Cottage Cheese, 1/2 - 1 cup
     
  17. tha_rush

    tha_rush Blue Belt

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    I don't doubt that you could between 10 and 12% body fat, but what's your lean muscle mass? Abs show differently for everybody, some have them show well at 10% while others have to get down to 8%.
     
  18. grndzro

    grndzro Green Belt

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    That is pretty much Keto.

    Swap the Dextrose with MCT oil/Coconut oil/Coconut milk & ground flax/chia/Hemp
    The Ketones will act as fuel and stimulant.

    Casein is the wrong protein for Keto. It has a very long digestion time and has the wrong amino acid balance. It converts mainly to sugar long after you finish working out.
    Double up on Whey and take it with an enzyme.

    Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor. It constricts arteries and is actually detrimental in a workout routine. Taking 1/2 an asthma pill (Ephedrine HCI, available behind the counter) 6.25MG would fill that role without any side effects. Ephedrine is safe till 100MG in the body so that much is nothing. The Guifenesin is pretty much GRAS and opens up airways in conjunction with the Eph hci.

    Take extra Vitamin C
    Take a B complex vitamin
    Consider taking a Choline/Inositol suppliment
    Consider taking Carnitine.

    The after workout high carb meal stops fat burning in its tracks for days possibly.
    IMO if that is your regular routine it could be detrimental. Mabye switch it up for a heaping of veggies and meat.

    You might try daily workouts with less weight. Enough that you get tired but can still work out the next day. Definition comes with density not from tearing up the muscle.
    Those burn out style workouts are only useful for literally making the muscle bigger, and won't be useful till density is maxed out.
    Daily moderate workouts are much better for fat burning and increasing density.

    If you want to jump into a Keto style diet taking some Olive Oil/water shots can fill in calorie requirements. You said your diet is high fat and the fact that you didn't gain weight means you shouldn't get keto flu.
    Taking a couple tsp of mct/CO oil/OO shot will curb hunger drastically.

    *Disclaimer* This is from a Keto viewpoint. It is not for everyone. It is only my opinion based on what I think I know. None of it is absolute and can be taken piecemeal.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2014
  19. StupidityKills

    StupidityKills Green Belt

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  20. grndzro

    grndzro Green Belt

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