Body Composition Struggles

Answered on June 30, 2014
Created June 28, 2014 at 11:53 AM

Hello, All,

Been Paleo for about 9 months (prior to that it wasn't much different, but eat more organic and are much more careful where we get are food from). In the last couple months I made some tweaks to shrink the wasteline, namely: Added Lean Gains Intermittent Fasting and removed most carbs (exception on weekends I will have a small amount of potato, quinoa or fruit and some wine). During the week a typical day looks like this: 11:00 - Optimum Nutrition Natural Whey Protein (not ideally paleo, but I've experimented with this part and found it helps my recovery) 11:30 - Strength training or HIIT for 1 hour 12:30 - Consume Whey #2 + about 1.5 lb of the following: kale, spinach, broccoli, green/red pepper, onion, tomato and some kind of protein (99% of the time it is chicken breast) + 1 avocado 3:30 - If I plan on biking home (4.5 mile) I consume Whey #3 7:00 - Coconut oil stir fry with .5 lb meat (again either turkey or chicken) and the veggies listed above (occasionally add guac or half avocado or a little green tomatillo salsa , but not always) And that is it. My weekly routines are pretty static like that. On the weekends it is pretty similar, but I rest my body (except for occasional bike ride) drink some wine and have a little carbs. I am just not seeing any body comp changes based on the above and really not sure why considering my exercise. I would love to hear what people think!

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2 Answers



on June 30, 2014
at 02:41 PM

For body re-composition you need 2 things.

  1. Quality Muscle Contractions.
  2. Solid Macros.

Quality Muscle Contractions:

Muscle contractions will lower your blood glucose and increase demand on muscle, metabolic rate, muscle mass and ultimately improve body composition. If you have a perfect diet and inadequate muscle contractions you will not see optimal results. There is an inverse relationship between intensity and duration when it comes to exercising. Too intense for too long will burn you out with no results. Too light and too short will make no difference as well. The intensity and duration of the exercises that will be optimal for each person can vary dramatically. Some big boned people thrive as bodybuilders and others thrive doing higher resistance cardio activities (like swimming or hiking). I don't recommend lifting heavy weights or cardio in isolation and there is an equilibrium point where you will receive optimal results. Play around with duration and intensity until you find something that you enjoy and that you will stick to. Wait a month or two to see if it also gives you the results you want. Body re-composition is a slow process, to get your ideal body could take 2+ years for many people.

Solid Macros:

You will not be Arnold Schwarzenegger on a low carb diet. You will not be Arnold Schwarzenegger on a High carb diet (>80% calories from carbs). To retain and build muscle mass you will need roughly 18-25% of daily calories from protein. Your macros should look like this:

  1. >15% protein && <28% protein.
  2. >20% carbs && <45% carbs.
  3. >25% fat && <40%fat.

I personally prefer a 20% protein, 45 % carbs and 35% fat ratio, but I do well on carbs, you may not do so well, especially if you're older, already high body fat and relatively sedentary.


After carefully looking at your question, I would recommend you include more moderate intensity exercise (Heart rate 90bpm -120bpm for 2+ hours per day) and only after including more physical activity, consider raising your carb intake.



on June 28, 2014
at 12:03 PM

Build muscle or cut calories.

If you're not seeing changes you're doing one or both of these things wrong.


Cut more calories.

Lift harder.

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