1

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Advice for making progress (so far not much luck!) - 21 yr | 15.5% body fat

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created November 04, 2012 at 8:21 AM

Hi All!

Stats: Male | 21 | 186cm (6.1ft) | 76kg | 76kg (167 lb) | aprox 15.5% body fat

Goals: Lean out (9-11% body fat), build strength, have lots of energy throughout the day

Questions What suggestions might you have to:

  • Increase energy levels.
  • Make consistent progress in my goals.
  • Feel full after meals (so I don't over eat)
  • Even though I eat strict paleo* (98% of the time) I do not feel properly fat adapted.

I currently get very fatigued (today I have felt totally exhausted most of the day) and generally not feeling like I am making progress (have been feeling this way pretty much since I went paleo) I have been doing the Lean Gains approach for 2 weeks now and I am still really hungry in the morning...

I have been thinking that since I have just started the proper training and started not over-eating, I just need to give myself more time (6 months plus), but I really don't want to spend another 6 months and be in the same place I am now...


BACKGROUND INFO and PROGRESS PICTURES

I have been Paleo (pretty strict since February this year). Your can see my progress pictures below - alt text. I have listened or studied lots of the subject and am not really sure what I am doing wrong...

Feb - June

At the start I was eating lots and lots of Macadamia nuts and Prunes, so safe to say I wasn't really making any progress with leaning out. I was doing a fair bit of cardio (although not letting my heart rate go above 75%). I went down to about 71kg at this point.

June - Mid Oct

Was exercising a fair bit, but I would finish a meal and would still be extremely hungry. This normally ended up with me eating a bowl of macadamia nuts with coconut cream once or twice a day. I knew it wasn't a particularly good idea, but I could not get over the hunger. You can see some food logs from this period here and here.

Mid-Oct - Now

Worked out, if I have 2 glasses of water after each meal, it prevents me from over-eating and I don't feel hungry after 10 or so minutes. Although I have still been having 1 or 2 serves of of about 100g of macadamia nuts once or twice a week.

Now my food and exercise looks like this. 5 x per week minimum 20 mins walking (normally in the morning). 3 x high intensity weight lighting type strength workouts - with a personal trainer (been doing for 3 weeks now, previously I was really bad at going and doing hard workouts) Sleeping 8 hrs or more each night in pitch black room (using the awesome bedroom blackout gear!) 2 x meals per day (leangains) each meal normally look something like:

  1. 3 eggs (free range organic)
  2. 2-3 pieces of bacon
  3. 150-200g organic lamb
  4. 1 avocado
  5. Broccoli/Cauliflower maybe 200g
  6. If it is a work out day I have been having a sweat potato as well.

*When I say strict paleo I mean [no grains, legumes, dairy, processed food, sugar, fruit etc]

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on November 09, 2012
at 04:51 PM

Have not read much on it, just know that the workouts are effective and easy to plan. Basically pick any 2-4 calisthenics (push-ups, pull-ups, sit-ups, kettlebell swings, burpees, etc) and do them in a Tabata pattern for 20-30 minutes. Guaranteed to get a good workout. To make it tougher, count the LOWEST number of reps in each cycle and try to improve that each time you do them.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 07, 2012
at 07:12 AM

I have been counting calories over the past few days and I would estimate before I was actually eating maybe close to 3000, as I have noticed a significant decrease in food now that I am aiming for about 1700 (since according to the 12 calories per lb of body fat, my maintenance is about 2000). Will see how I go. Thanks again for the advice.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 07, 2012
at 07:10 AM

Thanks again for the advice. Do you have any recommended reading for Tabata training (I found http://tabatatraining.org/) but was wondering if you had any other good resources. I really don't do any cardio at the moment, so I will continue that. :-)

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 07, 2012
at 07:08 AM

Hi Maria! Thanks for your advice. I have started taking some Mg and a good multi-vitamin and not getting the energy decreases (at least so far). I have also counted calories over the last 2 days and I realised I was eating a lot more food than I thought I was, this obviously was causing the non-weight loss. I think if I stop counting, I will just go back to eating way to much again... will see how I go. Thanks again for the awesome advice!

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 07, 2012
at 07:08 AM

Hi Marie! Thanks for your advice. I have started taking some Mg and a good multi-vitamin and not getting the energy decreases (at least so far). I have also counted calories over the last 2 days and I realised I was eating a lot more food than I thought I was, this obviously was causing the non-weight loss. I think if I stop counting, I will just go back to eating way to much again... will see how I go. Thanks again for the awesome advice!

58908e2a5be1d634e49c97da9f2558ce

(185)

on November 05, 2012
at 02:08 AM

You can look up CrossFit exercises on youtube that you can do at home or outside, those high intensity kind of exercises are what really get you burning through the fat. As for eating slow, in the beginning, it was definitely a conscious effort but my body seems to have regulated that now though, and I do it without thinking. I am hardly ever hungry after eating or between meals anymore. I usually count all calorie, try paleotrack.com, it is an easy way to track what you eat and it tells you what % of fat, carbs, etc you eat. I suppose once you get a general idea, you could stop counting.

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on November 05, 2012
at 01:57 AM

Yes I have done some sprinting too, in the summer I like to sprint barefoot on soccer fields. I try to keep a Tabata pace, i.e. run for 20 seconds and rest for 10 seconds, repeat at least 8 times. It is not intuitive to give up cardio to lose fat but this is exactly what worked for me. Many have found it difficult to lose fat and gain muscle simultaneously. I did this but was starting from having far too much fat and far too little muscle. You are not that fat so you might be content with one or the other to start with.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:32 PM

Wow! You sound like you have reaped some really really awesome benefits from Cross-fit! In Australia they are a lot harder to find, but I will certainly look into it more! | Eating slllloooowww - this is certainly something I have done extremely badly in the past! I tend to eat extremely quickly. Do you have any suggestion for pacing or do you just make a really conscious effort to take you time? | Do you count all calories or just get an idea and then stick with that? | I think some vitamins and some Magnesium - I have previously taken a fair bit, I will go back to taking it.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:23 PM

I think warm and then cold showers sound doable, will certainly give it a try. How frequently would you suggest doing these? | Zinc - sounds good, how much do you suggest taking? Do you have any material on Zinc I could read? | With regards to fat, I previously had an issue with it because, it is so easy to go over on calories because of how energy dense fat is. I will start using some more coconut oil and dropping down the protein a little. | Will look into the drips :-)

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:18 PM

Thanks for the advice. I will do some close monitoring of calories over the next week and see what I end up taking on with regards to total calories. | With regards to the salads, I will certainly take this on and see how it goes. | High intensity training certainly seemed to help you! Have you got any experience with sprinting? | I think training fasted sounds like a good idea! (Although I currently take some BCAAs as not to loose too much muscle).

4430c600b097f03d9936f0ae8b6b0201

on November 04, 2012
at 11:44 AM

I do a rough calorie count in my head on most days. It only takes me about 30 seconds to do at the end of the day. And by the way I weigh 173 right now, so my maintenance calorie intake would 2100 with no exercise.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:35 AM

I think going back to calorie counting again will be a must...

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:29 AM

Ok - thanks for the tips. I have been doing the IF fasting every day for the past 2 weeks, so i guess I will continue. You do make a good point about calorie counting and exercise... Do you generally calorie count?

4430c600b097f03d9936f0ae8b6b0201

on November 04, 2012
at 09:02 AM

I don't get home until late so I fast from 8:30 pm until noon or 1 pm the next day. I typically fast 3 or 4 days a week. I would say it took me around 3 weeks to drop 3% body fat. I typically eat 1400 to 1800 calories but exercise a lot.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 08:57 AM

Thanks for the advice. I am using the IF protocol where I am fasting from 6pm each evening till 12:30pm the following day and repeating. Is this the type of protocol you are on? Also- How strict were you with diet (did you calorie count etc)? How long did it take you to drop that 3%?

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4 Answers

1
4430c600b097f03d9936f0ae8b6b0201

on November 04, 2012
at 08:40 AM

To make more progress you should try to limit your macadamia nut intake even more. 100 g of macadamia nuts is almost 4 oz, which is about 800 calories. That will turn any day into too many calories to lose weight. I would also advise trying to intermittent fasting to lose weight quickly. It has helped me drop down from 12% body fat to 9% body fat and helped with my weight lifting. Not only do you lose fat but it also helps you release more HGH which gives your lifting a boost. I have also just started following a ketogenic diet and the weight is coming off real fast now. I am currently at 9% body fat with a goal of 7%.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:29 AM

Ok - thanks for the tips. I have been doing the IF fasting every day for the past 2 weeks, so i guess I will continue. You do make a good point about calorie counting and exercise... Do you generally calorie count?

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:35 AM

I think going back to calorie counting again will be a must...

4430c600b097f03d9936f0ae8b6b0201

on November 04, 2012
at 09:02 AM

I don't get home until late so I fast from 8:30 pm until noon or 1 pm the next day. I typically fast 3 or 4 days a week. I would say it took me around 3 weeks to drop 3% body fat. I typically eat 1400 to 1800 calories but exercise a lot.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 08:57 AM

Thanks for the advice. I am using the IF protocol where I am fasting from 6pm each evening till 12:30pm the following day and repeating. Is this the type of protocol you are on? Also- How strict were you with diet (did you calorie count etc)? How long did it take you to drop that 3%?

4430c600b097f03d9936f0ae8b6b0201

on November 04, 2012
at 11:44 AM

I do a rough calorie count in my head on most days. It only takes me about 30 seconds to do at the end of the day. And by the way I weigh 173 right now, so my maintenance calorie intake would 2100 with no exercise.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 07, 2012
at 07:12 AM

I have been counting calories over the past few days and I would estimate before I was actually eating maybe close to 3000, as I have noticed a significant decrease in food now that I am aiming for about 1700 (since according to the 12 calories per lb of body fat, my maintenance is about 2000). Will see how I go. Thanks again for the advice.

0
58908e2a5be1d634e49c97da9f2558ce

on November 04, 2012
at 03:43 PM

I agree, try to significantly reduce your nut intake - they tend to hinder weight/fat loss. Also, try to eat nutrient dense meals, and eat them slow. That has helped me control my hunger after finishing up a meal - you need to give your brain time to process the fact that you are full. Count calories, everything you put in your mouth (except water) adds up, so try to keep your calorie intake below whatever number of calories you burn a day (for me 1200-1300 works).

If you are feeling tired, maybe try supplementing with some vitamins or Mg?

I have been doing CrossFit (and like someone else said, I think THIS is KEY for fat loss) and Paleo for 2 months now. I have lost 6kg, 8% body fat and about 10 cm off every measurement.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:32 PM

Wow! You sound like you have reaped some really really awesome benefits from Cross-fit! In Australia they are a lot harder to find, but I will certainly look into it more! | Eating slllloooowww - this is certainly something I have done extremely badly in the past! I tend to eat extremely quickly. Do you have any suggestion for pacing or do you just make a really conscious effort to take you time? | Do you count all calories or just get an idea and then stick with that? | I think some vitamins and some Magnesium - I have previously taken a fair bit, I will go back to taking it.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 07, 2012
at 07:08 AM

Hi Marie! Thanks for your advice. I have started taking some Mg and a good multi-vitamin and not getting the energy decreases (at least so far). I have also counted calories over the last 2 days and I realised I was eating a lot more food than I thought I was, this obviously was causing the non-weight loss. I think if I stop counting, I will just go back to eating way to much again... will see how I go. Thanks again for the awesome advice!

58908e2a5be1d634e49c97da9f2558ce

(185)

on November 05, 2012
at 02:08 AM

You can look up CrossFit exercises on youtube that you can do at home or outside, those high intensity kind of exercises are what really get you burning through the fat. As for eating slow, in the beginning, it was definitely a conscious effort but my body seems to have regulated that now though, and I do it without thinking. I am hardly ever hungry after eating or between meals anymore. I usually count all calorie, try paleotrack.com, it is an easy way to track what you eat and it tells you what % of fat, carbs, etc you eat. I suppose once you get a general idea, you could stop counting.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 07, 2012
at 07:08 AM

Hi Maria! Thanks for your advice. I have started taking some Mg and a good multi-vitamin and not getting the energy decreases (at least so far). I have also counted calories over the last 2 days and I realised I was eating a lot more food than I thought I was, this obviously was causing the non-weight loss. I think if I stop counting, I will just go back to eating way to much again... will see how I go. Thanks again for the awesome advice!

0
B7e1ad6bb9ab814b8e90bdad4a472d5e

on November 04, 2012
at 01:42 PM

If you want to increase testosterone start taking cold showers it will boost your metabolic rate if you can't take cold showers right away start by taking contrast showers warm for three minutes then cold for three minutes cold shower will also burn your out side layer of fat. Make sure you have a heater on in your bath room.I don't do a lot of supplements myself but I do find that zinc is probably the best supplements you can take for testosterone because without this basic mineral your body cannot make it.Take it during the night time so you don't pee it out during the day I recommend zinc citrate or if you want to buy a more fancy supplements go for ZMA. Anything you can do to improve your sleep cycle will greatly increase your strength. You might want to start switching off your lights at 8 pm. Diet eat more fat. Buy a dip belt and start doing weighted chins and weight dips.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:23 PM

I think warm and then cold showers sound doable, will certainly give it a try. How frequently would you suggest doing these? | Zinc - sounds good, how much do you suggest taking? Do you have any material on Zinc I could read? | With regards to fat, I previously had an issue with it because, it is so easy to go over on calories because of how energy dense fat is. I will start using some more coconut oil and dropping down the protein a little. | Will look into the drips :-)

0
9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

on November 04, 2012
at 12:37 PM

I second what the other poster said about nuts, it is very easy to overeat them. If you are still hungry after meals then you probably simply aren't eating enough. The foods you list add up to about 1100 calories which isn't much especially if you are working out. Try more frequent meals, and I would try to eat more vegetables, try to work in a big salad made up primarily of crunchy vegetables and a simple olive oil based dressing, with maybe some grilled meat (chicken).

The thing that made a big difference for me was to switch from cardio to brief, high-intensity workouts. I was running 12-14 miles per week and when I stopped that (and all cardio) and started doing kettlebells, calisthenics and related strength-based work (high intensity and brief, 20-30 minutes 3-4x per week), I immediately lost about 10 pounds and a couple of inches off of my waist. Essentially, the running was keeping me fat. In my experience the two types of workouts that burn fat are brief high intensity, and low-intensity such as walking.

When I took it to the next level and joined a crossfit gym, the results were dramatic. I've lost 4 more inches off of my waist and a lot of body fat. I go to my workouts hungry (fasted about 4-6 hours) which is tough at the beginning but I believe encourages my body to burn fat. The results so far have been great.

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 04, 2012
at 11:18 PM

Thanks for the advice. I will do some close monitoring of calories over the next week and see what I end up taking on with regards to total calories. | With regards to the salads, I will certainly take this on and see how it goes. | High intensity training certainly seemed to help you! Have you got any experience with sprinting? | I think training fasted sounds like a good idea! (Although I currently take some BCAAs as not to loose too much muscle).

7d057f2b670d9611db291396884377b3

(15)

on November 07, 2012
at 07:10 AM

Thanks again for the advice. Do you have any recommended reading for Tabata training (I found http://tabatatraining.org/) but was wondering if you had any other good resources. I really don't do any cardio at the moment, so I will continue that. :-)

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on November 05, 2012
at 01:57 AM

Yes I have done some sprinting too, in the summer I like to sprint barefoot on soccer fields. I try to keep a Tabata pace, i.e. run for 20 seconds and rest for 10 seconds, repeat at least 8 times. It is not intuitive to give up cardio to lose fat but this is exactly what worked for me. Many have found it difficult to lose fat and gain muscle simultaneously. I did this but was starting from having far too much fat and far too little muscle. You are not that fat so you might be content with one or the other to start with.

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on November 09, 2012
at 04:51 PM

Have not read much on it, just know that the workouts are effective and easy to plan. Basically pick any 2-4 calisthenics (push-ups, pull-ups, sit-ups, kettlebell swings, burpees, etc) and do them in a Tabata pattern for 20-30 minutes. Guaranteed to get a good workout. To make it tougher, count the LOWEST number of reps in each cycle and try to improve that each time you do them.

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Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!