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Hack my leangains numbers (please)

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 05, 2012 at 11:47 AM

Started Leangains two weeks ago, after being VLC/ZC for 5 months.

I am 185cm, 65k, 77cm below the navel, @10-11%BF by those inaccurate calculators.

Workouts 3x week, less than 1 hour, heavy deadlifts, squats, pullups, and dips.

Online calculators say Total Daily Energy Expenditure 2227cal, BMR 1620.

Training days: Fast 16/8, wake up 5am, 10g BCAA and gym at 11am, two meals 12pm and 8pm @2200 Cal, 0% change from TDEE, 400g (dry) rice, 600g very lean top round beef, 15g fish oil, 1-200g green veggies, @154g protein, @27g fat, @324g carbs

Rest days: Same meal timing @1325 Cal, -40% change from TDEE, ZERO carbs, 600g flank steak @20% fat content, 15g fish oil, no veggies, @115g protein, @97g fat.

So im basically very little fat on training days, and ZERO carbs on rest days. Since I was meat and fat adapted, I'm used to it and perfer it on rest days. After the 16hr fast I slip right back into ketosis. I thought bombing all those carbs would send me into insulin shock and hormonal hunger craziness, but they didnt. Feel fine.

Seems like 325g of carbs is alot, but without fat to fill the calorie gap, and keeping protein at or under 2.5g/kilo, they have to be. I feel best eating 2-2.1g protein/kilo, or gluconogenesis screws up my ketosis on rest days.

Before going on leangains two weeks ago, While meat/fat/few greens only, I was eating 75/25 Fat/Protein, 2-3 meals a day (with a breakfast) @1600 cal/day and weight loss had stalled.

First week of leangains my rest day calories were @1550 being -30% under TDEE, but very little fat was coming off, so I dropped it to @1325 -40 under TDEE this week. Im leaning a bit, and workouts are GETTING AMAZINGLY STRONGER ever single workout. I'm breaking personal records by huge margins.

My goal is to get down to 5-6% bodyfat.

Please hack away....Advice?

EDIT First week carb ups were satsumaimo (Japanese sweet taters)but the fiber:carb:mass ratio was so high I had to eat 1.1 KILO over two meals to get my carbs! That was hard to get down with a busy schedule, and, my anal fissure damage which had been aleiviated by VLC returned; the fiber and bulk brought back a little blood marks on stools. I'm now a firm believer that fiber is NOT a good thing.

So, I switched to a much more calorie dense and low fiber starch source that's cheap to buy, easy to prepare and carry, and gluten free: white rice. No issues.

Bloating issues were non-existent. I thought I'd have issues with bloating, gas, discomfort, hormonal hunger exacerbation, dizziness, or the like, but NOTHING happened ( except the bulk and fiber hurting my colon).

During VLC I previously tried 50g carbs in sweet potato PWO, and it created HAVOC with my hormonal hunger. Strange. Seems more, just pouring it on, has a better effect than a little carb added to VLC. A little seemed to bring the negative side effects but be too small an amount to yield the positive effects.

edit Folks have questioned my WO/Rest 0%/-40% numbers as being too low. My goal now is bodyfat loss. I simply began with an online TDEE and BMR calulator http://www.1percentedge.com/ifcalc/ and started week one with 0/-20. The mirror said I was improving, measuring tape at the navel and scale said no change. Week two I tried 0/-30, same result, perhaps a tiny bit of fat loss. So this week (3) I've been on 0/-40.

It was pointed out that I should try 10/-30. Well, my logic is that if 0/-30 was not yielding satisfactory fat loss, why would increasing overall weekly calories (10/-30) change that positively?

Since the TDEE numbers are just computer estimates I'm using as a baseline,then if those numbers are over-estimates, my 0/-40 could in fact be a 10/-30; both are a 40% disparity in calories between workout days and rest days.

I am methodically calculating EVERTHING, and reducing little by little until I see a result. This week, at 0/-40 from BASELINE ESTIMATED TDEE, I am FINALLY feeling a tad hungry and I think reducing fat.

I want to add that during this whole three weeks, I am continually breaking personal records in my lifts and EXPLODING with strength gains and energy. My recovery and power improved incredibly. Its the best time in training I've ever seen in my life. Something is working! My 5rep max deadlift has one up 17.5%. My pullup rep max and workout volume has increased significantly. Its awesome. So I cant be too starved, now can I?

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on July 09, 2012
at 10:32 AM

I stand corrected.

2fd566cefde2de38e75e1bc13a966e16

(662)

on July 07, 2012
at 04:22 PM

Oh okay missed that about the fish oil. Well, it could have something to do with your body adapting to IF/calorie cycling/carbs which might alter water retention, etc.. Also LG is by nature a pretty gradual process as opposed to typical bulking/cutting cycles so I wouldn't expect to see huge body composition changes on a week-by-week basis. How are you measuring fat loss?

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 02:40 AM

Sorry for the length. I guess what I'm saying is that the TDEE/BMR are estimates; If 0/-30 produced no bodyfat loss, why would increasing total overall calories weekly to 10/-30 cause fat loss? If my TDEE is overestimated, then 0/-40 based on that estimate is in reality 10/-30.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 02:09 AM

The last five days I've been 0/-40. NOW I feel slightly hungry and the mirror is showing some fat loss. So, I think my TDEE and BMR are overestimates, and at the stated 0/-40 I'm more like 10/-30. Both are 40% spreads; the difference relies on the accuracy of the calculator estimates. All I know is I was stuck at a fat loss plaeau at 1600cal/day on ketosis/meat/fat for 4weeks. The first two weeks of leangains at 0/-20 and 0/-30 produced AMAZING strength gains in the gym (4 personal records!), but very litle fat loss. So I've methodically lowered to 0/-40. Hows my logic?

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 02:05 AM

As I mentinoed above, 15g fish oil is simply a tablespoon, and contains 3.3g of omega 3. For mental improvements, 1 tbsp/day fish oil has been shown to be very beneficial in many studies. As or the calories, I see your point. Those TDEE and BMR calculators are estimates; many say they are over estimates. I've always had a high BMI; I'm lean for my height. Those calculators tend to overestimate my needs accordingly. I was 0%/-20% at first. Nothing happened, fat/waist measurement didn't change. I dropped to 0/-30. No change.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 01:50 AM

15 grams of cod liver oil (1 tablespoon) contains 1.5g DHA and 1.2g of EPA, and 3.3g of o3 fats total. I'm right at those recommendations. Remember, 15g of fish oil is NOT equivalent to 15g of DHA/EPA; there are other fats in there too. Also, o3 fats are PUFA, but are ANTI-inflammatory, not inflammatory like other PUFA. Also, the studies I've seen (need to find a link) show that the real, positive, theraputic mental effects of fish oil are realized at doses of 15 grams total fish oil daily (3-4g DHA/EPA).

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 01:41 AM

I'm sorry If I sound perturbed, but my motivations are not part of the question, and being very lean and fit is perfectly within the sphere of paleo. I don't need to re-evaluate as I know exactly why I want it; looks AND performance. It looks good. I've been able to see my abs for years, but I want those love handle bits, the last remnants of stubborn fat, GONE. And, being lightweight, ie having a high strength:weight ratio, is optimal for climbing. Getting down to 5% BF gives a metabolic and hormonal advantage to gaining lean mass without gaining fat.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 01:27 AM

Dangerous? Martin himself is at that level, as are many of those following leangains, and many athletes, including rock climber (which is my sport), and they are pretty darn healthy. Seems like those who say it isn't healthy are many time those who are above that level and rationalize that its better not to go there. As for my motivation, so what if it is looks? Why is that wrong? You say I should re-evaluate as if it is wrong.

091423a30c0188fbff51e39397e7e056

(384)

on July 05, 2012
at 10:41 PM

5-6% body fat is dangerous for anything long-term. If you're doing this for looks I suggest you re-evaluate why you want to do this.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 05, 2012
at 10:01 PM

It's A LOT of carbs. Definitely makes my workouts stronger, but I'm not really dropping much fat as far as the mirror can show.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 05, 2012
at 09:59 PM

Yeah, sorry, been livin in Japan for a few years, metric is just easier and more logical. See my edit for your question.

60af23519906aa54b742ffc17477c3d3

(1186)

on July 05, 2012
at 05:47 PM

Dang you for making me convert your stats to pounds and inches. This is a sweet plan. Did you notice any digestive or bloating issues when you added the rice back in after so long VLC?

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3 Answers

1
A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on July 06, 2012
at 04:21 PM

I like your plan! I may have to give Leangains a try.

Only one minor quibble: 15 grams of fish oil seems like too much to me. If total PUFA should be less than 4% of calories (according to Dr. Harris and others), then more than 3-4 grams of fish oil is excessive. Even omega-3 fatty acids can oxidize and cause stress to your organs.

From Martin Berkaham: "Take 2 g EPA and 1.5 g DHA per day." That seems much more reasonable. You could easily drop 100 calories per day just by reducing the fish oil to Martin's recommendation.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 01:50 AM

15 grams of cod liver oil (1 tablespoon) contains 1.5g DHA and 1.2g of EPA, and 3.3g of o3 fats total. I'm right at those recommendations. Remember, 15g of fish oil is NOT equivalent to 15g of DHA/EPA; there are other fats in there too. Also, o3 fats are PUFA, but are ANTI-inflammatory, not inflammatory like other PUFA. Also, the studies I've seen (need to find a link) show that the real, positive, theraputic mental effects of fish oil are realized at doses of 15 grams total fish oil daily (3-4g DHA/EPA).

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on July 09, 2012
at 10:32 AM

I stand corrected.

0
2fd566cefde2de38e75e1bc13a966e16

on July 06, 2012
at 07:07 PM

Looks pretty good, my question is this:

TDEE on workout days and -40% on non-workout is pretty extreme for 10% bodyfat, I think? Almost all leangains plans have a surplus of calories on training days. I would shift slightly to +10%/-30% instead and see how that works. It's my understanding that the surplus on training days is a key part of Leangains' efficacy.

Lastly, as Dave S. stated 15g fish oil is WAY too much. It's starting to seem more and more that fish oil supplementation may not even been very beneficial (or beneficial at all) in metabolically healthy individuals, but if you are going to supplement I'd keep it <4-5g daily. Even Omega-3 PUFA's can cause problems.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 02:40 AM

Sorry for the length. I guess what I'm saying is that the TDEE/BMR are estimates; If 0/-30 produced no bodyfat loss, why would increasing total overall calories weekly to 10/-30 cause fat loss? If my TDEE is overestimated, then 0/-40 based on that estimate is in reality 10/-30.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 02:09 AM

The last five days I've been 0/-40. NOW I feel slightly hungry and the mirror is showing some fat loss. So, I think my TDEE and BMR are overestimates, and at the stated 0/-40 I'm more like 10/-30. Both are 40% spreads; the difference relies on the accuracy of the calculator estimates. All I know is I was stuck at a fat loss plaeau at 1600cal/day on ketosis/meat/fat for 4weeks. The first two weeks of leangains at 0/-20 and 0/-30 produced AMAZING strength gains in the gym (4 personal records!), but very litle fat loss. So I've methodically lowered to 0/-40. Hows my logic?

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 07, 2012
at 02:05 AM

As I mentinoed above, 15g fish oil is simply a tablespoon, and contains 3.3g of omega 3. For mental improvements, 1 tbsp/day fish oil has been shown to be very beneficial in many studies. As or the calories, I see your point. Those TDEE and BMR calculators are estimates; many say they are over estimates. I've always had a high BMI; I'm lean for my height. Those calculators tend to overestimate my needs accordingly. I was 0%/-20% at first. Nothing happened, fat/waist measurement didn't change. I dropped to 0/-30. No change.

2fd566cefde2de38e75e1bc13a966e16

(662)

on July 07, 2012
at 04:22 PM

Oh okay missed that about the fish oil. Well, it could have something to do with your body adapting to IF/calorie cycling/carbs which might alter water retention, etc.. Also LG is by nature a pretty gradual process as opposed to typical bulking/cutting cycles so I wouldn't expect to see huge body composition changes on a week-by-week basis. How are you measuring fat loss?

0
1c67bc28f4e44bbb8770b86df0463df3

on July 05, 2012
at 12:23 PM

Its working therefore - keep doing what you are doing until your are sure its not working. Seems dialed in as best as possible. 3 carb ups a week will certainly get you down into single digits not problem.

Medium avatar

(2417)

on July 05, 2012
at 10:01 PM

It's A LOT of carbs. Definitely makes my workouts stronger, but I'm not really dropping much fat as far as the mirror can show.

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