T Nation

A Diet Experiment

I’m not going to call this a Velocity Diet (although it’s pretty darned close) in deference to the “V-Diet fundamentalists”, thus the name VDEX for “V-Diet experiment”.

It seems there are several very negative people who are quite vocal on this forum. I’ve been very hesitant to post about my experiences. In the end, I decided that there are a lot more people reading than posting, and hopefully some part of my experience will help someone with their experiment. So, here goes!

I didn’t start out with the intention of doing anything more than trying a day or two of protein shakes. I’d just bought some micellar casein, I had some whey protein blend, and I just intended a trial run to “shake” things out (pun intended).

I’d started out at over 190 lbs in mid-2007 and was down into the low 160’s by March of this year, but I just wasn’t making any progress. In fact I was losing ground. I’d diet down with a sensible, low-carb diet through the week, but cheat all weekend and gain any weight I’d lost through the week back. I love food. I love beer. I love BBQ. I’m a pretty good cook, and I’m a pretty good homebrewer. Not a good combination for losing weight! So I felt I needed to do some thing drastic to break out of the rut I’d dug for myself.

So, I started my experiment on Friday May 9. I’d dieted down through the week, and the plan was to try the diet over the weekend. I hoped to be able to break the pattern of pigging out over the weekend. Then I’d be able to make some progress

My first shake was pure micellar casein. What a mess! That stuff if super thick. Ultimately, I ended up mixing about 2 parts protein blend to one part micellar casein. That seemed to work well for me. I also added about 20 grams of maltodextrin per days worth of shakes. My daily calories came out to about 1300 Cal, so about 900 of that is the shakes. My mixture then, was about 800 Cal of protein, and about 80 Cal of starch.

I did buy some Metabolic Drive as well. In fact, Biotest ended up saving my diet. The company I got the micellar casein from is super slow. I was about out, a week had gone by since I had ordered more, and it hadn’t even shipped yet. I then ordered several tubs of Metabolic Drive, and they arrived just in time before I ran out.

Anyway, my mixture seemed to work okay. I mixed up a day’s worth in the morning, and just scooped it out as needed throughout the day. I do the same thing with the Metabolic Drive. It makes it easy to keep track.

I didn’t take any fat-loss supplements, BCAA’s, etc.

I used a molecularly distilled fish oil with 400 mg DHA, 200 mg EPA.

I used Fiber choice (4 per day).

I used Bob’s Redmill flax meal. I started out mixing it with the shakes, but had problems with it clogging up the sink at work. I didn’t really want to lose my job over a diet, so I started mixing it with the natural peanut butter. That has worked out well so far.

At start on Friday, 5/9 at 165.2 lbs.

Measured on Sat. 5/10
BF = 18.8% using a 3-point method with skinfold calipers.
Lean Body Weight: 132 (est)
Chest: 38"
Upper Abs: 37"
Waist: 37.5"
Upper Thigh: L 22", R 22"
Mid Thigh: L 20.5", R 19.5"

On Sat 5/31
Weight = 153
BF = 15.7%
Lean Body Weight est: 129
Chest: 37.25"
Upper Abs: 35.25"
Waist: 35.25"
Upper Thigh: L 21.25", R 21.25"
Mid Thigh: L 20", R 20"

Today is day 25. Three more days to go.

I’m already planning on my one meal during transition.
Small bowl of oatmeal w/1 tbsp flax meal, 1/2 cup blueberries, and 2 omega-3 eggs w/ 1 tbsp flax meal, chopped spinach, and 1 tbsp olive oil. Yeah!

[quote]mathineer wrote:
…in deference to the “v-diet fundamentalists”, thus the name VDEX for “v-diet experiment”.[/quote]

We win again! Bwa ha ha ha!

But seriously, as long as you don’t call it the V-Diet, then it’s fine. Good luck with your low-carb diet!

The management of T-Nation have moved me here from the V-Diet forum because I’m not doing the V-Diet. They even changed the subject from VDEX (for Velocity Diet Experiment) to “A Diet Experiment”. At first, I was devastated. Aw, poor mathineer! But then I figured that if life hands you milk, make whey protein! :slight_smile:

So now, I need to figure out a name for my new diet. It can’t have anything to do with Velocity Diet, because I’m not doing that (as has been made so abundantly clear). How 'bout we call it MED-RX for Mathineer’s Experimental Diet Prescription? Yeah, that’ll do.

Great, now we’ve got a name for it, let’s try to define what it is.

I guess you could say that it’s a diet that eschews chewing! Most of your calories come from protien shakes. I recommend a 2/1 mixture of whey protein blend to micellar casein. The remainder comes from 2 tbsp of natural peanut butter, 2-4 tbsp of flax meal or milled flax seeds (gives you some good fats and both soluble and insoluble fiber), Fiber Choice or similar fiber supplement, and a vitamin/mineral supplement. This diet may not have sufficient sodium and potassium, so I suggest a potassium gluconate supplement (Walgreens), and a source of additional sodium. I got mine from 2-4 dill pickles per day (and yes, I did chew - so sue me!).

Article about hyponatremia:

If you’re drinking lots of water, sweating a lot, etc, make sure you also take in adequate sodium and potassium!

Today was day #27 of my MED-RX diet experiment.

Weight: 151.8 lbs (down 13.4 lbs from a start of 165.2)

I’m now less than two pounds from the lowest I’ve weighed in the last 2 decades! But this time, I’m not going to stop at 150. I want to see my abs one more time before I die! :slight_smile:

On Friday, start getting real food again. I’m planning on a breakfast of oatmeal and scrambled eggs. To say I’m looking forward to it would be the understatement of the century!

[quote]mathineer wrote:
But then I figured that if life hands you milk, make whey protein! :-)[/quote]

Making casein would be a better investment.


My email start page has short “news” items. This morning, one of these listed the top ten “sexiest jobs”. Here’s the list:

Personal trainer

Can you believe it? Mathineer isn’t even on the list! And Personal Trainer is #2! It’s a crazy world.

Today is day 28 of phase 1 of my diet. Tomorrow I’ll start having a solid meal for breakfast.

This vacation from “real food” has been pretty interesting. Not thinking about what to eat all the time (should I have the roast duck with wine sauce and creme brulee for dessert?) does change one’s perspective. I expect it will make it easier to control what I eat when I get back to solid food … at least for a while.

My weight this morning was 152.2. As I think I mentioned before, my low weight over the last couple of decades was about 150 lbs. Last time I was at that weight, I thought I was “there”. Now I realize I’ll be at about 14 %BF at that weight. I’m definitely not going to be satisfied with it this time. My goal is 8% and see my abs before I die! Of course, those last 10 lbs are going to be tough. I’ve been carrying them around with me for a loooonnnnggg

People are starting to notice I’ve lost weight. I’m getting compliments at work. I’m also getting comments like, “You should stop now, or you’ll get anorexic!”. As an RFB (recovering fat boy) I think there’s little danger of that!

As I start to add in the real food, I intend to increase the number, intensity, and duration of my metabolic conditioning workouts. These will include “sprint” intervals at the track, lighter weight complexes, and calisthenics complexes.

I’ll post my weight workouts later. I posted them before, but they were deleted when I was “moved”. I’m doing EDT style workouts, and I just increased weight on most exercises this week.

I went to the dentist this morning. In the waiting room, I had to sit between two, uh, portly women. One of them was more like a ball of fat with a head, two arms, and two legs poking out. She was just sitting there quietly, but her breathing was loud. I mean LOUD! I don’t think I breath that hard when I’m running intervals at the track (and I admit it, I run and I LIKE it), or when I’m performing that, ah, husbandly duty. What? Oh, mowing the lawn, what did you think I meant?

Anyway, I want to remember that woman next time I’m tempted to indulge in something that isn’t on my diet.

Yesterday was day 28 of the liquid phase of my diet. This morning, I introduced solid food, so I guess I’ve undergone a phase change.

My weight was 151.2 this morning, down from 165.2 28 days ago at the start for a total loss of 14 lbs, that’s 1/2 lb per day. Since I started on a Friday after dieting down through the week, I think that includes very little water weight. I’ll do caliper measurements tomorrow (probably), but I expect that to show that I’ve lost about 2-3 lbs of muscle. Let’s call it 3, 1 lb of water, so that’s 10 lb of ugly fat gone. I was sick with a bad chest cold for the first two weeks, so I had to take it pretty easy on all of my workouts during that time (I like to avoid uncontrolled fits of coughing while hoisting heavy (for me anyway) weights over my face. I know, it’s a character defect. So sue me!

Breakfast was a small bowl of oatmeal (1/4 cup steel cut oats, 1 tbsp flax meal, 1/2 cup blueberries, with cinnamon, ginger, and sucralose to taste), and 2 eggs scrambled with 1 tbsp flax meal and some chopped spinach. I started off wolfing it down, but then realized what I was doing. So I savored the rest of it. Man, that was good! Washed it down with a pot of green tea. Did I mention how GOOD it was?

This mornings workout was 5 rounds of (20 pushups, 20 crunches, 20 squats, and 50 jump ropes) in about 17 min, then I walked 0.5 mile on the treadmill at 10%, 3 mph. Didn’t have time for more, because I had FOOD to eat!

Just a quick update (I’ve been running around like crazy all day): 150.8 lbs this morning. I also took tape and caliper measurements as well as pics. I’ll post that stuff later when I have time.

I haven’t decided about posting pics yet. I might post the pics to my T-Page so I can delete them if I want to. Also, I’d like to do the side by side, but I don’t know how to make a JPEG of that. I did it in word, and saved it as an html file, but I don’t think I can upload that. Anyway, it really shows a difference!

Can anyone tell me a simple way to crop pics and create a side by side jpeg?

All for now.

150.0 lbs this morning

This is the last day of the first week of my transition. Tomorrow I start to get two solid meals per day. I’m planning on a lunch of about 300 Cal. Probably chicken or tuna (maybe pork) with a small salad or broccoli.

I’ve been keeping my caloric intake at about 1300 Cal (1500 on weight days). I’ll probably stick with that through the 2nd week of transistion. Then, after that, I might increase by about 200 Cal until I get to my goal of 8% body fat (about 140 lbs). Then I plan to stabilze at that weight and dial in my diet to maintain it.

Congrats on your weight loss. 1300 calories/day seems pretty extreme to me. It will be interesting to see how much muscle vs. fat you lost in the past month. Have you noticed your lifts going down during that time?

[quote]forlife wrote:
Congrats on your weight loss. 1300 calories/day seems pretty extreme to me. It will be interesting to see how much muscle vs. fat you lost in the past month. Have you noticed your lifts going down during that time?[/quote]

1300/day (1500/day on lifting days) was the value calculated from the equation given by Shugart’s velocity diet. I did the diet without all of the Biotest supplements for which I was banished from the v-diet forum over here to “diet purgatory” or perhaps the Thanskgiving equivalent of the “kid’s table”. :slight_smile:

I did caliper measurements at the approximate start, and end of the 28 day v-diet phase. According to those measurements I lost about 3 lbs of muscle. I’m not sure how much stock to put into that, as I’m only doing a 3 point caliper protocol. I do that because I can measure all of those points myself.

In fact, most of my lifts have gone up during this period (I’m now in the 7th day of the 1 solid meal per day transition phase). The one exception is the bench press. I’ve been having shoulder problems, and I think this is the main reason for this.

Here is yesterday’s weight session:
EDT Workout #2
PR Zone 1: Deadlift, lateral raise (200#, 32.5#)
35 reps each in 11:32 (last week 30 in 13;32)

PR Zone 2: step up, bent lateral raise (60#, 27.5#)
35 reps each in 10:48 (last week 30 in 11:09)

PR Zone 3: BB bench press, BB bend row (150#, 150#)
40 reps each in 12:20 (last week 30 in 10:57)

Extra Credit:
DB concentration curl 5@30#, 5@35#, 3x5@40#
Triceps kickbacks 5x5@30#

The bench felt pretty good this week, though. I really attacked it, and feel like I’m starting to make progress.

I do full body sessions, 3 times per week using the EDT protocol. Each of the 3 sessions is different.

If your lifts are going up, that is a good sign. I’m guessing catabolism would increasingly become an issue if you stayed on such a low calorie diet for a longer period of time, but I can see it working for a few weeks like you have done here.

[quote]forlife wrote:
If your lifts are going up, that is a good sign. I’m guessing catabolism would increasingly become an issue if you stayed on such a low calorie diet for a longer period of time, but I can see it working for a few weeks like you have done here. [/quote]

I went back and checked my records. When I took the initial BF measurements at the start of the diet, I was hydrated. When I took the measurements at the end of the 28 day liquid only part, it was in the morning before eating or drinking, but after a short, fasted cardio session. I believe that the hydration will affect blood volume etc, but not contribute to skinfold measurements substantially. Thus it could make the lean body weight appear lower than it really is. This could account for as much as 2 of the apparent 3 lbs of muscle I lost during those 28 days, ie I really only lost 1 lb. I was certainly getting plenty of protein during the diet, more than before I started it. Also, I always get an extra 200 Cal (half from dextrose/maltodextrin, the other half from whey protein blend) immediately after weight training.

I plan one more week of transition at the same caloric intake, then I’ll start increasing it, probably by about 200 Cal per week. I have about 10 more lbs to lose. I estimate that maintenance intake level will be around 2000 Cal. I hope to be increasing activity level somewhat as I ramp up the calories to maintain some fat loss during the time I’m increasing intake.

Here is a summary of the measurements I took throughout the first 4 weeks of my v-diet experiment.

Weight on morning of day 1: 165.2 lbs
Weight on morning of day 29: 151.2 lbs
Lost 14 lbs => avg of 3.5 lbs/week

VDay #2
Weight = 163.0
BF = 18.8%
Calculated lean body weight: 132 lbs
Sum of chest, upper abs, waist, upper thighs, mid thighs: 196.5 lbs

VDay #9
Weight = 158.8
BF = 17.5%
Calculated lean body weight: 131 lbs
Sum of chest, upper abs, waist, upper thighs, mid thighs: 190.3 lbs

VDay #16
Weight = 155.6
BF = 16.8%
Calculated lean body weight: 129.5 lbs
Sum of chest, upper abs, waist, upper thighs, mid thighs: 191.5 lbs

VDay #23
Weight = 153.8
BF = 15.7%
Calculated lean body weight: 129 lbs
Sum of chest, upper abs, waist, upper thighs, mid thighs: 191.0 lbs

VDay #30 (TDay #2)
Weight = 150.8
BF = 15.1%
Calculated lean body weight: 128 lbs
Sum of chest, upper abs, waist, upper thighs, mid thighs: 186.8 lbs

Body fat was estimated using 3 point (chest, stomach, mid thigh) caliper technique.

149.0 this morning! That puts me at 12.8 to 14.1 %BF (assuming my lean body weight is 128 to 130). I’ll take caliper measurements tomorrow AM.

I noticed that lower ab “V” showing through this morning. Still too much fat for any upper abs.

149.6 this morning.

I took caliper and tape measurements on Saturday. I took the caliper measurements twice, first when I got up in the fasted state, and again later after I’d had breakfast and some fluids.

Fasted state: 149.2 lbs/14.26% BF => Lean weight = 127.9 lbs.

Hydrated state: 152.6 lbs/14.44% BF => Lean weight = 130.6 lbs.

The caliper readings themselves were virtually identical as expected. I think this experiment supports the statement I made on 6/12 - namely that I probably only lost a pound or two of muscle during my v-diet experiment.

One other note: I used to be a runner. I ran 40 - 60 miles per week, usually including a 16+ mile long run. Now I get in maybe 10 - 15 miles per week of running, another 10 - 15 of walking, three weight training sessions, and a few metabolic conditioning sessions consisting of complexes with dumbbells, or bodyweight circuits. I’m considerably more fit than I’ve been in years. Yesterday I was able to spend the whole day working on honey-do tasks, mostly heavy stuff. I worked all day and never really got tired. So my question is, “Is this the reward for being fit?” I get fit so I can work all weekend for the Woman? Sheesh! :slight_smile:

BTW, I did find time to make myself a small sandbag this weekend. I already hate that sucker!

Transition Day #8
Weight = 149.0
BF = 14.4%
Calculated lean body weight: 130.6 lbs
Sum of chest, upper abs, waist, upper thighs, mid thighs:

6/28/08 (today)
Weight = 146.6 (first thing in AM)
BF = 12.6% (measured hydrated at 149.6 lbs)
Sum of chest, upper abs, waist, upper thighs, mid thighs: 191 inches

I have about 9 lbs to go. I’m still doing EDT - 3 PR zones. I’m keeping my training log at