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Anabolic Diet / Definition Diet


I apologize if this is covered somewhere, as I'm sure most things are. I recently read "Keys to Progress" by John McCallum. Very entertaining read. He discussed a zero carb diet (The Defintition Diet) to "tighten up" after "bulk and power" work. This diet required staying away from carbs for several months, focusing on protein sources. This is similar to the Anabolic Diet without the carb up.

Until very recently, I had always been very lean. I noticed a positive effect on muscle growth by going low, low carb for an extended period and then adding them back in. McCallum stated that by simply eliminating carbs, fat would be lost and muscle would be gained, or at a minimum, maintained.

My questions are:

What kind of body composition change can be expected by keeping calories at maintenance while utilizing the anabolic diet (which seems more sustainable than the defintion diet)? I would assume that fat will be lost until a homeostasis at that calorie level was reached (more favorable than staying at maintenance calories in a higher calorie diet). I know results will very by individual, but I'm sure someone has tried not going into calorie deficit in an attempt to save muscle.

Will a 36-hour pulse fast eliminate the need for the 12 day adjustment period at the beginning of the Anabolic Diet? It would be nice to pulse fast for 36 and start on the weekend carb loading earlier, lol.

Thanks for your time and help


You might be attributing more magic to low carb than is really there.

Confused by question. By definition, maintenance calories on any diet will maintain body weight. If you're training and eating sufficient protein, you might get some muscle increase and some fat decrease, but maintained weight nontheless.

I wouldn't think so. Most of the adjustment period is getting your liver and brain used to low carbs and producing and running on ketones instead of glucose, and then later getting your muscles more adapted to running on more fatty acids rather than ketones or glucose. That just takes time.


Thanks for answering. I know that keeping at maintenance calories will maintain weight. I guess the root is, as a lifetime really skinny guy, I don't want to cut (currently 6'1", 215, 15%). I know that the results of fat loss/muscle gain will be different per individual (at maintenance), I was more interested in composition changes based on other's experiences. I guess I will just experiment. I am hoping to lose 5% while maintaining as much muscle as possible (duh) and then bulking again). I know in the past, I have gained a lot of lean mass on a low carb diet. I have never done it with a weekend carb up.

I will definitely keep the 12 day adjustment period and not engage in the pulse fast based on your advice.

Thanks again