T Nation

diuretics

I have a physical test in 10 days and I want to lose some water weight before the test - i’m going to use some diuretics and was wondering if i should start today or wait until just a couple days before the test?

Are you talking herbal stuff or drugs?

I’m talking herbal - more specifically dandelion root. I’m also using ephedrine HCL which has some diuretic action I think (all I know is that it makes me pee like a mother - I’m not actually sure if it gets rid of excess fluids or not??)

If you try and lose water, this will effect your performance during physical activity. Cut out carbs to lose water and cut-up. Then the night before carb load. Be sure to drink lots of water, to prevent yourself from holding water. This will give you the most fat/water loss and then restore your glycogen stores. Bottom line, 10 days is a bit early to prepare for a “physical test.” If you want to perform well. You must be trying to make weight. But if it is a physical test that is evaluated by performance, not being hydrated could be a big problem.

The test is based on performance and weight - I have to keep under 200lbs and right now I’m on the edge of this weight. I’m a bit under 10% body fat so its not like I’m carrying around too much extra fat. I’ve been drinking tons of extra water in order to keep hydrated and I’m also keeping the carbs to a minimum.

If you want to screw up your performance big time take diuretics. They will drain your electrolites and you will be like a dead battery. Go the low carb route and you will do much better.

What if I take the diuretics now until 4 days before the test and go the low carb route as well and then drop the diuretics 4 days prior to the test while maintaining the low carbs. Would this be okay? Just using the diuretics to help lose the water and then keep it off by maintaining low carbs for the last 4 days before the test?

Cunning -

I would be careful. I used prescription diuretics and I was hurting the next day or two. I recovered fast and I think you will too but I think you will put that weight right back on. I wish I could offer you more. Best of luck.

The best time to try the herbal diuretics in that fashion would be on your own time, not before game day. Just do the low carb up to the day before d-day. That evening carb load. Try your new method on your own time. If it works, than ya know for next time. But that’s one guys advice.

Thanks for the help guys. I’ll try stay off the diuretics then until after the test and do some experimenting with them then - have a good new years and thanks again.

Okay - another question brought on by the fact that if I’m over weight which is 200lbs [I’m exactly 200 right now] I will lose a summer job that will pay me around $15,000.

What do boxers do when they have to make weight, or powerlifters etc. They make weight and then compete a couple hours later. Don’t they use diuretics or some other means of losing water weight? And then they compete in super demanding physical activity and seem to be fine.

The activities that I will be tested on can be found in another post I had called "18 chins in 10 weeks - help". The chins are no longer an issue its the other stuff and the 200lb weight limit. If I'm over the limit they literally refuse me even though the job is not for another 3.5 months.

I know that bodybuilders (on top of diuretics) tend to sodium/carb load x number of days out and then potassium load/carb deplete in order to lose water weight. There is a chemical advantage here though that it sounds like you don’t have.

Never the less, it may be your best bet. There’s a thread about competion dieting from the summer that will help with your quest.

From personal experience, when I sweat in a sauna I am nowhere near as lifeless as I am after I take diuretics. Aside from diet modifications already mentioned, this may be the route to go.

One other thing, If you get really cold for a good period of time (over an hour), your body will dump fluid to conserve heat. Heat/cold in a set may work, or vice versa.

WATCH YOUR SODIUM INTAKE FOR SURE! Avoid sodium and salty foods prior. These will blow you up overnight. And it takes a couple days of heavy water intake to drop it.

Hey guys - thanks for all the help - I have combined all your suggestions and here’s whats happened. I took the diuretics for 4 days and lost a few pounds (could have lost more but got into some high carb christmas food). The last day on diuretics I eliminated the carbs and now I’m down to 193lbs (this morning - tonight i’m 197 after drinking a ton of water). The carbs will stay out until the night before the test at which point I will carb up along with some protein. I have another 7 days until the test so I think I can drop a few more pounds.

The one thing I’m a bit worried about is the pretest carb up. Can I expect to gain water weight from this and if so how much. How should I go about this? My plan is to get the carbs from either brown rice, apples, and oats. How many grams should I get and should I carb load all day or just before bed? Thanks for all the help guys.

cunning: Sounds like the herbal diuretic helped a bit, which would indicate to me that you were carrying alot of water - get the water up to 2 gallons a day for the next few days, then 1.5 for 2-3 days before. The day before drink 1.25 gallons before 2 PM, then only sip water as needed… add a few gms of potasium in (actually about 800 mg throughout the day on those days with the 1.5 gallons should do it). This will help shed a bit more and keep you your body chemistry at least a bit more “regular”… avoid any sodium during this time too, and up the vitamin C to about 4-6 gms a day (just to keep you having some resistence to a cold or anything while your dehydrating). And finally, the morning of the test grab a cup of coffee or some other caffiene (no sugar!!).

As for carbs, stick with very low glycemic, complex carbs. For the first two days on high water, drop your carbs in half (although if your already on low carbs, just keep it there). Then the day before, carb up with yams or something similar - something like 1/4 - 1/2 cup every half an hour after 2 until about 6-8 at night (base it on how you feel and look). Then have some fatty fish at night. What this will do is make you look "hard", but also give you energy from the carbs and the omega-6's in the fish.

This is pretty similar to a routine that I’ve used to drop water/fat for a photo shoot, I know some other people have used it for a competition. Ideally you’d be able to try this with a “dry run” first, but it sounds like you don’t have the time.

Good luck!

Hey Steve - thanks for the help. Just one question - I have stopped with the herbal diuretics based on the advice of the others. It is now 6 days until the test - should I still be using them?

Hey Steve-O, one more thing - is fresh salmon good enough for the fatty fish? and how much would you recomend. Also for the potassium (this might sound stupid but I’ve never consumed potassium before) can I buy it in tablet form at the drug store or health food store?

Steve-O to Cunning: Potasium is easily gotten in any drug store/health store. I believe the most common dosage size is 100 mg. I’d buy capsules if possible over tablets, as I just feel it’s easier to absorb (personal opinion here though). As for the duiretics, only use them the day before, and I’d say in moderate quantities. For instance perhaps 2-3 pills of the dandelion root - the water and the potasium (and the lowered sodium) will do the job. In fact, if you’ve got breathing room in your weight (sounds like you’ve got 6 lbs or so), don’t even bother with them - there just going to get that last little bit out to look shredded, and your going more for weight then looks. As for the salmon, it’s dependant on your body wieght and tolerance, but my guess is 6-8 oz should be fine. Fresh is always better,providing you can get it easily and find a way to cook it with no sodium (poached with lemon juice and dill is probably a good idea). I almost forgot one more thing that may help - if you absolutely need the extra 1/2 lb, try a little thiomucase (or in a pinch preparation-h) spread over your midsection and perhaps your legs. Try it once and do some cardio with it on, but the night before, wrap your self up in these areas with some plastic wrap and some cotton clothing over it. It’s a local diuretic. But once again, if you’ve got room to spare, don’t bother - it’s more for looks. Everything else will drop the water and pick your energy back up for the test. Of course, you can always try a bit of an androgen to get you going for the few days before if this becomes an issue, but this has to be kept moderate as in some people it can make them bloated too.

BTW, I just looked at the date of your original post - it was a week ago (sorry, PC problems the past week). So it looks like you only have 3 days left? If your still at 193 or so right now, I'd just keep up what your doing, as you wont have the time to get the extra water intake to do it's job. Keep the carb up moderate too, and if possible, monitor your weight the day before and adjust accordingly (perhaps 45 minutes between carb intakes if your going up too quickly). The idea here is to get glycogen back into the cells for energy, not to make your retain water, so you shouldn't be going up in weight very quickly.

Hey Steve-O, thanks for all the help. It is now tuesday and the test is next sunday so I have 5 days to go. This morning after the morning piss I was 195. I’ve since taken on lots of water so I’d guess I’m right at 200 at the moment. So it looks like I’ve got a few pounds to work with here. I’ll follow all of your recomendations and I’ll keep you posted on the results. Thanks again.