T Nation

Fat Loss - Is This Realistic?


Following christmas and a careless bulk I managed to let myself drift up to something close to 20% bodyfat at 98kg and a height of 5'10. My strength has ridden up like crazy however which has been nice.

However Ive just recently started MMA for the purpose of improving general athleticism/gpp and also to drop a bit of fatty tissue... and boy oh boy did I get my ass handed to me last night. Granted shoulder was pretty bust from benching on monday but still - I was all over the place and unfit/slow as hell.

Now I've done the long drawn out cuts many times before in the past... everything from 8-12 weeks. Often low carb with 3-4 days strength work and NEPA walks. Everything from progressive calorie restriction from maintenance a velocity type diet.

Only problem is I have ALWAYS dropped a shit tonne of muscle when doing any of these. The lowest I have ever got down to was 9.5% at about 79kg last summer... but boy oh boy did I look scrawny as hell.

Ive just generally bounced in the mediocre range and never gained any strength or size for fear of getting too fat (been a fat ass most of my life).

So any whom I have been doing some number crunching and it seems that if I were to drop down to 90kg without dropping any lean tissue at all I could come in at about 13%.

Now I know from experience this isnt going to happen... I always drop an unnacceptable amount of lean tissue and for the life of me I cant figure out why.

Which is why Ive decided to run a prohormone (havoc) for 6 weeks to accompany a 6 week cut (dosing at 30mg ED but I disgress) - to try and hold on to some muscle tissue.

14% at 90kg would bring me in at about two and a half pounds muscle loss for about 15lbs of fatty tissue... a total of about 17.5lbs over 6 weeks... Or just under 3lbs a week total mass loss (not including water/glycogen).

Hell even a 5% bodyfat reduction to 15% bodyfat at 90kg would be acceptable... about 4.2lbs muscle loss and 13.4lbs fatty tissue loss.

Do these numbers sound reasonable? Just how much lean tissue do you think I can maintain?


at 20% BF there is NO REASON you should lose any lean tissue while on a diet unless you do something really stupid.

DO this:

1) find your maintenance caloric intake

2) reduce that number by 20% or so.

3) multiply your LMB (in lbs) by 1.5, use that number to determine the grams of protein per day.

4) multiply the number of grams of protein by 4, subtract this number from your total calories. This is the amount of calories you can get from fat and carbs, split it up as you want (perhaps 50% carbs, 50% fat)

so if you're 98 kg at 20% fat the calculations would look like this:

1) maintenance intake (BWx15)= 3,235 calories

2) 3,235 x .8 = 2,600 (rounded up)

3) 172 lbs LBM x 1.5 = 260g protein

4) 2,600-(260x4)= 1,560 calories from carbs & fat. Split evenly, that equates to ~200g carbs, and ~85g fat

track your calories closely by using any of the dozens of free calorie tracking websites, and adjust calories up or down based on real world results (up if you're losing strength too fast, down if you're not losing weight), aim for a loss of 1-2 lbs per week.


Interesting and thanks for the info - youve got some very different numbers to me. I calculated maintenance to be something closer to 3900 (you didnt seem to use the activity multiplier?)

Regardless do you think 2-3lbs is possible for shorter periods eg. 6 weeks with minimal LBM loss?