T Nation

Fat Loss Progress Help

Hello Christian,
I have a question on my fat loss process…

I’ve just finished 5 weeks at a -500 deficit of 2,300 after spending a previous month at maintenance of 2,800. I’ve been using a 40/40/20 split where my carbs and protein are at 225g each. With a re-feed once a week, on a day off at maintenance level (increased carbs by 125g).

Over this 5 weeks I’ve slowly added fasted steady state walking from 2 times a week to 6 times a week for 30 minutes.

I’ve been feeling great and my weight has gone down 1 – 1.5lbs per week which has been my goal, and my body is firming up, slowly but visible and you can feel it with my skin.

My 2 questions are:

  1. With carbs, when on a fat loss, is consuming 225g a day ok to do or is it too much? What is a good guideline to follow with carbs? Should I look to bump protein up and decrease carbs?
    Example:
    Bump protein up 25g to 250g
    Decrease carbs by 50g to 175g
    Bump fat up slightly to hit the 2,300 total

  2. Progressing forward, is it best to keep calories at 2,300 and slowly increase steady state walking by 5 mins each time fat loss stalls? And say once I hit 40-45 mins and if I haven’t reached my body composition goal yet, I shall look to decrease calories at this point?

Thank you for your help with this,
Henri Lamer

If you are losing 1 to 1.5lbs per week while eating 225g of carbs then you are fine. If you stop progressing you will likely have to drop it down a bit. If 225g was too much FOR YOU you would not be losing fat.

How many carbs to eat while trying to lose fat is an individual thing. It depends on many factors.

  1. insulin sensitivity: people who are more insulin sensitive can eat more carbs when dieting down

  2. Activity level: the more active you are, the more carbs you can have

  3. Muscle mass: the more muscle mass you carry, the more carbs you can eat

etc.

225g might be perfect for someone and way too much for someone else. Since you are losing fat, it is not too much. 1.5lbs per week is ok, that will allow you to maintain performance and muscle mass easily while losing fat.

I don’t recommend doing more than 30-35 minutes of fasted cardio… maybe 40 but certainly no more.

If progress stalls you have two choices:

  1. Add a small amount of cardio on a second session, either in the evening or after your weight training session. I’m talking around 15 minutes here, or 10 min HIIT.

  2. Reduce carbs (don’t increase protein or fat) to decrease caloric intake

Both work, it really depends on your personal preference, time available and fatigue level.

Hello Christian,
Thank you for the reply

(1).
I’ve come up with these 2 strategies for progression, which one would be the better option? I don’t mind walking, it allows me to meditate while getting some fresh air and sunshine.

Currently-
30 mins fasted cardio 6 x week
Next-
35 mins fasted cardio 6 x week
Next-
40 mins fasted cardio 6 x week
Next-
40 mins fasted cardio 6 x week
15 mins walking after 2 weight training sessions

Or

Currently-
30 mins fasted cardio 6 x week
Next-
30 mins fasted cardio 6 x week
15 mins walking after 2 weight training sessions
Next-
30 mins fasted cardio 6 x week
15 mins walking after 4 weight training sessions
Next-
30 mins fasted cardio 6 x week
15 mins walking after 5 weight training sessions plus 1 evening session

(2) I weight train 2-3 hours after my fasted cardio, so if doing a second session cardio for the day, is it better to do it after the weight training or later in the afternoon/evening? Both ways I can do…

(3).
Right now I don’t want to drop calories lower than 500 calories from my maintenance so I’ll keep my macros as it is for the time being. For future reference, with the above templates how far could you take it using the same macros? When if ever should you look to decrease carbs in favour of adding more cardio/walking?

Thank you again for the help

Henri Lamer