I have tried cutting my calories for 3 weeks (from 2500 to about 1800-2000/day), and I actually put on fat. I thought 500 kcal/day was the appropriate amount to cut, but it seems not. At least, not with my body. That's one of the things that's irritating me...it seems that 2500 kcal/day, while only 11x BW, is maintenance for me (or perhaps even a slight surplus, since my waist keeps increasing), but 2000/day is too little, because my body starts socking away the fat (I should note that I kept the macronutrient balance the same at 2000/day as I do at 2500/day).
I suppose I could try 2250/day, but at that rate, the fat loss will be so slow, it would take me 3 weeks to lose 1 lb of fat (assuming the loss is all fat, which from what I understand, is never the case).
I've toyed with the idea of the Velocity diet, but I'm on a very tight budget at the moment, and the cost for everything for me works out to almost $600, which is double my monthly grocery budget. Plus, they seem to be perpetually out of Raspberry Surge, which is what I'd prefer to use (I already have some on backorder).
I tried the Anabolic Diet, but after almost 2 months, I got frustrated because my body seems to react very, very badly to 35g/day of carbs. That extreme weak feeling you get in the first week just never left me, and it also caused me to get rather severe headaches. I find that my body is much, much happier with around 100g/day of carbs. I have the strength and energy I need, I can still get them all post-workout, and I'm still eating relatively few carbs.
I've been trying to work on my insulin resistance via my diet, as I've been big (read: a lard-ass) all my life. In fact, a year before I started lifting, I hit 309 lbs. I'll post some photos tonight of that, plus where I was when I started 5 months ago, and where I am now. I think the comparison from 5 months ago to today will show clearly what I mean about my body composition...the photos don't lie, and other than some pretty impressive quad growth and a tiny bit of he-hooter loss, there's really not any difference as far as I can tell.
So, I've been scarfing the cinnamon like there's no tomorrow, and taking the Alpha Male as directed, along with the Flameout. I tried REZ-V for a month, but I didn't notice enough of an impact to justify the cost, when I can get a month's worth of cinnamon for $16.
But, were it not for the fact that my BF% is staying steady and not increasing, I'd almost swear my insulin resistance is increasing, because from what I understand, the bloating, weight gain, etc. would all point to that.
As for the cashews, I eat them primarily because they're free at work. I could try switching to almonds, but to be honest, I really, really hate almonds. While I can toss back a handful of cashews with no problem, I'd have to choke down a handful of almonds. But, if that's what it takes to change things, I'm willing to give it a shot!
As for the caffeine, I'm just a caffeine junkie. Although I do have 4 of the 6 shots pre-workout: 2 in the morning when I get to the office, and two about an hour before my workout. Then the last two 1-2 hours after my workout and post workout meal, just to wake up (since I'm always defocused and mentally wiped out after my workouts).
As for actual, formal "cutting", I wouldn't even know how to do it. There are plenty of resources I can find for strength gains, bulking, etc., but it's difficult to find any solid, well-explained info for beginners who want to maintain strength and lean mass while reducing fat. Once I finish this program (I just started the 3rd-to-final week of it), I'd be happy to just maintain my lean mass and start losing the fat, but I'm having trouble finding places that explain in simple terms a good diet and lifting routine for that. Everything I see focuses on HIIT or intense circuit training, and I just have no idea whether I could go back to squats and deadlifts after several months of that.
I enjoy full-body pushing and pulling of heavy weights.
I do not enjoy doing so while looking like someone who spent their life watching Judge Judy while sucking back Cheesy Poofs.
Yeah, I know. I'm a noob, and I want everything overnight. I really don't, even though it may sound like it. I'd just like to see some progress, however small, in the direction I'd prefer:keeping the strength and lean mass I've built, while getting rid of some of this ugly fat.