T Nation

My Own Velocity Modification

I made a few changes to the Velocity diet Shugart is following, and have been doing it for a week now. The goal is to kill this gut I’ve developed over the past fifteen years, which is currently my major dissatisfaction with my body development. (I’ve got muscle now, you just can’t really see it. There’s an iron-hard six-pack hiding under that gut, and my legs would definitely turn heads if I could just lean them out a little.)

Here’s the basic breakdown of my changes:

  • Four scoops of low-carb Grow! in the morning

  • One gallon of distilled water over the course of the day

  • On training days, two scoops of PowerDrive and 1/4 cup of fish oil pre-workout with a multivitamin (Eclipse Hard Trainer Pack, minus the chromium picolinate, adding a Solaray 200 mcg Chromium GTF instead)

  • On training days, two and a half scoops of Surge post-workout

  • Four scoops of low-carb Grow! at night

I am not currently dong any real cardio, just a half-hour FMA class on Tuesday and my usual weight training on Monday, Thursday, and Saturday.

On Sunday, there is a window between noon and four when I’ve decided I can eat or drink whatever I want.

The calorie breakdown over the week goes about like this…

Training days: 440 + 552 + 350 + 440 = 1782

Non-training days: 440 + 440 = 880

This is a total of 9,768 Kcals over the course of the week, plus whatever my cheat meal is on Sunday. Since I haven’t had my cheat meal yet today, I don’t know what that’s going to be. I estimate that it will come in at or around 1,500 Kcals.

My weekly BMR comes in at around 25,000 Kcals, so I have about a 14,000 Kcal deficit and therefore can probably expect to see a solid four-pound weekly fat loss.

Of course, on two days out of the week, I only get two Grow! shakes all day long. I am thinking about adding cardio on those two days, as it would be an optimal time for it – I’d be doing it at roughly the same time as my usual workout, but without the fish oil calories.

The new micellar casein formula in Grow! really does keep me from being hungry throughout the day. Even on the no-oil days, I don’t feel like I’m starving to death. I do get hungry, however, and I’m always VERY aware of any food smells around me – I never realised before that there are six restaurants near the gym parking lot. I don’t know what or where they are, but I can smell each one distinctly.

Constipation isn’t an issue; a quarter cup of fish oil lubricates things pretty nicely, so anything in that area tends to be in a pretty big rush to come out. (It occasionally gives rise to interesting “reverse dry heave” scenarios, where you want to shit your guts out, but there’s just nothing there. It’s not exactly fun, but in retrospect it’s amusing.)

The workout I’m doing is semi-cardio in and of itself, which is why I’m not too worried about lacking the cardio. I start with thirty reps on the bench press in a single set (low weight, obviously), then move on to the squat rack where I do a long connected series of exercises (inspired by “the bear”) going from deadlift and power clean through three squats and two overhead presses with a good morning and a bent-over row. That’s one rep; I do twenty of these, with as many in a set as I can handle before I’m about to fall down. (The weight is necessarily light, because while I can squat a lot more, there’s only so much I can overhead press.) Then I put down the weight and collapse until my heart rate goes down enough to do another set.

So far, my average set is three, with the occasional “good” set of four; I sweat like hell and pant like a racehorse, and it hits pretty much every muscle group. I’m expecting this to balance out my muscle development – by using the same weight for everything, the weaker muscles have to “catch up” before the stronger ones get worked much. That’s the theory, anyway, but I’m not really here to talk about my workout at the moment.

I’m measuring progress by making sure I can still do the same workout in about the same amount of time (confirming no strength loss, which should roughly equate to muscle loss… I currently do the above workout in a little over 30 minutes), trying to improve my time and performance in that workout, and weighing myself on three different scales.

And at this writing, I’m down eleven pounds. I’m not too excited about that, because I expect a lot of it is just water and fecal matter (most people carry up to ten pounds of fecal matter in their large intestine at any given time, but with zero fiber, I’m now essentially empty). I think the SECOND week is where I’ll start to see “real” progress, i.e. progress that actually equates to fat loss.

Just providing an independent perspective. Thoughts, opinions, and questions are welcome. I’m going to go have my morning Grow! now. :slight_smile:

I’m curious why you decided to take just 2 large shakes a day instead of splitting it up over the day? It seems like more smaller meals through out the day would help your metabolism.

Also curious why no fats on non workout days?

Final question. I know you said this post isnt about your exercise but doing such high reps and low calories are you worried about losing alot of strength?

880 calories on a non training day. Hell, I have that for breakfast.

Your diet and for that matter Shugart’s will definitely work. You are STARVING the weight off.

I’ll read with interest about the results.

Good Luck!

Can you clarify your meal breakdown? It seems you are really packing in a lot of calories at once and not too frequently. I am curious as to your reasoning behind this. Also, getting between 30 and 50g of fiber will definitely help with the hunger. I am doing the Velocity Diet right now, and have found that to be a huge help. Also breaking up the EFA’s into smaller doses will make “emissions” a little easier. Check out the Fat Fast Redux Support Group thread for more tips.
Stay strong,
Dan

Combined reply and report at the true end of the week…

[quote]JNeves wrote:
I’m curious why you decided to take just 2 large shakes a day instead of splitting it up over the day?[/quote]

Convenience, nothing more. It may be more efficient to split it up into smaller amounts, but I’m hypothesising that the slow-digesting micellar casein in the new Grow! formula will keep the metabolism working throughout the day without having to drink further shakes.

Just to dump the calories lower, and also to create a fasted state at midday where I could put in some cardio. I’m going to try that next week; this first week, I wanted to prove that I could get through the 880 calorie days at all, and next week I’m going to see if I can get through it AND do a half hour of cardio at midday.

Well, with a low calorie diet in general, I’m concerned about losing muscle. To me, if it’s not functional, it’s not a muscle worth worrying about, so I’m keeping a close eye on where my strength is and how my workouts go; as long as I can do the same workout in about the same time and feel no more tired or damaged than usual, I’m at least maintaining my strength (and hence the muscle that matters to me). I won’t whine too much about any show-muscle that may drop along with the fat, as long as I keep the functional muscles.

[quote]Atreides wrote:
Your diet and for that matter Shugart’s will definitely work. You are STARVING the weight off.[/quote]

Well, after all, that’s how you get rid of weight – you take in fewer calories than you burn, and your body has to pull the energy out of the storehouse. The question is whether it will be the RIGHT weight: that useless wobbling ring of flab around my middle. I am sick of it. I’m more than half a year into a serious training regimen, and it hasn’t gone anywhere or done anything. I’m certainly packing muscle on under it, but I really want that spare tire to get the hell out of here.

[quote]Strongarm wrote:
Can you clarify your meal breakdown? It seems you are really packing in a lot of calories at once and not too frequently.[/quote]

Yep, that’s what I’m doing. There’s 440 calories in the Grow! shake at morning and night, 552 in the pre-workout Power Drive and fish oil, and 350 in the post-workout Surge. The timing goes about like this:

4:30 AM - Grow!, 440 Kcals
2:30 PM - Power Drive/fish oil, 552 Kcals
4:00 PM - Surge, 350 Kcals
8:00 PM - Grow!, 440 Kcals

It’s pretty basic:

Eat when you’re hungry. Stop when you’re full.

Four scoops of Grow! in a litre of water feels substantial, like an actual meal would, and leaves me feeling like I really ate something. Afterward, I honestly don’t feel the least bit hungry until about 4:00, so while I can easily drink my Power Drive and fish oil and my post-workout Surge, I just plain don’t need to in terms of hunger. I could readily go twelve hours on one four-scoop Grow! shake, which I think is a pretty solid vote of approval from my physiology. A two-scoop Grow! shake feels small and pathetic and doesn’t really keep me satisfied for long at all.

I have a weird holistic and spiritual view of these things. The science alone, I think, will give you certain results… but I’m also interested in the spiritual and mental aspects of the diet.

The only time I really feel hungry is on the non-training days, in the four hour window before I have my evening shake. I can actually handle being hungry for four hours twice a week, so it’s not really an issue for me. I’ve been thinking about tossing some milled flax seed into my shakes, but I don’t really feel that it’s necessary.

Wimp. :wink:

And, embarrassing as it is, here’s my “cheat meal” breakdown:

  • One chicken tender
  • Six fried mozzarella sticks with marinara sauce
  • Three quarters of a chicken quesadilla
  • Four small onion rings
  • One french fry
  • Two thirds of an eight inch Philly cheese steak
  • Two bites of a country fried steak with white gravy
  • One bite of a stack of five pancakes with blueberry syrup
  • Three large glasses of tomato juice
  • One large original Orange Julius
  • One large lemon-lime Mr. Misty Freeze from Dairy Queen

It’s interesting to note that my body rejected the idea of the country fried steak, the pancakes, the chicken tender, the french fries, and the onion rings. It was very happy with the chicken quesadilla and the mozzarella sticks, and it tolerated the sub pretty well, but with everything else I would look at it and think I wanted to eat it until I took a bite and thought “I don’t want to eat that”. My body is not “into” bread carbs right now, it seems. I may just want to order a second chicken quesadilla next week; it was a good one. Nice, strong jalapeno kick.

The tomato juice was the real shocker. I had a craving for a vegetable of some sort, and I was a little thirsty, so I ordered one glass and halfway through it my body went “HOLY SHIT THAT ROCKS GIVE ME MORE OF THAT”.

So I spent about $75 on food, but I only ate about $30 worth of it and ten bucks of that was tomato juice. I went seriously fucking nuts on this cheat meal, which really qualifies as a binge meal more than anything. I should have had a lot more self control and made better choices, but I didn’t, and I have to live with that.

Weight check just a few minutes ago: 213 pounds, about 3/4 pound shy of my weight when I started, which is pretty funny. I’ll see how things are in the morning; and I expect I’ll blast most of this weight straight out of my system after my fish oil tomorrow.

And a lot of it is probably water, anyway. Ever since that meal, I’ve been thirsty as hell, and I’ve hammered through pretty much anything drinkable I come across. Luckily, I have a water cooler full of distilled water in my house, so that’s primarily meant I’m drinking a lot of water.

Hey, I’m not proud of that meal, but that’s what happened dammit. Warts and all.

Update on weight loss for today:

The weight this afternoon was just over 210, down from just under 214, which makes approximately 3.5 pounds lost so far. If this is accurate, it’s pretty much in line with my expectations; 9,768 Kcals a week plus about a 2,000 Kcal cheat meal, where my BMR is 3,592 Kcals daily or 25,144 per week. This gives us a caloric deficit of 13,376 which – at the standard rate of 3,500 Kcals per pound per week – is 3.82 pounds of actual fat loss.

So it looks to me like thus far, the diet performs pretty much as effectively as any restricted calorie diet. It’s just somewhat faster because it’s more extreme, and… if I’m correct in my assumptions and hypotheses… it should maintain this efficiency for some time without loss of strength, energy, or metabolic rate.

My workout today actually went slightly BETTER than my previous workout. I got two solid sets in a row of five reps with my huge compound series, which is more than I have ever done even without the diet. The bad news is that I got overexcited and overzealous and slightly injured myself; I was feeling invincible, and I didn’t give myself a sufficient rest period or pay close enough attention to my form for the third set – where going for five again was just plain too much. I felt a bunch of stuff happen all at the same time on the third rep (left knee, right ankle, both shoulders, and right upper back), so I went “ooh, no thank you” and racked the weight. (I’m also starting to reconsider the “front squat to bent-over row” toward the end of each rep, which is making some nasty-sounding crunches and pops during the transition.)

It’s not as bad as it sounds. I’m pretty durable, reasonably quick to notice and address injuries, and I heal rapidly; I should be able to get back to my same usual workout after my two-day recovery… even with the added cardio on Wednesday. Some people would say I wimp out too early at times like this, but if I had finished out that set it would be taking me rather more than two days to recover.

I’m a little concerned that I won’t heal as rapidly on this diet, but we’ll just have to wait and see. If all else fails, I’ll do isolation work on machines instead of massive compound stuff.

[quote]CDarklock wrote:

And, embarrassing as it is, here’s my “cheat meal” breakdown:

  • One chicken tender
  • Six fried mozzarella sticks with marinara sauce
  • Three quarters of a chicken quesadilla
  • Four small onion rings
  • One french fry
  • Two thirds of an eight inch Philly cheese steak
  • Two bites of a country fried steak with white gravy
  • One bite of a stack of five pancakes with blueberry syrup
  • Three large glasses of tomato juice
  • One large original Orange Julius
  • One large lemon-lime Mr. Misty Freeze from Dairy Queen

Hey, I’m not proud of that meal, but that’s what happened dammit. Warts and all.
[/quote]

I know you said that the meal was a bit of a mistake, but I was wondering if you had researched overfeeding vs. refeeding vs. cheat meal. It would be something to look into. My initial impression is that the refeed or cheat meal options would be best for you, as the overfeed tends to work better for those who are leaner.

RIT Jared

CDarklock-

What is it with these extreme ketogenic diets that everyone is so excited about…???

The least I can say is interesting. The most I can say is I HOPE YOU ARE TAKING A MULTIVITAMIN, since you are getting so few nutrients from whole food. That being said, when you talk about yourself being holistic, I have to completely disagree with that. Holistic dietary practices are generally about WHOLE food - not 8 scoops of an MRP with no real nutrient value, besides protein. I’m not totally critisizing your “diet”, merely pointing out a few contradictions, at least as they appear to me.

As far your “strength levels”, again, just to call your attention to a contradiction - how can you monitor your strength when it appears you are working with 20-30% of your 1RM? This sounds like a great X-country W/O, but in your case you are giving your body almost no reason to preserve it’s LBM. It appears to be highly catabolic toward muscle mass because of both the intensity and volume. Generally, you want heavier loading, longer rest periods, and lower volume when cutting. Because you are so drastically cutting cals, you would even want longer rest periods and lesser volume.

Merely devil’s advocate here - just trying to HBO (help a brotha out). It’s just my opinion anyway… but, please do us a favor and be honest with your LBM retention. If you don’t lose 20-30% of the weight from muscle I would be surprised. BTW, you can burn off functional mass almost as fast as non-functional mass…

Later,

TopSirloin

Maybe I missed it but is there any specific reason you’re drinking distilled water?

I don’t like the huge idea of shitting your brains out. Completely unhealthy.

Same goes for dropping your calories and more than doubling them the next day. Just bad ideas in my mind. Seems like you’d strip off muscle and it’d be super unhealthy.

The shake idea to only take two a day… meh… up to you. If you don’t feel hungry. No worries. If you do. Its a little late. Kinda like drinking water before you’re thirsty.

Its hard to really say what happens till you do a % bf and see what happens. I think you’d lose atleast 1 to 1 if not 1 to 2. So if you dropped 30 lbs. 10 would be fat. But I have no clue how big you are already. If you’re 30%. You could just not eat and go 2 for one. Just all depends. Keep us updated.