T Nation

Newbie- First Goal Fat Loss

I am going to make this quick and straight to the point. I am fat. 5’11" 235 lbs. Started out about 8 weeks ago at 270. Considerable fat loss, but accomplished though low carb dieting and cycling.

At this point I know it’s time to start lifting again. I have never lifted more than a few months without giving up because I couldn’t “see” the results. If I am gaining muscle, and the scales don’t go down, i get discourage. Yeah, I know, it sucks being fat, and it sucks having that mindset, but that is the way it is.

So, with someone’s help, i would like a few suggestions. First I am eating a very low carb diet as “Dr’s Order”. I have elevated insulin with the extra fat, and I don’t want to add in extra sugar. My diet is pretty much all natural. Good fats, good protiens, good veggies, and water. Nothing processed.

This is my goal. Insted of losing my weight via cardio, and being a pussy at 165, I would like to add in weight training with any adjustments to exercise that would allow me to hit maybe 185 or 195. I am not looking to eat 8000 calories a day to gain muscle. I really need this shit off of me. I have read many of the articles, but I am a little confused on what may be a good path for me to start in.
I would enjoy cycling each day if possible, I suppose cutting it back to moderate intesnity rather than high intensity would be best for fat loss. Then lifting major groups 4 or 5 days a week would help nicely. Any suggestions for anyone in my shoes?

I don’t know how a carb filled post workout drink would do after lifting, but I am a little timid to try with my elevated insulin. Dr says once that fat is off the insulin will normalize.

Any suggestions on calories/day… lifting/cardio regimen to help me lose this fat quickly without looking like peewee herman win its off?

Thanks for the help!

First off, congrats on losing the weight you have so far. Major life changes are hard, but the benefits are great.

Lifting is a great way to help burn-off fat and maintain overall health.

Now to your questions:

1.) No-one really ‘needs’ a carb-filled PWO drink. If you’ve got insulin problems, and a doctor told you not do drink that kinda thing, skip it. Carbs + Protien PWO help optimize your muscle-growth, but are not required. Just have a regular whey shake after a workout.

2.) If you like cycling, then by all means cycle. If you also want to lift, you’re probably going to need to cut back a bit, but you don’t need to stop. You’ll know when to cut back when you start doing both.

3.) One aerobic exercise methodology for fat-burning is to use ‘interval training’ i.e. Bike at your regular pace for 5 minutes. Then crank-up the intensity for 1 minute, then 2 minutes of regular, 1 minute fast, 2 minutes regular, etc. Try this for 15-20 minutes, 2-3 times a week. This type of training will tax your energy systems in a different way than regular biking, and it’ll crank-up your metabolism. (This is the basic idea behind Alwyn Cosgrove’s ‘AfterBurn’ method)

4.) Buy 'The New Rules of Lifting" by Lou Schuler and Alwyn Cosgrove. It’s great for guys like you. (And just about anyone who lifts for that matter) It’s got a bunch of well-designed, properly perodized workouts that are modular, i.e. you can mix-and-match them depending on your goals. Highly recommended.

5.) As far as calories per day, I’m really not qualified to give you some exact number, but here’s what I’ll say instead. Keep eating what you’re eating. (From what you’ve got here it looks pretty clean.) On lifting days, drink a protein shake after your workouts, and possibly one the next morning too.

Lift Hard, stay strong,
john3103

I agree with all the above by john…

and will add. yes you could use Surge ONLY after lifting and lifting HARD you will be in a state that the insulin is warranted. But its not mandatory its OPTIMAL (for most). You could also simply go with say Metabolic Drive and a peaice of fruit.

Your diet sounds pretty damn solid though I would slow it down a bit Thats great progress but now after shedding a shit ton of fat your going to risk tapping inot the lil muscle you do have. Eat the same foods but aim to lose more like 1 or max 2 lbs a day and hell some weeks even not lose weight but lose FAT and inches.

I say read the beginnners thread. Also use the search engine and check out ALL the dawg school articles. Then “big Boy basics” is a great program to start with.

Any how great work so far keep it up, read up and come back anytime with questions,
Phill

im in your same boat trying to loose however i went of the method of keeping/increasing my lean body mass (206 atm) while cutting only fat and inches

sure its slow, but im getting stronger every week, the slow weight loss is the weight you know you will be able to keep off, becuase you made a life style change, not a crash diet. 30-40 pounds in 8 weeks thats 4-5 pounds per week which is amazing, but its really fast, and im almost certain it was not all fat. as for the insulin thing, you do not need to eat little to no carbs to keep a balanced insulin level, just the right ones at the right time. the eating plan i use is "the zone"and it was developed for diabetics originally and will keep your insulin levels normal if you follow it. also read up on nutrient timing, if you weight lift hard for 45mins to an hour you have just depleted your glycogen stores among other things and you body is now in a state of trying to re stock everything. eating the starchy quick release carbs at this time will NOT spike you insulin level hardly at all, you body will use it all to replenish itself.

Same here. I was 280 pounds 8 months ago now I am 220. Last two months I took up Muay Thai I lost a crap load of inches due to low carb diet and I shed most of my internal fat. In two months I went from Size 40 to 34. Geting really strong at this point but weight loss is slowing down. I just learned to accept that if the scale isn’t showing a loss it doesn’t mean I didn’t have any progress.

Any way good luck to you. I am working towards similar goals.

the pwo carbs are to stimulate an insulin response. i dont know how your insulin problem comares to the pwo spike from something like Surge, but you may want to consider it from a recovery standpoint if your training program starts to suffer.

since your insulin is already elevated, maybe just mix whey protein and gatorade mix yourself like I do, so you can try different ratios of protein to carbs.

I feel like shit if i drink gatorade any time except during my workout, when I absolutely crave it. i think a couple of JB articles say the body preferrentially burns fat and stores carbs as muscle glycogen pwo, so it theoretically wont kill the effect of your low carb diet.

i wouldnt skip it, maybe tweak it as i suggested. then again, this is coming from somebody with the opposite body composition problem, so maybe someone who has been in your position knows best.

congrats on your progress and good luck!

Thanks everyone for quick and informative reply. Just to clarify a few things. My fasting ( over night 12 hour fasting ) glucose levels were 100. 120 is diabetic. Now, the interesting thing is this level was during my QUALITY eating. No sugar, no processed foods, just protein, quality fats, and vegetables. Being that this level is elevated without me consuming carbs I wonder how much of a PWO carb solution I will need. I will experiment with maybe a half a scoop of Surge for PWO along with an extra scoop of quality whey protein.

John, thanks for the suggestion on interval training. I am going to break my cardio into 5 days a week. 3 Days at low intensity for about an hour, and two days doing intervals for 30 mins both upon rising without food prior. I will make adjustments as you suggest once I feel the need with strength training.

Phil, I like your suggestion of eating fruit along with protein. That may very well be all that I need at this point, again I will experiment

Once the fat is under control my insulin/glucose levels should stabilize. At that point I will not have any worry about consuming carbs for the right reasons to help my performance. It is interesting to note that elevated glucose levels are associated with lower testosterone levels so getting this fat off may be more important to my body than to others in a quick fashion.

Also, don’t think my diet is a ?crash? diet. I eat this way because I feel better doing so. I truly think that when a person like myself presents their body with quality, fresh ( mostly organic ) natural foods, that body will quickly respond with weight loss. In the past the same amount of food in the form of processed Frankenfoods would cause me halt on weight loss. It truly is the type of food, the type of carb, the type of protein that makes a difference.

as to you comment abou the same ammount of food, one small meal from a fast food joint can have a few thousand calories, while that same ammount of calories from clean foods could fill a whole table…

so if your eating the same visual ammount of food you are eating significantly less calories

[quote]designinme wrote:
Thanks everyone for quick and informative reply. Just to clarify a few things. My fasting ( over night 12 hour fasting ) glucose levels were 100. 120 is diabetic.[/quote]

Technically anything above 125 is considered diabetic, not 120. With your level at 100, you should be fine. I wouldn’t worry too much. What are your 2-hr post meal levels? Have you ever, even once, had a reading above 180?

The idea behind the PWO shake is to spike your insulin to help shuttle the necessary nutrients where they need to go. If your insulin is already elevated (which I find highly suspect, especially with the weight you’ve already lost) then just a protein shake should be all you need. It’s not like you’re going to hurt yourself or do any damage with the PWO shake though.

Also - your fasting glucose levels are usually independant of what you consume the night before. After the typical 8-hr fast, all food you have ingested should be fully broken down and for the most part- digested. The fasting test is to see how your body responds from a insulin aspect to not having food in you.

Be careful with the fasting exercise. You are on the cusp of being diabetic, and you don’t want to aggravate it. My suggestion would be to consume some real low-GI carbs prior to your morning workout, i.e. fruit, oatmeal, something of that sort. Once you trigger the diabetes (something you can’t ever fix) then you’ll have a problem maintaining those glucose levels during that exercise and could actually do some harm to you.

I know if I don’t eat at least a little something prior to morning exercise I get very light-headed and my glocose levls drop dangerously low. You may have elevated insulin levels now, a pre-cursor to Type II diabetes, but once you cross that line your body will no longer be able to control insulin production. Oh, if you couldn’t tell by now I’m diabetic and have been for years.

[quote]Phil, I like your suggestion of eating fruit along with protein. That may very well be all that I need at this point, again I will experiment

Once the fat is under control my insulin/glucose levels should stabilize. At that point I will not have any worry about consuming carbs for the right reasons to help my performance. It is interesting to note that elevated glucose levels are associated with lower testosterone levels so getting this fat off may be more important to my body than to others in a quick fashion.[/quote]

…“should” stablize, that is if you get them under control now and keep them that way. You actually have the ability here to prevent diabetes. You seem to have the knowldge, but you may need a better doctor.

Also- there are no scientific studies that prove insulin/glucose levels are related to T-levels. It’s more likely your age and the stress of the weight on you that is affecting your T-Levels than anything.

Umm yeah, kind of a duh here. :slight_smile: Seriously though you have a solid diet and I say keep doing it. Make sure your intake is consistent with your goals though and that you aren’t starving yourself. You may feel, as a “pre-diabetic” that you need to be really careful of carbs. The key is to eat a consistant amount every single meal so that your body doesn’t have to keep guessing what your taking in, and what you will be taking in.

Find your daily amount you’ll eat and divide it absolutely evenly beteen the meals. Trust me it works. Now that my weight is really down, I have effectively put my diabetes into remission so much so that my glucose levels never go above 100 or below 60.

Follow the 7 habbits laud out by JB, but keep your low carb lifestyle + surge post work out…

Eat often, whole and healthy. Eat lower sugar veggies, and lean meats. Take Flameout!

Random mutterings :slight_smile:

[quote]eengrms76 wrote:
Technically anything above 125 is considered diabetic, not 120. With your level at 100, you should be fine. I wouldn’t worry too much. What are your 2-hr post meal levels? Have you ever, even once, had a reading above 180?[/quote]

Never a reading above 180. Actually, I just had the reading of 100 after 12 hour fast, and a insulin reading of 9

[quote]
The idea behind the PWO shake is to spike your insulin to help shuttle the necessary nutrients where they need to go. If your insulin is already elevated (which I find highly suspect, especially with the weight you’ve already lost) then just a protein shake should be all you need. It’s not like you’re going to hurt yourself or do any damage with the PWO shake though.[/quote]

Ok, that is what I was looking to hear.

[quote]Also - your fasting glucose levels are usually independant of what you consume the night before. After the typical 8-hr fast, all food you have ingested should be fully broken down and for the most part- digested. The fasting test is to see how your body responds from a insulin aspect to not having food in you.

Be careful with the fasting exercise. You are on the cusp of being diabetic, and you don’t want to aggravate it. My suggestion would be to consume some real low-GI carbs prior to your morning workout, i.e. fruit, oatmeal, something of that sort. Once you trigger the diabetes (something you can’t ever fix) then you’ll have a problem maintaining those glucose levels during that exercise and could actually do some harm to you. [/quote]

Could you explain this a little more? I am a little confused as to why fasting prior to cardio could make my insulin issue worse? I do know that during the day if I don’t eat for long periods of time I feel completely “foggy”, and can’t concentrate on anything.

[quote]I know if I don’t eat at least a little something prior to morning exercise I get very light-headed and my glocose levls drop dangerously low. You may have elevated insulin levels now, a pre-cursor to Type II diabetes, but once you cross that line your body will no longer be able to control insulin production. Oh, if you couldn’t tell by now I’m diabetic and have been for years.

…“should” stablize, that is if you get them under control now and keep them that way. You actually have the ability here to prevent diabetes. You seem to have the knowldge, but you may need a better doctor.[/quote]

Well, the Doctor I go to is from the Mercola clinic, Dr. Go. I have a lot of faith in what they are teaching me, so I will stick with them for a little while longer and see how things work out on my next blood exam. At the time of my visit to the clinic, I was NOT verbal about my interest in weight training, just cardio. I am sure different suggestions by the physician/nutritionist would have been made if I would have discussed it with them at that time.

Now, that is great!