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Regressive Keto Cycle Wrap Up


Dropped from 100kg @ 20% bodyfat to 94kg @ 17.9% bodyfat.

Granted the bf test was a BIA scale - pretty useless but still...

Anywhom I had a horrible time on this diet - I lost a TONNE of size, strength and power. I can't put into words how demoralised I have been the last couple of days. I really wish I had never gone anywhere near this diet.

Im sure I did something fundamentally wrong - Ive always trusted Thibs nutritional advice but Im fairly sure I followed it to the tee... The only thing I wasnt sure about was the training side of things... I relied on 3 full body sessions a week with low volume and high loading. I thought this was a fairly sound way to preserve lean tissue and strength... apparently I was wrong.

Im so frigging miserable right now.


Cheer up. There are better days ahead. Your training was most likely not the culprit, it was most likely the diet. I'm not a big fan of it's suggestions.


I don't think I've ever lost this much muscle this fast.

Hopefully when my shoulders good enough to do full ROM flat pressing again (everything else is fine to go nuts with) I can start pulling it all together again.

I just want to be lean AND strong for once... I've spent my whole damn life being the chubby kid... The only time I ever managed to get down to under 10% bodyfat with slight ab visibility involved me being scrawny and weak as hell.


based on your numbers you lost about 2 kg of muscle?


based on your numbers you lost about 2 kg of muscle?



Sorry, but i gotta say it: I told you so. I told you not to do the diet. It's stupid, arbitrary and a pain in the ass to do. On top of all that it doesn't even provide sufficient protein to spare muscle, but i guess you found that out yourself didn't you?

We've all been there. I remember doing a bunch of dumb diets before finding out what really "works". File this one under "lesson learned".


Sounds about right.

And I cant even begin to describe whats happened to my strength and work capacity.


What was your training like?

I just finished reading 'The Ketogenic Diet' by Lyle McDonald, and the CKD he describes in there is very similar to CTs RKD cycle, but basically has a much bigger carb-up on the weekend (10g CHO per lb, over 24-48 hrs).

But he also describes what he says is the perfect training for this diet, and I really thought there was something wrong with the training sample he provided, like it was a miss print or something, but the examples are repeated again and again.

It's a Split workout on Monday (lower) and Tuesday (upper), Thurday (TBT high rep), Friday (cardio), Weekend (refeed).

But for the workouts

, he states to only do 1 work set per muscle group

, which I thought was very low, but maybe he has a valid point. Have you read the book, some really interesting points about this type of dieting that I never thought about.

I'm going to start this RKD next week, but I think I may tweak it a little to follow some of Lyle's guidelines .



In your Training Log, I remember you were doing strength training with NO cardio, and you said you'd only start doing NEPA if Fat loss stalled.

This is from page 227 of 'The Ketogenic Diet' by Lyle McDonald;

[b]Low-intensity aerobic exercise, below the lactate threshold, is useful for both establishing
ketosis following an overnight fast as well as deepening ketosis. High-intensity exercise will more
quickly establish ketosis by forcing the liver to release glycogen into the bloodstream. However it
can decrease the depth of ketosis by decreasing the availability of FFA. Performing ten minutes
or more of low-intensity aerobics following high-intensity activity will help reestablish ketosis
after high-intensity activity.

Guidelines for Establishing and Maintaining Ketosis

  1. After a carb-up, if not weight training the following day, perform 45â??+ of low-intensity aerobic
    exercise (~65% of maximum heart rate) to deplete liver glycogen and establish ketosis without
    depleting muscle glycogen. Interval training will establish ketosis more quickly by depleting liver
    glycogen but will negatively affect your leg workout.


  1. Perform a high-intensity workout (weight training or intervals) followed by 10-20â?? of low intensity
    aerobics to provide adequate FFA for the liver to produce ketones.

  2. Perform 10-15â?? of low-intensity aerobics after high-intensity training to provide FFA for the
    liver for ketone body formation.[/b]

Sorry it didn't go the way you expected dude, but I think it may have been your approach to training which lead to the poor results.

But Thibs should have really provided some guidelines of what training to follow with this diet as well.



or just choose a diet that isn't retarded. face it, the training wasn't the problem, the shitty diet was. low volume, high intensity (as a % of 1RM) training is the way to go when on a diet. unfortunatly, training will only get you so fat wrt muscle maintenance, sufficient protein intake is the other crucial puzzle piece. one that was obviously lacking from this diet.


Lyle writes some good diets, but as far as I'm aware his training advice leaves a little to be desired.


I pondered the RKD but I thought it looked more like something Thibs had invented while bored one morning rather than road tested.


Theres no reason why the damn thing should fail though which is pretty annoying - the only thing that could really be picked upon are the days where protein falls below 1g/lb. I wonder if this could be altered?

The concept of the diet as a whole is actually pretty sound with that exception... I do suspect my training choices weren't the best option. I did email thibs and message him in his thread a few times over the last year (or however long the article had been out) but unfortunatly he was always too busy to give a response.

To london runner... the NEPA walks and the such wouldnt even really count as cardio... its just about upping ones generic daily activity. I went for a few walks in the evening here and there... maybe did an extra trip down to the shops for food, offered to carry my friends bags, etc.

Interesting that calories werent SUPER low on this diet like they were when I did the v-diet twice... weight loss did start to slow dramatically half way through week 3 and came to an almost standstill in week 4... I would perhaps wonder about doing a recalculation at the end of week 2 for another calorie drop?

The fact calories werent as low as the v-diet made me also wonder about performing thibs metabolic pairings or something during this diet:

mon: upper
tue: metabolic pairings
wed: off
thu: upper
fri: metabolic pairings
sat: off
sun: off

This was the outline laid out by thibs in another article for the metabolic pairings... but not connected to this diet. He said oen of his clients dropped close to 5% bodyfat in a month using this approach. The lack of leg work is due to the fact that the metabolic pairings feature a lot of leg work. I do not know what diet this client had at the time however. Can this work with low carbs?

Perhaps to get around the low protein days... start the diet on a friday? Just an idea.

But the low protein days could definatly be sidestepped....

for a 220lb @20% bf male the calorific intake is 2420
(220lbs)*(1g protein per lb)= 220g protein, 880 calories
20g of trace carbs = 80 calories
2420-960 = 1460 calories to spend on fat = 162g

rough calorific macro split:
36.5% protein
3.5% carb
60% fat

There would still be a domninance of fat... shrugs I guess this approach isnt so good as a cookie cut approach (which is what thibs was forced to do) - maybe a different combo of weight and bodyfat would yield a protein dominant macro split.


I worked the numbers on my own RKD and there's more then 1g per lb of LBM even on the 30% Protein days. So I don't think that was the case.

I think that it took too long to re-establish ketosis after the weight training, which is what lead to the poor results.

Without light cardio post weight training, it can take 6-8 hours to re-establish ketosis (according to Lyle), which means his body was still trying to use Glycogen for fuel up to 8 hours post training, and when he's sleeping, he wasn't burning any fuel at all.

So if you actually work it out, he was probably in Ketosis 1-2 days out of the whole week. Where as with Lyles CKD method (light cardio in the morning and post training), he says you should be in ketosis for at least 5-6 days a week.

Did he even buy Ketostix for urine analysis to measure if he was even in Ketosis or not?
My guess is NO!



Lyle openly states that he doesn't know much about training, which is why he got outside assistance, and did a lot of research when recommending the training that he does in the book.

"The Ketogenic Diet" is probably the most in-depth analysis of a diet I've ever seen, he's basically broken the diet down into the smallest details and analysed and tested every single bit of it.

It's over 300 pages of text with 34 chapters, and at the end of every chapter, there's between 20-80 studies sited to back up his theory, research and results.

To be honest, I only found out about Lyle's work about 2 weeks ago, and I really think that I would have totally fucked up my own RKD diet if I had not read his book. There are so many components that I would have overlooked and not even thought about. This diet is a lot more complex then just following a set of Macros and doing what the hell you want training wise.




1/ You should have been doing some real cardio (running, rowing, biking) after weight training like I mentioned above, to quickly re-establish ketosis in the body.

2/ Metabolic pairings are basically the same as Tabata training, which is WAY TOO MUCH training to be doing on a diet with such low Kcals.

3/ From your training log, you were doing 4-6 sets per bodypart on your strength days, which is also a little too much.

I can totally understand if you never follow a Low Kcal Keto diet ever again, due to your results on this one, but if you decide to run it again with some changes, I highly recommend that you read the book I mentioned.

I know your a man of science, so you'll be able to appreciate the amount of work put into the book, in terms of research, studies, analysis and testing. You will look at Keto dieting totally differently after reading it.

PM me your e-mail address, and I'll send you a link of where to get it from.



I've used the RKD two times. The first time without cardio, I was very satisfied with the results. The second time with some cardio, the result was a little bit better than the first time. I didn't loose that much muscle but both times experienced some decline in strength using FB workouts.


There's no reason you have to eat a higher percentage of your calories from fat. Contrary to popular belief around here, the body doesn't start burning muscle tissue for energy if your fat falls below 50% on a keto diet.

As a matter of fact, if your fat % is too high, protein intake must be compromised, thus making the likelihood of muscle loss GREATER.

That is one of my main problems with this diet: it's based on the faulty premise that fat intake must be at least 50% on a keto diet or else you'll burn muscle. This simply isn't the case. Go check out Bricknyce's Rapid Fat Loss log if you don't believe me.


What the hell am I doing wrong then? Also I wonder if there is a better approach then full body straight set work?

Perhaps my stress was too high (girlfriend problems + studies) and my sleep poor and irregular.


This diet does seem pretty ridiculous.

Or "rediculous" for most of you :slight_smile: