Sunday, September 28, 2008

A New View of Energy Balance By John Berardi

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A New View of Energy Balance

By Dr. John M Berardi, Ph.D.

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A Violent Uprising?

Arthur Schopenhauer, a preeminent 19th century philosopher, once said that truth isn’t always as easily accepted as we’d like it to be. Specifically, he stated: "Truth always goes in 3 stages. First it is ridiculed, then violently opposed, and finally accepted as self-evident."

Now, in this article, I intend to introduce the Testosterone Nation to a new
"truth." Well, maybe that’s not the best way of saying it. But, since saying
that I intend to introduce the T-Nation to my best guess at a theoretical model designed to explain and predict a natural phenomenon will leave a few of you scratching your heads, let’s stick with calling it a new truth.

The "new truth" that I want to introduce you to today is a new view of the
concept of energy balance. Although the ideas in this article will suggest that the current view of the energy balance equation offers limited explanatory and predictive power and, as a result, needs revisions, I don’t necessarily think that these ideas will stir uprisings, violent or otherwise.

First of all, the concepts in this article are logical, supported by research, and have appeared in bits and pieces, albeit fragmented, elsewhere on this site in the work of myself and the Warrior Nerd, Dr Lonnie Lowery.

Second of all, I’m just not sure the concept of energy balance has the power to rouse violence. It always makes me chuckle when "experts" (in any field) parrot this Schopenhauer quotation, suggesting that the ridicule of their ideas actually somehow makes the ideas true! Looking back through history, many more ridiculed ideas have been shown to be false than have shown to be true.

So rather than testing the ideas in this article against the barometer of ridicule and violent upheaval, let’s just test them against a much more objective standard—the available body of scientific and clinical evidence.

The Current View of Energy Balance

Let’s start out with a few pictures illustrating the current view of energy
balance, or, at least, how most people view the relationship between "calories in" and "calories out."

The first image below represents how most people perceive the energy balance equation during weight maintenance. As the diagram represents, when "calories in" are equivalent to "calories out," body mass should remain constant.


The next image below represents the conventional view of the energy balance equation during weight gain. As the diagram represents, when "calories in" exceed "calories out" body mass should be gained.

The next image below represents the conventional view of the energy balance equation during weight loss. As the diagram represents, when "calories out" exceed "calories in," body mass should be lost.

Now, in looking at these pictures it’s important to understand exactly what they represent. These pictures represent a scientific model, or in other words, a mental picture, or idealization, based on physical concepts and aesthetic notions that account for what scientists see regarding a particular phenomenon. And not only does a scientific model, as described above, explain a particular phenomenon, it allows scientists to predict a future course for the phenomenon in question.

Therefore, if the energy balance model above (or as we understand it, based on the pictures) can consistently explain body composition changes seen in those altering their exercise and nutritional habits, as well as predict how any specific change in either variable will impact body composition in the future, it’s a valid model. If not, it’s invalid (incomplete, misunderstood, or completely wrong).

From that perspective, let’s take a few case studies of mine and see if the
model above holds up under the explanatory and predictive scrutiny necessary for a scientific model to be valid.

Three Strikes and You’re Out
In order to support my contention that the above-mentioned model of energy
balance (or as we understand it, based on the pictures) is inadequate; here are 3 case studies for your examination.

*Case Study #1:
National Level Cross Country Skier; Female - 20y

Client Information from September 2002:
5’6" ; 160lb ; 22% fat
(125lb lean, 35lbs fat)

Exercise Expenditure:
~1200kcal/day

Energy Intake:
~2500kcal/day
15% protein
65% carbohydrate
20% fat

Client Information from December 2002:
5’6" ; 135lb ; 9% fat
(123lb lean, 12lbs fat)

Exercise Expenditure:
~1200kcal/day

Energy Intake:
~4000kcal/day
35% protein
40% carbohydrate
25% fat

Net result — 12 weeks:
25lbs lost; -23lb fat; -2lbs lean

*Note that in case study #1, we increased energy intake by a whopping 1500 per day while energy expenditure remained the same. Since the athlete was weight stable in September—prior to hiring me—you might have expected her to have gained weight during our 12 week program. However, as you can see, she lost 25lbs (while preserving most of her muscle mass). Since the energy balance model above, as it appears, can’t explain this very interesting result, that’s one strike.

*Case Study #2:
Beginner Weight Lifter; Male — 23y

Client Information from August 2003:
5’6" ; 180lb ; 30% fat
(126lb lean, 54lbs fat)

Exercise Expenditure:
~200kcal/day

Energy Intake:
~1700kcal/day
21% protein
57% carbohydrate
22% fat

Client Information from October 2003:
5’6" ; 173lb ; 20% body fat
(138.5lb lean, 34.5lbs fat)

Exercise Expenditure:
~600kcal/day

Energy Intake:
~2200 - 2400kcal/day
35 - 40% protein
30 - 35% carbohydrate
30 - 35% fat

Net result — 8 weeks:
7lb weight loss; -19.5lb fat, +12.5lb lean

*Notice that in case study #2, we increased energy intake by between 500 and 700 per day while increasing energy expenditure by about 400 per day. Again, since the lifter was weight stable in June, prior to hiring me, you might have expected him to have gained weight or at least remained weight stable during this 8 week program. However, as you can see, he lost 7 lbs. But that’s not the most interesting story. During the 8 weeks, he lost almost 20lbs of fat while gaining almost 13 lbs of lean mass. Since the energy balance model above, as it appears, can’t explain this very interesting result, that’s two strikes.

*Case Study #3:
Mixed Martial Arts Trainer; Male — 35y

Client Information from June 2004:
5’10" ; 179lb ; 19% fat
(148.6lb lean, 30.4lbs fat)

Exercise Expenditure:
~300kcal/day

Energy Intake:
~1100 - 1500kcal/day
48% protein
25% carbohydrate
27% fat

Client Information from August 2004:
5’10" ; 187lb ; 9% body fat
(170.2lb lean, 16.8lbs fat)

Exercise Expenditure:
~600kcal/day

Energy Intake:
~2400 - 2600kcal/day
26 - 38% protein
28 — 42% carbohydrate
22 — 34% fat

Net results — 8 weeks:
8lb weight gain; -13.6 lb fat, +21.6 lb

*Notice that in case study #3, we increased energy intake by between 1100 and 1300 per day while increasing energy expenditure by only about 300 per day. Again, since the lifter was weight stable in June, prior to hiring me, you might have expected him to have experienced a large gain in mass, both significant muscle and fat gains. However, as you can see, he gained 8 total lbs, having lost almost 14lbs of fat while gaining nearly 22lbs of lean mass.
While the energy balance equation might have predicted weight gain, it’s
unlikely that it would have predicted the radical shift in body composition seen in this individual. Yet another strike against the current view of energy
balance, as it appears.

Simplicity and Energy Balance

After looking at the case studies above, you might be wondering where the
classic view went wrong. (You also might be wondering what these individuals were on in order to progress so quickly—well, actually, not one of them took steroids or any nutritional supplements more powerful than Low-Carb Grow! Surge, and fish oil).

Although scientists are still trying to work out what types of metabolic
"uncoupling" are going on in order to produce results like those results above, it’s my belief that the current view of energy balance (depicted in the slides above) is just too simple to offer consistent explanatory and predictive power in the realm of body composition change. Below are the three main reasons I believe this to be true:

1. Calorie restriction or overfeeding (in the absence of other metabolic
intervention like drugs, supplements, or intense exercise) is likely to
produce equal losses is lean body mass and fat mass (w/restriction) or equal gains in lean body mass and fat mass (w/overfeeding). And even if these gains or losses aren’t necessarily equal, they still are in such a proportion that while body mass may be affected, individuals will only likely end up smaller or larger versions of the same shape. I call this the "body shape status quo".(1)

2. Most people assume too much simplicity by associating energy intake with calorie intake alone, and energy expenditure with exercise activity alone. This simplistic view can lead to false assumptions about what causes weight gain and weight loss.(2) Both sides of the equation are much more complex and it’s these interrelationships that are important to physique mastery.

3. Most people treat the energy intake and energy expenditure sides of the
equation as independent. As a result, even if we could avoid reason #2 (the
problem of simplicity) by matching energy intake against all the known forms of work that the body does in utilizing energy,

"…Obesity can arise in the absence of calorie over consumption. In addition, opposite models can show how obesity can be prevented by increasing expenditure to waste energy and stabilize body weight when challenged by hyperphagia (over consumption)". (3)

Factors Affecting Energy Balance

Now, when I say that most people assume too much simplicity by associating energy intake with calorie intake alone, and energy expenditure with exercise activity alone, I’m not shaking my finger at them. Obviously, of the factors playing into energy balance, these are the most readily modifiable. But, assuming they are the only factors playing into energy balance is what gets people into trouble.

In the diagram below, I’ve outlined all the factors that we currently know to
impact both the energy intake and energy expenditure sides of the energy balance equation.


Notice one thing, though. I don’t mention hormones here. The reason: hormones don’t impact energy expenditure directly. Rather, they signal a change in one of the factors listed on the energy expenditure side of the equation (or they lead to an increased appetite, thus are two steps removed from affecting the energy intake side of the equation).

Obviously, this relationship is much more complex than most people make it out to be. Sure, on the energy intake side of the equation, things are fairly
simple. The "calories in" are mostly affected by the efficiency of digestion
(90-95% of energy in). And we can control this side by volitionally choosing how much we stuff in our mouths.

However, on the energy expenditure side, we’ve got three major "destinations" for our ingested energy; work, heat and storage. And all the energy coming in goes to one of those three destinations. From this perspective, although it seems a bit counterintuitive, we’re actually always in "energy balance" regardless of whether we’re gaining or losing weight. The energy taken in is always balanced by the energy going toward work, heat and storage.

The interesting part is that during periods of over- or under feeding, the
amount of energy in can influence most of the factors on the energy out side.

Relationships Between Energy In and Energy Out

In order to add another touch of complexity to the discussion, as discussed
above, most people treat the two sides of the energy balance equation as
independent. They’re not. But don’t just take my word for it:

"The regulatory systems (of the body) control both energy input and output so that for a given steady state, compensatory changes on the input side are made if expenditure is challenged, or on the output side (expenditure or efficiency) if intake is challenged…Realizing human obesity is caused by the interaction of an obesigenic environment with a large number of susceptibility genes, successful treatment will require uncoupling of these compensatory mechanisms" (4).

"The critical issue in addressing the problem of alterations in body weight
regulation is not intake or expenditure taken separately, but the adjustment of one to the other under ad libitum food intake conditions" (5).

In the end, as these scientists suggest, understanding the relationship between "energy in" and "energy out" requires a more complex energy balance model than the one most people currently picture in their minds.

And, as promised above, here’s my take on what this model should look like in order to more accurately reflect what’s going on with energy balance.

Dr. JB’s Energy Balance Model

Let’s walk through this model together.


First, energy is ingested, with 90-95% of it being digested and absorbed. Once this energy reaches the cells, the intake is "sensed" by the body and signals are sent to the brain (and other tissues) to manipulate energy expenditure.

Here’s one way that energy intake is "sensed." (For a more detailed explanation, check out check out Part 1 of my "Hungry Hungry Hormone" article series.)


Based on the signals received, the brain either sends signals back to the body in order to increase hunger and metabolic efficiency while decreasing metabolism (if in a hypocaloric state), or in order to decrease hunger and metabolic efficiency while increasing metabolism (if in a hypercaloric state).

A complete understanding of this model leads us to realize that trying to
manipulate total energy intake alone in order to alter body composition lets us down because the energy expenditure side of the equation quickly changes to accommodate intake conditions. And trying to manipulate the energy expenditure side of the equation in order to alter body composition lets us down because the energy intake side of the equation is signaled to change in order to match expenditure conditions. In the end, this entire system is in place to prevent significant deviations from a comfortable body composition homeostasis. However, we all know that body mass and body composition can be altered reliably and homeostasis can be overcome to one degree or another. So, how do we manage to "outsmart" the body?

Well, various strategies can help to "uncouple" the relationships between energy intake and expenditure. I’ve detailed a few of them below.

Energy Uncoupling

Notice that there are two possible "uncoupling points" in this energy balance model.

The first uncoupling point lies in the communication between energy sensing/brain signaling (the lower arrow) and the second lies in the communication between the brain and the body—particularly in the drive to eat and the drive to move (the upper arrow).

Think of what dieters face during those inevitable dieting stalemates that
nearly all of us have experienced. Once energy is restricted, appetite is
reduced and both exercise and non-exercise energy expenditure is reduced. In order to combat this inevitable metabolic slow-down, a few of the strategies illustrated above can be beneficial.

First, on the energy sensing/signaling end, periodic re-feeding, the use of
carbohydrate or carbohydrate/protein drinks during exercise, and upregulation of thyroid function by nutritional supplements designed to provide raw materials for thyroid hormone manufacture or to stimulate the conversion of T4 to the more active T3 in the body can help keep the metabolic signal alive.

Secondly, on the brain to body end (the drives to eat and move), although
signals are sent to increase food intake and decrease voluntary activity, these can be uncoupled by refusing to eat more in the face of increased hunger.

Also, uncoupling can occur as a result of performing more exercise and non-exercise activity (including using strategies for increasing the cost of each activity — wearing an X-vest when walking, for example) in an attempt to maintain pre-diet energy expenditure.

If you’re looking for more tips for uncoupling the tight relationship between
energy intake and energy expenditure, check out Dr Lonnie Lowery’s Losing Your Energy Balance series at www.t-nation.com

In addition, as most of you know, I believe that alterations in food type (what
you eat) and food timing (when you eat) can also uncouple this relationship and improve both weight loss profile and muscle building profile.

For more on this, check out my" Lean Eatin’" articles — Part 1 and 2 — as well asmy Appetite for Construction column right here at JB.com.

And if after reading these articles, you still don’t buy into the calore is not a calorie argument (which is closely related to the concepts presented in this article), check out this recent scientific paper by Buchholz and Schoeller (6).

Finally, check out my review of my presentation at the 2004 SWIS Symposium for a more complete treatment of how to use the information presented in this article to impact fat loss.

In the end, I hope it’s evident that the traditional picture of energy balance
is missing one key facet—the fact that energy intake and expenditure are tightly inter-related. Without understanding this relationship, some erroneous conclusions are regularly drawn by dieters and nutritionists, conclusions that prevent the types of success seen in the case studies discussed in this article.

Now that you’re armed with this information, you’ll be better equipped to
construct nutrition schedules designed to "outsmart" the body, uncoupling this relationship above, and losing fat (or gaining muscle) while others stagnate.

References:
1. Forbes, GB. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2000 May; 904:359-65.
2. Prentice, A, Jebb, S. Nutr Rev. 2004 Jul;62(7 Pt 2):S98-104.
3. Rampone, AJ, Reynolds, PJ. Life Sci. 1988;43(2):93-110.
4. Berthoud, HR. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2002 Jun;26(4):393-428.
5. Jequier, E. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2002 Jun;967:379-88.
6. Buchholz AC, Schoeller DA. Am J Clin Nutr. 2004 May; 79(5):899S-906S.

See Also:
Find out more about Precision Nutrition
Gourmet Nutrition: The Cookbook for the Fit Food Lover
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Find out more about Gourmet Nutrition.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The "300"




















Today was an auspicious day, CrossFit-wise. One of my long-term goals, to get 300RX on "Fight Gone Bad!" was met. I have been coming close to this for, literally, years, and during the FGB 3 Fundraiser I got 309, all with excellent form, and full ROM.

I made a change which helped A LOT, which was to change the order and the number of reps I went for in various movements. I have always started with the rower in the past, and the wall-ball has always been the choke point. I have always gone for 20 or better in everything and fallen apart in the last round when I have gotten close.

This time I started with box jumps, which have been a trouble spot as well, so I could do them fresh, and I just went ballistic on my strongest suit, push-press. I basically gave the wall-ball up as a lost cause and used it to recover for SDHP. I actually went to total muscular failure on the SDHP at about 16:53, so I don't think I could have gotten much more. The only bummer was that I was 3 points away from getting the CFEB record (311 presently). Next time I'm sure I'll get it. Ynez was an awesome wingwoman, I'm going to have to enlist her aid next time when I go for 325.


ExerciseSet 1Set 2Set 3
SDHP 75#171725
Box Jump 20"
272727
Push-Press 75#
35
35
25
Row141413
Wall-Ball 20#111112

Friday, September 19, 2008

There Can Be Only One...





...ideal diet, that is.

The more I learn about nutrition, the more I think genetics play a truly huge role in how we process food. IF is doing me righteous, but I think many people would fall apart on this protocol.

Today is day four of IF (intermittent fasting) as follows:

14-20 hour fasts
1500 calories
super-high quality near paleo foods.
no alcohol

I have eaten basically this for the last three days:

.5 pound red meat
6 oz dark meat chicken
1 oz cheese
one grapefruit
one pound broccoli
2 cups marinara sauce
2 oz whole wheat pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil
one packet "black powder"
4 GNC fish oil caps
2 TJ multivitamins
2 TJ Joint complex
2 GNC l-glutamine (1 gram)
small pot coffee, splash milk

Yesterday was a clear PR on "Grace" and I felt like I could do better.

Today in hour 14 of a fast I ran 5K, with 500 meters of elevation change in 24:45 , (and the first somewhat flatter 1.5 miles at a 7:00 pace).

I used to be a serious runner, so I am fairly certain this would translate to a 21:00 or so on a track, and this is by far the best I have felt on a run in long, long time (the last serious FLAT 5K I did took about this long!!).

And, again, at the end I felt like I had a lot left and had not pushed hard enough! Also I felt ecstatic rushes about 10 minutes into it that usually only happen at the end of a really long run (the "runner's high")- bonus!

I'm sold.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Tweaked IF

The last two day, I have eaten 1500 calories in a six-hour window, all super-favorable near-paleo foods.

WOD:

Done in hour 16 of fast.

Grace (30 Clean and Jerk for Time)

4:40 (PR, last time was 5:59).

I think I could do this in 2:59 with proper coaching.

Climbed with Andrea after CF:

5.10a "Ira" - surprisingly difficult
5.11a "Green" - fail, got about 60% of the way
5.10d - finished, first try, best climbing I have done in a while.
5.11a "Pink" - tried hard, got pumped, fell off
V3 - got it!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Tweak IF

Yesterday's Feeding between 2:30 and 8:30

Builder Bar - 3 blocks
Muscle Milk - 4 blocks, low carb, 3x fat
2 slices diabetic lifestyles bread, .5 lb 96/4 beef, ounce cheese, apple - 6 matched blocks
TJ's flatbread pizza, .25 lb lox 2 tangerines - 6 blocks 2x fat

19 blocks 2x fat

Analysis: a bit too much food, a bit to many calories, I'm going to tweak this today. I'll let you know how it goes.

Goals Update






New Posterior Chain Mass







I'm well on track with my fitness goals, but my body composition is sticking stubbornly in the 16-18% range.

However, and this is quite interesting, I have put on 7 pounds or so of lean mass in the last 3 months. I am at about 150 pounds of lean mass right now, almost the highest I have ever been at, and it shows: the 185x2 push-jerk the other day was a surprise.

Quarter One (ends Oct. 6th):
Goals:

* Bodyfat 11% (17%)
* Weight 169# (183)
* Lean = 146# (completed: 150#)
* CFT 800 (completed)
* Mile 6:30 (completed)
* Fran 5:00
* C&J 165 (completed + Push-Jerk 185x2)

The dreaded Fran is today. 5:00 seems unlikely, but I will try and equal my best of 5:45:

00:00 11 thruster
00:30 5 deep breaths
00:45 10 Thruster
01:15 5 deep breaths
01:30 11 pull-Ups
01:50 5 deep breaths
02:05 10 pull-ups
02:20 5 deep breaths
02:35 8 Thruster
03:05 5 deep breaths
03:20 7 thruster
03:50 5 deep breaths
04:05 15 pull-ups
04:35 5 deep breaths
04:50 9 thruster
05:20 5 deep breaths
05:35 9 Pull-ups
05:45

Update:

Fran RX 7:30

- a variety of factors could have caused this dismal performance:

a: alcohol
b: hypocaloric state/17 hour fast
c: smoked cigar on Saturday

I'm tempted to keep it real clean and try this again in one week, in a fasted state. God I hate Fran.

Did some climbing with Andrea at Diablo Rock Gym:

5.9x2, no break
5.10ax2 no break
5.10ax2 no break
5.10bx2 (needed 3 minute break, overhanging)

Friday, September 12, 2008

IF Day 3: Power Production PR!





Day 3 of IF, and while it is too soon to make any solid judgments, early signs are favorable:

-A near PR in FGB; 284
-A decent performance in Josh
-A PR in the Push-Jerk (185x2)
-Increased mental acuity
-Improved recovery time
-Improved injury healing
-Probable ease in compliance

If this works favorably for my body composition, and the above effects are persistent, I'll be ecstatic!

Today:

*21 hour fast (except 30 calories in one serving of "Black Powder" pre-WOD)

*WOD: Push-Jerk 3-3-3-3-3
155-170-175-180(PR)-185x2(F, but a PR)

Food: .5 lb broccoli in cheese sauce, double cheeseburger (96/4 lean) on Diabetic Lifestyles bread, Can of Salmon, 2 builder bars, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter. 1 Trader Joe's Thin Crust Pizza with Ham and Gruyere Cheese.

About 16 blocks +2x fat

Yesterday I only managed about 11 blocks before the clock ran out on my 6-hour window, so I need to make sure to plan my eating well.
-

Thursday, September 11, 2008

IF Day Two

I have decided to give IF a try, as I said in yesterday's post, I had good results with something similar before (warrior diet). I plan to do 16 hour fasts, and eat my full allotment of calories in the remaining 6 hours. I'll do 14 matched blocks (9 carb/9 protein)with plenty of fat.

I had a hard time eating enough yesterday, maybe 12 blocks, and I could barely sleep last night.

Very interested to see how this affects my WOD performance today, I plan to do it before eating.

Update: I did the 9/11 "Hero of your choice" WOD, I chose Josh:

* 95 pound Overhead squat, 21 reps
* 42 Pull-ups
* 95 pound Overhead squat, 15 reps
* 30 Pull-ups
* 95 pound Overhead squat, 9 reps
* 18 Pull-ups

I never did this so I have no comparison, but coming of the heels of severe caloric deprivation and a 17 hour fast, it felt tough.

Time: 12:20 RX

15/6
21/11/10
15
15/10/5
9
9/8/1

I seemed to be needing more recovery time than normal, but since I have never done this it is hard to say. I think sub-10 would be a good performance for me.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Almost IF/ Full Recovery

I took three days off, and besides my elbow, I feel fully recovered. I've been in the zone for some days now, 13-17 blocks.

Daniel over at ROCK ON is getting good results with IF, and I'm intrigued. I did something similar to this in Tucson back in 02 and got decent results. Today I did Fight Gone Bad in a fairly fasted state (.5 cup milk in coffee, 30 calories in "Black Powder" that I took pre-WOD).

Score was 284, subbed 45# thrusters for wall-ball

Row 20/20/18
Thruster 16/15/10
SDHP 20/20/16
Box Jump 20/18/15
Push-Press 24/27/29

Total - 284

I think my best ever score was 289 with shitty form and best legit was maybe 279, so I am pretty happy with this. I am fairly certain I will (finally) hit 300 at FGB III on the 27th.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Big Fake Boobies? Glass Eyes? Lipo? Tattoos? What is "acceptable"?

I recently did a post that elicited a lot of (90% negative) comments, about considering liposuction, the gist of which were that lipo is for the vain/lazy/shallow/SoCal set.

I actually do have a cosmetic augmentation (a prosthetic eye). Is this shallow vanity? If not, what is the difference?

Is is acceptable to have giant fake tits, like those featured prominently on the national site recently? Is that different?

Is it shallow vanity to remove an unsightly but harmless mole? Why or why not?

And who amongst us has nary a tat? Is that not shallow (almost by definition) vanity?





Serious Overtraining

I guess I'm pushing into being an advanced athlete, or at least a solid intermediate. because I have STILL not recovered from the Burpee/Murph, etc. punishment.

Beginners who become overtrained will recover fairly quickly
Intermediates/advanced athletes can take weeks or months to recover
Elites can blow a whole season or year by overtraining

I did Linda RX in 28:34, a good six minutes off of my PR (at a lower bodyweight) and I'm crushed again. I took yesterday off and will give FGB a shot today, but I'm not optimistic about it.

-Plan your breaks or nature will provide them for you.

Been solidly in the zone for the last few days - 13-17 blocks fairly clean. I went shopping yesterday and I have all good clean zone food again.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

FGB III



FGB III is rapidly approaching. We have 7 slots left on our team: the event is September 27th @ 11 AM @ Berkeley Ironworks.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Fab Four-Blocker





I'm back in the zone. 15 blocks yesterday, 13 today.

Yesterday's breakfast (pictured)

3 eggs, 1.5 oz lox, 1 oz Neufch√Ętel cheese, 2 slices diabetic lifestyles bread (very low GI) 1/4 pound broccoli, 1 heirloom tomato.

4 delicious blocks + 2x fat

Thursday, September 4, 2008

What Does It Take? Cosmetic Surgery?





My post-atkins results are very discouraging.

Pre-Atkins: 178, 18% bodyfat, 146 lean
Post-Atkins: 172, 14% bodyfat, 146 lean
Now: 182, 18.5% bodyfat, 149 lean

OK, so I am a bit stronger, but I seem to go right back to an unacceptable 18% bodyfat as soon as I stop paying attention: mind you, I'm still working out harder and more frequently, and eating better than 90%++ of people so this really sucks.

Anyway, the thing that has worked the best so far is just strict zone, between 1x and 3x fat, with 14 blocks for loss and 18-19 blocks for maintainance, so I'm back at that.

I went to Bikram Yoga (which was my pre-CF fitness regimen) and it was great, but you stare in the mirror the whole time: I actually am satisfied with my body overall, but I always have "love handles" that I just hate, and I have had them even at 10.5% bodyfat, the lowest I have ever been measured at (159 pounds, over 10 years ago). I am seriously considering liposuction on just this area, at the very least I think I will go in for a consultation. I certainly would not do this before at least getting as lean as I have been in the last 10 years (13% bodyfat or below).

Yesterday I had 13 blocks, all clean and did about 150 burpees.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Horror of Overtraining

Still knocked out. This sucks. I just cannot seem to recover from the last bout of intense back-to-back workouts.

I'm eating strict zone today and doing a bit of rowing, hopefully that will help.

9AM: 3 eggs, 1.5 oz salmon, tbsp. cream cheese, .5 tsp olive oil, .5 lb broccoli, couple of cherry tomatoes, 1.5 slice diabetic lifestyles bread. 4 blocks, 2x fat.

Did Bikram which seemed to help my elbow enormously. I was really hungry after, ended up with 22 blocks for the day.