Experiments in Fat Loss: Part 2- Cheating and Training…

Two weeks in to a low carb 28 day blitz and quite frankly I am suprised how easy I found it. Cheat day proved to be the highlight of the week and I found after two weeks of focussed eating that I didn’t really want to go overboard from generally eating bad stuff.

Every week there is one day where on this plan you get a clear day of eating, week one I pretty much absorbed anything edible but as I approached week 2’s cheat day I just thought going extreme was not necessary. There is a scientific reason behind these cheats or what are often called “refeeds.” The idea is that by increasing your consumption (primarily of carbohydrate) on these days you effectively restock your muscular carbohydrate stores.

Why is this important? Firstly, dropping the amount of energy in your diet can sometimes slow down your metabolism- this is partly a method to conserve energy. This is precisly why individuals who regularly cut calories effectively will yo-yo with their weight. Secondly, we need to preserve muscle mass- training on a refeed days gives me the best session of the week and I will refer more to this below in regard to training.

There was one day mid week where I was pushed energy wise- I added 50g of carbohydrates to one of my meals, again understanding that I had consumed circa 100g of carbohydrates for the day meant that this could be included, never the less though it was post training so this refeed was at least going to help recovery.

The day after my refeed (Sunday) was where I found I had most cravings- specifically for sugar. It didn’t help that when going out to watch the Rugby that there was a table full of Dorito’s, dips and doughnuts. Regardless of the rugby all I could do was watch people graze on food while I ate about 5 pieces of carrott. In all seriousness though I can see why social support is a positive thing when looking to reduce body fat! In my mind tough as it is- this is 28 days of focus to see what gives on this eating plan. Why take 6 months to do something when you can do it in 4 weeks?

What training plan am I following? The first question (or assumption) someone suggested to me was “You are mainly doing cardio right?”  Well no.

The gym based programme I am doing is mainly a strength/ hypertrophy crossover. The reason being is that I want to preserve as much muscle mass as possible during this period of time. Also, I am conscious of strength levels reducing- never good.  In to the mix with this goes one session of steady state CV (ususally a hill/ undulating run of around 30-40mins) and a full body low rep circuit style session (performed in week one not in week 2 due to time commitments). I am using an upper body session, a lower body session and a full body session- see below for the full breakdown:

Day 1

Upper Body.

A1 Pull Ups 5 x 5

B1 Bench Press 4 x 5

B2 Bench Rows/ Seated Rows 4 x 6

C1 Single Arm DB Shoulder Press 3 x 8

C2 Cable Face Pull 3 x 8

D1 Side Lying External Rotations 3 x 10

D2 Tricep Pushdowns 3 x 20

D3 Hammer Curls 3 x 10

Day 2

Lower Body

A1 Deadlift 5 x 3

B1 Bulgarian Split Squats 4 x 8

C1 Kettlebell Swings 4 x 20

D1 Ab Roll Outs 3 x 12

D2 Side Plank 3 x 12

D3 Hanging Ab Curls 3 x12

Day 3

Full Body

A1 Front Squat 5 x 5

B1 Speed Deadlifts 3 x 10 @ 60% Max

C1 Chest Press 4 x 6

D1 Weighted Press Ups 3 x 8

D2 Trx  or Inverted Rows 3 x 10

E1Walking Lunges 3 x 12

E2 Rear Delt Flys 3 x 12

F1 Cable Torque Press 3 x 30 secs.

All in all what did all this organization lead to. Well as discussed in the previous post there was quite a hefty first week of weight loss. After the refeed in week one my scale weight settled at 96kg (down 2.8kg). At the end of week 2 scale weight had dropped to 94.5kg. At the start of week 2 and at the half way point my weight had settled to 94.8kg (a total of 4kg loss in weight).

In Part 3  I will discuss supplements, workout nutrition, methods of body fat testing.

Published by ianmellis

Ian Mellis MSc. CSCS is the co-founder of Results FAST (www.resultsfast.com)based in Ware, Hertfordshire. Specialising in athletic development, physique improvement and injury rehabilitation he provides personal training, strength and conditioning and nutrition coaching for motivated exercisers and those looking to make a long term change to their health, fitness and performance.

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