My Story, P90X Complete, starting Insanity and P90X+
First, I wrote a post to this thread: http://www.fitday.com/fitness/forums...html#post14680, but the next post would so long that I decided to create my own thread.
I'm new to FitDay, I'm starting new round of workouts and will keep journal on FitDay this time.
No photos at this time, sorry. Will post them later.
Sorry for the language, I’m actually Russian. But I’ll convert units for you!
I wasn’t slim all my life, nor I was fat ;). I’m male BTW :).
Till age of circa 24 I weighted stable 70-71 kg (156lbs), which should be considered as normal, although I was a bit envious looking at my more fit pals. After graduating from university I started gaining weight, although my activity level didn’t change much (BTW, I was always be considered as active, was into roller-skating, skateboarding, snowboarding etc.).
But I didn’t pay much attention to it. But (suddenly, heh ) I found myself at 95kg (209lbs) and having blood pressure 150/110 at the age of 26. It was last spring. So I decided to “commit & succeed” (hello, beachbody! ).
Of course, I did it all wrong at the beginning. I wasn’t concerned much about calories, PFC ratios etc. I just started eating less. MUCH less. Retrospectively, I’m now very curious, how could I actually survive on 500-600 cals a day, someday 200-300 eating vegetables only.
Simultaneously, I’ve started reading about all these foods, began to understand what is good and what is not. Meanwhile I’ve dropped 25kgs (55lbs) by the October. It was half a year. This was my initial weight. Then I hit a plateau. But I just got smaller, slimmer of course, but I still had a lot of fat, especially on my belly. Besides, health problems arised, such as fatigue, dizziness and even started to have problems with my hair. I knew that I must gradually quit this “diet”, so I started eating more, very gradually, but, guess what? – I began to gain weight rapidly. Then I began digging deeper, and realized my mistakes of losing that much of *muscle* by starving my body, slowing down metabolism.
I didn’t want to be on this starvation my entire life, so guess what? I began exercising, running at first, than adding weights in October, started eating more, but guess what? Weight gain. I was quite tired of the dieting, so I decided to try Atkins, it promised eating unlimited amounts of food just avoiding carbs. That’s how I joined low-carb crowd . I managed to drop my weight to 143lbs, almost ideal BMI. But still my body composition was far from ideal. I went to the gym to lift weights. I haven’t spent much time on Atkins, I seemed too unhealthy to me, besides, I had constant problems with my digestion. I switched to South Beach then.
Meanwhile I was becoming more and more knowledgeable about nutrition, training, mostly from internet, discussion boards, etc. My pals and colleagues, who previously made fun of me for my fanaticism, began asking for advice. I realized that I have to train properly, not just lift weights helter-skelter. By that time I gained 8lbs back, let’s hope those were muscles.
This winter I read the book by Tom Venuto “Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle”. And that was eye-opening. So I decided to gradually quit low-carb, using Carb Cycling first, as described in Chapter 12.
By the moment I started P90X it was a year after I decided to change my life. So, in the outcome of the year:
1. Weight: 69kg (152lbs), had BMI 23.11, bodyfat: 10.6% (AccuMeasure, I personally don’t believe this, but I just fixed that number for tracking progress)
2. Blood pressure: 110/70.
3. Running 4-5 times a week (my.nike.com/denizko, but not all workouts are recorded) 8-10km at average pace of 4’45/km
4. Carb cycling diet, 3-5 days lo-carb (1g of carbs per kg of bodyweight, 2000cals), 1-2 days hi-carb (complex carbs, fruits, occasionally chocolate, alcohol once a two weeks).
My plan was to get more fit, shred that fat at the first found of P90X, than begin putting on lean muscle after. P90X is not designed for bulking after all. I decided not to use P90X nutrition plan, because switching to that lot of carbs (event on Fat Schredder) after half a year low-carbing could bloat be overnight. I decided to stick with Venuto’s plan, gradually increasing carbs as I progress through the program, and eventually quitting low-carbing, that I was planning for Phase 3.
So, I started P90X, I decided to go for Doubles, as I already had experience in the gym. Phase 1 is the same for Classic and Doubles BTW.
I was hoping to eventually break plateau, so I switched to fasted cardio in the mornings and P90X workouts in the evening.
After phase 1, I haven’t noticed nothing spectacular, but they say, that the real money comes after P2.
At the and of P2 I definitely became stronger, even got some muscle definition, and, yes, that sixpack was visible as I jumped in front of the mirror. The weight stayed stable.
As I started P3, the hardest part, I used to run only 1-2 times a week, because all other times AM workouts was Cardio X (hello, Doubles!), and I definitely needed rest.
As I was burning definitely more calories, I started adjusting my diet. I did really feel I needed to, gradually adding carbs by 10 each week and increasing intake by 200-300 (Tony suggests so), keeping calorie deficit at 20-30% though (I used Harris-Benedict formula with 1,7 factor (very active)).
I noticed some gain, but BF% stayed the same, waist measurement stayed 78-79, so I just thought it was muscle, then I haven’t done any measurements for 3 weeks. That was a mistake, although started noticing that my jeans became too tight, especially in the hips area.
Now, at last, to the main question.
So, I actually gained exta 8lbs during P3 and 1lbs a week after finishing, 1,6inches at waist and 2,2% Bodyfat!
My typical diet consisted 6 meals, a lot of water, I don’t eat red meat, sugar, simple carbs, but a lot of fish and sea products. I wrote down every single thing that made its way to my mouth.
1st (post-workout): oatmeal (whole oats), whey protein, BCAA, big salad of tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce, fruit (Apple, grapefruit)
2nd: Non-fat cottage cheese, oat bran, big salad of tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce, nuts, occasionally whole-wheat bread, fruit
3rd : Salmon or skinless chicken breast, big veggie salad
4tH: See 3rd
5th (post-workout): Whey protein, milk, tuna fish or cottage cheese mixed with lo-fat unsweetened cocoa powder, large veggie salad
6th: Cottage cheese with lettuce and light soy sauce and mustard
I did some research and googling. Possible reasons were:
1. I’ve tried too much to bring it and sent my metabolism to starvation
2. I’ve increased carbs intake (from 70 to 130)
3. I’ve eaten too much
And, guess what? The most possible reason is 3. I was fanatically recording every piece of food I’ve eaten, so it took not much time to find correlation with the food and the moment my weight skyrocketed.
I like diary very much, cottage cheese in particular. I ate it up to 400-600 grams a day. This is totally approved by BB communities, as it’s rich in protein, contains a little carbs and you can find fat-free version.
From the 1st of may I found a very delicious, buttery-smooth brand, and it was only 1,8% fat. I became a read addict of it, and ate up to 4 cups a day. I wasn’t very curious, how this low-fat product could be so delicious.
Now I learned the truth, and this is now widely discussed on Russian boards. One of fitness forums member worked in food lab, and guess what? The actual fat content was….30%, and definitely was it kind of cheap palm oil if not worse. So, doing a quick math, (30-1.8 (claimed fat%) )*1.8 results in whopping 50 grams of extra fat per pack, and I eat 3 or 4 of them, resulting 150 to 200grams of FAT, meaning extra 1350-1800 cals a day, driving true calorie balance from ~500 deficit to 1000-2000 surplus.
So, for my month and a half my PFC ratio was 32/49/19 instead of 46/27/27 with HUGE amount of unhealthy fats
The bottom line: instead of losing 9,7lbs of fat I could possibly gain 16,6lbs of fat. I know, this is too simple assumption, but it explains why I gained last pounds so quickly (in a week) after I decided to take a break. I didn’t adjust my diet, so I was just on my maintenance level (as I thought), when actual intake was twice as higher.
You can see all this calculations here
I hope this never happens in your country.
Do you think, are my assumptions correct? If that guy was wrong about fat content, I think the thing is in carb intake?
Anyway, P90X is GREAT PROGRAM. Bring It.
That was an enjoyable read. :)
I have one bit of info that might be helpful to you: You eat very low fat foods, maybe too low fat! We need fat in order to metabolize, and it seems to me that you're still stalling your metabolism.
When I began losing weight I made the same mistake as you did: I lowered my calorie intake to somewhere between 500 and 700 calories a day, sometimes as low as 200 calories a day. And I had the same symptoms that you describe. I also had a plateau ... or maybe that's not the right word, because I actually began to gain weight even though I ate less than I needed nutrition-wise. The problem persisted until I began to add fat to my diet.
I notice you do eat/drink certain things that contain fat, but they're not the right kinds of fat, if you know what I mean.
The greatest problem as it looks to me is your enormous amount of carb intake!
You get a bit of fat from the fish you eat, but nowhere near as much as you would need to metabolize all the rest.
If I were you I would take a look at the Atkins.com site, it has a lot of good info on how to boost metabolism.
Whatever you choose to do, I wish you the best of luck!
(And you know Tom Venuto? I had no idea he was known in Russia :D)
Hi, Ywon, thanks for your reply!
Personally, I didn't think that 130-150ish grams of carbs I was eating last month was too much.
Now I'm excluding carb refeeds, keeping carbs under 150, veggies, nuts (and fruit in moderation, it's summer after all :rolleyes:) and certainly increasing fat intake (50% or more), keeping protein as high as ~1g per lb of body mass. In fact, I'm going to give Paleo/Primal Blueprint a try ;)
I think I'll keep calories around 2500 and see what happens, results will be posted here, so stay tuned :)
Sorry for such a long silence. Before & after, it's russian photos :), but still, you get the point ;)
okay I finally read it. Excellent read!!! I remember reading elsewhere about eating too much cottage cheese could backfire. I don't remember where and hell, it may have been you that posted it before. I'd guess that could be very possible. I only use fat free cottage cheese. I like I you track everything, you are very meticulous.
01gt4.6, thanks ;)
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