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Old 01-16-2013, 10:10 AM   #1
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Low carb and working out...

Hello everyone, I wanted a little input from some of you gym goers that are also low carbing. Before I get to the questions, let me tell you a little about myself. 1st off I have been a gym rat for years now, I lost a ton of weight a while back with exercise and low cal/ low fat. Back then I worked out twice a day and I always felt starved but this was the only way I could keep the weight off. I tried my very best to keep the weight off but half the weight slowly crept back on after surgery and just not being able to sustain low cal and heavy workouts. I have followed a low carb way of eating in the past and did have some good results even though I followed it half heartedly. I found out a few months ago that my thyroid is low so I am now on Naturethroid and started low carb induction last week on 1/7. This time around I am committing to LC 100% to see if this will work for me.

-Now to the questions
-Have any of you started LC that where “already” steadily working out?
-How did it affect your weight loss?
-How long did it take before you started to notice a difference?
-Did anyone stop working out or cut back on workouts and still lose weight after started LC?
-If so what workouts did you cut out?
-Lastly do you lean more towards cardio or weight training and why?

I know that is a lot of questions but any feed back will help. I am curious how adding a LC lifestyle helped or didn’t help anyone that was already working out. I look forward to some of your feedback
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:48 AM   #2
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hi, Robofitz,

i'm going at this backwards to you, doing LC and then getting into training. but if you want any proof that you can train well on LC, look no farther than Peter Attia's "Eating Academy" blog. he eats very low carb and trains like a demon!

hth,

tao
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Old 01-16-2013, 11:00 AM   #3
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Thanks Tao...I will most def check out his blog
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:40 PM   #4
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Hi Robofitz. I think I can give you some insight, because I monitored myself closely when I started serious LC'ing. At the beginning (start of induction), I was very weak at first until my body started using fat more efficiently for energy. I was able to work-out, but the energy wasn't quite what it was on higher carbs. My energy definitely got better after a couple weeks. This lasted about 6 months, until I got closer to a normal weight for me. Then I started getting real tired again.

Adding just one apple about an hour before the gym did wonders for my energy. Now I bump the carbs a little every 3 or 4 days, and it works well. My suggestion is to tough it out for awhile doing strict LC until you get closer to whatever your goal is. Then start adding some clean carbs pre-workout and see what effect it has on you. The few extra carbs help fill out the muscles a little too I think. They never felt right staying at induction levels. You'll know what I mean if you work out a lot. Never slowed my weight loss down, and I looked a lot better too. I hope this made sense? I could probably use a few carbs right now
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:18 PM   #5
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First off, I just want to let you know that I feel that I have a lot in common--when I was younger, I could just starve myself and limit calories to lose weight, and it worked, and I still had energy. I knew about low carb, but it seemed like a huge commitment and I was afraid of fat because I did not have good information or knowledge about it.

I am a cyclist and I compete at an intermediate amateur level, so I workout probably more than the average person. At first, I would lose weight in the summer regardless of what I ate because I was working out so much. Now I am a little older and my metabolism (insulin sensitivity) has taken a hit, and with heart disease and diabetes in my family I know I have to go low carb.

I decided to ignore everything anyone said to me and just do it, while increasing my winter workouts last year. The first 3 days sucked, I felt ill, flu symptoms, and I could not complete my workouts. A 3 hour ride turned into a 1.5 hour ride. After ketoadaptation, I had more than enough energy and then more energy after the ride and I felt great. I went off low carb during the racing season because of .. well, emotional issues I have with food I'm back on now and I went through the same thing during the first 3 days, but I stuck through it and now, after over a week, I feel great and I'm able to increase my workouts to a higher level of intensity (power/wattage and heart rate based) than before I was low carb.

-Have any of you started LC that where “already” steadily working out?
Yes

-How did it affect your weight loss?
I lost more weight, especially immediately--I lose about 6 lbs the first week and then 1lb each additional week and I expect it to slow closer to my goal, as usual, since I don't have that much to lose anyways.

-How long did it take before you started to notice a difference?
1 week

-Did anyone stop working out or cut back on workouts and still lose weight after started LC?
I can see how it can be discouraging after the first few days, when your energy is so low because you are not able to use ketones, but if you push through that it is AMAZING the difference in energy. No more afternoon nappish feeling! I can go forever it seems. Endurance is definitely improved. My strength has greatly improved, as well.

-If so what workouts did you cut out?
NONE. I cut down the first few days because of exhaustion, but I continued to push after that. Why cut out if you don't feel you have to?

-Lastly do you lean more towards cardio or weight training and why?
I do a combination. For mountain bike racing, I need to be cardio fit in a big way, so this is a huge component, however, you cannot be a skillful cyclist without strength, so I work on different exercises that strengthen the core, upper body, and legs on different days than my major cardio workouts, and I stress either cardio or strength every other month, but never fully devote to either during a month. I have a coach make my plan for me so I don't have to worry about it too much So, my biggest concern is winning races, and I can't be competitive at my current weight, and I also need strength to be able to navigate obstacles. If your goals are more weight-oriented, it is different, but you should be able to do well on low carb. In other words, if you want to run faster, then run. If you want greater muscular strength, lift weights. If you want to ride bikes, ride bikes. Do what you like and low carb will make it better. There is some amount of evidence that sprinting is limited by low carb/ketosis, but endurance and strength is increased.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gladee88er View Post
Hi Robofitz. I think I can give you some insight, because I monitored myself closely when I started serious LC'ing. At the beginning (start of induction), I was very weak at first until my body started using fat more efficiently for energy. I was able to work-out, but the energy wasn't quite what it was on higher carbs. My energy definitely got better after a couple weeks. This lasted about 6 months, until I got closer to a normal weight for me. Then I started getting real tired again.

Adding just one apple about an hour before the gym did wonders for my energy. Now I bump the carbs a little every 3 or 4 days, and it works well. My suggestion is to tough it out for awhile doing strict LC until you get closer to whatever your goal is. Then start adding some clean carbs pre-workout and see what effect it has on you. The few extra carbs help fill out the muscles a little too I think. They never felt right staying at induction levels. You'll know what I mean if you work out a lot. Never slowed my weight loss down, and I looked a lot better too. I hope this made sense? I could probably use a few carbs right now
This is very interesting to me because, to be honest, the first time I was LC I did very low LC for a year, and since then I have not lasted more than 6 months. Last year I initially planned to stay LC throughout racing season, and to spike myself with sugar before and during races, use it like a drug (like caffeine!). Peter Attia has talked about this, too, but I don't know if he's done it.
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Old 01-17-2013, 12:56 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gladee88er View Post
At the beginning (start of induction), I was very weak at first until my body started using fat more efficiently for energy. I was able to work-out, but the energy wasn't quite what it was on higher carbs. My energy definitely got better after a couple weeks. This lasted about 6 months, until I got closer to a normal weight for me. Then I started getting real tired again.
I can't speak to the original poster's questions because I was ridiculously sedentary when I started working out when I started Atkins in May. But my trainer is a competitive bodybuilder who has used low-carb ketogenic "cutting" diets for years to get ready for competition. He gave me a comprehensive electrolyte supplement to take from the first day I started Atkins, and he told me that if I took the supplements and drank plenty of water that I would not have weakness, low energy, nor any symptoms of the "induction flu."

I took the supplements and although I was completely sedentary -- and obese to the point where I had terrible stamina -- I did not have any of the flu-like symptoms that I've heard about on the forums, nor did I experience any weakness or any other noticeable signs of fatigue or illness when I did very hard workouts from the first day that I started Atkins -- since the first day of Atkins, I've been doing two days per week of heavy weight training (split sets using 10-25 pound dumbbells) and three days of intense interval training. Both of my brothers are amateur competitive bodybuilders and they absolutely back up what my trainer told me about the weakness that is associated with the start of a low-carb diet -- in their experience, taking the right balance of electrolyte minerals, and the right amount per pound of lean muscle mass, prevents the ill effects of their ketogenic "cutting" cycles.

Apparently, when the body goes into ketosis, the kidneys substantially change the way they process sodium in a way that allows more sodium to leave the body. And the initial loss of glycogen that comes as a result of significantly eliminating dietary carbohydrates flushes out the water molecules that are attached to the glycogen molecules, which flushes a substantial amount of sodium out of the body, which leeches potassium out of the skeletal muscle. Potassium is a key ingredient in muscle synthesis and cellular energy production, so a substantial loss of potassium can lead to weakness and muscle fatigue. Because bodybuilding cutting cycles typically only last 8-12 weeks, they don't have time to allow the body to take several weeks to re-adjust electrolyte levels. To avoid potential weakness, bodybuilders with good nutrition coaches take an appropriately balanced electrolyte supplement to avoid the loss of gym power.

Quote:
Originally Posted by creseis View Post
Last year I initially planned to stay LC throughout racing season, and to spike myself with sugar before and during races, use it like a drug (like caffeine!). Peter Attia has talked about this, too, but I don't know if he's done it.
Bodybuilding fat "cutting" diets are typically low-carb ketogenic diets but they're "cyclical" in a way that integrates carbohydrate "re-feeds." So bodybuilders basically "spike" with sugar when they're on ketogenic diets in the way that you're talking about. The two main cutting approaches (of which there are hundreds or possibly thousands of variations) are "cyclical ketogenic diets" (CKD) and "targeted ketogenic diets" (TKD).

CKDs are diets in which some days of the week are entirely low-carb -- some bodybuilding CKDs allow only the trace amount of carbs that naturally occur in meat and eggs, which means they eat absolutely no veggies on low-carb days -- while some days of the week are very high-carb, to re-feed glucose into the body and re-fill the glycogen stores. Weight-training workouts are scheduled the day after a carb re-feed, to take advantage of the re-filled glycogen stores and the anabolic environment that the influx of glucose and raised insulin levels create.

TKDs are diets in which *most* of the day is very low-carb, but every workout day starts with a high-carb first meal and then a high-carb feed directly before workouts -- typically the pre-workout feed is a high-carb protein shake. Each workout is high-intensity and is designed to deplete as much of the re-fed glycogen as possible. Then, the rest of the day is very low-carb.

Very low-carb ketogenic bodybuilding cutting diets typically include high-carb periods because it is believed that gym power is dependent upon readily available glucose, and it is also believed that the anabolic work of insulin is necessary for premium muscle growth. Whether these beliefs are true or not is debatable. But most bodybuilders believe it so almost all of them follow this principle to some extent.

Although these diets typically include substantial amounts of glucose during the re-feed periods -- some diets use a solution of 1-part liquid glucose to 4-parts water in amounts, based on lean muscle mass, that can be as much as 400 grams of glucose in a single day -- despite these short bursts of extreme carbohydrate influxes into the system, they have been proven to be extremely effective at cutting fat. Mauro di Pasquale developed the first CKD back in the 1970s and that development was substantially responsible for the change in bodybuilding competition standards that occurred during that period, because competitors became able to cut bodyfat far below the level that was previously thought possible while maintaining, or adding, substantial muscle size.

Jeff Volek is a bodybuilder, a physiology researcher at the University of Connecticut and, along with Stephen Phinney, the world's leading expert on athletic performance while keto-adaptated. His book (with Stephen Phinney), The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance, makes a research-based case for the benefits of keto-adaptation for athletes -- including strength athletes like bodybuilders. But I haven't been able to find any information on whether or not Volek stays keto-adapted during his bodybuilding growth cycles.

Martin Berkhan is one of the new "gurus" of bodybuilding nutrition and he argues against bodybuilding growth/cutting "cycles" and recommends a program that is *basically* low-carb-ish throughout the year. He calls it "lean gains" because his idea is that it is possible to grow substantial muscle mass while cutting fat. His program is *mostly* meat and fibrous veggies, but he includes more carbs than a typical low-carb diet and so I'm not sure if a bodybuilder would actually get into ketosis on his program.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:54 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by creseis View Post
This is very interesting to me because, to be honest, the first time I was LC I did very low LC for a year, and since then I have not lasted more than 6 months. Last year I initially planned to stay LC throughout racing season, and to spike myself with sugar before and during races, use it like a drug (like caffeine!). Peter Attia has talked about this, too, but I don't know if he's done it.
Peter used to use some type of simple sugar, it may have been a gel but i forget, now he uses and recommends super starch because of its non-impact on BG. he talks about this in his post on super starch.

Last edited by taokeema; 01-17-2013 at 04:55 AM..
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:03 AM   #9
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I have been low-carb for almost 5 years now. I could only say it would be difficult to say how low-carb would affect your workouts. Everyone is different and what works for me may cause you to blow-up. The first couple of weeks may be a challenge and you will probably feel weak. Stay with it though as it gets much better in weeks 2-4.

As someone else already pointed out you can use simple sugars (gels, chomps, etc) like a drug that you take immediately before and at specific intervals during your workouts. Having said that, it takes a good month or two to really get your body adjusted to low-carb. Do not begin to experiment with gels until you have maintained a low-carb diet for at least that long.

There was an article that I will look for that explained this very well. One thing it pointed out that I live by is no calories in the window 2 hours to 10 minutes prior to a planned workout or race. When you take in calories, particularly sugar, it will cause an insulin response that will actually cannibalize your glycogen stores that your liver and the large muscles of your legs has stored.

For me personally, since Sept of last year I have limited my workouts to an 1-1.5 hours. Because of this I have not had any gels, chews during a workout. If you like V8 juice it's a great energy drink as it provides a bit of carbs and very high in salt which you need if your really working up a sweat. I just buy the little 5.5 oz cans and chug it. I know it sounds gross and my friends often cringe but don't knock it till you try it.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:12 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robofitz View Post
-Now to the questions
-Have any of you started LC that where “already” steadily working out?
-How did it affect your weight loss?
-How long did it take before you started to notice a difference?
-Did anyone stop working out or cut back on workouts and still lose weight after started LC?
-If so what workouts did you cut out?
-Lastly do you lean more towards cardio or weight training and why?

I had already been working out with a personal trainer twice a week for more than a year when I started low carb, plus cardio on my own once or twice a week.

Once I started low carbing, I lost almost 10 pounds very quickly. I do not remember precisely how long it took me to notice a difference, I think it was within a month or two.

My emphasis was, and continues to be, weight training. I like to feel strong and I think weight training does wonders for my physique.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:03 AM   #11
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I think it depends on your goals and why you are working out. If you are training, primarily to lose weight and attain your ideal body then LC may be the answer. But it isn't the answer for everyone. There are many people who have acheived their ideal body on HC or moderate carb diets. Like someone mentioned above. Carbs provide the energy to get the "most" out of a workout. Ie. athletic performance and muscle building. I am a competitive amateur athlete and train with other amateur athletes and none of them do LC. I am doing it for health reasons now so my racing days may be over because I don't know if I am going to be able to supplement my workouts with a carb source just yet.

However, if you are a competitive athlete and you are training to win something. That is a different goal, you need carbs for that. Peter Attia, uses something called superstarch (mentioned already) to get through an endurance event, but I am not sure about whether or not he is winning races using that strategy. I think to win you need to be using carbs, burning fat won't do it alone.

In my experience, and I am ketoadapted now, I seem to be able to still do a good CV workout and lift weights, but my athletic performance has gone down. However I am not doing any carb supplementing at all. Nor am I shifting out of a LC diet, for the purpose of racing. Because I am ketoadapted for medical reasons which take priority over racing, I don't have any plans to return to a higher carb diet for now. So I'll have to see how it goes, I may not be able to race anymore, and will have to focus on workouts for the benefits of building better health and body.

I would say try it and see how it works for you, it may not be the answer because everyone is different in how their body responds to diet. But it is worth a try.

Last edited by Punkin; 01-17-2013 at 07:05 AM..
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:23 AM   #12
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Gladee88er – Thank you for the reply and input…I am finding that my energy is better and workouts this week are much more efficient than they were last week. Once I get closer to goal, eating and apple before a workout sounds like something I will most definitely try! My goal right now is to get back into heavier lifting and working my muscles to failure as that is when I feel the best and seem to get the results that I want.

Cresis – wow, we do have a lot in common…I also cycle although not at a competitive level but I have put some heavy miles in and enjoy doing long rides whenever I can. My issue is that no matter how hard or how long I workout I just can’t lose weight. It’s almost as though all those years of low cal and heavy workouts sort of messed my metabolism up. I thought for a long time that’s what it was but am hoping that by correcting my thyroid levels combined with low carb, the weight will shift. I appreciate your feedback as it is very informative!

Trillex – Thank you, thank you for all the info! I will be reading your post a few times since there is quite a bit of great information…a lot of great stuff to process. Question for you…are you still following strict low carb or have you started incorporating heavy carb meals before working out? I see that you work out with a trainer and body builders so wondering if that has helped with the efficiency of your workouts and with results.

Batlou – 5 years on low carb is impressive, are you at goal? I am finding that my energy levels are starting to get better. If you find that article please do share. My brother in law was actually on the national triathlete team and he explained something very similar to me one time about this very thing. I would be interested in reading more about this. I actually love v8 so thanks for the tip!

Marged – that is great! 10pounds after starting low carb! I have lost ½ an inch since I started on the 7th…I will not weigh myself, I measure instead. My relationship with scales is a very slippery slop so I have a good relationship with the tap measure. Since I have a lot of muscle and am 5’10 the #’s on the scale just piss me off! Thanks for your input.

Punkin – When you switched to LC, did you drop any weight or did you stay about the same? Also I see your athletic performance went down but how did it affect your strength for weigh lifting? Did it stay the same, improve ect? I am trying LC now because nothing else is working. I haven’t seen any real results after a year of diligent workouts and pretty clean diet. I have tried calorie counting, calorie shifting, nothing but grilled veggies, fish and chicken, vegan…you name it I have tried it. I always will stick to something for a solid 2 months just to give it sometime and still nothing. So far on LC I feel great but am concerned it will compromise my workout’s which is why all this feedback is very helpful.

Yesterday I literally read all of Peter Attia’ website (thank you taokeema)…I totally feel like him in the sense that I am strong and very fit but bigger than I would like to be or should be. If I had to guess I probably weigh 180-200lbs and I wear a size 14-16. I am 5’10 so I carry the weight well but I felt my best when I was a size 10 and weighed about 160, although I am more concerned about the size rather than weight. I was fat my whole like up until 10 years ago…I weighed 270lbs and got down to 150 with diligent workouts and calorie counting. I had to work very, very hard to stay at that weight and I was miserable and obsessed with my weight. Fast forward to today, I am hoping that LC will help my body turn into a fat burning machine without the stress!! Thanks again for all the replies. I am sort of a research junkie when it comes to diet and fitness. Its nice getting feedback from people who are on the same eating plan!
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Old 01-17-2013, 10:46 AM   #13
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[QUOTE=Trillex;16200878]






Bodybuilding fat "cutting" diets are typically low-carb ketogenic diets but they're "cyclical" in a way that integrates carbohydrate "re-feeds." So bodybuilders basically "spike" with sugar when they're on ketogenic diets in the way that you're talking about. The two main cutting approaches (of which there are hundreds or possibly thousands of variations) are "cyclical ketogenic diets" (CKD) and "targeted ketogenic diets" (TKD).

CKDs are diets in which some days of the week are entirely low-carb -- some bodybuilding CKDs allow only the trace amount of carbs that naturally occur in meat and eggs, which means they eat absolutely no veggies on low-carb days -- while some days of the week are very high-carb, to re-feed glucose into the body and re-fill the glycogen stores. Weight-training workouts are scheduled the day after a carb re-feed, to take advantage of the re-filled glycogen stores and the anabolic environment that the influx of glucose and raised insulin levels create.

TKDs are diets in which *most* of the day is very low-carb, but every workout day starts with a high-carb first meal and then a high-carb feed directly before workouts -- typically the pre-workout feed is a high-carb protein shake. Each workout is high-intensity and is designed to deplete as much of the re-fed glycogen as possible. Then, the rest of the day is very low-carb.

Very low-carb ketogenic bodybuilding cutting diets typically include high-carb periods because it is believed that gym power is dependent upon readily available glucose, and it is also believed that the anabolic work of insulin is necessary for premium muscle growth. Whether these beliefs are true or not is debatable. But most bodybuilders believe it so almost all of them follow this principle to some extent.

Although these diets typically include substantial amounts of glucose during the re-feed periods -- some diets use a solution of 1-part liquid glucose to 4-parts water in amounts, based on lean muscle mass, that can be as much as 400 grams of glucose in a single day -- despite these short bursts of extreme carbohydrate influxes into the system, they have been proven to be extremely effective at cutting fat. Mauro di Pasquale developed the first CKD back in the 1970s and that development was substantially responsible for the change in bodybuilding competition standards that occurred during that period, because competitors became able to cut bodyfat far below the level that was previously thought possible while maintaining, or adding, substantial muscle size.

________________________________________________

These strategies seem to be the best way to go for most really active people. You have to remember some people have active jobs during the day, and exercise 3 or more days a week. This puts a lot of energy demands on the body. I was amazed at how efficient fats were for burning energy. But as those fat stores get smaller and smaller, the fat gets more stubborn, and doesn't seem to want to get released for energy as easily as before.

I think Lyle McDonald was one of the first pioneers to stick his neck out and promote the cyclical ketogenic diet specifically for athletes and bodybuilders. These others jumped on the bandwagon after they observed he was on to something. I remember reading his stuff on "cyberpump" website around 1999 -2000??

High energy demands and lower body fat make it difficult to stay very LC without having at least a couple high-carb meals a week (at least for me). Plus my muscles were always soft, and felt like mush. This kind of defeats the purpose of weight training in the first place. 2 or 3 higher-carb meals a week, plus an apple or something before the gym does the trick for me. It's always a process it seems, that seems to get trickier the leaner you get. Good luck, and keep training!

Last edited by gladee88er; 01-17-2013 at 10:47 AM..
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:07 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Robofitz View Post
Punkin – When you switched to LC, did you drop any weight or did you stay about the same? Also I see your athletic performance went down but how did it affect your strength for weigh lifting? Did it stay the same, improve ect? I am trying LC now because nothing else is working. I haven’t seen any real results after a year of diligent workouts and pretty clean diet. I have tried calorie counting, calorie shifting, nothing but grilled veggies, fish and chicken, vegan…you name it I have tried it. I always will stick to something for a solid 2 months just to give it sometime and still nothing. So far on LC I feel great but am concerned it will compromise my workout’s which is why all this feedback is very helpful.

Yesterday I literally read all of Peter Attia’ website (thank you taokeema)…I totally feel like him in the sense that I am strong and very fit but bigger than I would like to be or should be. If I had to guess I probably weigh 180-200lbs and I wear a size 14-16. I am 5’10 so I carry the weight well but I felt my best when I was a size 10 and weighed about 160, although I am more concerned about the size rather than weight. I was fat my whole like up until 10 years ago…I weighed 270lbs and got down to 150 with diligent workouts and calorie counting. I had to work very, very hard to stay at that weight and I was miserable and obsessed with my weight. Fast forward to today, I am hoping that LC will help my body turn into a fat burning machine without the stress!! Thanks again for all the replies. I am sort of a research junkie when it comes to diet and fitness. Its nice getting feedback from people who are on the same eating plan!
From the way it sounds to me, you are working out to lose weight and that is a different approach than athletic training. And that is kind of where I am coming from because i have always struggled with my weight, being overweight when I was a kid and also a yoyo dieter. I took up exercise as a way to manage my weight and try to achieve a leaner body. I did get a fairly lean body through excessive exercise, basic weight training and restricting calories, however when it came time to maintain my weight, it was impossible. When I tried to reduce the exercise it just lead to over-eating. I basically got stuck in a position where I had to either continue to exercise 3 - 5 hrs a day or change my diet. That is when I went low carb, and now I am fairly low. Around 30 - 40g a day. My athletic performance has gone down meaning I can't lift as heavy, and I get tired more easily, athough some days are better than others. The other thing is that I can't keep up to the other people in my training group who are HCers. It doesn't bother me though because racing isn't a priority to me. Not gaining weight or being overweight is my focus. If it means sacrificing athletic performance to be on a diet that keeps me at a good weight than that is what will make me happy.
Having said that, I think you should try low carb because it sounds like your priorities are similar to mine. For you it is more about being overweight than being a superior athlete. Have I got that right? I would work on decreasing your carbs until you hit the right ratio that gives you a diet to help you match your goals. You could try below 25g at first, then try increasing it to 25g to 45g. You might even be able to go higher than that. "carb tolerance" is an individual thing. I know plenty of HCers that are very lean and don't have weight issues at all. It depends a lot on genetics and maybe a bit, lifestyle.

Hope that helps.
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:44 AM   #15
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From the way it sounds to me, you are working out to lose weight and that is a different approach than athletic training. And that is kind of where I am coming from because i have always struggled with my weight, being overweight when I was a kid and also a yoyo dieter. I took up exercise as a way to manage my weight and try to achieve a leaner body. I did get a fairly lean body through excessive exercise, basic weight training and restricting calories, however when it came time to maintain my weight, it was impossible. When I tried to reduce the exercise it just lead to over-eating. I basically got stuck in a position where I had to either continue to exercise 3 - 5 hrs a day or change my diet. That is when I went low carb, and now I am fairly low. Around 30 - 40g a day. My athletic performance has gone down meaning I can't lift as heavy, and I get tired more easily, athough some days are better than others. The other thing is that I can't keep up to the other people in my training group who are HCers. It doesn't bother me though because racing isn't a priority to me. Not gaining weight or being overweight is my focus. If it means sacrificing athletic performance to be on a diet that keeps me at a good weight than that is what will make me happy.
Having said that, I think you should try low carb because it sounds like your priorities are similar to mine. For you it is more about being overweight than being a superior athlete. Have I got that right? I would work on decreasing your carbs until you hit the right ratio that gives you a diet to help you match your goals. You could try below 25g at first, then try increasing it to 25g to 45g. You might even be able to go higher than that. "carb tolerance" is an individual thing. I know plenty of HCers that are very lean and don't have weight issues at all. It depends a lot on genetics and maybe a bit, lifestyle.

Hope that helps.
Yes that is exactly correct. I do have workout goals that I set for myself but over all my focus and goal is to be thinner…not so much for vanity reasons but more that I just want to feel comfortable in my skin. I’m a confident woman and love my curves but being that I gained almost half of the weight that I lost through heavy exercise and strict diet I just don’t feel as comfortable as I used to. Right now I am eating very low carb just while on induction. I’m at 20 or below and plan on coming up once my craving go away (maybe in another week or 2) by adding more veggies and a small serving of black beans a couple times a week…more so on heavy lifting days for the energy. When you started low carbing you were already exercising correct? Did it help you with weight lose or help you become leaner? To be honest I have just getting frustrated with working out so hard and getting very little results. Before starting low carb I felt like I was killing myself at the gym just too even notice any to little results. It’s very discouraging when I feel like I am doing everything correctly with diet and working out with no results while my friends work out very little, eat like crap and get better results than I do. I’m looking forward to seeing how LC works for me…so far I love it. It’s amazing how much fat I have been eating daily and still I have lost ½ an inch and don’t have that heavy bloated feeling all the time. I really do hope that this way of eating is going to be it for me. I appreciate all of you feedback and yes, it is a great help!!
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:51 AM   #16
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Hello everyone, I wanted a little input from some of you gym goers that are also low carbing. Before I get to the questions, let me tell you a little about myself. 1st off I have been a gym rat for years now, I lost a ton of weight a while back with exercise and low cal/ low fat. Back then I worked out twice a day and I always felt starved but this was the only way I could keep the weight off. I tried my very best to keep the weight off but half the weight slowly crept back on after surgery and just not being able to sustain low cal and heavy workouts. I have followed a low carb way of eating in the past and did have some good results even though I followed it half heartedly. I found out a few months ago that my thyroid is low so I am now on Naturethroid and started low carb induction last week on 1/7. This time around I am committing to LC 100% to see if this will work for me.

-Now to the questions
-Have any of you started LC that where “already” steadily working out?
-How did it affect your weight loss?
-How long did it take before you started to notice a difference?
-Did anyone stop working out or cut back on workouts and still lose weight after started LC?
-If so what workouts did you cut out?
-Lastly do you lean more towards cardio or weight training and why?

I know that is a lot of questions but any feed back will help. I am curious how adding a LC lifestyle helped or didn’t help anyone that was already working out. I look forward to some of your feedback
-Have any of you started LC that where “already” steadily working out?
no I started LCing at the same time I started working out

How did it affect your weight loss? LC and working out I believe promote max fat loss together.-

How long did it take before you started to notice a difference? The first week, back then at neary 400 pounds the weight comes off quick though.

-Did anyone stop working out or cut back on workouts and still lose weight after started LC? i have never stopped-

If so what workouts did you cut out? n/a


-Lastly do you lean more towards cardio or weight training and why?
Actually I do cardio first 30-60 minutes and then hit the weights, with medium weights and I workout fast w/ little rest in between sets.



Good Luck
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:55 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by LCdave View Post
-Have any of you started LC that where “already” steadily working out?
no I started LCing at the same time I started working out

How did it affect your weight loss? LC and working out I believe promote max fat loss together.-

How long did it take before you started to notice a difference? The first week, back then at neary 400 pounds the weight comes off quick though.

-Did anyone stop working out or cut back on workouts and still lose weight after started LC? i have never stopped-

If so what workouts did you cut out? n/a


-Lastly do you lean more towards cardio or weight training and why?
Actually I do cardio first 30-60 minutes and then hit the weights, with medium weights and I workout fast w/ little rest in between sets.



Good Luck
Thank you Charles...just want to say WOW, from your avi picture you look great after being 400lbs!! Way to go and thanks for answering my questions, all of this info is a really great help and motivating to me. Thanks again!
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:48 PM   #18
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Related: this article matches my experience with exercising to lose weight:

Does Exercise Really Make Us Thinner? -- New York Magazine
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:04 PM   #19
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I also wanted to add that in many of the studies cited by Phinney and Volek, the high carb/low calorie diets always lost substantially more muscle than low carb, and they figured that people in ketosis would last about 2 days longer if starved in Antarctica than someone not in ketosis because of the rapidity of protein/lean mass loss when you're not in ketosis.
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Old 01-18-2013, 06:25 AM   #20
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I followed a high carb/low fat/calorie diet on and off for 5 years, exercising 2 - 5hrs a day, and did not lose any muscle mass. In fact quite the opposite, I have quite a decent amount of muscle mass. I think what people "think" is a loss of muscle mass, is more attributed to glycogen and water storage, and the shrinking of the muscle fibers to make them more efficient, however the number of fibers do not change. Also when you lose fat, you look smaller so you think it is a loss of muscle, because body still retains some fat underneath the skin layer. It is more of an illusion of a loss of muscle.

That is an interesting article from the new york times. I think for most people exercise does aid in weight loss, but for a chosen few it does not help all that much. For example when I took up running 10 years ago I gained weight! It is because it stimulated my appetite and I ate more. I didn't track calories then, but I remember after a workout, making myself a buffet as a snack after a run. I probably ate back double the calories that I burned.

Moral of the story, the key to losing weight is diet. And diet is an experimental process which is different for everyone. Some people can tolerate more carbs/protein than others. Exercise can help, but for some people it needs to be monitored. And never factor your exercise into your daily intake, unless you are a competitive athlete. It doesn't work in the long run. You are better off doing a little bit of moderate exercise a week and sticking with a daily intake that is average for your age, height, weight and gender. That is of course my opinion, based on my experience. I am a former exercise junkie, and exercise didn't really get me to where I want to be.

Last edited by Punkin; 01-18-2013 at 06:26 AM..
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Old 01-18-2013, 06:37 AM   #21
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Thank you Charles...just want to say WOW, from your avi picture you look great after being 400lbs!! Way to go and thanks for answering my questions, all of this info is a really great help and motivating to me. Thanks again!

you are welcome and good luck


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Old 01-18-2013, 09:51 AM   #22
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Related: this article matches my experience with exercising to lose weight:

Does Exercise Really Make Us Thinner? -- New York Magazine
Great read and thanks for sharing this article...very insightful. I love science!!
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:08 AM   #23
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Yes that is exactly correct. I do have workout goals that I set for myself but over all my focus and goal is to be thinner…not so much for vanity reasons but more that I just want to feel comfortable in my skin.
Good luck!

I've been doing LC for more than 10 years (at goal for most of that time). I've always worked out a lot, but I've never been a competitive athlete. Instead, I ski (skate, classic, downhill), kayak, sail, cycle, backpack, skijor, and go to the gym and lift weights and do cardio when it's raining and I can't have as much fun outside.

Cycling or kayaking in the heat, I take electrolyte pills (for cyclists). These make a huge difference for my energy and endurance. I bonked once doing a long ride in the heat when I didn't bring enough food (the hamburger place was shut! And 50 miles to another shop!) and then I ate 3 candybars when I finally got a place with food.

Otherwise, coconut oil, nut pastes, and cheese keep me going on long endurance things.

I work out not to win, but to keep me fit, strong, and sane. Plus I love being outside! (Yesterday I walked and skied 16 km in the -18ºF cold, after work, trying to see the aurora--and because the snowy forest is really cool in the dark).
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:25 AM   #24
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How did you measure it? The only way to know if you're losing muscle mass is to measure nitrogen loss through urine every day, is this what you did?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Punkin View Post
I followed a high carb/low fat/calorie diet on and off for 5 years, exercising 2 - 5hrs a day, and did not lose any muscle mass. In fact quite the opposite, I have quite a decent amount of muscle mass. I think what people "think" is a loss of muscle mass, is more attributed to glycogen and water storage, and the shrinking of the muscle fibers to make them more efficient, however the number of fibers do not change. Also when you lose fat, you look smaller so you think it is a loss of muscle, because body still retains some fat underneath the skin layer. It is more of an illusion of a loss of muscle.

That is an interesting article from the new york times. I think for most people exercise does aid in weight loss, but for a chosen few it does not help all that much. For example when I took up running 10 years ago I gained weight! It is because it stimulated my appetite and I ate more. I didn't track calories then, but I remember after a workout, making myself a buffet as a snack after a run. I probably ate back double the calories that I burned.

Moral of the story, the key to losing weight is diet. And diet is an experimental process which is different for everyone. Some people can tolerate more carbs/protein than others. Exercise can help, but for some people it needs to be monitored. And never factor your exercise into your daily intake, unless you are a competitive athlete. It doesn't work in the long run. You are better off doing a little bit of moderate exercise a week and sticking with a daily intake that is average for your age, height, weight and gender. That is of course my opinion, based on my experience. I am a former exercise junkie, and exercise didn't really get me to where I want to be.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:26 AM   #25
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Good luck!

I've been doing LC for more than 10 years (at goal for most of that time). I've always worked out a lot, but I've never been a competitive athlete. Instead, I ski (skate, classic, downhill), kayak, sail, cycle, backpack, skijor, and go to the gym and lift weights and do cardio when it's raining and I can't have as much fun outside.

Cycling or kayaking in the heat, I take electrolyte pills (for cyclists). These make a huge difference for my energy and endurance. I bonked once doing a long ride in the heat when I didn't bring enough food (the hamburger place was shut! And 50 miles to another shop!) and then I ate 3 candybars when I finally got a place with food.

Otherwise, coconut oil, nut pastes, and cheese keep me going on long endurance things.

I work out not to win, but to keep me fit, strong, and sane. Plus I love being outside! (Yesterday I walked and skied 16 km in the -18ºF cold, after work, trying to see the aurora--and because the snowy forest is really cool in the dark).
I have been wondering how you have been doing, glad to hear this!
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:31 AM   #26
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Dexa scans. I use those as a way to track my body composition. But also from observation, I noticed myself retaining my muscle as the fat disappeared.

There is no actual accurate way to tell if you are losing muscle, since the body burns protein as fuel, you can only guess. But there seems to be this misconception that endurance sports "eat away" at muscle mass and in my experience they don't.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:36 PM   #27
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I think for most people exercise does aid in weight loss, but for a chosen few it does not help all that much.
Here's my thinking on this:

Exercise does not help in the sense that if you exercise 3,500 calories worth, you will lose a pound of fat.

Exercise does help in changing your body to perhaps increase insulin sensitivity or change in other ways that will facilitate weight loss.

I don't totally buy the idea that exercise makes you burn more calories when you are resting (even if it did, you would just eat more to compensate).

I don't buy the idea that muscle has a higher metabolism than fat (even if it did, you'd just eat more to compensate).

I do like the idea that working your muscles to exhaustion helps them use up the glycogen store and replace it, thus improving insulin sensitivity.

I like the idea that changing up your exercise routines keeps your body from adapting, and that that is a good thing.

Last edited by PianoAl; 01-18-2013 at 12:38 PM..
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:51 PM   #28
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I exercise regularly, about 4 days a week.
I use weights but also ride a bike and run the tredmill for cardio.
I never noticed a connection between workout intensity and weight loss.
None.
So I workout because I like the way it makes me look and feel.
I also workout for mental health reasons.
I can get moody at times.
Going to the gym usually lifts my spirits tremendously.
"Move a muscle, change a mood"
It's a motto that has worked nicely for me.
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:36 PM   #29
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I do like the idea that working your muscles to exhaustion helps them use up the glycogen store and replace it, thus improving insulin sensitivity.

I like the idea that changing up your exercise routines keeps your body from adapting, and that that is a good thing.
At the end of 2011 after a few years of just mindlessly working out, I got very serious about my workouts again and food intake. I was looking for an eating plan that was going to work for me so during that time I wrote all my workouts in a journal along with food and how I felt. I started off with one day cardio interval training, next day lifting with all compound moved switching up cardio and weights every other day. I was working out like mad and I felt strong but again, very little noticeable results. I started reading more about working muscles to failure with more reps and lighter weight and the positive effects. I was always under the impression from all the stuff I had read in the past that heavier is better for building muscle so I always did just that…still working the muscle to failure. After reading about this and a steady 8 months into heavier lifting, I decided to give it a try. I lowered my weight (not by much) but just enough to be able to do at least 20 clean reps of whatever I was doing. I would literally walk out of the gym shaking and bam, I started to notice some changes pretty quickly after that. I do agree that working your muscles to exhaustion help use up the glycogen store and replace it. I also think that it’s a good thing to continuously change your exercise routine in order to continue to physically become more efficient.
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:37 PM   #30
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I basically got to the point where I got stuck in a bad cycle. Where basically I just had to keep upping my intensity and the amount of exercise I was doing to maintain my weight. I have theories as to why this was happening, but I really don't know why. I decided that I was not going to start exercising 5 - 8 hrs a day, just to maintain my ideal body. It was ridiculous.

So I gave up on all that and put the energy into my diet instead. Now I have a rule of thumb that I follow. Before I exercise I ask myself these questions.

"Am I doing this workout session because I enjoy it?"
"Am I doing this workout session to build a better body so that I can get more enjoyment out of life?"
"Am I doing this workout session because I think I need to still lose weight?"
"Am I doing this workout session to burn off extra calories?"
"Am I doing this workout session because I don't want to get fat?"

I only do the workout if the answer to either of the first two questions is yes, but that is because I used to workout for all the wrong reasons. I don't think yes to the last 3 questions is a good reason to do a workout because for me it backfires. But that is based on my experience, and I realize for everyone else it could be different. I somehow turned into an exercise junkie because of the "fear of flab."

Last edited by Punkin; 01-18-2013 at 01:39 PM..
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