View Full Version : Trying to loose onl fat but lost 8lbs fat & 5 muscle

03-10-2008, 12:27 PM
Hey I am new to the forum but I have been trying to loose fat and not muscle. I found out a have a herniated disc so while it heals, I am dieting in hopes to loose only fat. As far as working out i do 100 pushups a day, biceps 3 times a week and wall sites every other day, as well as lunges.

My diet consists of a rotation of A and B days. On A days I have very little carbs (less then 20g) and on B days I basically eat whatever I want (lots of carbs). The rotation goes AAB. Here is a table of my progress.

Start: Feb. 10 240lbs Body Fat % unknown

2/18/08 236.4 lbs 18.9% BF
2/23/08 232 lbs 17.5% BF
3/10/08 226 lbs 17.3% BF

Between 2/18 and 2/23 I lost 4 pounds of pure fat according to the mesurements. From 2/23 to 3/10 I lost 5.7385 lbs that were notfat and only 1.7615 lbs of fat.

I have until May 10 to bring my body fat down. I would like to loose one pound of fat a week at least. Do you see any flaws in my diet that are hurting the chances of this goal. I don't want to loose muscle... should I be eating 50% of normal carbs on the A days instead of limiting carb intake to less then 20g? Thanks in advance.

Eric Cartman
03-10-2008, 01:02 PM
I see BIG flaws in your workout schedule,...

"100 pushups a day, etc..."

First of all, working out the exact same muscle every single day is terrible... you aren't giving your body a chance to recover, so you might actually be losing muscle.. your body keeps breaking down the muscle, but never repairs it,...

Also, your routine is lacking in all the major exercises.. you're not doing bench press, squat, shoulder press, or any of the major compound movements.. if you have a herniated disc, you may have to do variations of these exercises, consult a doctor!

Get a REAL routine that allows muscle recovery, don't work out the same muscles every day..


03-10-2008, 01:25 PM
Contrary to what you might have read or heard, you don't have to lose lean body mass during a fat loss program. You've lost a lot of weight, including fat. However, eating whatever you want 2 or 3 days per week is a generally inefficient, ineffective way to lose fat.

Here's one aspect of what your body is doing on each three day cycle:
Day 1 (A-day): Low carbohydrate intake, so glycogen stores begin dwindling.
Day 2 (A-day): So little carbohydrate matter that your body stops using glucose macromolecules and begins to use ketone bodies for energy. Metabolism is slowing. Mood is lethargic.
Day 3 (B-day): Your body is screaming for carbohydrates. You generally gorge yourself, replenishing glycogen stores. However, not only are you giving ketosis pretty much no time to work, but with your slowing metabolism, you likely overfeed yourself.

This is undesirable. Couple this with the fact that you're doing cardiovascular-type work (that's what I'd call pushups) with some isolation exercises, and the negative effects magnify.

Conversely, in the same timeframe (2/18 to 3/10), my bf% went from ~19 to ~11. Those are not estimations, they're straight from the spreadsheet. I'm a pretty tiny guy for weightlifting (5'8" and 185lbs), so it was important to me that I not lose LBM; I actually ended up putting on a few pounds of it. How?

>> a moderately low carbohydrate intake every day (60-90 grams), with high protein (>200 g) and sorta high fat (~60g, which keeps hormonal levels where they ought to be).
>> weight lifting that consists of compound exercises only, four days a week, on a westside-style routine (search for it if you want to know more, I'm definitely not an expert on this). the other three days, I row a 2k (that's a little under 8 minutes of cardio on off days). You have to lift heavy and use lots of muscle groups to maintain your LBM, but, with low carbohydrate intake, your body can't take long workouts (cortisol levels skyrocket) -- that's why isolation exercises are not very helpful during fat loss programs.
>> one cheat MEAL per week. I still log the protein, fat, and carbohydrates I eat during this meal, but I have whatever I want. The rest of the week, I'm completely strict.

I'm sorta new here, and I'm not a doctor or nutritionist, so don't take what I say to be anywhere near flawless. That said, I think you'll see better fat loss with more muscle retention if you ditch the isolation exercises and just do two upper-body and two lower-body workouts a week, with mainly compound exercises (bench, dumbbell press, squat, deadlift, whatever you can do with your injury), and tweak your diet so you don't switch in and out of ketosis every two days. In fact, you don't have to cycle at all, yet -- save that for when you get down to 10-12%BF.

03-10-2008, 02:48 PM
Hmm, well pushups aren't really a workout but I guess I still shouldnt do them everyday. I literally can't do any leg workouts except wall sits. But i can do some different upper body lifts (not bench). I might change to the slightly higher amount of carbs every day. thanks

03-10-2008, 05:19 PM
Is there a reason you can't do lower body workouts?

03-10-2008, 06:00 PM
the herniated disc is pushing on nerves that go into my leg

Eric Cartman
03-11-2008, 05:43 PM
The thing that is obvious here:

you need to consult a physical therapist or exercise expert, someone who knows about herniated discs, and design an exercise program for yourself.

None of our advice can really help you, because you don't have an effective way of working out your muscles yet.. I've had back problems for years and figured out which exercises I liked and which I didn't...

Once you've found a workout routine that you can do without injuring your discs, you then need to add in reasonable nutrition and of course recovery time, so you are able to repair muscle.


04-10-2008, 06:10 PM
Yeah, I completely agree with EC because we don't know what exercises to tell you to try because of your condition. The only thing you should be doing at this moment is dieting. While getting your diet down you should go to an expert to help you make an exercise program that will benefit you with your condition.