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ShockBoxer
09-13-2005, 07:30 AM
Starting my 8th week already of holding at 1750, average, calories. Some 2200 days, some 1500 days, some 1800 weeks some 1600.

My home scale still reads 180 lb first thing in the morning, empty stomach, empty bladder. :rolleyes:

The gym scale has tracked me from 178.3 to 172.4. With a pound fluctuation either way.

Every muscle is bigger but people say I've lost weight. I don't really see it, though (besides having less of a double chin). The muscles I can see and feel but definition doesn't appear different.

Cutting is hard when *you're* not seeing a reduction in BF. Then again since my muscles are bigger I have to have lost some... or even my stupid home scale's numbers would be going up (well, maybe not... piece of ****.)

Maybe I'm too far below maintenance (though according to the home scale I'm AT maintenace.) Wondering if I should add a hundred calories a day? That one would be easy... an extra glass of milk.

shootermcgavin7
09-13-2005, 07:49 AM
Usually about halfway through my cut; I start to hit a plateau. There's a few different things that I have tried in the past, all of which have worked for me; trying one of these may work for you:

* Bump calories up about 400/day for about a week; then start cutting again. Sometimes your body just needs a break, or your metabolism is crawling, etc.

* Change your routine: I'm not sure exactly what your lifting scheme is; but I usually can keep calories lower and still hang on to muscle doing heavier lifts

* Add an extra day of HIIT

* Add another day of lifting (i.e.; if you are currently doing legs/back or chest/back on the same day; split them up and add more.


In short, you need to add activities that burn fat. Your body MAY respond to further lowering calories; but if I personally were below 1750 on a cut, I'd start losing more muscle mass than anything.

When your bodyfat starts going down, your body tries to hold on harder to the fat it still has, so you really have to start kicking your ass to get down further. At least I do.

I'm sure plenty of other people have better advice, but one of the above mentioned points typically helps me get through a stall during a cut.

zimbo
09-13-2005, 07:59 AM
One thing you *really* need to do (even though you might not feel totally comfortable doing this) is have a friend take digital pictures of you so that you can compare later. You see yourself naked everyday so you grow accustomed to the gradual changes in your body composition. Comparing photos will help you see how far you've come.

--Steve

malkore
09-13-2005, 09:11 AM
I'm in the same boat Shadow. I'm about 3-4 weeks in, and am still bouncing from 190-194 from day to day. I contribute it to not being good about my diet on the weekends, and holding water due to too much salt on the weekends as well (I tend to weigh in on Sunday)

By the same token, I've been increasing poundage lifted every single week...so I suspect any fat I lost was replaced by muscle weight, especially since my cardio sessions have been rather lacking.

For that reason I'm gonna force my wife to learn how to test my bodyfat % with calipers, so I have a better idea of wtf I am at.

ZDrax
09-15-2005, 10:35 PM
I just checked your fitday. You're eating crap. Pure, refined crap. That's why you're stuck. Get rid of every single name brand food item in your diet and watch the pounds melt off.

Whenever I want to get into the single digit BF range, I generally switch over to a high protein, paleo like diet. Outside of my peri-workout nutrition, I consume only lean protein, healthy fats (olive, fish, flax, etc.), fruits, vegetables, and nuts (NOT peanuts). You need more protein, and less junk food. I consume no MRPs, and limit my "powdered" intake to one serving a day. Take a look at my fitday to see how I'm working my cutting diet. Notice the complete absence of name brand foods or packaged goods.

Best of luck, and pardon the tough love, but you should know all this by now if you've been hanging out on these boards/site long enough.

ShockBoxer
09-16-2005, 08:38 AM
Yeah, the past two weeks in particular have been total **** for my fitday. I eat out way too much, even if I maintain a caloric deficit while doing so. I'm trying reign it in a bit but all my friends are fat as hell and what we do when we're out reflects it. I'm down 20 pounds since January and they don't know how (caloric deficit. It's not hard. I only stopped losing weight when I started lifting). Last night in particular was a birthday party at East Side Mario's (an italian restaurant) so ... yeah.

Thing is.. I'm eating as well as I can afford on a daily basis. 5 oz boneless skinless chicken or a 6 oz steak once a day are all I can do. What does that leave for the other 100 to 120 grams of protein? A can of tuna for most lunches still leaves at least 80 grams of protein to knock back. The instant-shake breakfasts are the easiest way for me to get 15 g protein and give me enough carbs to jump start my morning. I'm out of shake mix, though, and I'm not buying any more. I'll eat a slice of toast with natty pb, two egg whites, and a glass of milk instead as I should have all along.

Healthy fats I don't have a problem hitting. Anymore. Built helped with that. My saturates make up 10% or less of my caloric total, where fat makes up usually 30-35%.

Carbs... my carbs blow goats. Mostly they're sugars. My intestine seems to prefer them... I get crippling pains more often trying to handle complex (oats, wheat bread, whole wheat pasta). I have some sort of disorder going on down there but it defies diagnosis (to the point where if I die from it I get a syndrome named after me). I'd *like* to clean up my carbs but don't know what to try when most of the common sources of complex feel like someone has slammed a heated railroad spike through my abdomen.

I'm here, which means that I can't do this **** on my own, which means I appreciate any advice given.

Edit: And I just checked your fitday. Holy crap! 3 to 5 servings of protein powder? I'm pretty sure my protein problems would be solved if I took another two scoops of whey a day... but I can barely AFFORD one. You have meals with multiple meats in it... damn, that would be sweet!

I am poor. Really poor. Live in the slums with the hookers and druggies poor. Pack heat to go to the corner store poor. It makes a difference. The twenty-five bucks I drop on eating out are as much to get me and my girl the hell out of the neighborhood for an evening as anything else. It's my feeble entertainment budget.

ZDrax
09-16-2005, 12:29 PM
Oooh man, I'm sorry to have gotten all of your case like that! Now I'm definitely going to hell.

I'm not sure if all of this advice is applicable to you, but here are a few ideas to perhaps cut down on costs.

1. Visit farmer's markets. They're open on Saturdays. I can usually bring home double (sometimes triple, it really depends what I'm buying) the amount of fruits and veggies (I hope THESE are still ingestible), and sometimes meats, for my $$$. What would be best is if you could find a small, "local" market, where all of the farmers actually come out and sell their goods. Some of the corporate farmer's markets (Larry's, Harry's etc) are really hit or miss.

2. Buy your meat online. That's what I do. You'd be surprised how cheaply you can find quality slabs of meat. I use the Kansas City Steak Company, and found on offer through QVC (LOL!) for ridiculously cheap non-grain fed steak.

Best of luck to ya. I am SO sorry for being a Class A jerk. You'll reach your goals sooner than you think. Peace!

ShockBoxer
09-16-2005, 02:36 PM
Actually, most vegtables aren't. The good list includes celery, peas, carrots (in small doses), and most types of beans. Whatever all those have in common. Lettuce too, but who counts lettuce?

Fruit I can handle for the most part. Not in juice form, though, no matter how pure. Weird but true.

Farmer's markets close for the season pretty soon around here. Never have much of a selection, either... there is one corporate one here but it's on the other side of the city.

I don't know about buying food online. I like to inspect my food really carefully before purchase. It's worth looking into, though.

No worries. From a technical standpoint you're right... my diet does suck. The best thing I can say is that I keep below maintenance. The extra baggage that goes along with being me you couldn't know. It's cool.

muscleup
09-16-2005, 02:39 PM
You might be better off to sub in the list below for some of those complex carbs you have been having trouble with.

Fibrous Carbs

Green Leafy lettuce (red, green, romaine)
Broccoli
Asparagus
String Beans
Spinach
Bell Pepers (Green or Red)
Brussels Sprouts
Cauliflower
Cabbage
Celery
Cucumber
Carrots
Eggplant
Onions
Pumpkin
Garlic
Tomatoes
Zucchini

malkore
09-16-2005, 03:18 PM
for the remaining protein: egg whites, cottage cheese 1-2% milkfat

if egg whites are 'gross' add 1 or 2 yolks in, and that'll drastically improve flavor/texture.
if you hate cottage cheese (like me) add a little bit of fat free, no sugar added yogurt (I buy Blue Bunny lite 85 fruit yogurt)...it'll mask the taste, and it'll taste more like you're eating a large serving of yogurt thats sorta bland. its the only way i can really tolerate cottage cheese on a regular basis.

ShockBoxer
09-16-2005, 03:29 PM
Heh. Damn...

Three things on that 'fiberous carbs' list don't trigger pain. Celery, Lettuce, and Tomatoes, which I can't stand unless they're on a burger or in sauce form. The rest I've tried (I particularly have no ability to handle onions, garlic, and peppers).

I think I've just found one of the big trigger groups for my disorder. Fiberous carbs.

As for cottage cheese... I like it! Give it to me raw and I'm good. Problem is it's 500+ mg per half-cup and I'm on a sodium reduced diet for blood pressure. A half cup a day is about all I could fit in.

I made a 'challenge' thread that outlines all my special problems.