Is Low Carb The Answer?

Everything Sounds Great Before Your Start

Do you start every new training program or diet with the conviction that THIS IS IT?  Do you believe that every change is the answer to the riddle.  This is what will take you over the top.  This is the missing link and the system that will make all the difference.  If not, you should.  After all, why would you do anything if you were not sure it would work?  Its human nature to think that way.

However, there is another approach.  The approach is to look on each change as an experiment without expectation.   To try something new in order to learn something.  Discovering what doesn’t work is as important as discovering what does.

  • Decide on a change you want to make
  • Decide on one change you want to make
  • Determine how you will measure the impact (weight gain, weight loss, strength gains, etc)
  • Establish a start and end date of for the experiment
  • Make the change
  • Measure and make a decision – yay or nay

 The January Diet

I dropped six lbs in January following the holiday eating binge.  Half of it was fat and I felt pretty good about that because my bodyfat % came down.  That’s a good thing.

Then I started doing some research and came across this quote:

“some hapless individuals will lose as much as one pound of muscle for every 2-3 pounds of fat that they lose when they diet”

That comes from Lyle McDonald.  Lyle is a nutrition guru that used to write for Hardgainer and Cyberpump.  He wrote a book called “The Ketogenic Diet”.   Lyle is a person that I used to follow regularly and I respect what he has to say.

Before I read that, I thought of January as a success.  Now I’m questioning that.  Is it possible to do better?

The overall theme of the particular article referenced above is that the body will tend to gain or lose in the same percentages.  In other words, if I were to gain six lb of muscle, I can expect roughly to be muscle.  As a result you wind up where you started.

In May 2015 I weight 164 lbs at 12.4% body fat.  Today I weigh 164.2 at 12.7% body fat.  In between I went as high as 172.  My gains were slightly more fat than muscle and my losses were roughly 50-50.

The approach works in terms of gaining and losing.  But it does not work in achieving the larger goal of changing the ratio of fat to lean muscle.

How do we do that?