Bigger Guys Losing Fat

Posted on January 12, 2017 in Appetite Manipulation, Cutting, Sustainability

This post is for those of you who “can’t”, or are struggling at losing fat.

Lose Fat
Big Guy https://www.flickr.com/photos/78428166@N00/17352438356/

Let me start off by saying that everybody is capable of losing fat. If the supply of food on planet earth ran out, and consequently you didn’t eat for a week, I can guarantee you would be leaner.

So the fact is you CAN.

The issue is an inability to eat at a consistent calorie deficit over time. Your appetite is too large relative to your body’s caloric requirements.

Our strategy therefore, needs to blunt our appetite and increase our calorie requirements simultaneously:

  1. Don’t cut too fast. If you try to do anything too fast it will prove disastrous in the long run. You won’t be able to sustain it, and you will become the typical “yo-yo dieter” that 97% of people will become when they start out on a new diet. It’s nearly always too extreme. My suggestion would be to start off by reducing calories by approximately 10% from what you’re currently consuming (obviously you have to be tracking this first), then go from there. Gradually reduce as and when you need to. This is as opposed to a 20% reduction from an arbitrary online calculator that whips up a number pulled out from its’ creators backside.
  2. Use Intermittent Fasting. This will allow you to consume the majority of your calories when it matters the most, the evening. Eating more in the evening and during social times will prevent feelings of deprivation from arising. The biggest factor as always though is total calorie intake. Don’t lower it too quickly.
  3. Eat more protein, within reason. As we all know, it’s the most satiating macronutrient. Remember there is always a trade-off between protein and carbs (calories equated). This is essentially satiation vs feeling good. You will need to decide for yourself which is most important. I suspect that most people aren’t genuinely hungry all the time and would be better off keeping their carbs slightly higher. This allows the diet to be more fun, particularly in the evenings (if you are fasting). But, if you are suffering and are genuinely hungry a lot of the time, then feel free to increase your protein intake.
  4. Consume some caffeine. I’m not a big advocate of pre-workouts generally. However, I think they can be useful for your biggest workouts, potentially right before a deload. They are a great appetite suppressant in the short run, but just be aware of the impact upon your CNS and possibly your sleep also. Coffee is a safer bet in the long run, and can be taken consistently without any negatives. As long as you stick to 1 or 2 in the mornings, there only appears to be positives (blunted appetite and slightly increased productivity).
  5. Increase cardio. This needs to be fun in order for it to be sustainable, and prevent you from “yo-yo-ing”. Normally with cardio for most people, it is SO EFFECTIVE because it increases the calorie requirements proportionately beyond genuine hunger increases. This may not be the same however for everyone. Also, make sure it doesn’t interfere with your recovery from weight training (particularly legs). This is one of the big advantages of LISS cardio.

There are more strategies of course, but they will be coming in at a later date. I’m purposefully staying at a macro level on this blog, specifics will arrive later 🙂

The key here is to make it as fun and enjoyable as possible. That is the one key distinguishing factor between a successful dieter (stays lean) and a “yo-yo-er”.

  • Harry Davidson

    Another great post!

    How long should I fast for? I’m at about 15% body fat but haven’t been fasting so far during my cut but want to start. Won’t fasting impact protein synthesis?

    • Thanks, the answer is probably whatever suits you best. The recommended eating window is about 8 hours usually (so maybe 12-8pm). An important point is to not jump into this straight away, rather ease yourself into it by pushing your first meal back by 1 hour every few days or so.

      If we look at the most important stuff first (that reminds me I need to do a Nutritional Priorities post):

      1) Total calories – Are you hitting these correctly?
      2) Macros – Are you hitting enough total protein/carbs/fats?
      3) If you’ve nailed the above, then you can think about protein synthesis. It won’t be ideal to get all your protein in 1 meal, however if you have a 50/50 distribution between 12pm and 8pm you will receive about 99% of the gains possible vs the typical “old-school” bodybuilder diet (6 meals per day, evenly spaced protein & optimal for protein synthesis).

      The reality is that for most guys who live a normal, fun life, have a fairly large appetite and don’t compete, the bodybuilder diet is NOT SUSTAINABLE. Diet adherence underpins everything when it comes to diet, and IF helps enormously with this.