If you want to reclaim your health, your fitness and your entire life, then this…
Loads of guys either on Twitter, or via email, have given me a story that goes along the lines of:
“So I used to be 275 pounds at about 35% body fat, and I hated the way I looked, felt, and was worried about my health and future. I was worried about how my 50’s, 60’s and beyond were going to be, and my family has a strong history of diabetes.
I started your Intermittent Fasting eating strategy and it was going really well. I lost 30 pounds and got down to 245, but now no matter what I do, I can’t seem to get past this sticking point.
I’m eating way less food, and I’m doing a lot of cardio, but for some reason the pounds are no longer coming off. I was loving it, but now I’m really frustrated at my lack of results.”
Alright. Big problem.
And there’s a big solution, but it’s not easy, especially psychologically and emotionally.
Let’s delve into it…
Master The Maintenance Period
Maintenance isn’t exactly sexy or exciting, and it’s not what you feel like doing.
But it’s 100% necessary. Because your metabolism has plummeted. A weight loss stall means that, by default, you are currently consuming maintenance calories, but now your maintenance is too low.
So the goal of this period is simply: metabolism recovery.
Or put another way: you’re ‘locking in’ the lower body fat %, without risking the re-bound.
It’s crucial that you keep this goal at the forefront of your mind the entire time, as it’s this mindset that will prevent you from getting lazy, getting into an ‘accidental’ calorie surplus, and gaining weight.
This isn’t ‘time off’ per se, it is simply a 2-4 week period whereby you’re re-building your metabolism.
Here’s how to do it…
Step 1: Increase Your Calories By 10%
Whatever you’re currently eating in your Intermittent Fasting plan, increase this by 10%. Provided you’re lifting weights regularly on a solid strength training program such as the 007 Program or the Warrior Program, AND you’re doing regular cardio, then there’s pretty much no risk that it’s going to add body fat to you.
It will simply serve to lower stress levels, re-gain a little muscle, and re-build your metabolism (the number one goal here). All of this will create room for further fat loss in the future.
I would be very, very careful in regards to the content of your diet (the macros and micros). There is a very strong temptation among people once they’ve raised their calories a little (after being in a deficit for a while), to go absolutely bat-shit-crazy and just eat ice cream and pizza.
If you fall into this trap, you’re 100% bouncing all the way back up to your original weight.
You need to keep the vast, vast majority of your foods high in protein & veggies, and then get your starchy carb sources timed around your training – and this is the real key to re-vamping your metabolism.
Step 1 should last for approximately one week. Then you move onto step 2:
Step 2: Increase Your Calories By Another 5% + Remove A Little Cardio
It’s only a tiny amount, but it’s continuing to kick your metabolism upwards, particularly if you keep up with both the intense lifting and the Intermittent Fasting schedule (which you definitely should!)
I don’t have any hard rules for the cardio side of the equation, but you want to back off a little on it. This may be 1-2 sessions per week being removed if you currently do quite a few per week, or it could just be cutting back on one of your sessions of you do 2-3 bigger cardio sessions per week.
Whatever you’re currently doing, back off a little. It’ll help with recovery, stress hormones, and re-building your metabolism.
This step needs to last at least one week, potentially quite a bit more depending on:
- How strong/energetic/happy you feel
- The scale (which will move up a little due to water retention, glycogen, and greater stomach content)
- How you look in the mirror (you should look fuller in your muscles, rather than bloated)
A maintenance period doesn’t really have a maximum time limit, but usually it will be from 2-4 weeks, and then you can shift gears back into fat loss mode.
Two weeks is the minimum because one week simply isn’t enough time for any metabolic changes to occur.
You need to shift your calories a little upwards, keep your lifting the exact same, and make sure your food is still 100% clean. NO alcohol. NO junk food.
But DO make sure you’re getting some carbs in and around your training (think: potatoes, oats, fruit etc.)
If you want personal, one-to-one coaching on exactly how to do this (including Whatsapp calls etc.), then check out the Silver and Gold options here.
Furthermore, this month’s newsletter is specifically geared around carb-timing, and how to use this to maximise muscle retention in a calorie deficit. This will be sent directly to the inboxes of all subscribers at the Economy, Silver and Gold levels. It goes out on 31st May, so make sure you don’t miss it!