What follows is a list of the most common things I’ve observed when working with clients. Some I cannot explain and won’t try, others I could, but there are better articles out there with explanations, so I’ve given links for further reading if one particular topic interests/concerns you.
- Everybody panic’s about stalling, yet probably >50% of people stall for ~2 weeks.
- Whooshes often happen at the start of a diet due to drops in carb consumption. You probably know it, but the reverse is true when people binge.
- After a carb binge (holiday for example) most of the gains in weight will usually come off within a week of resumption of the regular diet.
Don’t panic and lose heart.
- Those that fuss the most over the minor details succeed the least.
- While fat usually comes off the upper abs before lower, it can take irregular patterns so measuring at various sites is important.
- Stress stalls fat loss more than it seems to hinder strength gains.
- Lack of sleep stalls fat loss and strength gains.
- Those that believe they can do it, generally do, regardless of the above two points.
- Most people on a cut have a few hunger pangs on the rest days but nothing major.
- Nearly everyone feels full when switching to a 2 meal pattern but then after ~3 weeks adjusts completely.
- Every runner that has introduced squats so far has improved performance. -reminds me of this comment in a Reddit discussion by Martin Berkhan.
- Putting a diet break in before introducing cardio to a program is a wise idea and often saves cardio from having to be used at all.
- When performance is a priority, the speed at which fat loss can be achieved will inevitably be less. Trying to convince someone of this is tough.
Because sharing this is motivational for everyone, me included. Here’s a broad range separated into three vague categories. Cuts, Recomps and Fighters.
Note: You are an individual, your results will vary depending on genetics, adherence, and effort.
(Peter, Joar, Theis, Jeff. Top to bottom.)
No diet breaks were needed or taken during the time-frames above with the exception of Jeff. All took a reasonably relaxed approach to counting. Cost these four gents a fair bit in new clothes however. 🙂 They look like completely new men with abs no longer a dream for them. I look forward to bringing you those updates.
(Shamil, Daniel, Joe, Max, Ahmed, Danyelle.)
Shamil, Daniel and Joe displayed the best results, and thinking about it they were the ones that could stick to things best. Joe said he feels skinny which is common if you’re still wearing the same t-shirts, but no-one is going to say that on the beach to him. This is also a common feeling/worry to have just before the definition starts to come through.
Shamil learned to relax a little more and trust me about 3 weeks into things and from then on it was plain sailing.
Max had a tough travel schedule but did well. Ahmed did it with just my initial guidance -they didn’t have the monthly reassessments. Danyelle did it all on her own.
The fighters and other athletes so far seem to have adapted to the diet very well, despite their tough training schedules. There have been some modifications made of course, however on the whole the results and feedback is pleasing so far.
Congratulations to Karna (right) for her successful cut to weight and then taking gold at the Pan-American Championship at blue belt lightweight. Carl (left and below) picked up two medals at the Abu Dhabi World Pro Trials in New York earlier this year.
Karim Byron, after a year out from knee surgery, will be looking to take gold at the Rickson Gracie cup so I’m sure you’ll join me in wishing him the best for that. He’s hoping to make a move on the UFC heavyweight division. He’s got the pedigree (see medal collection below), just got to cut the weight now.
More on the way. Many I can’t share. Learning every day. Trying to get better.
Thanks for reading. Comments/questions welcome.