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Posted: 8/16/2021 12:22:56 PM EST
[Last Edit: dyezak]
So, at 42y old I've finally checked my ego and realized the past 18y of not working out and being only mildly careful about my nutrition means I'm not the same 24y old military guy I have been seeing myself as.  Getting winded playing with my son made me realize I need to kick myself in the ass.  Back in March I started cycling infrequently to get some cardio work in and just get myself to a place where I could actually do some sustained activities.  A month ago I put my nose down on the cycling and stuck to 6d a week there.  My performance started going up so 2 weeks ago I decided it was time to actually start being serious since I could obviously do a real workout now.  I began tracking my nutrition, and I added in resistance training.  Now that I have changed behavior and stuck to it for a while I want to set myself some goals to track my progress towards.

I'm looking to check my goals against reality here.  

My height:  5' 10"
My starting weight a month ago:  200.8lbs
Starting body fat %:  25.85 (using tape measurements, not extremely accurate, but repeatable)
Starting lean body mass:  148.9lbs

My goal at 42 years old is to do my best to not lose muscle.  I want to maintain that 148.9lbs of lean body mass and get rid of the damn fat.  My healthy body weight for my age/height is between 161 to 172, so I set my goal for 166lbs (right in the middle of what all the literature says I should be).

Looking at healthy weight loss when you're high in body fat (me) you can safely(??) target 1.5% of your body weight loss in a week.  So I rounded down and am targeting the first month loss of 10lbs (hopefully all fat).  I'm targeting loosing 9lbs in the second month.  As my body fat drops I can't safely drop the same weight while maintaining my muscle (I'm 42) so I'm expecting 8lbs in the third month, and maybe 7lbs in my fourth month.  

That would put me at 166lbs after 4mo and busting my butt to maintain my starting lean mass of 148.9lbs.  First reality check here....is this attainable or am I being unrealistic?  I am 1mo in and am measuring out ahead of schedule (188lbs, 21.25% BF, 148.4lbs lean mass) but I know the first month is a lot of water weight and glycogen losses so I kind of expect to be a little "ahead" of schedule when I factor those things in.  I expect that if I went to maintenance calories for a few days and my glycogen stores and water retention recovered I'd put a couple pounds of water weight back on.

WORKOUTS:

My workouts are between 700-1100kcal active burn on top of my BMR.  I'm doing 2 days a week of no activity to focus on recovery, and alternating my workout days between full body resistance training and cardio training.  

NUTRITION:

I'm keeping my protein intake at about 0.9g per pound of body weight (170g a day), and just filling in my other macros while maintaining a 20% caloric deficit (I do not skimp on protein as a hope to maintain my muscle mass).  No sugar, very little alcohol.

Thoughts?  I just started tracking everything with Whoop...and while people have legit accuracy questions about these types of trackers my idea is they should give me a consistent look at things.  Repeatable measurements should keep me accountable in other words.

ETA:  Edited to remove confusion.
Link Posted: 8/16/2021 2:55:29 PM EST
[#1]
I just did pretty basic stuff when I decided to get in shape.  I quit drinking at 50 (needed to anyway) and started eating a lot of rotisserie chicken with some garlic salt and a little olive oil on it, heated in the microwave.  Lots of water and iced tea (haven't been a soda drinker for a long time) and began working out at the apartment complex gym.  Went from 196 and 26% body fat at 6' tall (measuring with one of those body comp bathroom scales) dipping all the way down to 161 and 17%.  As of today I'm 171 and 18% at 56.

I no longer have the gym to use since moving but have been walking a lot this summer up and down the hilly lake road I live on, doing pushups with the "Perfect pushup" spinning handles, doing body weight dips on a stand I've had for years and using a good doorway chin up bar, plus some steel barbells I have for curls and shoulder presses.  I watch the snacks, and eat a lot of grapefruit and apples, but a good burger or pizza is a treat from time to time.  

Good luck!  The best thing was to hear people I knew asking "Have you lost weight?" plus seeing my BP drop considerably.
Link Posted: 8/16/2021 4:07:08 PM EST
[#2]
Originally Posted By dyezak:
So, at 42y old I've finally checked my ego and realized the past 18y of not working out and being only mildly careful about my nutrition means I'm not the same 24y old military guy I have been seeing myself as.  Getting winded playing with my son made me realize I need to kick myself in the ass.  Back in March I started cycling infrequently to get some cardio work in and just get myself to a place where I could actually do some sustained activities.  A month ago I put my nose down on the cycling and stuck to 6d a week there.  My performance started going up so 2 weeks ago I decided it was time to actually start being serious since I could obviously do a real workout now.  I began tracking my nutrition, and I added in resistance hypertrophy training (body weight calisthenics).  Now that I have changed behavior and stuck to it for a while I want to set myself some goals to track my progress towards.

I'm looking to check my goals against reality here.  

My height:  5' 10"
My starting weight a month ago:  200.8lbs
Starting body fat %:  25.85 (using tape measurements, not extremely accurate, but repeatable)
Starting lean body mass:  148.9lbs

My goal at 42 years old is to do my best to not lose muscle.  I want to maintain that 148.9lbs of lean body mass and get rid of the damn fat.  My healthy body weight for my age/height is between 161 to 172, so I set my goal for 166lbs (right in the middle of what all the literature says I should be).

Looking at healthy weight loss when you're high in body fat (me) you can safely(??) target 1.5% of your body weight loss in a week.  So I rounded down and am targeting the first month loss of 10lbs (hopefully all fat).  I'm targeting loosing 9lbs in the second month.  As my body fat drops I can't safely drop the same weight while maintaining my muscle (I'm 42) so I'm expecting 8lbs in the third month, and maybe 7lbs in my fourth month.  

That would put me at 166lbs after 4mo and busting my butt to maintain my starting lean mass of 148.9lbs.  First reality check here....is this attainable or am I being unrealistic?  I am 1mo in and am measuring out ahead of schedule (188lbs, 21.25% BF, 148.4lbs lean mass) but I know the first month is a lot of water weight and glycogen losses so I kind of expect to be a little "ahead" of schedule when I factor those things in.  I expect that if I went to maintenance calories for a few days and my glycogen stores and water retention recovered I'd put a couple pounds of water weight back on.

WORKOUTS:

My workouts are between 700-1100kcal active burn on top of my BMR.  I'm doing 2 days a week of no activity to focus on recovery, and alternating my workout days between full body hypertrophy training and cardio training.  

NUTRITION:

I'm keeping my protein intake at about 0.9g per pound of body weight (170g a day), and just filling in my other macros while maintaining a 20% caloric deficit (I do not skimp on protein as a hope to maintain my muscle mass).  No sugar, very little alcohol.

Thoughts?  I just started tracking everything with Whoop...and while people have legit accuracy questions about these types of trackers my idea is they should give me a consistent look at things.  Repeatable measurements should keep me accountable in other words.
View Quote


IMO, you're being a little unrealistic. A 1000 calorie a day deficit is supposed to result in 1-2lb loss per week. So a 4-8 lb loss per month is more realistic. At some point calorie deficit alone may not be enough, and you'll have to try to get into ketosis.

In general, cardio is not the most effective for weight loss. It's much better for heart/lung health. Resistance training is more effective for weight loss, as there's an after burn effect.
Link Posted: 8/16/2021 4:59:10 PM EST
[#3]
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Originally Posted By bigx5murf:


IMO, you're being a little unrealistic. A 1000 calorie a day deficit is supposed to result in 1-2lb loss per week. So a 4-8 lb loss per month is more realistic. At some point calorie deficit alone may not be enough, and you'll have to try to get into ketosis.

In general, cardio is not the most effective for weight loss. It's much better for heart/lung health. Resistance training is more effective for weight loss, as there's an after burn effect.
View Quote


Resistance Training = Hypertrophy (resistance to muscle failure to be specific)

3 days a week I'm pushing hypertrophy and 2 days cardio...maybe I said it too confusing in my OP.
Link Posted: 8/16/2021 5:08:05 PM EST
[#4]
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Originally Posted By dyezak:


Resistance Training = Hypertrophy (resistance to muscle failure to be specific)

3 days a week I'm pushing hypertrophy and 2 days cardio...maybe I said it too confusing in my OP.
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What's your daily calorie deficit though?
Link Posted: 8/16/2021 5:13:31 PM EST
[#5]
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Originally Posted By bigx5murf:


What's your daily calorie deficit though?
View Quote


BMR ~= 2650kcal

Average Consomption ~= 1740kcal

Although I'm not pushing a ketogenic diet, I've shifted my caloric macros from carbs to protein, and because of that I'm rediculously low on carbs so as a side effect of me trying to push protein intake I'm in ketosis anyhow.

Average Macro Breakdown for that 1740kcal is 165g protein, 90g fat, 29g carb
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 10:18:08 AM EST
[#6]
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Originally Posted By dyezak:


BMR ~= 2650kcal

Average Consomption ~= 1740kcal

Although I'm not pushing a ketogenic diet, I've shifted my caloric macros from carbs to protein, and because of that I'm rediculously low on carbs so as a side effect of me trying to push protein intake I'm in ketosis anyhow.

Average Macro Breakdown for that 1740kcal is 165g protein, 90g fat, 29g carb
View Quote


I'm guessing you haven't actually had your BMR tested. I had mine done (along with a DEXA scan) about 8 weeks ago and my BMR was 1930 calories/day (6'1", 163lbs, 13.4% BF). Add in an estimated amount of calories burned from daily activity (doesn't include exercise) and I'm at a hair over 2,500 cal/day. You having a BMR greater than that just doesn't compute for me.
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 10:25:49 AM EST
[#7]
My vote is also unrealistic.  If you run a 20% deficit you'll lose quite a bit of muscle. 10% is a realistic max and 5% would be the best deficit to maintain muscle while losing weight it will also be the slowest and requires more accurate tracking since the margins are narrow.  

I'm not a fan of cardio for fat loss I think it's been pretty decisively shown that resistance training is the king of fat burning.  Two days of cardio is going to eat into that muscle you are already trying to preserve.


You aren't obese,  so look more towards a recomp approach.  High protein,  ultra low carb and sugar. Resistance training 4-5 days a week  (hard) and you'll accomplish your goals.

Disclaimer: just my opinion
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 10:45:24 AM EST
[#8]
Agree with both posters above. Not realistic without losing a lot of muscle in the process.
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 11:10:02 AM EST
[#9]
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Originally Posted By LTCetme:
My vote is also unrealistic.  If you run a 20% deficit you'll lose quite a bit of muscle. 10% is a realistic max and 5% would be the best deficit to maintain muscle while losing weight it will also be the slowest and requires more accurate tracking since the margins are narrow.  

I'm not a fan of cardio for fat loss I think it's been pretty decisively shown that resistance training is the king of fat burning.  Two days of cardio is going to eat into that muscle you are already trying to preserve.


You aren't obese,  so look more towards a recomp approach.  High protein,  ultra low carb and sugar. Resistance training 4-5 days a week  (hard) and you'll accomplish your goals.

Disclaimer: just my opinion
View Quote


I'm a marathoner/ultramarathoner and I do agree with this. Lifting heavy stuff won't burn as many calories as running would for the same workout duration, but what will happen is that you'll build muscle and that muscle will then burn calories outside of a workout (effectively increasing your BMR). Plus, muscle is great as a glucose sink and it'll help with insulin sensitivity.

I would recommend that OP up his protein intake to a bit above 1gm/lb of goal body weight to help preserve muscle mass as he loses weight. I'm usually getting 180-200grams of protein per day (primarily filling the rest of my calories with animal fat) to keep my muscle up while leaning out a tad.
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 8:13:18 PM EST
[#10]
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Originally Posted By Commander_Keen:


I'm guessing you haven't actually had your BMR tested. I had mine done (along with a DEXA scan) about 8 weeks ago and my BMR was 1930 calories/day (6'1", 163lbs, 13.4% BF). Add in an estimated amount of calories burned from daily activity (doesn't include exercise) and I'm at a hair over 2,500 cal/day. You having a BMR greater than that just doesn't compute for me.
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Nailed it.  My BMR wasn't measured, it was based on my age, height, weight, and resting heart rate...so just an estimate.  My BMR will be a bit higher than normal because my resting heart rate isn't as low as it should be (68bpm)...that raises the estimator a bit.  

But you are probably right, which is why I'm tighter on my caloric intake than my #'s tell me I should be.
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 8:16:41 PM EST
[Last Edit: dyezak] [#11]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By LTCetme:
My vote is also unrealistic.  If you run a 20% deficit you'll lose quite a bit of muscle. 10% is a realistic max and 5% would be the best deficit to maintain muscle while losing weight it will also be the slowest and requires more accurate tracking since the margins are narrow.  

I'm not a fan of cardio for fat loss I think it's been pretty decisively shown that resistance training is the king of fat burning.  Two days of cardio is going to eat into that muscle you are already trying to preserve.


You aren't obese,  so look more towards a recomp approach.  High protein,  ultra low carb and sugar. Resistance training 4-5 days a week  (hard) and you'll accomplish your goals.

Disclaimer: just my opinion
View Quote


You nailed where I want to be...the fact is that I just *can't* right now.  I'm a weak puddin' ass mofo.  If I was back in the Army I'd be chewing my ass out every day for how weak I am.

Because of my weakness right now I don't have the capability for resistance training to last long enough to get caloric burn going.  I certainly can hit muscle failure and gain strength.  So I'm pushing my resistance training as much as I reasonably can while allowing for recovery and rebuilding of muscle tissue and augmenting my lack of caloric burn with the cardio.

I should be up to 5d a week resistance training by October according to the fitness schedule I'm on.  3d a week for August.  4d a week for September.  5d a week in October.
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 8:18:57 PM EST
[#12]
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Originally Posted By Commander_Keen:


I'm a marathoner/ultramarathoner and I do agree with this. Lifting heavy stuff won't burn as many calories as running would for the same workout duration, but what will happen is that you'll build muscle and that muscle will then burn calories outside of a workout (effectively increasing your BMR). Plus, muscle is great as a glucose sink and it'll help with insulin sensitivity.

I would recommend that OP up his protein intake to a bit above 1gm/lb of goal body weight to help preserve muscle mass as he loses weight. I'm usually getting 180-200grams of protein per day (primarily filling the rest of my calories with animal fat) to keep my muscle up while leaning out a tad.
View Quote


I thought I might be a little light on my protein.  Glad to hear someone echo that.
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 8:21:03 PM EST
[Last Edit: dyezak] [#13]
Thank you guys for the feedback.  I was worried I was being optimistic...sad that my worry is being echoed here too; but good that I'm resetting my mental state now at the beginning of my journey instead of getting pissed in 3-4mo when I'm not hitting the milestones I thought I should be.

ETA:  The new concepts in the fitness world around "recovery" being important is something I'm latching onto.  We didn't have that concept in the late 90's in the Army.  It was just work your ass off as frequently as possible until you collapse every time and then go eat.  

The recovery thing makes total sense and is one of the reasons I'm doing cardio with my resistance training.  It allows my body to recover from the resistance training while still being active, burning calories, and most importantly improving my cardiovascular system.
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 8:43:36 PM EST
[Last Edit: LTCetme] [#14]
I think a key aspect to your fitness journey is likely sustainability. You are on a long journey and rather than just wrecking yourself for those early wins focus on how you can build healthy habits that stick.  Fitness and "feeling good" is a life style not a 12 week plan. If you set realistic, achievable goals you'll find that the wins stack up almost as fast and you aren't mentally counting down to "the end". If you are too hard on yourself you'll end up resenting it and cheating. That leads to quit and the inevitable "THIS IS IMPOSSIBLE.  FUCK IT." mindset.

Bike a little more.  Run a little more. Lift weights even if you start embarrassingly light. Who the fuck cares?  I'm not judging you. Push yourself each week a tiny bit harder. Start transitioning towards better food choices and better less processed ingredients.  Be mindful of your mental state and get plenty of sleep.

You'll feel better long term if you do. I got faith brother!

ETA at 42 and 5'10" you have the potential to get completely jacked if you put your mind to it.  It's probably a couple years down the road but 100% achievable.
Link Posted: 8/18/2021 8:54:29 PM EST
[#15]
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Originally Posted By LTCetme:
I think a key aspect to your fitness journey is likely sustainability. You are on a long journey and rather than just wrecking yourself for those early wins focus on how you can build healthy habits that stick.  Fitness and "feeling good" is a life style not a 12 week plan. If you set realistic, achievable goals you'll find that the wins stack up almost as fast and you aren't mentally counting down to "the end". If you are too hard on yourself you'll end up resenting it and cheating. That leads to quit and the inevitable "THIS IS IMPOSSIBLE.  FUCK IT." mindset.

Bike a little more.  Run a little more. Lift weights even if you start embarrassingly light. Who the fuck cares?  I'm not judging you. Push yourself each week a tiny bit harder. Start transitioning towards better food choices and better less processed ingredients.  Be mindful of your mental state and get plenty of sleep.

You'll feel better long term if you do. I got faith brother!

ETA at 42 and 5'10" you have the potential to get completely jacked if you put your mind to it.  It's probably a couple years down the road but 100% achievable.
View Quote


You know the part about making it feel good, fun, etc is extremely important.  That is one of the reasons I abandoned fitness when I got out of the Army, because while I was in it was a chore.  I had one year where I was having fun, in the gym, etc.  But most of my units wanted to do bullshit Field Manual based calisthenics just for the sake of checking a box that the unit did X pushups and X situps every day for a year.

I like riding this stupid bike, and most important to me...it is something my son likes to do with me.  It won't be long until he can leave my butt in the dust on a bike if I don't do something about it now so here I am.
Link Posted: 8/19/2021 10:02:46 AM EST
[#16]
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Originally Posted By dyezak:
Thank you guys for the feedback.  I was worried I was being optimistic...sad that my worry is being echoed here too; but good that I'm resetting my mental state now at the beginning of my journey instead of getting pissed in 3-4mo when I'm not hitting the milestones I thought I should be.

ETA:  The new concepts in the fitness world around "recovery" being important is something I'm latching onto.  We didn't have that concept in the late 90's in the Army.  It was just work your ass off as frequently as possible until you collapse every time and then go eat.  

The recovery thing makes total sense and is one of the reasons I'm doing cardio with my resistance training.  It allows my body to recover from the resistance training while still being active, burning calories, and most importantly improving my cardiovascular system.
View Quote


Having those worries backed up by others is a good thing. As you said, it's better to make an adjustment and be on the correct track now rather than later.


Recovery is massively important. Yes, you have to do work in order to prompt your body to make an adjustment (building strength, cardio capacity, etc.) but it's the recovery between workouts that actually makes those gains. If a person doesn't recover properly from a workout they also won't see the gains they expect, and lack of recovery also leads to burnout and injury.

Regarding your cardio supplementation: this should be done at an intensity that's low enough that you can practically have a conversation - you should be able to speak several full sentences without needing to stop for a breath. Yes, this may mean you're going VERY slow (especially at the beginning) but that's fine. You'll get naturally get faster for the same level of effort as your cardio capacity improves, and you don't want to go too hard on recovery sessions because that will take away from your harder workouts. Hard days hard, easy days easy.
Link Posted: 8/19/2021 10:45:56 AM EST
[#17]
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Originally Posted By LTCetme:
My vote is also unrealistic.  If you run a 20% deficit you'll lose quite a bit of muscle. 10% is a realistic max and 5% would be the best deficit to maintain muscle while losing weight it will also be the slowest and requires more accurate tracking since the margins are narrow.  

I'm not a fan of cardio for fat loss I think it's been pretty decisively shown that resistance training is the king of fat burning.  Two days of cardio is going to eat into that muscle you are already trying to preserve.


You aren't obese,  so look more towards a recomp approach.  High protein,  ultra low carb and sugar. Resistance training 4-5 days a week  (hard) and you'll accomplish your goals.

Disclaimer: just my opinion
View Quote


Pretty much this.

If you are 149lb LBM, you could eat about the same (if not more) quantity but focus on protein with carbs and fat making up energy sources. Lift for hypertrophy and try to raise LBM. If you are deconditioned, you should be able to bump that closer to 160ish in a year’s time then gradually do a deficit while continuing to hit the weights, taking your BCAAs and Creatine to help keep the muscle mass and drop fat. That’s a bit more sustainable approach in the long term.

I say that because I’m currently doing it now. Last year around this time I was about your size (OP) and got to about where you want to be by eating 1500kcal per day and training BJJ 3 times a week and road biking 3 to 5 days a week along with tracking macros. I lost the bulk of the weight from September to December getting to around 170lb and the rest of the way from January to April when I was in the mid 160s after a hard training session.

And as soon as lockdown hit again, I watched the scale jump back up to 180 pretty quickly. I never really stopped tracking food intake and was surprised to see a fat increase on 2000kcal/day. I’m guessing my BMR tanked over the year.

So I started a different approach in June. I gradually started increasing my calories while lifting weights 6 days a week. Currently I’m doing a double kettlebell program (because lockdown) and have increased my LBM from 144(after weight loss) to around 153 and my body fat percentage has gone to 20% (was around 15% per the tape). Currently I’m trying to take in between 2700-3000kcal/day and my weight gain has been stagnant for about a month. I’m going to run with this as long as I’m getting adequate recovery for lifts until around Christmas and start cutting back calories to reduce BF% down to around where it was before. Hopefully I’ll maintain some of the new muscle with the lifting and high protein diet.

TL;DR I was in the same place as OP a year ago, made it to where he wants to be in 6 months, and then found it wasn’t sustainable due to a lower caloric rate. Now I’m trying to pack on muscle with lifting and caloric surplus and I’m having success and feeling better. Recommend OP do the same.
Link Posted: 8/19/2021 11:47:48 AM EST
[#18]
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Originally Posted By Andi-in-BKK:


Pretty much this.

If you are 149lb LBM, you could eat about the same (if not more) quantity but focus on protein with carbs and fat making up energy sources. Lift for hypertrophy and try to raise LBM. If you are deconditioned, you should be able to bump that closer to 160ish in a year’s time then gradually do a deficit while continuing to hit the weights, taking your BCAAs and Creatine to help keep the muscle mass and drop fat. That’s a bit more sustainable approach in the long term.

I say that because I’m currently doing it now. Last year around this time I was about your size (OP) and got to about where you want to be by eating 1500kcal per day and training BJJ 3 times a week and road biking 3 to 5 days a week along with tracking macros. I lost the bulk of the weight from September to December getting to around 170lb and the rest of the way from January to April when I was in the mid 160s after a hard training session.

And as soon as lockdown hit again, I watched the scale jump back up to 180 pretty quickly. I never really stopped tracking food intake and was surprised to see a fat increase on 2000kcal/day. I’m guessing my BMR tanked over the year.

So I started a different approach in June. I gradually started increasing my calories while lifting weights 6 days a week. Currently I’m doing a double kettlebell program (because lockdown) and have increased my LBM from 144(after weight loss) to around 153 and my body fat percentage has gone to 20% (was around 15% per the tape). Currently I’m trying to take in between 2700-3000kcal/day and my weight gain has been stagnant for about a month. I’m going to run with this as long as I’m getting adequate recovery for lifts until around Christmas and start cutting back calories to reduce BF% down to around where it was before. Hopefully I’ll maintain some of the new muscle with the lifting and high protein diet.

TL;DR I was in the same place as OP a year ago, made it to where he wants to be in 6 months, and then found it wasn’t sustainable due to a lower caloric rate. Now I’m trying to pack on muscle with lifting and caloric surplus and I’m having success and feeling better. Recommend OP do the same.
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Thanks for the feedback, but looking back realistically....could you have done your current workouts now back then?  I get what you're saying and what you are doing right now is MUCH better than what you were doing a year ago.  But did you do the best with what you had to work with (physically) when you started?
Link Posted: 8/19/2021 12:59:19 PM EST
[#19]
It's worth pointing out too that "working out hard" is not connected to a specific amount of weight or distance ran. It's a perception of exertion. So what is a hard workout for you may not be the same for the next guy. Dial in your weights distances to what you can accomplish and progressively increment from there.  There's no rule that says if you squat the bar only you aren't working out hard.  Next week throw 5s on it, week after 5s and a 2.5... ect.  When I'm doing hypertrophy I try to increase by 5lbs per week  which is only a 2.5 on each side. It adds up fast though.  If you can do that for 6 months those miniscule increases compound to 120lbs!

Some of those 2.5s seem really heavy too.
Link Posted: 8/20/2021 2:30:43 AM EST
[#20]
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Originally Posted By dyezak:


Thanks for the feedback, but looking back realistically....could you have done your current workouts now back then?  I get what you're saying and what you are doing right now is MUCH better than what you were doing a year ago.  But did you do the best with what you had to work with (physically) when you started?
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I think I understand what you are asking. My RPE was actually a bit higher during my cut than it is currently. I tried lifting weights and the small aches and pains I got then, plus with BJJ (I get hurt all the time even though I’ve been doing it for 6+ years, lol) never quite healed while I was on the hard deficit, but I wasn’t giving them time either because I would just tape it and keep rolling. I had to give up lifting because of the extra load it was putting on me with the already intense cardio sessions from rolling and riding Zwift or IRL.

BJJ performance is the main focus for me, and has been for the entire time. I was a weak 185er but adequate at 155 or 170, so the thought was to cut weight to get into my correct weight class.

Now, with ONLY lifting I’m recovering very quickly and gaining mass because I’m almost force feeding.

Sleep has been about the same then and now.  

When lockdown ends (probably October the way things are looking) and BJJ starts back, I’m planning on continuing with the calorie surplus and dialing back my lifts to only 2-3 days a week instead of 4-5. And BJJ 3-4 days a week (plus teaching it 1-2 days a week) or 2 BJJ, 2 Muay Thai(because I’m in Thailand so why not), 2 teaching BJJ. I may gradually reduce calories at some point, but I doing think I’ll ever push for under 2000kcal/day ever again. I’d like to end up around 175-180 and be able to water cut for competitions to 170 without a lot of fuss.

My oldest daughter is also getting good at riding her bike so I also want to be able to get out with her and ride from time to time, but not at the FTP pushing, pseudo-race mode thing that I was doing before.
Link Posted: 8/20/2021 9:39:51 AM EST
[#21]
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Originally Posted By Commander_Keen:


I'm guessing you haven't actually had your BMR tested. I had mine done (along with a DEXA scan) about 8 weeks ago and my BMR was 1930 calories/day (6'1", 163lbs, 13.4% BF). Add in an estimated amount of calories burned from daily activity (doesn't include exercise) and I'm at a hair over 2,500 cal/day. You having a BMR greater than that just doesn't compute for me.
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Following up on this.  You are dead on.  

The BMR calculator I was using had to be WAY off.  I did some testing and the Mifflin St. Jeor calcultor seems to be one of the best estimates out there.  Using that calc my BMR is 1769...which is more in line with what you are saying as well as more in line with my Whoop measurements.  

Thanks for bringing this to my attention.
Link Posted: 8/20/2021 9:42:49 AM EST
[#22]
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Originally Posted By Andi-in-BKK:


I think I understand what you are asking. My RPE was actually a bit higher during my cut than it is currently. I tried lifting weights and the small aches and pains I got then, plus with BJJ (I get hurt all the time even though I’ve been doing it for 6+ years, lol) never quite healed while I was on the hard deficit, but I wasn’t giving them time either because I would just tape it and keep rolling. I had to give up lifting because of the extra load it was putting on me with the already intense cardio sessions from rolling and riding Zwift or IRL.

BJJ performance is the main focus for me, and has been for the entire time. I was a weak 185er but adequate at 155 or 170, so the thought was to cut weight to get into my correct weight class.

Now, with ONLY lifting I’m recovering very quickly and gaining mass because I’m almost force feeding.

Sleep has been about the same then and now.  

When lockdown ends (probably October the way things are looking) and BJJ starts back, I’m planning on continuing with the calorie surplus and dialing back my lifts to only 2-3 days a week instead of 4-5. And BJJ 3-4 days a week (plus teaching it 1-2 days a week) or 2 BJJ, 2 Muay Thai(because I’m in Thailand so why not), 2 teaching BJJ. I may gradually reduce calories at some point, but I doing think I’ll ever push for under 2000kcal/day ever again. I’d like to end up around 175-180 and be able to water cut for competitions to 170 without a lot of fuss.

My oldest daughter is also getting good at riding her bike so I also want to be able to get out with her and ride from time to time, but not at the FTP pushing, pseudo-race mode thing that I was doing before.
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You and I seem to be very closely aligned with our lifestyle, motivation, and plans.  You're a year ahead of me.  My best friend is right there too and is about 4mo ahead of me.  
Link Posted: 8/20/2021 11:30:58 AM EST
[#23]
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Originally Posted By dyezak:


Following up on this.  You are dead on.  

The BMR calculator I was using had to be WAY off.  I did some testing and the Mifflin St. Jeor calcultor seems to be one of the best estimates out there.  Using that calc my BMR is 1769...which is more in line with what you are saying as well as more in line with my Whoop measurements.  

Thanks for bringing this to my attention.
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Just for a bit more context for you:

The printout I got after my RMR test predicted that I would have an RMR of 1,780 cal/day and entering my height/weight from the time of the test gives me 1,725 cal/day. My measurements were 8% higher than predicted, but according to the test I took 10% either way is within "what's expected".

That calculator looks to be pretty darn accurate, so I'd expect you to be much more dialed-in on your nutrition needs now. Best of luck from here, mate.
Link Posted: 8/20/2021 2:01:40 PM EST
[#24]
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Originally Posted By dyezak:


You and I seem to be very closely aligned with our lifestyle, motivation, and plans.  You're a year ahead of me.  My best friend is right there too and is about 4mo ahead of me.  
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One thing that helped me as well, that might not be a perfect analog for you, is I’m 10 years younger than you. But as long as your hormones are in check, it shouldn’t be a dramatic difference.

I also experienced similar results about 5-6 years ago when I started BJJ for the first time. Dropped from 225 to 168 in about a year. But it came back then as well, but it took the second time for me to make the connection on BMR/LBM and trying to optimize that instead of just purely cutting. Trying to go from fat to skinny without gaining muscle was just making me skinny fat, lol.

That’s just my experience, and as with everything your mileage may vary. Big thing is find an active hobby that will motivate you to make healthy life changes.
Link Posted: 8/23/2021 7:54:18 AM EST
[#25]
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Originally Posted By Commander_Keen:


Just for a bit more context for you:

The printout I got after my RMR test predicted that I would have an RMR of 1,780 cal/day and entering my height/weight from the time of the test gives me 1,725 cal/day. My measurements were 8% higher than predicted, but according to the test I took 10% either way is within "what's expected".

That calculator looks to be pretty darn accurate, so I'd expect you to be much more dialed-in on your nutrition needs now. Best of luck from here, mate.
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Well, since I got the Whoop (10d) I've been tracking total caloric expenditure during a day.  I also track my workout expenditure.

I've been adding my workout expenditure to my BMR and it is landing within +/-3% of what Whoop says my daily total expenditure is.

I think these BMR #'s are close enough now and I'm getting several different conformations on them.
Link Posted: 8/23/2021 2:36:17 PM EST
[#26]
I’m 42 as well. I decided to get into shape three years ago and I’m in the best shape of my life and feel great. I run and lift and up until 3 years ago, I’d never done either.

Before and after.

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Link Posted: 8/30/2021 8:22:13 AM EST
[#27]
Just thought I'd check in with you guys and give you a progress/status report after your help.

The day (8/18) I got my real BMR #'s down and started tracking a proper caloric deficit along with increasing my protein from ~160g/day to ~200g/day was a big change.  

My lean body mass has been steadily going up.  Which is great and something I didn't plan on.  I started at ~148lbs of lean body mass and have seen small steady ticks up.  Today is the 4th day in a row I've measured out at 151lbs+ of lean body mass.  I think for anyone that would be a big gain, but for my age that's huge.  I've been over 150lbs of lean body mass for over a week, so it's trending up and not miss-measurements.  

Also, my body fat % has been dropping incredibly fast...and my belly fat is quite literally melting away. 7/25 I was ~39.5" around my abdomen, and today is the 2nd day in a row I'm ~34.5" a round my belly button.  7/25 I was ~200lbs and today I am 185lbs.  I am weighing and measuring every day at the same time in the day as well to limit as much variability as I can.  

Really it's the lean body mass that's the unexpected change.  Because that's going up I am seeing faster results than expected.  I'll keep measuring every day, sticking to the plan that was laid out for me back in July, and check in here again in a few weeks.
Link Posted: 9/1/2021 12:21:12 AM EST
[#28]
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Originally Posted By dyezak:
Just thought I'd check in with you guys and give you a progress/status report after your help.

The day (8/18) I got my real BMR #'s down and started tracking a proper caloric deficit along with increasing my protein from ~160g/day to ~200g/day was a big change.  

My lean body mass has been steadily going up.  Which is great and something I didn't plan on.  I started at ~148lbs of lean body mass and have seen small steady ticks up.  Today is the 4th day in a row I've measured out at 151lbs+ of lean body mass.  I think for anyone that would be a big gain, but for my age that's huge.  I've been over 150lbs of lean body mass for over a week, so it's trending up and not miss-measurements.  

Also, my body fat % has been dropping incredibly fast...and my belly fat is quite literally melting away. 7/25 I was ~39.5" around my abdomen, and today is the 2nd day in a row I'm ~34.5" a round my belly button.  7/25 I was ~200lbs and today I am 185lbs.  I am weighing and measuring every day at the same time in the day as well to limit as much variability as I can.  

Really it's the lean body mass that's the unexpected change.  Because that's going up I am seeing faster results than expected.  I'll keep measuring every day, sticking to the plan that was laid out for me back in July, and check in here again in a few weeks.
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Are you keeping the same workout from earlier with the cardio? That’s pretty impressive results.

Here’s my results from the same time period:

3000kcal/day average @150g protein and 50/50 split carbs and fat. Lifting reasonably heavy and high volume 3-4 days a week (clean and Press with double 28kg/62lb Kettlebells- moving towards double 32kgs/70lb in the next month) No cardio training currently, I’ll pay for that one when I’m back in BJJ in a few weeks.

Body weight is about the same at 193lb up 1-2lb since mid July, but body fat went from 22% to 19%. So about a 10lb increase in lean mass since early July.
Link Posted: 9/1/2021 8:22:43 AM EST
[Last Edit: dyezak] [#29]
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Originally Posted By Andi-in-BKK:


Are you keeping the same workout from earlier with the cardio? That’s pretty impressive results.

Here’s my results from the same time period:

3000kcal/day average @150g protein and 50/50 split carbs and fat. Lifting reasonably heavy and high volume 3-4 days a week (clean and Press with double 28kg/62lb Kettlebells- moving towards double 32kgs/70lb in the next month) No cardio training currently, I’ll pay for that one when I’m back in BJJ in a few weeks.

Body weight is about the same at 193lb up 1-2lb since mid July, but body fat went from 22% to 19%. So about a 10lb increase in lean mass since early July.
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Yes, same workout (including the cardio which is my addition), slightly altered nutrition like was suggested here, and altered expectations on fat loss results.  This morning I measured 184lbs with a 34.00" abdomen around the belly button which puts me below 18% body fat and close to 151.8lbs of lean muscle mass.  

The workout does tick upwards in intensity every week (either more reps, more weight, or more distance for the cardio) and that's by design.  There's also a STRONG emphasis on recovery.  I have another test scheduled for 9/24/2021 to ensure my strength is progressing as needed.  The prescribed plan completes its titration for increased workload on 11/7/2021 with a new physical fitness test on 11/9/2021, that's the re-assessment date where potentially drastic changes are made for continuation.  If my strength progresses as prescribed by this plan I should be at the point where I would be able to max an Army or Marine fitness test for my age group.  

Below is my tracking that I've been doing.  Top two lines are my weight projection with actual weigh in.  Next single line is lean body mass.  Following two lines are my projected measurement for my abdomen with actual measurement.  And the final two lines at the bottom are projected body fat with measured body fat.  The projection that is obviously off compared to measurement is the body fat, I didn't project to drop this quickly because I planned to maintain 148lbs of lean muscle mass.  The lean mass going up is the x factor there.  

ETA:  **Remember, my goals here were to first and foremost lose the body fat.  Secondarily it was to get stronger.  The last it was maintain lean muscle mass.  

Attachment Attached File
Link Posted: 9/9/2021 11:34:59 AM EST
[#30]
Went through my first "cheat day" on Labor Day weekend.  BBQ and Beer was consumed .  

Keeping my accountability here though, this morning I was at 182.0lbs and a 33.5" belly around the belly button.  Puts me in the 16-17% body fat range with around a 152lb lean muscle mass.  

Odd note though.  When I started this journey I started measuring my belly around the belly button because that was the biggest measurement.  As I have lost weight the area right under my belly button is now bigger.  So I've kept measuring in the same space for consistency as I figure that's more important than me trying to be accurate with a notoriously inaccurate method.  I'm reminding myself that keeping my measurements consistent will show directionality of change and let me know if I've tapered off, regressed, etc.
Link Posted: 9/11/2021 2:50:02 PM EST
[#31]
Well done!

If I were to guess, I'd say you're losing a decent amount of visceral fat, which is awesome. That's the stuff that essentially chokes your organs and leads to diabetes/heart disease/high blood pressure, etc.
Link Posted: 9/11/2021 4:53:32 PM EST
[Last Edit: dyezak] [#32]
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Originally Posted By Commander_Keen:
Well done!

If I were to guess, I'd say you're losing a decent amount of visceral fat, which is awesome. That's the stuff that essentially chokes your organs and leads to diabetes/heart disease/high blood pressure, etc.
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Thank you sir, I've got another 7 weeks of caloric deficit as long as I stay on track.  I'm monitoring my progress multiple ways to cross check myself.  I found VERY FAST that the scale is a liar .  

Water weight can fluctuate by 2-3lbs easily.  Just to prove it to myself I did a very heavy 90min 1200cal bike ride without drinking water...cramped like a bitch at the end.  But I "lost 3lbs" in 90min according to the scale.  Yea, I sweated 2.9lbs .  Guzzle down 60oz of water and Mr. Scale said I gained 4lbs in 2min.

That told me that even if I weigh myself every morning, at the same time, I'd likely be having water weight fluctuations that I can't realistically account for with Mr. Scale lying to me.  

So in addition to measuring my weight, and my waist; I started tracking everything I ate to account for as much caloric intake as I can.  I also measure my total daily caloric expenditure with a Whoop and every workout or physical activity (mow the grass) I measure that separately so I can have calories in and calories out.

I then look at my caloric deficit over time (say a week) and that tells me that I "should have" lost X weight.  

I then look at my weight over that same time period; while checking my body fat to account for changes in my lean body mass.

Interestingly, the measurements line up within 1/10th of a lb.  AND, if I wake up one morning and my weight is not what it "should be", but the other measurements point that I'm still headed in the right direction I know that it's likely water weight (or waste/poop weight ) and Mr. Scale is just lying to me that morning.  
Link Posted: 9/14/2021 7:44:33 PM EST
[#33]
My resting heart rate has dropped from 79-81 down to 57-61 through this journey so far.
Link Posted: 9/15/2021 12:48:56 PM EST
[#34]
Am I reading your numbers correctly?  In the 5 or so weeks since you've started this threat your bodyfat % went from around 25% to 16-17% and you added 3lb of lean muscle. In 5 weeks?

For a 42 year old male adding 3lb of lean muscle in a year in pretty good results natural.

The tape test is widely acknowledged to be inaccurate.  And although it's a repeatable test you can do at home, it's widely inconsistent form test to test as well.

I highly recommend you get a DEXA scan.  They're pricey, I just paid $125 this weekend for one.  But they are accurate.  You can gauge your progress week to week pretty well on the scale and in the mirror and get a DEXA scan after 6 months to know with real certainty where you are.

The one I just got showed a 13lb lean muscle gain and drop of 5 percentage points of bodyfat over a 2 year period.  I'm 46 and was very happy with those results.
Link Posted: 9/15/2021 7:35:39 PM EST
[#35]
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Originally Posted By SIG_gunner:
Am I reading your numbers correctly?  In the 5 or so weeks since you've started this threat your bodyfat % went from around 25% to 16-17% and you added 3lb of lean muscle. In 5 weeks?

For a 42 year old male adding 3lb of lean muscle in a year in pretty good results natural.

The tape test is widely acknowledged to be inaccurate.  And although it's a repeatable test you can do at home, it's widely inconsistent form test to test as well.

I highly recommend you get a DEXA scan.  They're pricey, I just paid $125 this weekend for one.  But they are accurate.  You can gauge your progress week to week pretty well on the scale and in the mirror and get a DEXA scan after 6 months to know with real certainty where you are.

The one I just got showed a 13lb lean muscle gain and drop of 5 percentage points of bodyfat over a 2 year period.  I'm 46 and was very happy with those results.
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I think as long as he is measuring at the same spot, using a Naval method of weight and height with neck and waist measurements is repeatable enough for measuring progress. It’s probably not the correct number, but it’s a decent reference.

And as far as LBM gains, if he is deconditioned, he’s probably getting a good jump with newbie gains in muscle as well. There are plenty of cases where guys have put on 8-10 pounds of muscle in the first 6 months to a year (only to gain a pound or two yearly for the following few years).
Link Posted: 9/16/2021 8:27:10 AM EST
[Last Edit: dyezak] [#36]
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Originally Posted By Andi-in-BKK:


I think as long as he is measuring at the same spot, using a Naval method of weight and height with neck and waist measurements is repeatable enough for measuring progress. It’s probably not the correct number, but it’s a decent reference.

And as far as LBM gains, if he is deconditioned, he’s probably getting a good jump with newbie gains in muscle as well. There are plenty of cases where guys have put on 8-10 pounds of muscle in the first 6 months to a year (only to gain a pound or two yearly for the following few years).
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Yea, I agree the tape is inaccurate.  But if care is taken to do it the same place, the same way, and at the same time of day; you can get repeatability.  It helps the tape I use has a spring tensioner on it so it gives the exact same tension every time too.  As for Dexa Scan, it is precise as well.......but not accurate.  If you get two measurements from the same machine you'll get a pretty clear picture into improvements but it's not accurate.  Plenty of videos out there of Dexa Scan being WAY WAY WAY off on their scans, probably because the machine wasn't originally calibrated correctly.  

As for LBM I too was shocked.  If you read my OP my plan was just to not lose any muscle.  I was advised to increase my protein to limit the loss but I, and the initial responders here, thought I'd lose muscle...I'm old.  After seeing the gains, I looked into it and yea, newbie gains are a scientific thing.  NIH has actually studied them and has explanations for why it happens.  There are super science-y papers I have come across that "explain" it but this paper takes a couple studies and translates them into normal person talk:  Newbie Gains

Like I said about the inaccuracies in one of my updates above, I know the tape isn't real, but it shows if I'm moving in the correct direction or  if I have plateaued, or worse have regressed.  Here is a 5d after I started, 38" belly measurement around my belly button, and this morning at 32.5" belly.  I started at a 40" belly but didn't get a pic of that.  

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ETA:  The pics are from 8/1/2021 to 9/15/2021 - both are first thing in the AM after waking up.  No post workout pump shot or anything.  Not that I have enough muscle for that to really make that big of a diff or anything
Link Posted: 9/26/2021 9:41:27 AM EST
[Last Edit: dyezak] [#37]
Just checking in (accountability), hit 174 this morning.  31.625" belly too.  I think my belly being below 32" is likely the first time since probably 2008 or so.  

ETA - I've been really consistent on the fat reduction week to week.  Based on my progress, I should have another 5w of caloric deficit to maintain and then start eating in a slight surplus to try and start adding on lean mass.
Link Posted: 10/2/2021 11:37:16 AM EST
[Last Edit: dyezak] [#38]
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Passed a big milestone this morning.
Link Posted: 10/2/2021 5:28:44 PM EST
[#39]
That's my goal too but I'm going up.
Link Posted: 10/2/2021 5:38:14 PM EST
[#40]
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Originally Posted By LTCetme:
That's my goal too but I'm going up.
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If you're doing it right (lean mass) that's harder.
Link Posted: 10/2/2021 6:15:57 PM EST
[Last Edit: LTCetme] [#41]
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Originally Posted By dyezak:


If you're doing it right (lean mass) that's harder.
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Originally Posted By dyezak:
Originally Posted By LTCetme:
That's my goal too but I'm going up.


If you're doing it right (lean mass) that's harder.


Fuck. Tell me about it. I started out working on a pure clean bulk.  It's almost impossible.  I'm going to have to do a cut at some point.

I'm putting on 5 to 7 per month which is mathematically impossible to be all lean.
Link Posted: 10/21/2021 10:51:17 PM EST
[#42]
Well, last THREE WEEKS I have been battling injuries.  First was a groin pull, pretty bad on a Sunday bike ride.  I did hit my max average power output over a 72min ride .  But it took me nearly 8d to be able to do anything other than sit up, and lie down.  

Got back in the saddle, did a ride, then hit the weights and threw my back out pretty bad.  Spasm in my lower back and pinched a nerve.  It wasn't too much weight, it was poor form.  

Just got back to where I can now start working again safely...but there is good news:

I hit my goal weight reduction.  I'm 163lbs as of today!  Even through the injuries I did what I could and maintained my diet.  This means I'm officially done with the heavy cardio and caloric restriction and will be titrating my caloric intake upwards while I shift to more weight lifting to start building more strength/muscle.
Link Posted: 11/17/2021 1:09:53 PM EST
[#43]
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Check in and accountability time
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