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Old Forum It's Geoff Neupert's fault..or..what's going on with my body?

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So, I used to be in serious endurance condition (swimming. biking, soccer, martial arts) but have never lifted weights in my life.

30 years later I've  managed to pack 100 lbs. of fat on my 5'8" frame @ 230 lbs.

So, I get a calorie thinger and it says cut to 1700 calories a day and I'll lose 2 lbs. a week.  Well, I do that, and add KB swings.  Had to start with 5 sets of 5 swings and started working up.  I was also walking fast 30 minutes a day including a nice hill..

I start losing 5lbs a week.

I'm  happy.

Then I see Pavel recently post one of Geoff's progressions and think I can do that.

So I went from doing 10 x 10 with a minute rest to 8 x 20 on the minute and start climbing the reps according to progression.

And my weight goes from 218.5 up to 223.5 in 4 days.  I even lower my calories down to 1500.  I actually don't get very hungry anymore.  I'm up till 1 am laying in bed with my body running hot on the three work out days.  Still my body weight barely inches down.

Finally, two weeks later being strict on the diet, I've gotten back to the 218.5.

My belt has gone down a notch. My wife assures me I'm losing weight, it must be muscle gain.  But I'm thinking there is just no way I'm adding that much muscle.

I wasn't monitoring body fat % so I set that up on the scale, it "may" be going down, but too soon to tell.

I'm hoping the tribe here can tell me what's going on. Are my muscles just retaining water from the intense exercise?  Is it packing on muscle?  It seems impossible to be gaining or even maintaining weight on only 1500 calories while working out that intensely (for me).







If the belt has gone down, that is progress. Don't stress too much over the scale
+1 in not believing in calories.  In an exercise physiology class I took we learned that most will see a significant drop in weight (not necessarily body fat) for 2-3 weeks on a serious calorie restriction protocol such as the one you're describing.  After that time your body will think it's going to starve and undergo hormonal changes to stop burning fat, regardless of the incoming calories.  Not being able to sleep at night could be another indicator that you're in a state dominated by your sympathetic nervous system, bad for health in addition to body composition goals.

Take measurements to have more significant data, weight alone is worthless due to hydration, body composition, etc.

Geoff Neupert has excellent programs for fat loss, and explains how to eat, etc. for maintaining fat loss.

Your dedication is admirable, get a proven program and eating strategy that maximizes your gains for the effort you're putting in.
As long as the belt is tightening, swing on. Add a cheat day or two and bump your calories up by 500 or so on those days. It'll keep your body from slowing to a metabolic crawl.

There is no shame in moderating intensity if the workout is overstimulating your CNS. Moderate caloric deprivation and moderate workouts work wonders.
I subscribe to the Mike Dolce mentality of  "don't count calories, make calories" count.


Sounded cheesy as all heck at first but the approach has stuck with me.
+ whatever on weight. Your DNA is going to set that for you once the strength training continues it's process. Body fat % should be the focus. Once you get your bf % to where it ought to be your body will tell you how much you will weigh.

From a bio chem stand point you MUST continue that strength training in order for your body to regulate your body fat correctly. Take the Dan John approach on that and don't care why it works just so it does.

Also from a bio chem stand point what Mike pointed out is also very important. To say you put X amount of calories in your body really doesn't mean all that much. Wasted cals  is a HUGE factor. How your cells regulate the fat depends on what kinds of food it is dealing with. If it is all wasted cals that your body does not need, well guess what your body does with it? It sticks it to the side (fat)and thinks it will deal with it later.

Dan John said it best "eat like an adult, make your movements as inefficient as possible and move, move, move."

Good Skill to you!
Not being able to fall asleep until 1 AM on training days seems like a red flag. There seems to be quite a bit of thought around the importance of that earlier sleep window (10-1) in setting positive hormonal patterns, which in turn seem to be essential for overall health and body composition.
How your pants fit is an objective clue--the scale is not particularly useful and the mirror is worthless. How are your chins doing? (my favorite body composition metric)
Robert, congratulations on your progress - your work capacity is increasing, you're adding muscle and losing fat.  For body recomposition, those are exactly the things you want - nice work!

Wow, thank for all the mental calories to chew on guys.

<blockquote cite="I don’t believe in calories.">

Couple thoughts on that for the sake of dialectic.

If I took the video seriously, I'd stop exercising now. (other than, you know, I don't want to be a wimpy noodle).

Secondly,  yes, the body starts giving up its fat stores less quickly on calorie restriction, but give them up it must. I know several folks on strict calories who shed 40lbs and 120lbs. So, it does in fact work.  Further,  lap-bands and such are forced calorie restriction down to 800 - 1200 cals.  People lose weight.  Forget the long term health effects for a moment :)

I ended up at calories vs all meat and vegitables cause I'm missing a gene that creates an enzyme that flushes uric acid out of my system. Even on meds, if I have too many high protein fest in a row, I'm crippled with gout in my knees. Joy!

Worse, perhaps the same gene fairy also tweaked what ever controls protein-c in my system, leaving me with serial blood clots (DVT's). More Joy!

Bottom line I'm on coumadin/warfarin and have to stay away from the greens or get subjected to blood test every few days.

So, I went with moderate protein/vegitables/nut butter/slice of toast/beans/apple etc. and low calories as my "weigh" out.

I do think the workout is taxing my CNS. No doubt and perhaps I should dial back the increasing reps and proceed more slowly given my complete lack of conditioning.  We go to bed by 10pm and I'm laying away with my metabolism screaming till 12 to 1am.    I really just feel like getting up and going for a walk.

Because of that I didn't add TGU's in on the other days of week and cut back walking but may need to slow down progression.  I'd love your thoughts on that.

I'm hearing loud and clear I need to start measuring waist.  And @Russel, that second chin is smaller... But not gone darn it!

I had assumed my appetite was so suppressed because of the intensity of the intervals and it kicked my body into eating fat.  Sounds like my ASSumption may be wrong there.

Thanks for so many responses here. I'm not quitting the kettlebells. I"m definitely doing Cheat Days on Sunday.  I am wondering if I need to dial it back and especially not add TGU's on off days till my body adjust to the work load.






Robert all things are not created equal that is for sure. No one knows that better than me. I'm riddled with genetic "defects", but just know IT CAN BE DONE.  Strong First begins with the mind! I read somewhere that you can be whatever you want to be but you must be strong first. :)

Keep chipping away at it and make those necessary tweeks as needed for your body. You are unique!! Be your own gauge!!

OR You can just blame Geoff. I would. :) He's a strong enough man. He can take all the blame you can throw at him. :) Oh, and Geoff if you happen to read this, hope you and Tim are having a good time in CA.














I hope folks, especially Geoff, realize the blame was tongue in cheek (my cranked up metabolism really is his fault though).

He's in CA?  I should drive over and challenge him to a swing off.  Cause, you know, I've been doing this a month.


Good call on backing off on the volume.  If your body can't handle it, go back to what was working and push that envelope.  In due time you'll probably be rocking Geoff's program but if you're not sleeping like a baby (nerdspeak: aren't zonking out after dusk due to incresed SWS pressure from your training) I'd say the jump was just too much too fast.

Props for your dedication and results thus far!  It sounds like you dig your eating program.  The "best" program is the one you do to completion that works; so I won't attempt to detract you in that area.  I would recommend "intermittent fasting" with what you are doing though.  The health benefits are great and I watched my dad comfortably drop 1lb a day for a month doing it alongside kettlebell training.  Check out for more info.

Sleep is ruled by your circadian rhythm which is affected by sunlight and meal times so if nothing else I'd check it out just for that.

Good luck in your conquest to be a better man!
Robert!  That's great news that your chins are improving.  That's the funniest thing I've read since Christine said "English is not my mother thong."  Mother thong, what an image that is.

Sorry to not be more upbeat.  The calorie theory irks me and maybe I'll post a rant sometime.  Taubes has already written most of what I have to say.

I do think exercise works, but via insulin.  Muscle mass, afterburn, and activity all siphon off glucose from the bloodstream.  Disclaimer -- I'm just some random dude, not a professional.

Cheers on your great attitude and progress!

@ Zach,  I don't believe in calories, but I do believe in electrolytes!
Thanks Connor.

I'm in kettlebell diapers here - so don't know it all.  I'll check out the site.

Would you all just stick to swings 3 times a week - or add in two days of TGUs?

It's not for everyone, but I hope you like it.

TGU's are an amazing movement that are a gift that keeps on giving and will accelerate your progress.  I would do swings 2 - 3 times per week and the two days of TGU's depending on what your body can handle and responds to.

This video is a great guide to get some of the finer points of the getup.

All you need is 5 minutes per session switching hands every rep so you could do them on Monday and Thursday and do your swings MWF (Getups before swings on Monday)

I'd say it would be best to keep the frequency of swing sessions higher if you're backing off on how hard you're hitting them. 3 should be great, 4 would work too. The key is to do as much quality work as possible while staying as fresh as possible.  You've found a lower dose that works, now just dose with it often until you feel you can push it further. Rinse and repeat.

Keep us posted on how you're doing, it's always uplifting to hear a success story!
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