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Kettlebell The Quest for New Year’s Weight Loss with HIRT

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brandonc501

Level 1 Valued Member
First time poster, long time reader. I am posting this to share what I have learned as well as to create a bit of accountability for my intentions. I started this thread so that I can post in a few weeks what I will learn, not to mention to spark a discussion - they are always awesome on this forum. Heaven knows I have read countless discussions on here in the search for that fitness Holy Grail, and I thought I would take the role of the space monkey and give it a shot myself. Anyways:

The Goal: Rapidly lose fat while gaining – or at least maintaining – muscle mass (i.e., the Holy Grail of fitness, I suppose). The impetus for the rush is a weight loss competition where I work. Would like to lose ~18lbs of fat in the next 6 weeks – aggressive, to be sure, but possible. I get $400 cash and bragging rights if I win. As our benefits administrator (who helps handle our company wellness initiatives), it’d be great to walk the walk and talk the talk.

The Plan: Overhaul diet and implement new training regimen designed to hone in on fat burning and muscle growth. KBs, for a myriad of reasons, are a good vehicle for training; they combine hypertrophy and conditioning into one compact, efficient package. Not to mention, they are just fun!

The Diet: We all know the most important factor is diet. Since the competition started (1/7/2019), I have been compliant with the following: Decrease caloric intake to create ~1000 calorie/day deficit. Will measure on MyFitnessPal. Diet will consist primarily of vegetables (mostly green), fruits (mostly apples, oranges, bananas), lean proteins (HEAVY emphasis on chicken – I work at a poultry company in Arkansas), and zero beer. Total daily caloric intake will not exceed 1900 Kcals/day.

The Training: The plan is to toggle back and forth between two plans laid out by, possibly my favorite writer here (next to Pavel, of course), Dr Craig Marker. He wrote one article entitled HIRT for Hypertrophy and Hybrid Power Conditioning Program – both on Breaking Muscle. (links below) The idea is to utilize the High Intensity Repetition Training to target fat, and I plan to get the most bang out of my buck by hitting the glycolytic + anaerobic system 3 days a week and the alactic + anaerobic 3 days a week (switching back and forth, resting on Sunday). My hope is that this will be the most efficient way to hit my goals in such a time crunch. On top of the training, I will walk at least 60 minutes/day at work during lunch and breaks. If the going gets tough, I will take a rest day if my body demands it (like we have all encountered while trying to go aggressive in S&S)

My Stats: Male, 27 years, 6’0 tall. Weight as of 1/16/2019 is ~237lbs, waist been hovering between 39 and 40 inches. The weight loss competition I entered started 1/7/19 (I’m already down 3 lbs from this date) and ends March 4. This gives me a little over 6 weeks to hunker down on diet and train. Serendipitously, Dr Marker didn’t recommend doing the training he laid out longer than 6 weeks at a time anyways.

Other info: I am creating this post not only to hear any insights and recommendations from you – I know the knowledge to be gleaned from you all is near limitless (long time reader, first time poster) – but I think we can all agree that accountability is a very necessary ingredient to our goals, especially weight loss. I am a diehard KB enthusiast who started with a 40lb not even a year ago, and am now doing TGUs with a 40KG.

I considered chugging along with S&S for this goal, but since that program is designed for a well-rounded base for fitness and not specifically fat loss, I thought I would try to experiment. I have tried both these workouts before (not for any serious length of time, let alone combined in the same time frame) but I felt the effects on my body to be mostly in line with fat loss (challenging but no ridiculous burn) and I think there is something to be had here.

Swings for the Conditioning program Dr Marker laid out will be performed with a 24kg KB: 10 reps EMOM for sets varying between 22 and 28 minutes (waviness) on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays. Heavy reps for his Hypertrophy plan will be with my 44kg KB. Presses will be performed during the 10 minutes “rest” intervals will be performed with my 24kg KB (~65% 1RM), 40kg KB(~85% 1RM), and 32kg KB(~75% 1RM). These will be conducted on Tuesdays (3 rounds), Thursdays (4 rounds), and Saturdays (5 rounds). My current 1RM for a press is my 44kg KB (on a very good day).

I will let you all know my results and will publish my training log come March 4! Thanks to all and especially Dr Marker.

Links:

HIRT for Hypertrophy


The Hybrid Power Conditioning Program
 

kenaces

Level 6 Valued Member
Good luck with your goal :)

I am doing something similar as I have started the Hybrid Power Conditioning and the Waves of Strenght pressing program the author suggests. I will also be doing some easy cycling and walking. I was thinking of rolling with this for 2-3 months and then giving the HIRT for Hypertrophy Program a try.

The goal is to lose the "last 10-15" pounds, and of course, improve my fitness/strength.
 

brandonc501

Level 1 Valued Member
Good luck to you, too!

So far I can tell you that the hybrid conditioning I did yesterday was a relative bestbr, even in a calorie deficit.

The hypertrophy work I did today in a calorie deficit... Not so much. My presses have definitely suffered since I cut calories.

I think I'll be able to maintain (I hope) muscle, but not expecting gains. The ~1000 calorie deficit has brought my 3 RM down to 1 or 2 today.

Anyways, I will keep you posted. Thanks to you both for replying today - I want the accountability!
 

vegpedlr

Level 6 Valued Member
You work in a poultry factory and still eat chicken?!

Anyway, re: diet, The Potato Hack.

Lots of walking. While not about a crash approach such as yours, the Josh Hillis book Fat Loss Happens on Mondays has some good info and KB/BW workouts. Why not keep your training log here where we can cheer you on?

Best of Luck
 
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brandonc501

Level 1 Valued Member
Nooo, I don't work in a poultry factory, just an office along with some of the other administrative operations that large companies need - though I do visit them a lot to meet with employees. The chicken does come at a handy discount to us though, which is really handy. I tried vegan before - for the health reasons, not necessarily anything else - and I dropped 20 lbs, blood pressure took a dive for the better. Just wasn't sustainable for me though.

I have read Fat Loss Happens on Monday - good read, but not my favorite to be honest. The meal planning - which I do after reading the book - was best lesson.

Below is training log, as of today:

upload_2019-1-18_9-29-15.png

Once I study formatting here a bit more, I will attach whole thing.

Thanks for asking to see it. I think posting it will help with motivation
 

Bret S.

Level 8 Valued Member
Good luck to you, too!

So far I can tell you that the hybrid conditioning I did yesterday was a relative bestbr, even in a calorie deficit.

The hypertrophy work I did today in a calorie deficit... Not so much. My presses have definitely suffered since I cut calories.

I think I'll be able to maintain (I hope) muscle, but not expecting gains. The ~1000 calorie deficit has brought my 3 RM down to 1 or 2 today.

Anyways, I will keep you posted. Thanks to you both for replying today - I want the accountability!
Good luck Brandon!
What walking speed are you using? Is it non-stop or city walking?
Do you have access to a rower?
 

brandonc501

Level 1 Valued Member
"City" walking. Siloam Springs has a pretty downtown area, which is where I take my walks. I would say the pace approaches 3 mph.

No access to a rower, I'm afraid - tho I do enjoy those more than most cardio machines.
 

Snowman

Level 6 Valued Member
+1 to starting a food/training log.

I would also suggest that, at least for the first week or two, don't be afraid to take an extra day off here and there. Lots of walking and 6 days/week of training isn't nothing, especially when you're running a heavy calorie deficit. Obviously, some people will be able to handle that volume just fine, and some people won't. If you have to a rest day (by which I mean just walking and no KB stuff) in the middle of the week, it's probably worth it to keep you cortisol levels from getting out of whack.
Along that same vein, it might be smart to have a re-feed day every week or two, or if things start to stall. Notice I didn't say "cheat day." None of that crap. Just a day where you eat a an unrestricted amount of calories, in the form of healthy, nourishing food. Six weeks is a while to maintain a hard push; you might have to back off here or there in order to keep your body from pushing back too hard. In your case, the issue is going to be one of "How hard can I push the system before it starts to break down and compensate." If your body start compensating, your progress will slow.

Looking forward to seeing your progress.
 

brandonc501

Level 1 Valued Member
+1 to starting a food/training log.

I would also suggest that, at least for the first week or two, don't be afraid to take an extra day off here and there. Lots of walking and 6 days/week of training isn't nothing, especially when you're running a heavy calorie deficit. Obviously, some people will be able to handle that volume just fine, and some people won't. If you have to a rest day (by which I mean just walking and no KB stuff) in the middle of the week, it's probably worth it to keep you cortisol levels from getting out of whack.
Along that same vein, it might be smart to have a re-feed day every week or two, or if things start to stall. Notice I didn't say "cheat day." None of that crap. Just a day where you eat a an unrestricted amount of calories, in the form of healthy, nourishing food. Six weeks is a while to maintain a hard push; you might have to back off here or there in order to keep your body from pushing back too hard. In your case, the issue is going to be one of "How hard can I push the system before it starts to break down and compensate." If your body start compensating, your progress will slow.

Looking forward to seeing your progress.

I think you are right about the refeed day. I've been in a calorie deficit for about 2 weeks now. Up to yesterday, been focusing on TGUs instead of presses - and MAN I had no idea how big a hit my pressing strength was gonna take from that deficit.

With a focus on fat loss (i.e., at least maintaining muscle while dropping pounds overall), anyone see any possible benefits to doing TGUs instead of presses? They are challenging but I feel like they require less raw power.
 

kenaces

Level 6 Valued Member
So far I can tell you that the hybrid conditioning I did yesterday was a relative bestbr, even in a calorie deficit.

The hypertrophy work I did today in a calorie deficit... Not so much. My presses have definitely suffered since I cut calories.

I think I'll be able to maintain (I hope) muscle, but not expecting gains. The ~1000 calorie deficit has brought my 3 RM down to 1 or 2 today.

Anyways, I will keep you posted. Thanks to you both for replying today - I want the accountability!

Wow, the 1k deficit would crush me. Even with my more moderate deficit I already am thinking I will be adding in additional rest days as needed.
 

kenaces

Level 6 Valued Member
Lots of walking. While not about a crash approach such as yours, the Josh Hillis book Fat Loss Happens on Mondays has some good info and KB/BW workouts. Why not keep your training log here where we can cheer you on?

I am a huge fan of Josh and his work. He has really helped me lose and keep off ~50#.

I have done many of the workouts from his book and really enjoy the structure. I just finished up ~10 weeks of his metabolic/endurance/strength phase.
 

Bret S.

Level 8 Valued Member
50 LBs ain't no joke! That's great to hear!
My brother lost 110 lbs in a year eating Atkins meals and swinging a kettlebell.. and he's kept it off, now I've got him hitting some more Type 2 fiber work.
Keeping the weight off and adding muscle is where it's at, you can keep this going afterwards but at a more sensible, less costly pace.

You may end losing some muscle and strength to lose the weight so fast, but don't worry it comes back fast once you've earned it.
 

brandonc501

Level 1 Valued Member
Just an update:

upload_2019-1-21_8-6-45.png

Took a "refeed" day on Saturday like Snowman suggested. No garbage consumed or anything - just didn't count calories. I didn't feel nearly as wiped on Sunday, so I even threw in some bicep curls by putting a dishtowel through the handle of my 24kg. Just for fun.

So far, I DO actually feel like I'm seeing some fat melt away from the waist. Maybe wishful thinking, but I suppose maybe not. I think it's too early for a scale to say anything significant tho.

Side note about the HIRT Swings and Presses: I've only really muscled thru Dr Marker's HIRT Hypertrophy twice this year, but both times, about halfway to two-thirds through, I've gotten that familiar, acidic, almost fruity taste in the back of my mouth. So maybe that regimen really does go after the fat? At least more intensely than I would've imagined.

I'll let you all know if I keep noticing that. Thanks for reading!
 

banzaiengr

Level 6 Valued Member
Overall sounds like a good plan. Knowing what you were doing before could help a bit in determining the impact it may have on your central nervous system.

I recall Craig's HIRT article but not the specifics.

"The idea is to utilize the High Intensity Repetition Training to target fat, and I plan to get the most bang out of my buck by hitting the glycolytic + anaerobic system 3 days a week and the alactic + anaerobic 3 days a week (switching back and forth, resting on Sunday)."

So depending on what you were doing before, 3 days per week of higher intensity work along with a 1000 calorie/day deficit could be tough. Not sure what you'll be doing on your alactic + aerobic days but that along with the walking on top of 3 high intensity days could be quite a shock to your CNS.

For 6 weeks though it could be o.k. Good luck and keep us posted on your progress.
 
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GeoffreyLevens

Level 6 Valued Member
I did not see this mentioned by might be good to get very clear plan for diet after you reach your goal. In general, "diets" don't work because people go back to doing what they were doing prior to, exactly what put the excess on in the first place. I've been reading research and self experimenting for years (pre-diabetes was the prime motivation) and what seems to me to be true, is that a pretty wide range of options will work and be very healthy AND every one of them involves near zero highly processed, manufactured, "food" and not drinking calories. In other words, whole foods, minimally processed, as close as possible to how they come in from nature. Some people need to get into a smaller box than that but for most that's enough to do the job.
 
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