Thursday, December 23, 2010

Progress Information

First, background information:

This is my first post to show my progress so far.  I will also explain my plans for the next phase to begin on January 1, 2011.  So far this year, in 2010, I have followed 2 different programs and I have had positive results with both.  They were very different in most ways and produced very different results.

Winter 2009/2010

When I first decided to try something to lose some weight and get in better shape, I ordered the P90X workout program. This was in December of 2009.  In the first round, I only made it to the 60-day mark at the end of January.  I was very much out of shape and I just got worn out.  Also, I did not make very significant changes to my diet, which was full of refined carbohydrates and industrial oils.

Spring 2010

Around March, I tried it again, but also ended at the 60-day mark due to being physically, mentally, and emotionally drained.  This time I did take out many of the bad items from my diet, but I was substituting with meal replacement bars made with soy and many "heart-healthy whole grains" while cutting down on "artery-clogging saturated fat".

I do not mean to say anything bad about the P90X program.  I do believe that it can get you ripped.  However, to really get the most out of it, you need to already be at a decent level of fitness.  I was not very strong at the time and did not have a lot of endurance, so it whipped me like a rented mule.

I had made diet changes according to what seemed to be the most widely-accepted advice, and I did notice that I felt a little better, but I wasn't seeing changes anywhere near like the progress photos advertised for the program.  Now, I am not so naive to believe that the advertised results will be seen by everyone, but I thought I had given it my everything and my results were not as close as I felt they should have been given the amount of work and time I had put in over the 60 days so far.

Summer 2010

In July, I decided to give it another go.  Below are my beginning photos for July 1, 2010.  This is with no real exercise and back to the Standard American Diet since giving up on the second P90X round about 3 months prior.  My approximate weight was 195 lbs.

I tried P90X again and I was seeing similar results as before. This time, after 30 days, I was already feeling like I could not make it through 60 days of it, much less the full 90 days.  I had been following Sean Croxton of Underground Wellness for some time, and I was beginning to implement his suggestions on diet.  I noticed better changes this time, but the workout schedule was still just too brutal for me.

From listening to Sean's radio shows, watching his videos, and reading his blogs, I was introduced to a numerous variety of interesting people with a vast array of knowledge.  I started studying people like Paul Chek, Mark SissonDr. Michael R. EadesChris Masterjohn, Robb Wolfe, Dr. Stephan GuyenetRichard Nikoley, and MANY more.  As I began introducing the advice from these resources, I started feeling much better.

Aug 2010

Now we are up to August 1, 2010.  This was the first time a had real tests and measurements done for a set of beginning data.  Below are my stats and photos:

7/1/2010 8/1/2010

Weight 195 185

Body Fat (Scale) 22.4% 20.8%

Body Fat (Calipers) n/a 17.3%
Exercise Max
Chin Ups 0 4
Pull Ups 0 2
Standard Push Ups 10 25
Diamond Push Ups 4 10
CVS Minute Clinic
Fasting Glucose 69
A1C 5.6%
Total Cholesterol 237
LDL unable to calculate
HDL 45
Triglucerides < 50
TC/HDL Ratio 5.3
Blood Pressure 121/86
Waist 36
Framingham Risk 3%
10-yr Heart Disease Moderate Risk
Lifetime Fitness
Max VO2 36.5
Bicep Strength 89
Sit and Reach 15
Overall Fitness 55.6%
Age 32
BodyAge 30

July                                       Aug

Dec 2010

From August 1st up until today, December 23rd, I have had a transition from eating 50/50 paleo to 80/20 paleo, but still including cheese and eggs (some paleo people don't consider eggs part of paleo).  By around November 1st, I had eliminated all wheat except for my cheat Saturdays.  From Richard Nikoley's blog,, I was introduced to Martin Berkhan, the creator of LeanGains.  Beginning around December 1st, I started following the LeanGains recommendations for 8/16 intermittent fasting.

Now we have arrived to today, December, 23, 2010.  I am feeling better than I have in at least 10 years.  I'm estimating my current body fat percentage is getting close to 15% compared to my previous measurement of 17%.  My strength gains have been noticeably significant but I have not been tracking strength with data.  I plan to start tracking workout and strength data for a better idea of my actual gains.

Next, plans for the next phase:

The next phase will still be based on the Primal Blueprint lifestyle and will continue to take the majority of its nutrient ratios and food items from an evolutionary-based mindset while following an intermittent fasting schedule from LeanGains.  I have found this combination to work very well for me.  It just feels RIGHT.

Some supplements and workouts suggested in The 4-Hour Body will be used from it's sections on gaining strength.  I know people have a wide variety of opinions on Tim Ferriss. After reading his book, I find it to be an interesting collection ideas and personally-tested theories.  I like personally-tested theories.  Most of the information in this book was not new to me, but I did like how it brought many of the different ideas together.

Contrary to Tim's suggestions, strength training workouts will be performed fasted first thing in the morning on weekdays.  I have seen a lot of information on fasted training from a variety of sources that intrigue me, so I want to test it out on myself.  I will take some suggested supplements from both Martin and Tim along with cold water prior to fasted training, but no food and nothing with a significant caloric value.  Meth or crank dope can double your single rep max and has zero calories.  Put COPS on on high volume in the background and triple results can be seen!  Kidding...I will be just using 10g BCAA's, Creatine, and NO-Xplode.


Weekdays:  I will be using his 8/16 intermittent fasting during the weekdays.

Saturday:  Each Saturday will be my feast day followed according to the suggestions from LeanGains and The 4-Hour Body.

Sunday:  My Sundays' meals will consist of only coffee with cream and cinnamon in the morning followed by a reasonable-sized lunch with my parents.  I can easily consume 1000-1500 calories of good quality food from this single meal, so I will not putting myself in any danger of not enough calories for the day.

Sunday will serve as a semi-fasting day of only one meal.  The lack of evening meals on Sunday will give and extended fasting period from Sunday's lunch to Monday's normal breakfast at noon.  I have heard many suggested benefits of weekly 24-hour fasting, one of which being cellular protein cycling via autophagy.  To put it in a simple way, this tells the cells it's trash day and the truck is coming, so set out your waste now for pickup.

Of course, water should be consumed during this 24-hour fast.  Water to be applied as needed;  don't drink X glasses of water a day thinking it is helping to flush out the system.  It seems logical to me that kidneys can only filter out a limited amount of waste so an increase in water only helps until you hit the point where there is more water than the kidneys need.  Also, I would think that the body is pretty good at monitoring this balance level.  So, I will just be drinking if I'm thirsty and not forcing myself to drink any certain amount.

This weekly cycle will be followed from Jan 1, 2011 to April 1, 2011.  I will update with progress stats and photos once per month on the 1st.


I recently ran across a website with a workout plan to get up to 100 consecutive push ups in 6 weeks or less, depending on your starting point.  According to my initial test results, I am supposed to start at week 3.  So, I will start week 3 of the routine on week 1 of my overall program.  This will put me completing week 6 of the 100 push up workout program at the end of my first month.  If all goes well, my push ups count will have increased from 40 to 100 in one month.  That sounds like a huge task, but I'm willing to give it a shot.

Stay tuned for the next progress stats and photos coming Jan 3, 2011!

Update: Progress Update now published here.

No comments:

Post a Comment