My Four Hour Body, Slow Carb Diet Progress

four-hour-body

I’ve been on Tim Ferriss’s Four Hour body Slow Carb Diet now for just under two months. For those of you interested, or in the middle of it, here’s my progress and some of my general observations that might help if you are hitting a plateau of any sort. In the interests of perspective, my starting weight was 156.2lb (71kg) and 19% body fat measured using a bio impedance scale (used only  for the purpose of tracking improvements).

Weeks 1-4
During my first month, I lost a total of 4kg (approximately 8.8lbs) and went from a 19% bodyfat percentage around 17%. Most of that loss (about 1.5kg) was within the first week and loss of water weight probably accounts for most of it. For the rest of the weeks, the loss was consistent but just short of the 1kg mark. The only things I did during this first month was to switch over to the slow carb diet, and attempt to eat within the first hour of waking and took low dosages of the AGG stack.

Weeks 5-8
The second month, in terms of overall weight loss, has been much much less, around 1.5kg and dropping further from 17% bodyfat to the low 16% region. During this month, the actual loss of weight was only within the last week. I noticed a sudden stop to the fat loss during the start of the month, and I was at a loss to explain why. I had only done two things differently from the first month. 1. I added 24g in Whey form to breakfast to hit the 30g of protein mark, and 2. Upped the dosage of ALA to 200mg.

As it turns out, I was using flavored Whey, which has, in rather minute quantities, Lactose. After reading around on Tim’s blog and his post on updates and corrections to the book, it turns out, that you need to consume Unflavored Whey, which has no Lactose, but is nearly impossible for me get where I live and is prohibitively expensive anyway. So I have stopped taking Whey until I hit my desired weight and body fat percentage target (10-12%). At that point I will do a combination of Geek to Freak and Occams Protocol and build muscle at expense of fat loss.

In addition, in terms of exercise, I try to do at least 75 kettlebell swings twice a week along with the Cat Vomit and Myotatic Crunches.

I post another update at Week 12, which should be around the 9th of March. If you have any questions and/or suggestions please let me know.

The Ideal Body Fat Percentage

ideal-body-fat-percentage

No two people are alike. The ideal body fat percentage, varies from person to person and it depends on many factors such as age, height, genetics, types of activities, and eating habits; however, there is a percentage (a rule of thumb in a manner of speaking) that is considered healthy and attainable for most men and women. The following chart (from the American Council on Exercise) lays out the ideal body fat percentages for both men and women according to age. Age and gender must always be taken into account, as they a the primary differentiating factors.

DESCRIPTION WOMEN MEN
Essential Fat 10-13% 2-5%
Athletes 14-20% 6-13%
Fitness 21-24% 14-17%
Acceptable 25-31% 18-24%
Obesity >32% >25%

Elite athletes fall under the lean category. They have different standards than the average person and therefore comparing yourself is pointless unless you have the same level of physical activity and nutrition, remember, we are talking about training everyday on a strict diet regime. So what about the rest of us who aren’t top-performing athletes? In general, a 30-year old man should ideally fall somewhere between 10-16% (my personal target is to get to 12%), while a 30-year old woman should fall between 18-22%.

Obesity in the U.S. and Europe is on the rise. Men with a percentage of over 25% and women with a percentage over 32% can experience severe health complications. This is clearly a visible unhealthiness. But what about dropping too low? Having a low body fat is equally as unhealthy, just in different ways. Having a low body fat percentage decreases performance and can also cause serious health issues. Unless you are training for the Olympics or some other high-intensity competition, there is really no reason to drop below 8% for men and 14% for women.

Some people continue to blame genetics on their health problems and/or levels of body fat, especially when it comes to weight. Where you store fat on your body can be contributed to your genetic makeup, but most weight gain and loss is linked to your lifestyle. The good news is, if you want to change your body composition you can. You are not confined to your present state of being. The biggest thing you can start to change is your diet. To achieve a healthy body fat percentage you must create the right balance between the food you eat and the energy burned (calories in versus calories out). It’s not about total weight as this can usually give a false sense of healthy versus unhealthy. Underwater weighing, skin fold thickness measurements, bio electrical impedance, general measurements and the body mass index are ways in which you can determine your body fat percentage and start to reach healthy goals. Just remember to always use more than one form of measurement, ideally body fat percentage and measurements.

If its six pack abs you are after then, the ideal body fat percentage for men, is around 12% for basic definition and 9-10% to look ripped.

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