My contest prep is in full swing!
I was eating a lchf diet on about 1850 calories per day and no cardio in my building season. To start my prep back at 15 weeks out to Masters Nationals, I started cycling 2 really low-intake days paired with intermittent fasting and then 5 decent calorie days at about 1750 each. I’ve since taken them down a notch and added a variety of movement in addition to my weight training.
Eating low carb high fat (lchf) is quite unique and this is my first cutting season to do so. I’ve been living grain-free since October, off all wheat, corn, rice, beans, oats, and potatoes. In that I have lowered my systemic inflammation and I look leaner even when the scale weight is higher. Hopefully I added muscle this season, we shall see!
So now when I cut, my carbs are set at 25g daily (yowser!) and my proteins at 115g. I’m fat adapted, so my body can do this. It is my fats that move about and make up the balance. My scale weight is peeling back, but I’ll likely add some refeeds up near 100g of carbs later in my prep so I don’t lose muscle.
Note to body: Don’t touch my glutes, diet mode! You can take it off my back and arms, but please leave my glute work be (if only I could spot reduce, right?)
In order to lose, the body HAS to be primed. We can’t live in an ongoing calorie deficit or the metabolism WILL revolt. Then muscle mass is taken, cortisol levels rise, body fat increases, and frustration is sky high. Trust me, it is a place we don’t want to be.
So to have seasons of loss and cut, we have intentional seasons of eat and build. That is when the fluff comes on (but not too much), the energy rises, and muscle can attempt to be added.
We still have to watch the food types so we aren’t just going into trash-can mode and throwing anything and everything into the furnace. In that, you can destroy your gut microbiome and incur major inflammation and you just become a fat storing machine, NOT a muscle building one. It also hurts your ability to shed fat later, too.
Be strategic, stay mindful. This is the season I love, being lean and all cut up for the summer. All the winter work now reveals.
And I chisel!
To Your Wellness,