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Thursday, 26 February 2009

Cutting carbohydrates

I was a guest on BBC Radio Nottingham today and managed to turn the conversation to how if you're fat it is your responsibility.

I don't care if the 'F' word is no longer politically correct.

No doubt this was dreamt up by one of the many fat politicians who think it is okay for the UK health service to dish out gastric banding and other cop outs for fat people.

Yes Gordon Brown you are fat and you should be setting an example. (Obama's better than you at this so why don't you play sheep as usual but for something positive this time??)

The point is 99.9% of the time it is........YOUR FAULT!

You choose to not eat breakfast, go to a party instead of the gym, drink alcohol as a treat when you have nothing to reward yourself for and you also choose to eat too many carbs which you DON'T need to 'stop you getting hungry'

At the end of my Metabolic Circuit Class last night at the studio, I overheard one of the regulars say they had cut out carbs so my ears pricked up!

On further investigation it emerged he was cutting out carbs because another of the group had lost around a stone since Jan 1st doing it (the 'other' being one of my personal training clients who is a machine - or will be by the time I'm finished....)

It reminded me that people STILL insist on picking bits out of other peoples' diets, weights routines etc and often end up worse off as they don't have the full story.

This client in question has not 'cut out' carbs but instead follows one of three variations of carb cycling I use depending on the goal, the person and what we have found works for them.

I would never recommend cutting carbs 100% a la The Atkins Diet as this will results in a slowing of your metabolism and greater difficulty in shedding fat in the future.

In the Fat Loss Action Blueprint I use one variation of carb cycling which works really well for fat loss whilst maintaining muscle. This involves only eating carbs after exercise.

Another variation is to not eat complex carbs for 3 days then have a high carb day.

Another which I am personally using at the moment is eating complex carbs BOTH sides of my training as I am more about performance at the moment and feel I need the carbs beforehand to 'fuel' up. I want to get the most out of my workouts in preparation for Tough Guy but also want to keep body fat down.

Today's food plan looks like this:

0700 Live biopot yoghurt with nuts, blueberries and dates plus protein supplement
1000 Grilled chicken breast, spinach, olive oil
1230 Salmon, wholegrain rice, tomato, olive oil
1530 Boiled eggs, wholegrain rice, spinach, olive oil
1900 Lean minced beef and chopped tomato, herbs (chili con carne style) with asparagus
2100 Nuts and peanut butter

Another important factor is when you cut something out you often need to increase something else in order to avoid swinging the other way.

This will involve eating more lean protein, more vegetables and/or more healthy fats such as flax oil to avoid being too low on calories.

Go too low on calories for more than 2-3 days and your caveman instincts will kick in, slow your metabolism and often leave you 'skinny fat' (the technical term used to describe those who drop weight but maintain their semingly treasured muffin top...) and low on energy.

This will effect your productivity at work as well as in the gym!

So today's message is stop taking snippets of nutrition plans, training plans or anything else and make sure you get the full story and understand what you're doing and why!

And yes IT IS your responsibility to go and get the full story - don't wait for someone to read it to you!

What are your thoughts on carbohydrates?

I want to know what works for you and wasn't doesn't!

If you don't know you need to learn!


Fat Loss Action Blueprint


Amber said...

I'm still struggling to find what works for me, but I notice you don't eat a lot of fruit - do you take fruits out because of the high carb content?

I eat about 4 servings of fruit a day normally and 4 servings of veggies.

I don't eat other carbs though - or rarely - I'll eat one cup of whole grain rice if I'm hungry.

spuddytat38 said...

I also struggle. If i have a chicken salad for lunch i dont have the energy for the gym later so have to eat carbs at breakfast and lunchtime so i have decided on the salad for lunch on my non-training days and have a wholemeal sandwich on those training days or a baked potato. I then eat a mix of carbs and protein after training.

Jon Le Tocq, Storm Force Fitness said...

Amber, I tend to eat berries and dates at breakfast and take a multivitamin. I don't tend to eat loads of fruit as I find 5-6 meals per day works best for me and if I eat fruit with certain things I get a dodgy stomach!

How are your energy levels? Consistent or up and down?



Sounds like you're eating three square meals per day. That is usually why people get highs and lows throughout the day and if you eat at lunch and nothing until evening meal after training you may be at the bottom of the energy trough when you get there!

What does the rest of your day look like?


Amber said...

I eat every couple hours myself and eat a protein/fat/carb with every snack and meal. For the most part my energy levels are good - I can tell when I eat something I shouldn't because I get really tired.

Typical day:

5:30 - banana (pre-workout)
7:30 - 2 eggs, ham, orange
10:00 - apple, 2TB organic PB
11:30 - spinach salad w/chicken breast, 1/2 c. grapes, olive oil - balsamic dressing
3:00 - baby carrots, Laughing Cow lite cheese wedge, 12 almonds
5:30 - grilled/baked protein of some sort, broccoli, pineapple
8:30 - homemade cocoa - 1 c. 1% milk, cocoa, stevia to taste.

I can't seem to find a good calorie level that makes me lose weight. I have been losing fat as my clothes fit much better, but no actual scale movement.