Eat More. Do Less.

It’s Time To Turn This Train Around

So I’m kinda stuck. The tag line of the site still works (as satire at least), but the title and URL are no longer applicable. Why? Because this week, I started eating a second breakfast. Every day.

Flickr image by Dennis Matheson

Flickr image by Dennis Matheson

You may remember one of my first posts about how the name came to be. If not, take a hot minute to read it here. It’ll totally change your life and perspective on everything. I promise. (But no refunds). Short version is I caught myself one morning about to eat a second breakfast just because it was there and free. In that moment it occurred to me that my fatness (literary license taken) was due largely to constant bad decisions and laziness. It was also the point I knew things had to change.

And here we are. Welcome. Have a sweet potato, a cup of green tea, and stay awhile.

Where It Began To Fall Apart

My diet over the last couple of months hasn’t been as strict as before. I didn’t go fast food crazy, just ate a little more than I had been, maybe a few desserts, etc. And I gained about 8lbs back from my low of 213lbs. A few days later, half of that dropped off, probably water from increased carbs. I had my body fat retested on Monday and I’m still sitting about 5.5lbs heavier than my low.

In my first 6 months I lost 50lbs. In the last 4 months, I’ve lost 10. Not bad, not great. It’s the diet, what can I say. The proof is in the pudding, and I may have had a few too many servings. In that same time, I’ve only put on 4lbs of muscle (which translates to a drop in body fat by 4 percentage points). I did get my RMR up to over 2,200 calories.

I had originally intended to get down to around 10% body fat before changing my diet and working on adding muscle. However, during the time when I eased up on the diet, I started noticing side effects. Example: Prior to cutting my carbs back in the spring, I had my deadlift up around 360lbs. But after months of low calories and low carbs, I often struggle just picking up 275lbs. One weekend, I ate too much pizza and bread over 3 days. Monday, I hit a deadlift of 335lbs. Huh.

A few weeks ago I added 30lbs to my back squat after a weekend with 2 desserts (and probably gourmet pizza). After that I cut my calories and carbs back down like a good boy. A week later? Back squat topped out 80lbs under my new PR. Huh.

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I Have To Eat How Much?

A few weeks ago I decided to make the change at the one year point in January even if I wasn’t down to 10%. But after screwing up my diet and seeing how it improved my lifts, I decided to go ahead and at least investigate more. About that time, a friend introduced me to Eat To Perform. I read through it in a few days and it scared the crap out of me (not the best weight loss strategy, getting the crap scared out of you). I’d have to increase calories by 55% and more than double my carbs on training days. And those numbers are STILL restricted from what the online calculator suggests because I’m over 20% body fat (though not by much…yeah!).

As of this week I have gone from 1,800 calories and about 23% carbs daily, to 2,800 calories with 200g of carbs on lifting days (800 calories just from carbs!), and 2,000 or so calories with 120g of carbs on rest days. The idea here is to eat more carbs when you train, getting about half around your workout time. This gives your body the fuel it needs to workout and recover. It’s odd eating the majority of my carbs right after a workout, but who am I to argue science or the results others have had.

Let me tell you, it was hard not going over 1,800 calories, but it’s even harder getting up to 2,800 without eating junk. It’s more food than you think. I use protein shakes to get my protein intake up to around 1g per pound of body weight. And as I drop fat, this number will go up until I’m around 3,100 calories. Yikes.

Goals Change, So Do Motivations

I’ve committed to 90 days to see what happens. Just like when I started Crossfit, I know not to expect things to stabilize after two weeks. I’ll probably gain a few pounds initially and the scale will be less an indicator of success than visual inspection, strength, and how clothes fit.

At this point I’m taking it on faith that I can get stronger and still drop a few pounds. But as we’ll discuss in some upcoming posts, goals and motivations change. I’m not looking to lose a ton of weight now, though I’d still like to drop 25lbs. My goal is to get stronger and be able to do things like strict pull ups and handstand push ups. I’m not looking to be skinny. I’m ready to be fit, be able to Rx a few WODS, and be able keep setting new personal records instead of falling way under old ones. Do more. Suck Less.

I stopped eating second breakfasts because it was bad for me and caused me to get fat. Now I’m back to eating two breakfasts to intentionally gain mass and strength. Instead of eating because of boredom, I eat to fuel performance.

If you’re here just because you like the name of the site, it’s time to get off the train. Otherwise, strap in because we are in for a crazy ride!

What is your favorite carb? I need more!

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