Cutting the carbs

I’ve hit a decent weight plateau recently, actually I’ve been around the 200-205lbs mark for nearly a year now. Now, I don’t find that particularly worrying, I’ve been much heavier in he past…I think 240lbs was my heaviest, I’ve also been leaner and lighter at around 189lbs. 

In my mind around 210-215lbs would be my ideal weight, but lean, obviously. When I was hitting the 240lbs mark, one thing I definitely wasn’t was lean. 

In light of these musings on body weight, I needed to re-asses both my strength goals, and body image goals. I suppose I have the same issues that most people do, I want to achieve the impossible and gain strength whilst losing body weight and dropping my body fat percentage.

After re-writing my strength training programme (I try to do this every 3 months) I decided it would be a good time to change my diet up. In doing this I have stopped calorie counting, and cut carbohydrates from my breakfast and lunch 5 days a week. 

This change has seen me lose 5lbs in the 2 and a half weeks I’ve been doing the diet. Aside from breakfast and lunch, my main meals are the same as they always have been, healthy(ish) high protein and free from processed foods and white carbs (as far as possible) 

I haven’t set any firm rules, aside from cutting out the carbs in meals 1&2. I still have a few beers a couple of nights a week and still have sweet treats too. 

As far as my training goes, I still train primarily for strength, with a power building style programme. This also has the addition of 2 cardio workouts a week, generally at the fire station or a 30minuite swim.

Results….. well aside from the 5lbs, I generally feel better. I definitely feel less bloated, I don’t think I realised how bloated I was before. I’ve lost 1cm off my waist too, which isn’t much, but is welcome and I generally feel like I look slimmer. 

I’m never really an advocate of cutting a thing out completely. Food, drink or exercise wise. So for me cutting down the carbs has had a good effect on helping me get leaner. I don’t plan on using it forever, but do thin that it is a positive dietary change to implement when your body needs a shake up.

Training…. I was worried that my energy levels would drop off with less carbs early in the day, and in turn effect my output in the gym. This doesn’t appear to have happened yet, and despite losing some mass, all three of my lifts are still on course and have not dropped. Again, this has been over a short term, and I would have hoped they wouldn’t. But it is always reassuring to find that a negative change hasn’t occurred. 

I generally try and train around mid-afternoon, so I am still carb free when I hit the gym. I’ve found I feel lighter like this, noticeably so from a few weeks ago. In turn I feel like this has helped my deadlift and squat, no bloating and I don’t feel like I’m going to burst at the bottom of a squat…. which is good! The second thing I have noticed could be psychological, but as I feel lighter, I feel faster too. I’m finding pushing the prowler, jumping and pull-ups are feeling easier, although this could be in my head…..?

To sum up the low carb route I’ve taken, I’d say that I’m both happy and surprised with the diet. I can’t really think of a negative part of it to be honest, aside from the fact that I can’t eat pizza and drink beer for breakfast anymore. I’ll keep you posted on the progress, but until then here are some example days nutritionally and some easy recipe ideas to go with the low carb mornings.

Breakfast ideas:

Scrambled eggs, avocado, mushrooms & tomatoes. 

Skyr yoghurt & berries

No carb fry up – No bread/ hash brown etc.

Fruit and a protein shake.

Lunch ideas:

Ive been trying to use the combination of high protein mains with vegetables or salad on the side. For example:

Firehouse chilli with veg (steamed or oven cooked) 

Recipe here

Grilled steak or chicken & salad.

Chicken, tomato & veg blast

Recipe here

These of course are just examples, there are some more recipe ideas in the nutrition part of the website. 

As I said earlier, the last meal of the day is what you would have on a normal, healthy day. Carbs included.



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