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Where am I going wrong? Cant move enough FAT


allyshake

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Hello, great to join this site as a new member. I am 45 and for the last three years (I admit for up to 10 weeks at the beginning of each year) I have attempted to shed some of my body fat, currently 34.4%. Before you tell me consistency over a long period is the key, yep I know!, the issue for me is moving the fat. I seem to gain muscle easy, and fat even more easily. I have a relaistic goal for my age to get down to max of 22%, I am currently 111. kg. I have carefully monitored my results in the past and have been able to lose fat whilst achieving an increase in muscle mass reasonably consistently, but it seems to be getting harder each time I try and the process takes longer. I currently do a minimum of 5 cardio sessions/week at about 65-70% max heart rate. 2 x 1 hour and three x 20 minute post weights work out which I do Mon, Wed and Fri. The wgts consist of 3x12 bench at 50kg, 3x12 leg press 120 kg, 3x 12 leg ext at 55 kg, 3 x 12 lat pull down at 50 kg, 3 x 12 leg curls at about 35 kg, 3x12 dumbell arm curls at 9 kg DB, 3x 12 either shoulder press or lat shoulder raise with the same wgt. I think that is about it. I eat about 2500 caqlories a day at about 35% p, 50-55% c and less than 10% F all of which is non sat fat. I have no issues recovering from this routine and have very little muscle soreness in the days after doing wgts. The doc also gives me a Sustanon 250 shot every 2 weeks as my test levels are low , currently only 12.7 nmol/l. I also take 3 mg of HMB every day, 5g of creatine M and only substitute one meal on wgt days with a high prot shake. Here are my latest results.

Wgt kg Fat % LMM kg Fat kg

111.90 36.40 71.17 40.73 2/01/2006

111.00 34.70 72.48 38.52 9/01/2006

110.70 34.30 72.73 37.97 16/01/2006

111.00 34.40 72.82 38.18 23/01/2006

Compare this with the same routine a year ago but with no Sustanon.

117.50 38.20 72.62 44.89 17/01/2005

115.10 35.10 74.70 40.40 24/01/2005

114.60 32.00 77.93 36.67 31/01/2005

112.30 28.60 80.18 32.12 7/02/2005

111.30 29.70 78.24 33.06 14/02/2005

109.50 26.50 80.48 29.02 21/02/2005

and a year before that where I mainly did weights with little or no cardio and ate an avg of 2700 cal

111.80 32.10 75.91 35.89 18/01/2004

111.40 33.30 74.30 37.10 25/01/2004

111.50 28.80 79.39 32.11 2/02/2004

110.50 28.70 78.79 31.71 9/02/2004

110.90 29.70 77.96 32.94 16/02/2004

Now I must admit I am getting older, but is it my body that is doing the resistance? ie fat set point, or have I got my nutrient mix and total cal wrong, or could it be my workout schedule. And yes I know this should be an every week thing instead of a short stint every new year! Notwithsatnding that issue, which I have every intention of not doing this time around WHAT IF ANYTHING am I doing wrong. I spent 16 years in the defence forces and if you were over 15% body fat they put you on a diet. I hovered around that for most of my mid to latter career. Could I get back to that?? How long is it gonna take.

Well this has been a long intro but I hope this generates some feedback and useful advice. Cheers

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Hi allyshake! I'm sure we can keep you on track beyond those 10 weeks!

My gut feeling is the problem is with your protein/carbs/fat ratios. By the sounds of things, your body type is dismayingly efficient at storing carbs as fat. So I'd suggest tweaking the ratios a bit - more protein and fat, and fewer carbs. Something like 40%p, 40%c, and 20%f for starters, and then we can readjust later as neccessary. (As an added bonus, the increased fat intake may help your natural testosterone levels.) Make sure, of course, that most of your carbs come from slow-releasing sources, not sugars or other high GI carbs.

Remember that as you get older, your metabolism will slow down anyway - so you will find it easier to store fat, and harder to lose it. You could try the techniques suggested here to help it pick up speed.

Hope this helps. :)

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Thanks for that feedback. I am surprised that increasing Fats can help but will give it a try. I am a student at present so am not working and have plenty of time for workouts. I think my diet is good. Breaky is either Weetbix or Home made muesli (rolled oats, nuts, dried fruits, seeds etc) and super trim milk. Snacks are tomato, low fat cottage cheese, Ryvita crackers, Baked Beans, Brown rice, Broccoli, Frozen mixed vege and chicken breast for main meals. Plus fruit, oranges, apples, peaches, apricots and pairs, all fresh and not out of a tin. Only use Olive or Grape seed oil for cooking, and whole avocado for speading on ryvita. I drink plenty of water, have the odd soda and have a bought coffee three times a week.

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Your diet is no good - mostly processed carbs. I suggest trying the diet I recommend in the second post of this thread:

http://www.nzbb.co.nz/forum/viewtopic.php?t=947

I've been on it for ~3 weeks and have lost about half the flab I usually carry. At least cut back on all the fruit you eat. Also, the weights you lift seem rather light for you size.

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At least cut back on all the fruit you eat. Also, the weights you lift seem rather light for you size.
I agree, the weights didn't seem to fit in with his comment about being able to put on muscle easily. Does the weight you currently do challenge you? i.e. you say you do 12 rep on the benchpress at 50 kg, does that mean 12 reps is your maximum? If it's not your maximum you need to increase the weight, if you're not challenged your body isn't going to be forced to work and therefore won't change.
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Thanks again, great info! Yes the weights dont really challenge me, and I dont get much muscle soreness the day or two post workout. I guess as I have had a break from the gym I was taking it easy but could probably go up on the weight for the major muscle groups. I thought my diet was OK but understand this is vitally important. cheers

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Hi Allyshake,

I can relate to your post entirely. For years I was maintaining my weight and training regularly, with no real change in body profile or muscle mass. I guess I was a little scared of putting on bodyfat. However about 18 months ago, at age 39, with no change in any lifestyle factors, I started getting fatter. Betrayed by my own hormones!!

Anyway, in your situation here's what I would do:

1. Switch to a full bodybuilding type split routine. You may know about this already but, just on the offchance you don't, this means each time you hit the weights you focus on only one or 2 bodyparts, as opposed to training the entire body as you do now. For instance, workout one could be legs, workout 2 chest, shoulders and triceps and workout 3 back and biceps. With this type of routine you will do more exercises than you are currently doing for each bodypart. For instance, currently for chest you are doing 3x12 bench at 50kg. However on a split routine you might do 5 sets of bench, starting at 15 x 20kg and working up to 6 x 80kg. You would follow this with one or 2 other exercises for chest performed similarly before moving onto the shoulder part of the workout. The last one or 2 sets for each exercise should feel extremely difficult with the last set taken to a point where you physically could not crank out one more repetition.

Why train like this? Its all about forcing an adaptive response. Our bodies are simply amazing, a vastly complex and efficient machine that tightly regulates all internal processes while minimising energy expenditure. As far as your body is concerned weight training constitutes a stress. Your muscles are taxed, and if the exercise is of sufficient intensity and duration then actual physical damage occurs within the muscle tissue itself. The bodies response to this is to not just repair the damage but to supercompensate: to ensure that if exercise of similar intensity and duration occurs again that it isn't stressed to the same degree your body actually builds a little extra contractile tissue, your muscles end up a fraction bigger and stronger. However this remarkable adaptive mechanism means that if we continue to train with the same weights and reps our bodies respond less and less. The muscles are simply used to this training load and feel no stress at all.

With a split routine we can focus more on individual muscle groups, hit them harder and try and increase the amount of weight lifted week by week (effectively increasing the intensity and forcing a continuous adaptive response). Lifting more weight is a key indication of a gain in muscle mass. We want increased muscle mass because of its direct correlation with basal metabolic rate, the amount of energy you burn daily simply by existing.

The declining basal metabolism observed with age is normally directly attributable to loss in muscle mass. Muscle is an active tissue. Even when we are doing absolutely nothing there is a base level of electrical activity going on within the tissue. Hence by increasing your muscle mass you increase the amount of calories you must consume in order to simply maintain your weight. As most people age however they also become less active, resulting in less muscle mass and a corresponding decrease in the basal metabolic rate. ie. it gets harder for them to keep fat off.

2. Increase your protein intake percentage, eating small, protein rich meals often. Your bodies energy demands at any one point in time aren't particularly high. When you eat, once the energy content of that food hits your bloodstream what is actually needed at that point is used, the rest is stored as fat to be used at some later point (if needed). By eating smaller meals, say 6 to 8, spaced out through the day we minimise this fat storage process. It also means that your muscles get a continuous supply of protein for supercompensation purposes.

3. Persist. It really does take time. The process of changing your body is very slow and at times hugely discouraging. However hanging in there and keeping at it is one of the keys.

Lastly, will you be taking the sustanon continuously from now on? The reason I ask is anabolic/androgenic steroid administration is actually suppressive of natural hormone production. If you stop the sustanon injections without using something like HCG your natural testosterone levels will be worse off than before.

All the best anyway Allyshake, let us know how you are getting on.

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Thanks Andrew, whilst I knew some of this stuff, your paragraph is good advice and explains some of the contradictory info that is out there in the ether of the internet, thanks.

The Doc will give me two more Sustanon 250 shots over the next 4 weeks. Currently my level has only increased to 12/7 nmol/L, so this is low. The aim is to get up to 20+ if possible. I am aware that natural Test is reduced if on a hormone replacement and was concerned about this, however I didnt seem to be making my own in enough quantity. I had relatively high but <150 pmol/L of Oestradiol (Estrogen) and becuase of my fat% and abdominal fat I am carrying this could be effecting my aromatase and thus I could be losing testosterone to estrogen conversion. For this I am going to try Chrysin a herbal aromatase blocker.

By the way, what is HCG? What does it do and how do I get it if needed? PS I take Tribulis also to boost natural test but this may contradict the Sustanon???

cheers

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hCG is increasingly used in combination with various Anabolic Androgenic Steroid (AAS) cycles. When AAS are put into a male body, the body's natural negative feedback loops cause the body to shut down its own production of testosterone via shutdown of the HPTA (hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular axis). High levels of AASs that mimic the body's natural testosterone trigger the hypothalamus to shut down its production of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) from the hypothalamus. Without GnRH the pituitary gland stops releasing luteinizing hormone (LH). LH normally travels from the pituitary via the blood stream to the testes where it triggers the production and release of testosterone. Without LH, the testes shut down their production of testosterone, causing testicular atrophy ("shrinking testicles"). In males, hCG mimics LH and helps restore / maintain testosterone production in the testes. As such, hCG is commonly used during and after steroid cycles to maintain and restore testicular size as well as endogenous testosterone production.

Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_chorionic_gonadotropin"

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What you need to know about HCG.

Note that this is written in regards to regular and long duration steroid use not HRT. Consult with your doctor about using it as it may or may not be needed

Taking tribulis will not contradict the sustanon although some people are in doubt as to whether it truely is effective in raising testosterone levels

Characteristics:

Human chorionic gonadotrophin is a strange hormone. Its only found in the placenta of pregnant women. For women it has fairly little use if any however, but to the male athlete it has one interesting property. It can mimic the action of luteinizing hormone (LH) in the body. LH is a pituitary hormone that is released and signals the manufacture of testosterone in the testicles. The sex hormones in the body work via a negative feedback system, where too much sex hormone (like anabolic androgenic steroids and estrogens) causes a signal to the brain to stop the release of LH. During long duration cycles, if natural test stays suppressed for considerable time, a male user will begin to note an atrophy in his testicles, meaning they will visibly shrink purely out of disuse. By administering an LH-mimicking agent, one can bring back the function of the testicles and let them regain their size. This is the main use of HCG.

The downside is that HCG too is suppressive of natural testosterone. Because it takes the place of LH. LH is not the first step in the chain of command, instead its manufactured in the pituitary under the response of Gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) which is secreted from the hypothalamus. And since an LH mimicking agent is supplied exogenously, the negative feedback signal to the hypothalamus will still tell it to stop making GnRH, and so no natural LH is produced. This is why the product is always used in conjunction with a potent estrogen receptor antagonist like clomid or Nolvadex. When the androgen level in the body has dropped, these antagonists will lower estrogenic response creating a steroid deficit that signals the Hypothalamus to start making GnRH. When it does, after HCG therapy, testicle size is up again and shortly thereafter natural testosterone manufacture should return to normal. But therefore its crucial that users note that though HCG is essential after long cycles, it shouldn't be used without clomid or Nolvadex AND HCG should be discontinued at least two weeks before coming off Clomid or Nolvadex or else it will suppress natural testosterone itself.

Haha beat me to it

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If you are looking for an over the counter test booster I highly recommend Diesel Test, available from NutraPlanet. I have been using this over the last few weeks and at 6 tabs per day it really seems to be working well for me.

Chrysin has fantastic anti-aromatase abilities in vitro (in the test tube) but suffers a little from low bioavailability. The Diesel Test contains ingredients to help with estrogen levels (di-indole methane) but no specific anti-aromatase as such. However as stated I am still getting great results at the dosage mentioned. There are a range of other anti-aromatase products available over the counter in the States (6-oxo, ATDs such as Designer Supplements Rebound XT, Gaspari's Novedex XT etc.) but I am not sure of the legality of them here in New Zealand. As well as binding to the aromatase enzyme ATDs also bind to androgen receptors (ie. where testosterone ought to be binding) on cell walls so there are some negative implications there in terms of decreasing the activity of testosterone.

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6 OXO is available from Endorphin systems.

I noticed this a while back too, however I am still not sure of the legaility of compounds like this in NZ. I know this sounds stupid when it is already available but I have seen products containing yohimbe (Nutrex Lipo 6) and vincamine (BSN NO Explode) for sale here, both of which (yohimbe, vincamine) are classified as prescription only medicines. The reason I ask is I was thinking about getting bulk androstenetrione (6 Oxo) from NutraPlanet or maybe the caps from 1Fast400.

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Assuming the caloric totals are same, I don't think it matters if you consume 3 meals vs. 6,7,8,9,10 ect. Plus it's a pain in the ass to eat 10-12 meals a day. Let's say you're on a diet and you need to consume 2000 kcals to achieve fat loss for that week or whatever, try breaking those 2000 kcals for 12 meals and eating them. I doubt you'll feel remotely satisfied after eating one of those meals. The multiple meal thing is most likely used to get more calories in you. Say you're bulking on 6000 kcals and over. Eating that amount of food in 3 meals will be a little hard, so you'd break it down into several meals.

Okay, yeah, you could make an argument about more fat being stored with meal frequency being 3 or around there, but between those 3 meals the person will be burning stored calories/fuel. If you eat smaller meals you might get away with storing less fat but you'll be relying less on stored calories because the meals are closer and energy is readily available, so there's no real difference happening.

Same thing goes for thermic effect of food, yeah it'll go up everytime you eat a meal but compare net TEF of 3 meals vs. however many meals you want to eat. It's still similar.

It all comes down to Calories (in) vs. Calories (out) in the end.

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Assuming the caloric totals are same, I don't think it matters if you consume 3 meals vs. 6,7,8,9,10 ect. Plus it's a pain in the ass to eat 10-12 meals a day. Let's say you're on a diet and you need to consume 2000 kcals to achieve fat loss for that week or whatever, try breaking those 2000 kcals for 12 meals and eating them. I doubt you'll feel remotely satisfied after eating one of those meals. The multiple meal thing is most likely used to get more calories in you. Say you're bulking on 6000 kcals and over. Eating that amount of food in 3 meals will be a little hard, so you'd break it down into several meals.

Okay, yeah, you could make an argument about more fat being stored with meal frequency being 3 or around there, but between those 3 meals the person will be burning stored calories/fuel. If you eat smaller meals you might get away with storing less fat but you'll be relying less on stored calories because the meals are closer and energy is readily available, so there's no real difference happening.

Same thing goes for thermic effect of food, yeah it'll go up everytime you eat a meal but compare net TEF of 3 meals vs. however many meals you want to eat. It's still similar.

It all comes down to Calories (in) vs. Calories (out) in the end.

I agree, it is all about calories in versus calories out. However there is a reasonable body of evidence to suggest that smaller meals eaten often tend to make it easier for people to stick to the program. That is, there is a psychological advantage, people know the next meal isn't that far off and tend to snack in between meals less. The reverse of this is of course the classic "skipping breakfast" approach to diet, which has been linked to increases in obesity.

As well the calories in/calories out/bodymass paradigm isn't linear. For instance lets say we had 2 people with identical metabolisms consuming identical quantities of food, with that quantity supplying an excess amount of energy beyond their needs. The first person consumes this food in 2 meals, the second spreading it over 6. The second person, all other things being equal, would put on less weight/bodyfat. If the relationship between energy intake/energy expenditure and bodymass was perfectly linear (as we might expect it to be) then it would make no difference over how many meals the food was consumed, only the total calorific content would matter. But other factors do come into play, such as the thermogenic effect of food you noted, redundant cycling, insulin response and so forth. These give the smaller meal approach a slight advantage.

Lastly since we are interested in building muscle as well the advantages of small regular meals in terms of maintaining a positive nitrogen balance have been well established. With the classic 3 square meals per day approach a fair amount of the amino acid content of protein consumed is deaminated (converted to glucose and urea, with the urea being excreted via the kidneys).

Having said all this the bottom line is really as you said, calories in versus calories out.

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Well I am glad to report an increase in LMM of 3.96kg and a fat loss of 4.06kg. Starting weight was 111.9 and I am 111.8 today. Body Fat % has gone from 36.4% to 32.8%.

Whilst I am happy with this, my major goal was to lose the fat only, but I guess a muscle gain is a bonus, particularly as it seems to be happening concurrently.

I have started a split routine as Andrew suggested and I certainly am feeling that I am working harder, in fact I have upped the weight I am lifting.

So things seem to be progressing well.

Thanks for all the advice and encouragement.

cheers

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Hi

All good advice. Just wanted to reinforce the multiple meal option.

Your body will store body fat quicker as it cycles upward and downward after each meal. By eating more often you stabilise your insuline levels and reduce the amount of movement of you blood sugar. This is how the Aitkens High Fat, High Protein and NO Carbs diet works. By not eating carbs you blood sugar levels essentially flat line.

As stated in earlier threads you're best to stick with low GI carbs. They will supress your hunger longer and not cause your blood sugar levels to spike radically.

Also, you should be having between 1.8 and 2.2grams of Protein per kg of body weight. For me eating only 3 meals means stacking approx 70 - 90 grams in each meal, when your body will struggle to process over 45 grams in a 3 - 4 hour period.

When I'm reducing my BF% I use a Whey Supp made with water as my 2nd, 4th and 6th meals. These will also supress your hunger and if you go for the no carbs options you wont cause a significant spike in your blood sugar.

My base off-season weight was 122kg from 2000 - 2004. Since then the main changes I made was to cut down my dairy, increased my daily water intake to 3 - 4 litres and switched from Weetbix to Oats in the morning. This reduced my based to 115-117kg since then. (I tend not to put too much faith into electronic body fat tests and calipers as your daily fluid retention can mask your true progress.).

This is what worked for me however. And part of the journey is finding out what work for you.

Not sure if this is helpful. Good Luck!

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