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Old 05-27-2007, 07:51 AM   #1
Lauri Michelle Zucker
Member Lauri Michelle Zucker is offline
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Location: Philadelphia  PA
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I just went to and asked why I could be gaining weight on the Zone diet, but I thought I might also ask here to see if anyone else has had the same issue. I've been on the Zone for about a month now, and at first, I did the calculations in the book to calculate my protein requirement. It said 9 blocks when active. I lost some weight but was hungry. Then I went to and used their calculator, and it said I should consume 11 blocks per day. Then the weight gain began. I backed off to 11 blocks of fat and protein, but 8 blocks of carbs, and still I'm gaining weight. I do CrossFit 5 mornings a week for 45 minutes, and I thought this combined with the diet would make fat disappear. Has anyone else had this problem, or does anyone have any ideas of how to change the diet so that it can work for me?
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Old 05-27-2007, 08:14 AM   #2
Craig Van De Walker
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A couple of possibilities come to mind

#1 you are gaining lean muscle. Don't freak out about that. Years ago I worked as a trainer and had some female clients initially gain weight while going down in clothing size.

#2 you are "estimating" your food portions. Weight and measure exactly until you are dialed in and the diet is working well for you.

#3 are you using high GI carb sources? I have heard some people have real problems with insulin and certain carb sources. Try getting your carb blocks from green veggies if you are not already.

#4 I suppose it is possible your blocks are too high but I can't imagine any active person being much below 11. How tall are you and what is your weight. If you are a thin person with high BF #1 may well be the issue TEMPORARILY. Once you body comp is changed things will improve.

caveat - I made lots of assumptions with the very limited info you gave. Things that would help other answer this type of question-height, weight, strength, performance (how many pushups and pullups can you do) ect.
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Old 05-27-2007, 07:48 PM   #3
Christina Von Rassler
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I've tried the Zone diet twice and both times gained weight. Plus all I could think about was food ( what to eat and when ). Since I started CF 3 months ago I too have put on weight. Is your body changing? like your torso getting more narrow, straight up and down? My body has definately changed and I'm waiting to see if I gain ( muscle ) and then lean out or lose weight. Maybe our bodies are in the process of changing. Last year I worked with a trainer and did bulk up a bit before I leaned out. I like what Craig said, I hope he is right. I too was doing the 11 blocks of protein and gained weight. ( I'm 5'2' 114 lbs ). Good luck to you. Keep up the CF, it is the most amazing workout!!
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Old 05-27-2007, 08:07 PM   #4
Lauri Michelle Zucker
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Thanks for your input guys. I have been eating low GI carbs, like asparagus, broccoli, and then strawberries, blackberries and melon, and have been referencing the top 100 zone block foods book. My measurements aren't changing at all, so I don't appear to be leaning out. I'm 5'5", 126 lbs, with 27"at my navel and 37"at the hips. I also purchased an electronic food scale, so I'm definitely not estimating food potions. I did Fran with 65 lbs in 8min 30sec, and have been doing CrossFit since August of last year, so I'm pretty fit. I have fish and chicken as my protein sources, but also have cheese. Should I limit my low fat cheese intake maybe? I only have them as snacks though. Any other thoughts would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 05-27-2007, 08:30 PM   #5
Alicia Michel
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Lauri, I've also tried the Zone diet for about 3 months and gained weight. Like Christina, all I could think about was food and I felt hungry all the time.

Things were better after I switched to the Anabolic Diet in that my weight stabilised, I wasn't think about food and the next meal all the time, I could do 24h intermittent fasting comfortably and I lost a bit of bodyfat.

That might be just me though?

Have you had any bodyfat testing done to get a rough guide as to what sort of weight you might be putting on?

(Message edited by dx7 on May 27, 2007)
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Old 05-27-2007, 08:39 PM   #6
George Mounce
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My first thought is get rid of the scale. I've seen this coming up lately in posts and it concerns me, especially among very active CrossFitters.

Weight is and always will be subjective. It is nothing more then the force of gravity upon your body. It tells you nothing more then how you and the earth aren't crushing each other.

What is important is body composition. What is your bodyfat percentage? Have you gained lean muscle mass (which weighs quite a bit more, roughly 5x more then fat)? Work towards a healthy body composition and stop worrying about what you weigh. I'm guessing your jeans still fit just fine. It will save your worry brain cells for more important things, like if you can beat your CrossFit PR's!

Currently with the Zone and 21 blocks I am 5'11" and 186-188 pounds. I am pretty strict with the Zone (occasional glasses of wine, gotta love living near Napa Valley) and I have noticed that my weight on any given day due to water and food intake can vary easily by up to 5 pounds between morning and night. 5 pounds is enough to make some people go crazy. But because I know my body composition, I know its my body working out what it is going to use for fuel and keeping my metabolism's fire going as well as giving me enough energy to get through the workday and CrossFit + PT workouts.

How much you weigh is not a problem, and I would hope you don't see it as a problem. If you had an unhealthy body composition, or low self-esteem I would view that as a problem. From your posts though I see that neither is the case.

Keep up with CrossFit and keep progressing. Let your weight be something for your driver's license and nothing more.
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Old 05-28-2007, 01:26 PM   #7
Robert Wolf
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I found the Zone carb level to be a bit more than I do well on. I'm at 16 blocks but do very well on ~10-12 blocks. I just add 3 blocks of fat for every carb block I delete. This seems to stabilize the food cravings I had in the past which were SUPER annoying as I had nothing like this when following something like the anabolic diet.

In Mastering the Zone a flow chart is offered that can help one "fine tune the hormonal carburetor" as Dr. Sears puts it. That's that stuff. As to the weight could add muscle quite easily. It sounds like you are running at a pretty high level performance wise. Tinker with the above modifications and see if dialing in the carb level helps but the weight will follow your performance needs...not a preconceived notion of what you "should" weigh.
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Old 05-29-2007, 04:08 PM   #8
Pierre Auge
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If nothing else try what Robb wrote. Robb is tha shiznit on nutrition. I very much recommend his advice. Fat most often will resolve the hunger issues associated with the zone.

If you ever get to the point where you are working at elite levels of activity (several hours a day) your carbs will climb back up invariably to zone levels.

The most common comment I receive is "I think I need more carbs" and invariably the answer is exactly what Robb just wrote!
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Old 05-29-2007, 09:08 PM   #9
Kevin McKay
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Yeah, what Pierre said about what Rob said.
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Old 05-31-2007, 01:24 PM   #10
Jill Genschoreck
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Lauri - although you may not be allergic to it, some women don't do well with dairy products when trying to lose weight or leaning out.

I'm 5'3", 114 lb & eat 10 blocks. I usually double or triple my fat, though. I would think 9 might be not enough food for you to keep your energy going?

Even before I started Zone, I dropped the majority of my dairy and within days saw a noticable visual difference in lean muscles and more energy. I still stay away from it as much as I can.

You may want to try no dairy for a few days, too. It's all about trial & error... what effects me may not affect you.

Good luck.
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