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Old 04-20-2009, 06:50 AM   #11
Andrew Husband
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Re: Leaning Out

My food choices on the Zone are mostly paleo, minus egg whites, etc. I never touch grains or sugar until my cheat day and my carbs come from veggies and some fruit (mainly apples and oranges), so overall it's a clean diet. I'm trying to continually tweak it to find the right combo of foods and calories. It sounds like most people don't double their fat intake until they are around 7-8% bodyfat and feeling drained from the workouts.
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Old 04-20-2009, 07:37 AM   #12
Melissa Urban
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Re: Leaning Out

The Zone diet as Rx'd is NOT meant for CrossFitters who are performance driven. In my book, Zone for performance includes 2-5x the recommended fat IMMEDIATELY, not once you've become super lean. Dropping your fat is exactly the opposite of what you want to do right now.

Try eating more. I don't care if you don't understand how that works - just try it, for two weeks. Trim your carbs back even more - under 100g a day. Eat MORE fat. Up it to 3x. And make sure your 17 blocks is enough protein to maintain muscle mass. (I don't really speak "blocks", so I'm not sure how many grams that is a day, but 17 doesn't sound like enough.) Cut your cheats, too... no grains, no sugars (real or artificial), no dairy, no processed foods.

You may also find that you cannot maintain performance at 7% body fat. Once you're already pretty lean, it becomes exponentially harder to tailor your diet to cut ONLY body fat, while sparing ALL your muscle. As a result, as you start to lean out more and more, many people find their performance does suffer. At that point, you'll have to make a choice about what is more important.

Finally, I can probably give this advice to everybody... do better about mixing up your training, and make sure you are getting enough rest.
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Old 04-20-2009, 08:07 AM   #13
Noah Martin
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Re: Leaning Out

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Originally Posted by Melissa Byers View Post

Try eating more. I don't care if you don't understand how that works - just try it, for two weeks. Trim your carbs back even more - under 100g a day. Eat MORE fat. Up it to 3x. And make sure your 17 blocks is enough protein to maintain muscle mass. (I don't really speak "blocks", so I'm not sure how many grams that is a day, but 17 doesn't sound like enough.) Cut your cheats, too... no grains, no sugars (real or artificial), no dairy, no processed foods.

What's a typical day of eating look like for you in this sense?
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Old 04-20-2009, 08:24 AM   #14
Laura Kurth
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Re: Leaning Out

6'2 190 pounds and you are on a 17 block (1700 calories?) diet. When will this madness end!

I don't subscibe to the zone or paleo, but I subscribe to melissas 'eat more' theory

To get to about 2,000 calories per day (or more) for my 5'2 105# frame, I eat something like the following -

Breakfast - 2-3 eggs, a cold hamburger perhaps or some ham/bacon, a grapefruit, oatmeal, peanut butter

Lunch - large salad with meat on it, a lot of nuts, an apple

PM - cup of whole milk plain yogurt, meat, bunch of veggies, more nuts/almond butter/sunbutter, 88% cocoa chocolate, maybe more fruit if I went running

My carbs are a bit higher than you might want because I am training for a marathon. But you cannot be a 6'2" man, eating 1700 calories per day and doing crossfit!!
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Old 04-20-2009, 08:29 AM   #15
James Forshaw
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Re: Leaning Out

Multiply your lean body mass by 0.7 (CF standard), so 190 x 0.88 = 167lbs, and x 0.7 = 117g of protein per day. This comes to just under 17 blocks, so technically Andrew is doing things right.
What's worked for me in the past, and by worked I mean good performance and being around 8% BF, is the correct protein blocks, then about half that number in carbs, and roughly double to triple (counting fat is so blah) the fat.
IMHO, combining quality (paleo) in a decent ratio (as above, courtesy of Robb Wolf's ideology) with smart IF can't fail to produce excellent results in terms of performance and body composition.

PS: I generally suffer in performance at extremeties of leanness, but Josh Everett was immersion-tested and shown to be 5%. And his performance is elite as one could wish.
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Old 04-20-2009, 08:46 AM   #16
Melissa Urban
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Re: Leaning Out

I would venture to say that Everett is the exception. Most of us are the rule.

James, I like what you're saying, and I do love IF, but I didn't start to implement it until my quality was solid and my proportions and quantity were well established. Simply not eating for a good portion of the day, with less than ideal quality, quantity and proportion, isn't gonna help. And adding IF to a complicated and changing dietary mix (as you try to play around with all of the above factors) is only going to confuse you about what may be working and what isn't.

Noah, you can find a very typical day's diet for me here (not always WFS, but this particular post is).

I eat way more than the OP, and I'm a pretty lean chick at 135#. My performance just keeps getting better the more I eat, too. I have yet to hit that point where I'm eating too much fat and getting soft. Also, I just CrossFit. No extra WODs. We program our own stuff, 3-1-2-1. And I end up taking an extra rest day a few times a month, whenever I need it. (So it's not like my activity level is twice that of a normal CrossFitter.)
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Last edited by Melissa Urban : 04-20-2009 at 09:00 AM.
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Old 04-20-2009, 09:03 AM   #17
Roelant Bergen
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Re: Leaning Out

I second this. I'm 6", 205 and thought 17 blocks would be "restrictive" enough for me to lean out. Big mistake. I bumped up to 18 or 19 blocks (liberally), deleted one or two carb blocks (I just eyeball now, except for my meat) and started doing about 1.5-2x fat immediately (will increase later). I just PRd my deadlift at 425 (felt easy) and recently shaved a minute off my Fran. Many people have said it here, on videos,and on CF Radio: Eat for performance, and you body will fall in line, it has no choice but to adapt to the stresses you put it under. The minute I stopped worrying about BF% and starting chasing more ring dips, pullups and better metcon, I started leaning out like crazy AND getting bigger. Like more veins on my arms (biceps esp), starting to see my 6 pack crazy....
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Old 04-20-2009, 09:48 AM   #18
Caleb Whitfield
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Re: Leaning Out

Andrew, listen to Melissa, she really knows her stuff. Suggestions from her helped me take the next step in my diet. They also introduced me to larabars which I love, but that is another story. Ultimately, trial and error will decide what works for you. Play with several of these suggestions and find out what works. My main suggestion would be to decide what it is you want out of this and pursue that wholeheartedly. If it is performance then eat, eat, eat, but make sure it's clean. If you are concerned more with how you will look in your speedo this summer then weigh and measure your food. Good luck!
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:20 AM   #19
Brian Bedell
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Re: Leaning Out

Hmmmm...I think I need to eat more. 5-8" 190lbs at 16 blocks now.
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Old 04-20-2009, 01:33 PM   #20
Brad D. Gregory
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Re: Leaning Out

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Originally Posted by Caleb Whitfield View Post
Andrew, listen to Melissa, she really knows her stuff. Suggestions from her helped me take the next step in my diet. They also introduced me to larabars which I love, but that is another story. Ultimately, trial and error will decide what works for you. Play with several of these suggestions and find out what works. My main suggestion would be to decide what it is you want out of this and pursue that wholeheartedly. If it is performance then eat, eat, eat, but make sure it's clean. If you are concerned more with how you will look in your speedo this summer then weigh and measure your food. Good luck!
I think I am suffering from something similar as the OP. I am trying to up my calories but I'm getting stuck eating 3K and staying clean. I guess I just need to add more protien or fats?
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