Any bodybuilders here?

(Erin ) #1

Or knowledgeable weight trainers?

I came across this article…

Is this accurate?

I’m stuck because I feel like I’m being pulled in two different directions. I started training and keto at the same time. I really need to build muscle (I am no where near a bodybuilder but figure you would have the most knowledge on the topic) I went through a lot of muscle wasting during my pregnancy year. I also need to loose 10lbs (I guess I should say body fat % instead of “Weight” so I’m at 24% and want to get down to at least 20%.)

I’m conflicted and feel like I should get off keto and go back to traditional low fat high protein with carb cycling if I want to gain a good amount of muscle.

If I’m doing under 20g carbs or less and 25% protein how could I build muscle that way?

So far I’ve done nothing in either direction lol. I’m training and haven’t built muscle and I’ve been doing keto for almost 4 weeks and haven’t lost any BF.

This article is interesting but it’s kind of overwhelming.

What’s your take on this? Should I try to incorporate the creatine and protein powder? But then I’m afraid of going too heavy on protein. I feel like this is a very fine line.

Is it easier to build muscle with traditional weight lifting type diet and then move into keto after I’ve built it up?

IDK I am lost :woman_facepalming:t2:

(Chris) #2

Aim for 1g per pound of bodyweight with protein. If you plan to build muscle on keto, I suggest 20-25g or less total carbs, and enough fat to fill in energy needs.

You can lose fat and build muscle on any diet given enough protein and a sufficient amount of calories for the goal.

Let me ask you a question. Was your low fat carb cycling working for you?

(Lazy, Dirty Keto 😝) #3


(Edith) #4

Keto is not an instant cure. At four weeks in you, more than likely, are not fat adapted. It takes about eight weeks for your body to learn to use fat for energy instead of glucose. For some people it takes less time and for some people it takes more time. Even then, it is not a switch. You will notice your muscles feel less lead-like as the weeks go on and then your workouts will improve.

The initial week of keto, you body uses up its glycogen stores. With those stores goes a lot of water. Maybe some fat, but mostly water. Fat loss progresses from there.

At four weeks your body is still adapting. If you only have 10 pounds to lose, you are not going to lose fat as quickly as someone who has 40, 50, or even more pounds to lose. Also, muscle isn’t built over night. How much muscle do you think you will gain from only four weeks of training? Building muscle takes time. It is possible you have gained muscle, but it might not be enough to show outwardly.

Keto also causes metabolic healing among other things you may not have even thought of. There is a lot more going on under your skin than just fat loss. Your body might be giving those precedence.

There is a lot of information out there and some muscle building fiends here on the forum, such as @Dread1840 who replied about protein needs. But, you still need patience. Unfortunately, nothing happens over night.

(Ken) #5

I suggest at least six months of Keto first to insure adaptation. It’s much easier to lose your fat first, without worrying about muscle gain. Muscle gain always requires a caloric excess, so it is a cross purpose process with fat loss. Afterwards you can do a “Keto Bulk” to add muscle. That is really a TKD while eating a caloric excess, usually having some additional, simple, targeted carbs like glucose/dextrose/glucose-d around your training sessions. Just enough to fuel your workouts and keep a little glycogen in your muscles, but low enough to not add significant glycogen to the liver so you keep primarily burning fat.

TKD and CKD for fat loss are designed to preserve muscle while you’re doing it. Keto Bulks are designed to increase muscle mass without adding body fat along with it.

(Chris) #6

Yes I actually agree with this fully, even if one was going to use a higher carb approach. Tuning your metabolism toward fat sets your insulin sensitivity and makes you better able to utilize energy of both types. I don’t use a tester but I’m more than certain I spend like 65%-80% of my time in ketosis when in a fat loss phase.

(Erin ) #7

Well I’ve never actually done much weight lifting in my life, mostly cardio and dancer type programs Bc I was a dancer so I always went back to that.
So as far as actually trying to pack on muscle I don’t know what works for me. I just need more info on trying to do keto at the same time Bc I feel like I’m stuck and feel like I need to choose either gaining muscle OR keto loosing fat. If it’s possible to do together then yes!

So if I’m 150 then I need 150g of protein? Can I use protein powder as well?

Do I need to increase my calories to bulk up? So how does that work if I need to cut calories to loose fat?
I’m horrible at eating enough calories which is prob why I loose my muscle

(Erin ) #8

Ok so like the article says also, something like eating all the carbs for the day prior to training? but i shouldn’t start doing that until after I’ve been doing keto for a few months?

(Erin ) #9

Oh also, it says IF is not good if I want to gain muscle? Should I do a progressive type thing where I just start out doing reg keto diet and light cardio until I’m fat adapted and then move into more weightlifting and start changing up how I introduce the carbs??

(Ken) #10

The point is to restore normal insulin sensitivity first. It is to eliminate hyperinsulinemia before you try to add muscle.

Opinions differ as to how and when to add carbs when trying to add muscle. The TKD approach I suggested is fairly conservative, but others recommend much higher consumption levels.

(charlie3) #11

I started keto, cardio and lifting at the same time 2 years ago. I’ve setted in to 40 net grams of carbs, 20% protein and 70% fat. First lost 30 pounds of fat (170 to 140) in about 8 months. Today I’m 160 lbs, 14 lbs muscle, 6 lbs fat regain. Most of the muscle gain came in fits and starts in the past year. My protein average is about 135 grams a day from beef, fish, and eggs. It’s probably more than I need. It took months to get past the low energy thing. Today I believe I don’t need any additional carbs for anything I do, 2 hours a day of cardio and 90-100 minutes of lifting a week. I believe carbs are popular because they are addictive, period.

BTW, looking at my Crono food log for the past year, looks like I ate 100-150 extra calories per day, on average.

(Kenny Croxdale) #12

Keto Gains: How to Build Muscle Without Carbs

Yes, it’s an accurate, good article.

Gaining Muscle On Keto

Research has demonstrated that you can gain muscle on a Ketogenic Diet while decreasing body fat.

Protein Intake

The article provide good information on the amount or protein need based on your level of training.

Less protein is needed because ketone protect and preserve protein; reserving it for maintaining and increasing muscle mass,. That based on Drs Jeff Volek and Stephen Phinney research; The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance.

Research also has demonstrated that in a fasted state, ketone protect muscle protein up to 72 hours with around a 16 to 24 fast being the sweet spot.

Preserving muscle mass in these two examples is the body’s survival mechanism. it realizes that in need muscle go essentially go hunt down foot. However, it doesn’t need fat.

The body also realizes that it has plenty of calories from fat to burn.

A 120 lb person with that 10% body fat has 12 lbs of fat. A pound of fat has 3500 calories X 12 lbs means this person would have 42,000 calories available to use.


Creatine provide a multitude of heath benefits. It one of the most research supplements on the market and inexpensive.

Protein Intake

Research by Dr Layne Norton and Donald Layman have determined that approximately 25 - 30 gram of quality protein (Meat and Dairy) are necessary per meal/serving to trigger the muscle building, anabolic effect for increasing muscle mass.

Protein:Fat Intake Ratio

You don’t need to consume a gram per pound of protein. The article you posted note that.

Thus, if your protein intake for the day (3 meals at 30 gram per serving) was 90 gram, your fat intake for the day would need to be 90 gram, as well.

A good rule thumb is that you need at least a 1:1 Protein to Fat intake ratio.

Metabolic Training

This method increases your metabolism for hours after your workout.

It amount to overcharging your “Metabolic Credit Card” and and having to pay it back over time with more calories being burned.

High Intensity Interval Cardio and Circuit Resistance Training that are fairly high intensity with short rest period dramatically increase your metabolic rate for hour.

Information on High Intensity Cardio Training and Circuit Resistance Training can be found online.

As with anything new, you need to ease into it.

Kenny Croxdale

(Erin ) #13

Thank you for all this info!

(Erin ) #14

Is there a good calculator that can measure the grams for me? If I eat a steak for example I would need to know the amount of protein if I’m going to try to aim for the 30g per meal.

And with that should be the same for grams of fat? Are there any examples of menus for this? I’ve always focused so much on not going over my 20g Of carbs that I really am not sure how to gauge the fat/protein ratios. 30g of fat is a lot in one meal no? I always eat a steak or hamburger patty with cheese, possibly with green beans and bacon, or chicken breast with a salad. I don’t think my fat content is that high.

(Kenny Croxdale) #15

My Fitness Pal or Calorie King

These two sights will break it down for you.

Instead of using them, I just look up each food item up, if I don’t know. As with everything, when you do it enough, you eventually remember how many gram of protein, fat and carbohydrates are in foods that you constantly consume.

My wife uses CalorieKing for some reason.

Good Protein Rule of Thumb.

For the most part 28 gram (approximately 1 oz) of meats and cheeses yields 5 - 6 gram of protein.

Thus, for someone trying to consume 30 gram of protein, you need to consume around 140 grams/5 oz of meat or cheese.

The fats in meats and cheeses varies dependent on if you purchase low fat or high fat.

The Number of Grams/Ozs

Yes, you need to know the number of grams/oz in the steak.

If you want to consume a steak with 30 gram of protein, you work backwards.

Divide 5 - 6 (approximate amount of protein in 28 grams/1 oz of meat) into 30 gram of steak protein.

That means you need to consume approximately 5 - 6 oz of steak per meal.

It Depends

Meats: It depends on the fat percentage in the meat. Some meats are quite fatty while some aren’t.

When it comes to cheeses and eggs, the Protein:Fat Ratio is very close.

Large Egg: 6 gram of Protein and 5 - 6 gram of fat. Cheeses are similar.

[quote=“StarRRT, post:14, topic:98886”]Are there any examples of menus for this?


There are some menus on some of the Ketogenic online sights that you can find.


20 gram is really low, which is fine. For most, myself included, less that 50 gram usually works. However, some individual may need to go lower and some can go slightly higher.

30 Gram Is A Lot

I agree. That a lot of protein for most people.

I am a Powerlifter and do a small amount Bodybuilding Training. I need around 40 - 50 gram of protein per meal. I find that is a lot of protein.

With that said, there a way of basically…

Gaming The System On Protein

Protein is composed of Amino Acids. Amino Acids are like tools that perform certain jobs.

The Amino Acid Leucine is the Amino Acid responsible for maintaining and increasing muscle mass. There is plenty of online research on this.

Leucine alone triggers this anabolic, muscle building effect. However, it works best when combined with whole proteins; meat and cheeses.

Thus, taking Leucine along with your meal, means you don’t have to consume so 5 - 6 oz of steak.

My Personal Example

I found consuming meal with 6 - 8 oz of meats or cheeses uncomfortable.

So, what I do is consume around 4 oz of meat/cheese per meal and with some Leucine.

Added leucine makes wheat protein as anabolic as whey

Vegetable protein are lower quality proteins. That means Vegans need to consume a lot more to elicit the same muscle building effect as those who consume animal source proteins.

Beans and Rice Example

To get enough protein, you’d need to consume two cups of Beans and Rice!

One of the poorest protein is wheat.

Research by Dr Layne Norton, article above, demonstrated that adding Leucine to Wheat makes ist as anabolic as Whey Protein; Whey contain the highest percentage of Leucine.

Whey is often touted as “The Anaobolic Protein” for that reason.


Leucine is fairly inexpensive. You don’t need a lot.

The downside is it has a bad taste. Thus, I suggest that you mix it with something to kill the bad taste.

Another solution is…

Branch Chain Amino Acids, BCAA

This is composed of three Amino Acids that work in conjunction with each other: Leucine, Valine and Isoleucine. Leucine is the workhorse that drive the muscle building response.

The majority of BCAA come in flavors that that are tasty. For some reason, most Leucine is not flavored.

However, my wife got some water flavoring at Walmart that works. It’s pretty cheap.

I mix the flavoring with the water and Leucine and water which make it tasty.

[quote=“StarRRT, post:14, topic:98886”]I always eat a steak or hamburger patty with cheese, possibly with green beans and bacon, or chicken breast with a salad.

Meat With Cheese

Your combination is most likely providing you with enough Protein and the right Protein: Fat Ratio. However, count it to make sure.

Chicken Breast With Salad

As you may know, Chicken Breast is low in fat; approximately 5 gram of fat.

However, traditional Salad Dressings are high in fat: approximately 14 gram of fat in two tablespoons.

With that said, your close on your Protein:Fat Ratio, depending on how much Salad Dressing that you are using on your salad.

My guess is that you are closer than you think.

However, guessing is never good. Knowing is better.

Balancing Your "Food Checkbook"

As with writing a check, it is better to know how much money you have in your account before you write the check. That is why you balance your check book; so you know.

That means you need to balance your food check book.

(Erin ) #16

Thank you for all of this great info!!!

Before I forget, I’m ordering this grass fed protein powder…if you read the back of the label it shows the amino acids with a leucine 2910mg. Is that a good amount? Or should I purchase separately and mix in?
I’m going to try this particular isolate Bc my stomach is very sensitive to whey and any protein powders I use tend to upset it. I haven’t tried this all natural grass fed whey so I’m hoping it’ll work.

Grass Fed Whey Protein Powder Isolate - Unflavored + Cold Processed + Undenatured - Pure Wisconsin Grass-Fed Protein for Shake, Smoothie, Drink, or Food - Natural + Non GMO + No Gluten - 1 Pound

I have the calculator now so I’ll be checking everything. I have it set to 1700 cals (not sure If that’s correct but I think it was 1500-1700 for moderate to large deficit) I’m 5’5 151lbs. I do want to get down to 140 (but again that’s always been without me doing any weight training)
25g carb
105g protein
131g fat
Those are my numbers I have programmed.

(Kenny Croxdale) #17

Leucine and Whey Protein

Yes, 2910 gram of Leucine is very high amount.

As I stated in my previous post, Whey Protein contains the highest percentage of Leucine. That is one of the reason that Whey Protein is referred to as “The Anabolic Protein”.


Those numbers look good.

One thing more that will help is to rotate you calorie intake every two week.

This research goes more into it. This will help you with you weight loss.

Intermittent energy restriction improves weight loss efficiency in obese men: the MATADOR study

"… alternating 2-week blocksresulted in greater weight loss (fat loss) without greater loss of FFM (Fast Free Mass/Muscle) , attenuation of the reduction in REE (Resting Energy Expendidture), and superior weight loss retention after 6 months, compared with an equivalent ‘dose’ of continuous ER (Energy Restriction).

The 20% Rule

Research by Dr John Ivy and Dr Layne Norton, independent of each other, came to the same conclusion.

Increasing calorie intake approximately 20% above your current calorie intake ensures gains in muscle mass are maximized and minimizes fat gain.

Decreasing calorie intake approximately 20% below your current maintenance calorie intake, ensure maximal fat loss and minimizes muscle mass loss

That means you need to decrease you calorie intake approximately 20% below maintenance every two week; down to 1360 calories.

The drop in calories means you are in a calorie deficit, losing weight

However, after about two week, your body adapts by decreasing you metabolism so you don’t lose weight. It a survival mechanism to make sure you don’t starve to death.

To reboot you metabolism up, you then need to go back up to your maintenance calories of 1700.

You will gain a little weight back. But that is okay.

After two week on maintenance, drop you calories back down 20% again.

You will lose whatever weight you gained and more.

You have to trick your body into doing what you want it to do rather than what it want to do.

(Erin ) #18

Oh wow that makes a lot of sense! Especially why people would stall. I think my body adapts very quickly to things which is why I get stuck. I will definitely try to add this approach and see what happens. I was doing the exact IF times and eating patterns for a while and nothing was changing.


Ok, so I’ve lifted with carbs, lifted 100% keto, lifted sorta kinda TKD/CKD. My results are my own… but I’m also considering what I anecdotally know from other places like Ketogains where we’re all lifting and keto. I’ve read all the stuff that says we build muscle the same, all the stuff that says we don’t need higher protein, that we don’t need calorie deficits and surpluses etc. What I’ve found after years of keto and lifting… A little more carbs goes a LONG way! That said, if you go about it like a CKD protocol that’s really SUPPOSED to look like some good carbs at night, like a sweet potato with your steak, I do a bowl of oatmeal a lot, or higher glycemic veggies that aren’t really keto but aren’t terrible either. It’s NOT supposed to be a weekend of eating Pizza and Ice Cream. Sometimes it’s REALLY hard to walk that line. Another thing I picked up from the Ketogains side of things which I was VERY against for a while was throttling your fat macros for leaning out or just loosing fat, given that typically we’re taught to never reduce fat and even add it to already fatty stuff. I did that for years and after about a year plateau of both fat loss and muscle gain I decided to not fall a victim to the definition of insanity and I dropped the fat down as well as my caloric intake daily. Guess who started loosing again? You can absolutely gain muscle while keto but in my experience I takes some tweaking in % of your carbs vs fat as well as increased protein.

I’ve seen no shortage of people saying you need no carbs at all to put on muscle, that you can be under 100g of protein a day and get big, but then they say they’ve been lifting for years and they post a pic and they don’t even look like they work out! Different people are in the gym for different reasons so I don’t judge solely on image but person after person argues that keto doesn’t hurt muscle gains says stuff and they look like a novice lifter after years of keto and lifting in the gym does give clues. Creatine is a great supplement and I always recommend it keto or not. You’re not going to go too heavy on protein. I’m with @Dread1840 on the 1g per lb of bodyweight. Seems to work the best for most people. If you’re not getting it from diet use shakes, no need to be afraid of Whey unless you know you have issues digesting it.

What type of lifting are you getting into? Traditional bodybuilding or more of an Olympic or Crossfit kinda thing? That can change some stuff about how you eat sometimes drastically.

(Chris) #20

I’ll add if you have issues digesting whey, try a blend that is only isolate and no other protein types. Stuff is like night and day in comparison to concentrate/isolate blends.