How to maximize fat loss with weight lifting


I am trying to lose my last 8% body fat before hitting the fitness category (20%). I am a 5’ 7" female with 28% body fat currently. Looking for advice on best way to lose fat with weight lifting and diet (keto, IF, EF, etc.).

I typically worked out in the evenings. Did 20 minutes of lifting, alternating upper and lower body, followed by 20 minutes in the dry sauna. I would then go home and sleep, and not eating anything til breakfast the next morning. This worked for me until I hit a plateau.

I recently switched up my routine. I workout in the morning, fasted. My usual weight lifting and sauna routine, but also add 30 minutes of cardio. Then have breakfast, followed by lunch mid afternoon, and dinner in the evening. All keto meals.

Before going keto, I use to have to do 1.5 hrs of cardio (on top of weight lifting) plus stay under 1000 calories to drop weight/fat. My body puts on muscle easily, but will not lose fat easily. With keto, life has been easier. However, I just can’t seem to get past this plateau and am looking for advice (based on science) on how to optimize my routine for fat lose.

I recently, stopped eating dinner and just have chicken broth with some seaweed. I am thinking of doing a 24 hour fast once a week. For some reason prolonged fasting longer than 24 hours has caused me to gain weight (I am talking body fat, not water weight). I am also tempted to increase my cardio back to 1hr or longer if that is what it takes to get fat loss. However, I prefer lifting over cardio.

Is there an optimal weight lifting / diet routine for fat loss?..(i.e. best time to work out - morning / evening; fasted before working out or after; does cardio speed up fat loss; do you have to restrict calorie consumption if trying to burn the last few percent of body fat, etc)

(aka Nick) #2

I’m not an expert by a long stretch, but I’m a big fan of the book Body by Science by Dr. Doug McGuff and have been following his weightlifting prescription for a while now. He and Dr. Fung of Obesity code seem to agree that cardio is a great way to build muscle, and muscle endurance, but not an especially good strategy for fat loss. That mirrors my own experience. YMMV.

Body by Science is a very simple resistance training program that has just 5 lifts and takes 15 minutes in total. It’s meant to be done only once per week. In fact, it’s so taxing, unless you’re young and extremely fit, it’s hard to manage more than that. That probably sounds like slacking but it’s not. It’s a very, very hard 15 minutes. It’s like the resistance training version of a HIIT workout. It’s unlike any other programming I’ve ever seen. Lots of folks here on the forum are doing or have done it. All I can say is that my strength is skyrocketing and the fat is dropping away for me. It works!

That’s my two cents, but I’ll be following this thread with interest to hear what’s working for other folks. Good luck!

(Bunny) #3

Yes cardio can and will speed up fat burning but it has to be fast and in short stents (HIIT) like say 5 minutes broken up into 5 reps on a elliptical cross training machine or treadmill per day?

I add type 2 resitant starch to this, to burn the body fat even more, better and faster in addition to the above!

Don’t believe me? Try it?

Lifting weights to build bigger muscle tissue (hypertrophy)? …but it has to be very very heavy weight and the same; for a very short duration, sitting their pumping iron with little tiny weights or exercising for hours just damages the muscles too much within a short period of time for the recovery period!

Very short duration of any kind of physical exertion is KEY to building bigger muscle tissue and burning ACTUAL body fat and it also increases cortex (brain; neuroplasticity) motor speed, endurance (when you really need it) and strength! Exercise too much and you get burned out on your own adrenal spikes which means no fat gets burned?

Any body who practices a very particular type of martial art (dim mak) would know this!

(Boots on? Balls to the wall? Good start.) #4

Lyle McDonald has excellent information aimed specifically at women. Loads of podcast interviews with him on the issue - here is one example.

He also has a book on the subject - bit pricey but I’ll be buying it.

(Henny) #5

I’m also getting frustrated, I work out 6 times a week. Weightlifting, strictly keto, most days my main meal is my lunch which is 2 hard boiled eggs, chicken skewers with peanut sauce low carb and skyr vanilla yogurt again low carb. Total protein is 90g fat is 20g carbs 14g

I would then have some form or nuts later or meat and green veg with butter .

My weight training is working and I feel nicer, slimmer but my scales go up and down by the same pound this past week, thinking to go cycling today as the weather isn’t too bad. Get some cardio in. (My gym is at home as I don’t have the fancy machines, just weights and everything that comes with that)

I know I’m making progress, my muscles certainly tell me when I walk like a penguin for a couple of days after leg day and my arms are sore from upper body. But I just want the fat to go away and the scale to reflect this as it’s stuck on 14st 0lp or 14st 1lp for the past week.

I find the red meat stays in my body , I find eat red meet my number 2 will be halted by a couple of days. Where as if I eat chicken it’s more regular. I also take ashwaganda drops daily.

I worry over eating , am I eating too little, then I think if I eat more then it will all just pile back on.

Stopping is not an option, last year I lost 3st and thus year I’d like to loose the other 3st. I would like to see my scales moving below that stupid 14st mark.


Is this correct? For the day or for one meal?
Either way somethings not right here, typo?

(Fast Freddy) #7

Try to fast all day and workout towards end of fast (afternoon) and hit the weights fasted - then go home eat, then rinse and repeat next day - Idea is to wake up and extend the fast as long as you can to burn through stuff and go through autophagy, thus burning more fat, then hit HIIT workout to deplete more glycogen and then break fast at night. Works awesomely for me :slight_smile:

(Complete legend) #8

Just FYI, you’re replying to threads that are months and months old.