Karim's muscle gain carnivore adventure

(Bunny) #281

That is why I like the concept of protein cycling if you want to tighten up any loose and flabby skin…lol

Forcing the body to sometimes use more of its own (matryoshka) protein than dietary protein.

(Karim Wassef) #282

How about the concept that metabolic down-regulation is a function of the rate limiting use of body fat?

(Bunny) #283

A Box of Donuts…lol

(Empress of the Unexpected) #284

I love your thread, but glad I didn’t stumble on it as a newbie - I would have been terrified!! Still don’t understand half of what you are talking about. :rofl::rofl::rofl: But really glad you are out there doing the experimenting for us. You and @primal.peanut.

(Karim Wassef) #285

It was easy for me in the beginning too… but these last 20lbs to get into the teens of body fat is harder.

(Karim Wassef) #286

so here’s today’s meal:

close to the target but I’m satiated at only 1400 cal! I thank the clotted cream for this! :smiley:

(Karim Wassef) #287

So here’s the carnivore plan for the next couple of months based on this…

Basically, I’m going to start with about equal dietary protein and fat and slowly increase dietary fat as my own body fat declines.

The idea is to keep metabolism high by eating more fat each day. I’m starting in a near fast at 1400 calories but this should ramp up to 2200 cal as I continue to lose.

I know it’s counter-intuitive, but it’s intentional to maintain ketosis and high metabolism. It’s the “anti-fast”.

The target date is July 14th of this year (going on vacation that day) and the target body fat is in the low teens. Here’s the plan for May, for reference:

(Mame) #288

I can’t even guess what is going to happen! But hey, that makes it fun thanks to your reports.

(Mario) #289

what workout routine do you have? i found only 2 are working really well for me.

5x5 stronglift works very good for me, but is boring me fast.

german volumen training is absolute the best for me to put mass on and lean out at the same time. my body needed one cycle to adapt, thats around 7-8 weeks. after that results where amazing.

just to give an idea

(Karim Wassef) #290

ok… :smiley:

so I’ll try to explain my thinking:

I’ve been wondering about something - why does my metabolism slow down when I fast if I have sooooo much fat left in my body?


I have 40lbs of fat left on me but the day I don’t eat, it panics and drops my metabolism?

Seriously - why do it? Just my base metabolism goes from 2363 down to 1675 and then up to 2383 … that’s 30% slow down when I stop eating and 40% speed up when I eat more…

If I was super lean, I could understand that kind of reaction, but seriously … 40lbs of fat.

So - I started thinking about those mechanisms that could cause such a reaction and went back to some of the metabolic discussions with Nick @don_Q.

One topic was just how much fat can the body pull from its own stores at a time. Basically - it’s a rate limit that says “no matter how much fat I have, I can only take out X at a time” and that limit is around 34 calories per pound of fat per day.

Ok. Taking that one step further… I have 40lbs and I can only access 34 calories per pound per day. That’s 1360 calories that I can get to stay alive when I don’t eat. But I was living on 2800 calories… so where is my body going to get the difference 2800 - 1360 = 1440 calories left?

Well, it can do this by using up lean mass and destroying my muscles and organs… But my body is too smart for that. It’s NOT going to do that. Instead, it’s going to go down in energy usage to the bare minimum. There’s usually some material that’s being broken down every day anyway, so it factors that in and says:

“Look! We’re shifting down to 1675 calories a day. I can get 1360 calories from fat, and the remaining ~300 calories I can get from this stuff we were going to break down anyway… good luck - we’re shutting some things down!”

This is just like the electricity company basically telling everyone to conserve during a heat wave because we’re running short. And if you don’t listen, we’re going to shut off the power. The body does the same - making me sluggish and sleepy and weak.

So - this basically says that the reason the body slows down my metabolism when I fast (and gives me the fasting chills) is because it CANNOT access any more of my own fat.

Now the problem with this down regulation of metabolism is that it slows down far usage even more, etc…

So - I went back to my fasting study and decided to build up a plan that would NOT make that happen.

I started with the protein I need.

My experience is that I need 0.7 g / lb of lean mass. But I want to gain muscle, so I want to eat more protein than I need to maintain. I have a lean mass target of 160lbs, so I should eat 0.7 g x 160 = 112g of protein every day. Some of this will go to replenish the nitrogen cycle waste material and the rest should go into building more lean mass.

Next, I want to stay in keto so I set 5g of carbs.

With those two settled, I could work out how much fat I need in order to keep my available energy at 2800 calories. This basically says that I’ll be getting 112g x 4 cal/gram = 448 calories from protein. And I’ll be getting 5g x 4 cal/gram = 20 calories from carbs. And I calculated earlier that my body can access 1360 calories from fat.

So - in order to give my body what it needs to stay at 2800 calories and still burn my own fat, I need to eat enough dietary fat to get to 2800 calories… so 2800 (total I want to be at) - 1360 (from my fat) - 448 (from protein cycling) - 20 (from carbs) = 972 calories needed from dietary fat.

Well, I can work out what that is since fat is 9g / calorie … so 972 / 9 = 108g of dietary fat needed to avoid slowing down my metabolism!

If I worked it out right, I shouldn’t feel hunger since I have sources of energy that balance to my current metabolic rate. And I should stay in ketosis since my carbs are low and my protein is sufficient.

So to get my 2800 calories in metabolic output, I can get 1360 from my fat and need 1440 from my diet.

That’s basically DAY 1.

If that actually works - then for each day, I could predict that my fat reserves would drop based on the fat I used that day. If I used 1360 cal, and each gram of fat generates 9 cal, then I would lose 1360 / 9 grams of fat = 151g. I convert that into lbs by dividing my 454 and I get 0.3lbs of fat lost each day.

This is a gross oversimplification, but it’s a model I can test.

But if it’s right, then the next day I no longer have the ability to use 40 lb x 34 cal / lb again because I have slightly less fat to work with. I only have 39.7 lbs of fat now, so I can only use 1350 calories…so I have lost the ability to access 10 calories compared to the day before.

This sounds trivial, but it builds up.

So instead of 1440 calories from diet, I now need 1450 calories from diet to maintain my 2800 calorie metabolism… and so I need to eat a little more fat on day 2… instead of 108g of fat, I need 109g of fat… and so on and so on…

each day, I need to eat a little more fat to compensate for the fat I lose access to but without dropping my metabolism:

Before the end of the month, I would be eating 135g of fat and 112g of protein and my dietary intake would go from 1400 calories to nearly 1700 calories.

This is what I meant by “counter-intuitive”… in order to keep my metabolism high and continue to burn my own fat at the same rate, I need to eat more and more fat each day.

Mind you, I’ve been eating 200g+ of fat since I started carnivore so this is not really a lot of fat, but it’s “enough” fat to keep me satiated but still losing my own fat.

Keto does this automatically, but I’m trying to work out the non-linear relationship between food macros and metabolism. Basically - what most people try to do with CICO linearly, I’m trying to create a model that aligns with keto and CICO… like an all encompassing metabolic balance formula that adjusts daily.

So… after weeks of this… what would happen?

Well, each day, I would eat a little more fat while controlling protein and carbs

and my fat intake would almost double during that time from 108g to 189g… And my dietary intake would go from 1440 calories per day to 2200 calories per day… all while losing my own fat.

Basically, I would make my body super comfortable with the availability of external fat so it never tightens down on my metabolism and slows down.

The total weight loss would not be that large… I would be going from 180lbs to 162lbs, but the composition would be a lot leaner ~ 12% body fat. And the way there is by eating more and more fat each day.

Does that help explain my thinking?

(Karim Wassef) #291

I do one major group each day - so let’s take tomorrow for example.

I’m planning a chest day and I’ll do a reverse pyramid bench press

Set 1. starting with the maximum weight I can properly do for 6 reps.
Set 2. maximum weight I can do now (a little less than set 1) for 8 reps.
Set 3. maximum weight I can do now (a little less than set 2) for 8 reps.
Set 4. maximum weight I can do now (a little less than set 3) for 6 reps.

By this time, my chest is usually super sore. and I do the same with incline press.

Then I do the same with decline press.

Then I do the same with cable flies to get the cross squeeze in the chest.

Sometimes, I’ll go for dumbell flies instead of benchpress to make sure each side is getting enough stress.

Some days, instead of a reverse pyramid, I’ll just do all light weight for 20 reps each… or stay really heavy for 4 reps each…

I do legs one day, chest one day, upper/lower back one day, shoulders/arms one day, and core one day… using more or less the same methodology but never training if a muscle is sore.

Weekends I either take a break or use my elliptical for cardio.

(Karim Wassef) #292

I will say that my method has two constants in it that may not be constant :smiley:

The first is that I can access 34cal of body fat / lb of fat mass…
The second is that my body need 0.7g / lb target lean mass to avoid catabolism and build more muscle.

There’s also one assumption that by metabolic rate is 2800 calories and that’s what all my math is based on. In reality, since I’m working out, that could be as high as 3100 calories and my body could start to adapt as I go through this in an unexpected way.

That’s why I am not recommending this for anyone else. It’s my n=1 experiment and is based on a couple of fundamental principles - the first is that ketosis is a balance of dietary fat for satiation and body fat for the rest. The second is that there will be a metabolic balance and I need to eat enough of the right ratios to keep my body from panicking…

I have only had 1440 calories today and I am not hungry - so at least day 1 looks like it’s working. I’ll post by blood results in a bit.

(Karim Wassef) #293

Before dinner = 72G,1.2K = 3.3GKI
After dinner = 81G, 0.7K = 6.4GKI

So clearly 112g of protein is enough :smiley:

I am happy to see my glucose staying in the 70s and 80s… We’ll see what tomorrow brings.

(Mario) #294

sounds not bad to me. i like to keep things simple as possible, but i still track everything.

my lean mass is approx 164 lbs, and i feel best around 180 gr protein. but i have days with 250gr also.

i just eat how much i feel hunger and check to stay around 180gr.

for gaining lean mass, every one told me to eat at least 3000 kcal. thats way too much for me, i am not able to eat that much! i gained easy with 2500, and still keeping all in shape with 2000. i have days with 1600, usually next day i am very hungry. but its fine with me.

so just for statistics, i will join you here until end of june, because i anyway start to reduce bodyfat now. i stay AAA - almost all animal. beside my daily lemon and here and the an avocado i eat only animal.

(Karim Wassef) #295

Day 12

Lost another 1.2lbs (mostly water) in 24hrs and blood glucose under control. No hunger but I am getting electrolyte headaches.

So looks like I’m recovering from my carnivore binge last week.

Last night ended at 80G, 1.3K = 3.4GKI
This morning I’m at 71G, 0.9K = 4.4GKI

So in the target range

(Karim Wassef) #296

The constant of 34cal/lb body fat comes from this research


The upper limit in that paper of 290+25 = 315 kJ/kg = 34 cal/lb. This is the maximum fat transfer rate.

The muscle building dietary protein requirement at 0.7g per lb of lean mass is experimentally determined for my body. Could it be higher? Maybe…

My results show that at 0.7, I don’t see a glucose excursion. At 1.2, I do see a glucose excursion… so there may be a better optimal point.

That’s where the coefficients for my muscle building + fat loss macro builds.

Anyone have feedback on this? :smile:

Really want some dialogue here… is it too controversial?

(Monique) #297

I admire your pioneering spirit @Karim_Wassef but the level of detail you drill down to is beyond my brains ability to compute :joy:

image https://media1.tenor.com/images/838380c93482db5666c903494b1f3229/tenor.gif

(Karim Wassef) #298

Ok. :slight_smile:

Did any part of my thought breakdown make sense?

(Mario) #299

it makes perfect sense! just not so sure, why you fear glucose that much?

(Ilana Rose) #300

What happens lower that makes you think you can’t grown muscle tissue? I’m not doubting you, but I’m curious how you arrived at that lower limit.

I do completely doubt the usefulness of the 34 calorie/lb of fat value. My guess based on how that value was arrived at is that it’s probably completely wrong when applied to people eating to satiety ketogenically.