Started carnivore - fatigue and loss of strength

( #1

Hey guy,

I started carnivore since around 4 weeks ago. I started directly the diet with no transition period. First week, I saw myself hungry which is unsual for me then that went away, sugar craving took another 4 days to go away. I noticed the fatigue occurring within the first 10days and that went away. My appetite regulated to be 1-2 meals. In fact really I don’t feel hungry I eat because I feel weak. The thing is I’m losing my strength which is apperant as I’m working out and tracking the reps. After the first week I started noticing the loss of strength and it is still ongoing. Even when I workout for a day or 2, I take a day rest from fatigue though perviously that did not happen nor that the workout is intense.

I wanna know if anyone experienced something similar. Is it temporary thing or am I not eating enough? I do suspect that I’m not eating enough as I do really get hungry or so far able to consume loads of meat.

(Give me bacon, or give me death.) #2

Welcome to the forums!

There are two issues here. The first is fat-adaptation, which is something that everyone who embarks on a ketogenic diet has to deal with. The lowered athletic performance you are describing is a sign that your muscles are making do with ketone bodies until the fatty-acid metabolic pathway can be reactivated (it goes dormant during a prolonged period of high dietary carbohydrate/glucose intake). Fat-adaptation generally takes somewhere between six and eight weeks, and you will know you are fat-adapted once your performance returns to or exceeds your pre-carnivore level.

The second issue is that even people who have been eating a ketogenic diet for some time find that there is still an adaptation period when they fully eliminate carbohydrate and go strict carnivore. This period can take up to six months. You are brave to go directly from the standard American diet (SAD) to fully carnivore.

So give yourself six months or so before deciding whether the carnivore diet is for you or not. In the meantime, you should probably go easy on the exercise, since it will do no good to stress your body during the period of adaptation. If you find the adaptation really uncomfortable, you could eat carbohydrate at ketogenic levels (under 20 grams a day is what we recommend), get fat-adapted (and return to exercising), and then embark on fully carnivore eating. You would still have to adapt to the carnivore diet at that point, but it would be a lot easier.


I am long term zc.

You got some issues here which are key.

You are new to zc. You will experience long term fatigue IF you continue to exercise as hard as you have.

We have to adapt while we detox. 2 big things here. Adapt our bodies to total ketone burn and then we have to deal with detox and for each of it is SO individual.

Key on carnivore…just eat as your body asks. Never limit your food intake. If not hungry don’t eat and if you are more tired, take a nap vs. going to the gym or working out etc…

cause this is your adapt time. We can’t push it, change it, deal easily with it as our bodies are giving us key signals to ‘just listen to me’…big fatigue nap and eat well thru it. Big changes while healing, just adapt thru and eat great while this is all happening to you.

you can not and never will ‘rush’ in any way what zc will give you.
listen to the body. adapt accordingly and address those immediate issues and just ‘stay on zc’ and eat great and ‘live thru detox and adaption time’

you are ok and there ain’t a darn thing wrong with ya and there is NOT that much you can do while your body heals internally…while it takes from you what it needs and detoxes…so hold strong, eat best ya can all the time and let it happen…hold on for the zc ride cause IT IS SO fab when ya get thru your personal adapt time :slight_smile: You hold strong and keep on rocking it!!

and if you check the site we got an all in big zc/carnivore section here for only us carnivore people with experiences as we do this plan so come on in and read up and join our group…we have a great group of zc’ers here :slight_smile: and can help ya if you want it!

( #4

thank you both!

I just wanted to check that this is normal and thankfully all is good.

This new diet is doing great things to my health and gut that’s why I’m really keen in continuing it and making it a way of life.

As for the training I’m already lowering down cause I simply can not keep up and there is no need to kill myself over it.

Also right now I’m testing food mainly vegetables and seeing how my gut reacts, in order to see their effect on me.

its good I joined the forum and would look forward to reading ppl experiences!

(Troy) #5

+1 for sure

When I am back on carnivore. I find this extremely important. I am one to push myself even when tired.
I can NOT sleep during the day …user problem
Even on SAD

The best days and workouts are those that I DID incorporate in some light rest, nap or power nap😄

I do not fall asleep , just the 30-45 minute refresher does wonders. Emotionally and physically

(Bunny) #6

I’m a subscriber to Dr. Shawn Bakers Channel Meat RX on YouTube and I watch him closely (everyday) and he eluded to what your describing (fatigue, weakness) and he says he eats more fat to help with that when he’s lifting?

Just thought I would pass it along!


Ok, now if you are starting carnivore there are no vegetables at all in this plan…but it sounds like you are using carnivore to be like an elimination diet to see if you can tolerate certain veggies in your eating plan, which would put ya back into a low carb plan…which is absolutely fine if you are using carnivore for that purpose. I think eating only meat/seafood and using that as an elimination menu and detox the body is a very smart way to truly see what foods you can add back and work for your body and not against you. The longer you eat NO veggies at all and stay strict zc, the more ‘like real’ truth you find about what you can add back later if you want…in that the more you do heal your gut which is what you are doing now and that is great…the more that does heal and you add back things later, you get a big eye opening truth on what that veggie might do to you…it is gonna be either one your body can handle or one you say, wow I won’t be adding that back into my menu LOL Glad you are tackling it all and making it work for you!

Yes, that was me too…I just had to rest and relax and just chill out without doing any extra pushing thru the fatigue…I never would really sleep either but those power rests are truly important :slight_smile: :sunny: I am really glad you did what you needed too to get thru the adaption times and heck I learned something thru it all…I don’t have to go go go at full speed every day of my life like I was doing, hey I can rest and relax and enjoy just that too :wink:

( #8

Thanks for the info I’ll ensure to eat more fat I do think i do not eat enough generally. one way im trying to get this solved is just be having a massive meal since I do not get hungry much during the day.

( #9

Actually I started carniovre as an experiment to see which food I can consume with no issues. As I keep having endless gass which are very annoying and do not seem to end.

So as you said, I’m using carnivore as an elimination diet which I started doing it after 3 weeks of strict zc. Right now I’m trying to check in small quantities and in one meal only what are the food that affects me one at a time and listing them and wirting exactly what did I feel/get.

I’m not sure if 3 weeks of zc was enough time to be honest but it seems to be working so far.


yes I so agree that 3 weeks is still such a ‘detox and adaption’ time that real results can’t be given from your body at this point…time and more time is required as we all have to put that in to receive the big great benefits.

gas usually is veg. That little bit some zc new people try to keep a little? LOL Kill the veg and the gut gets so much better so much faster and of course depending on what veg your body likes better you get more or less from that plant food source.

Now if consuming NO plant matter at all while transitioning you could have a bit of gas while the gut heals so it would be a normal healing process as your body needs.

but any veg is usually number 1 trouble with gas in most people’s lives :slight_smile: but even on zc, it is way less but heck yea we gotta pass some gas sometimes LOL

The way to go…all in carnivore. No veg, no plant oils, no anything except meat/seafood…even drop dairy for at least a month…and while a month is low still, most times we recommend go ‘all in’ as zc truly is and bunker down for like 90 days…90 days gives real more results and truths.

"Playing in zc’ is hard cause one won’t ever get the truth of what the plan can do for a person if they are not 100% zc…so…but again, any elimination menu and restricting and observing on how you do is a great step in a great direction for you :sunny:


Does Shawn Baker still eat rice?

(Bunny) #12

Omg don’t even that he will have a fit…lol

(Give me bacon, or give me death.) #13

From his physique, which I got to examine at Ketofest last year, I should think not.

(And get your minds out of the gutter. :grin: He happened to be part of a group that went out to eat.)

(Susan) #14

The thing that gives me the worst gas in the world is GARLIC. Even a small amount.


for me it is the sweetness taste. Had to dump it totally cause I loved it but all of the sudden it switched to me eating like a spoonful of sugar on my food…garlic stinks literally now for me LOL

It takes so little plants to effect all of us in some way. When we know it and learn we can dump it and thrive :slight_smile:

(Katie) #16

I agree with a lot of what has been said already, and want to add that electrolyte maintenance is also important. Have you been adding sodium, magnesium, and potassium?