C7f9f16f8f75a3d1f7057fc8fc44a861
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Relative newbie looking to lose fat

by (5)
Updated about 6 hours ago
Created March 19, 2012 at 9:40 PM

Hey all,

I'm a 25 year old female, 5'9", 153lbs, ~24% body fat (per my scale). I'm trying to lose fat and build muscle.

I've been eating Paleo (ala Robb Wolf) for over 2 weeks now and lost about 1 inch off my hips and waist. I've allowed myself 1 cheat meal. I will allow myself another in about 2 weeks.

I do CrossFit 2 times a week and use the elliptical 3-5 times a week (used to run - knee injury right now). I also take 1 or 2 walks a week with my dog and a weighted vest and go to Zumba 1 night a week. I like to workout twice a day when I can, early in the morning and again around 2pm.

I am planning to make some adjustments.

I am not hungry as often as I was but I still am in the habit of 3 meals and 2 snacks, so I plan to start Intermittent Fasting instead. So I plan to wake at 4am, go to CrossFit or the gym at 5am, have some espresso after, eat around 11am, and then eat again around 7pm.

I am also going to start doing CrossFit 3x a week. I also plan to cut back on the high intensity cardio and replace that with heavy lifting. I will probably do cardio 2 or 3 times a week. I will probably keep the walks with my dog and the Zumba because I enjoy them.

So what do you think? Any suggestions on how to improve my new approach?

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19120 · March 20, 2012 at 2:52 PM

Research IF thoroughly. It has helped me, but don't fool yourself into thinking it's effective because of starvation - it's all about a smaller eating window with IF, but you're still getting a day's worth of food. YMMV, but I like IF for my own body.

Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106
19120 · March 20, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Definitely make sure you get enough food/calories during the day - with an IF eating window or not.

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1115 · March 20, 2012 at 1:42 AM

Nothing wrong with continuing doing what you enjoy. If someone told me to put down my hockey stick and get off the ice because the cardio was bad for me, they would probably be getting a slapshot to the face. :) Do what you love, it's the stuff that makes life worth living, just listen to your body. Also, if you hang around here enough, you'll soon find there is a fairly vocal dichotomy of paleo hackers: those who love crossfit and those who think the intensity/overtraining/injuries will cripple us. hehe. To each, his/her own.

C7f9f16f8f75a3d1f7057fc8fc44a861
5 · March 20, 2012 at 1:10 AM

I guess I do know more than I think I know. :) Right now, I'm just not wanting to eat 5 meals a day. So that spurred my interest in IF. And super interesting article. Thanks! I will work on cutting out the cardio... Stopping the elliptical is easy but I do, unfortunately, enjoy running and Zumba.

C7f9f16f8f75a3d1f7057fc8fc44a861
5 · March 20, 2012 at 1:06 AM

I guess that I should have mentioned that one reason I want to do IF is because I'm just not hungry all that much. :) Thanks for the help though!

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5 Answers

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115 · March 19, 2012 at 10:32 PM

Don't cheat on your meals, and, as you mentioned, stop using the elliptical and crossfit more often (3 on, 1 off.) Also, I'd stay away from IF. In one of Robb Wolf's first few podcasts he talks about IF--it's only to be used by people who really have their diet controlled and their sleep regulated, which is also something to note. Sleep as much as you can, in a dark room.

Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106
19120 · March 20, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Definitely make sure you get enough food/calories during the day - with an IF eating window or not.

C7f9f16f8f75a3d1f7057fc8fc44a861
5 · March 20, 2012 at 1:06 AM

I guess that I should have mentioned that one reason I want to do IF is because I'm just not hungry all that much. :) Thanks for the help though!

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0 · December 31, 2013 at 4:16 PM

It sounds like you have some good ideas in there, but I would only caution that you've only been dialed in on the food piece for a little more than two weeks, where most recommend trying out a new diet regime for at least 21 days and then observing differences.

From your post, it sounds like you're doing a lot of exercising, which may eventually turn around to bite you; like others have mentioned, adding too many stressors (exercise, fasting, stress from work, relationships, sleep quality) will eventually cause you to plateau or even regress. I personally work on 2 heavy volume kettlebell sessions a week, with lots (5-6 miles a day) of walking and some body-weight work with pullups and squats.

It doesn't take marathon efforts, but a little time will work wonders. No need to overdo it, it sounds like you're on the right path! Best of luck.

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0 · December 31, 2013 at 11:38 AM

Do the research on fasting! It can send you off on a binge if you are not careful. Also your body could go into "survival" mode and hang on to your body fat.

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0 · March 20, 2012 at 2:19 AM

I'm 5'9, and 180, 24% body fat. I'm stressed about my body fat. I want to loose more, I'm considering fasting, is that the way to go?

Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106
19120 · March 20, 2012 at 2:52 PM

Research IF thoroughly. It has helped me, but don't fool yourself into thinking it's effective because of starvation - it's all about a smaller eating window with IF, but you're still getting a day's worth of food. YMMV, but I like IF for my own body.

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1115 · March 20, 2012 at 12:26 AM

Not sure why you even asked this question because it sounds like you've got a firm grasp on this lifestyle. I agree with hile about IF... IF isn't something to be used by "metabolically deranged" people, but with your height and weight it sounds like you're fairly close to a very healthy (aka lean) body weight. So, try IF-ing out. If it feels good, stick with it. If not, pick something else and move on. Just be consistent. Even if you go back to three meals and two snacks, which works for plenty of paleo people - especially those with families, more important than WHEN you eat is WHAT you eat. keep it healthy, keep it paleo, and, if leaning out is your goal, keep it lower carb. (but eat enough carbs to sustain your crossfit). Keep up the dog walks, I'm going to steal your weighted vest dog-walk idea. :)

ETA: Forgot to mention that you should rethink the cardio! It works against your leaning-out goals! http://everydaypaleo.com/2011/09/02/friends-dont-let-friends-do-cardio/

Good luck!

Fb677d93955eb0fac597e3d94db92980
1115 · March 20, 2012 at 1:42 AM

Nothing wrong with continuing doing what you enjoy. If someone told me to put down my hockey stick and get off the ice because the cardio was bad for me, they would probably be getting a slapshot to the face. :) Do what you love, it's the stuff that makes life worth living, just listen to your body. Also, if you hang around here enough, you'll soon find there is a fairly vocal dichotomy of paleo hackers: those who love crossfit and those who think the intensity/overtraining/injuries will cripple us. hehe. To each, his/her own.

C7f9f16f8f75a3d1f7057fc8fc44a861
5 · March 20, 2012 at 1:10 AM

I guess I do know more than I think I know. :) Right now, I'm just not wanting to eat 5 meals a day. So that spurred my interest in IF. And super interesting article. Thanks! I will work on cutting out the cardio... Stopping the elliptical is easy but I do, unfortunately, enjoy running and Zumba.

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