Saturday, September 13, 2008

Client Results Update: Summer Competition

Some of you may recall that I announced an 8 week summer competition to celebrate the 1 year anniversary of this blog. Here, I'm showcasing four of the seven competitors that followed through (three had to drop out due to events related to travel and new job opportunities). The winner (Aaron) received the consultation fee in return.

Aaron, before at 203 lbs

Aaron, after at 186 lbs

Despite facing many challenges throughout the consultation period, Aaron managed to skillfully juggle a hectic work schedule and social events with his diet and training regimen; this netted him a loss of 17 lbs and a personal best in the deadlift. Having shown such success in a not-so-diet-friendly environment, I think Aaron was worthy of being crowned the winner of the lot.

I love the Leangains approach! The problem I usually have with dieting is hunger. With the Leangains approach, I actually felt full during the eating phase. The morning hunger wasn't bad at all, and knowing a filling meal was coming made it very easy to tolerate. Martin provided a detailed plan and was always available to offer feedback. I highly recommend the Leangains approach, and I intend on maintaining this lifestyle for the health benefits of IF'ing and the ease of use. It is so nice to not be thinking of 6 meals a day and to be free of the constant planning and cooking.

- Aaron

Tiffany, before at 150 lbs

Tiffany, after at 145-146 lbs (4 weeks)

Tiffany was only able to remain on the diet and training regimen for 4 weeks (due to relocating), but made impressive progress during that time. I was quite surprised that a mere 4-5 lbs fat loss had such a profound impact on her physique.

I've tried many different diet plans over the years, and they've all pretty much worked as long as I've complied with them. In the past, my dieting success has been directly linked to my motivation. I'm willing to put up with a lot of blood, sweat and tears (and hunger!) if I am motivated enough. Once the motivation is gone though, I always slip back up to a weight that's easier to maintain, because I'm not motivated enough to maintain a weight that requires deprivation and constant hunger. I'm also not motivated enough to drastically change my lifestyle. I would rather enjoy restaurants and bars at 20% bodyfat than eat perfectly clean all the time in order to be 15%. It's just not that important to me. My experience with intermittent fasting has been great because I've been fairly successful without much motivation. It fits so well into my schedule and lifestyle that it's not very painful. It still requires some discipline, but on this plan I will be able to maintain a lower bodyfat level without feeling deprived. I do miss breakfast, but it's a sacrifice I can easily make. It's way easier to give up breakfast than to give up restaurants and bars. Also, even though I miss breakfast, I definitely do NOT miss the mini-meals, or having to carry tupperware containers around with me everywhere. Even if I were to stop following a strict IF regimen, I will certainly never go back to 6 meals a day. I am thoroughly convinced that 6 meals a day has no positive effect on body composition. The only thing 6 meals a day ever did for me was to make my diet MUCH more difficult in every aspect - hunger, food obsession, convenience, compliance, feelings of deprivation, etc. I am much happier now that I know I can be more flexible with my diet and still make progress.

- Tiffany

Einar, before at 205 lbs

Einar, after at 186 lbs

Einar lost an impressive amount of body fat while gaining strength consistently throughout the consultation period, but I fear these pictures may not do his body transformation full justice.

Before I contacted Martin I didn`t know much about calorie counting or how to put together an efficient training routine. As I got started with the diet and training routine Martin gave me I was surprised of my own progress, I lost weight and gained strenght at the same time, something I didn`t even think was possible. All of this was done with the leangains approach, which saved me a lot of wasted time eating and preparing food. Any questions I had were answered with a detalied explanation, leaving little room for mistakes.
I would highly recommend Martin your personal trainer as he certainly has helped me to understand a lot about dieting and training.

- Einar


Megan made an impressive change to her physique, whilst gaining a good amount of strength and cardiovascular fitness, but has choosen not to display her pics for personal reasons. I have included her stats here instead.

Megan, before

Body weight: 265 lbs

Bench Press: 80 lbs x 5
Squats: 135 lbs x 6
Deadlift: 175 lbs x 5

Megan, after

Body weight: 240 lbs

Bench Press: 115 lbs x 8
Squats: 185 lbs x 8
Deadlift: 235 lbs x 4

I've struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember and when I say I've done every diet under the sun I really, really mean it (it's such a cliché right!?). They all work, but I always end up rebounding (aka binge eating...) once the feelings of deprivation hits me. BUT! I can honestly say that I think intermittent fasting may just be that missing part of the puzzle I've been looking for. Oh, and not to mention being made aware of all stupid mistakes I've made in the past! During the eight weeks I've been doing this diet, I've managed to be "strict" without feeling the need to overeat when I feel a setback or when I feel deprived. That's a first! I'm REALLY psyched about the progress I've made so far and I think hiring Martin was the best investment I've made in a very long time.

- Megan

Monday, September 1, 2008

Intermittent Fasting Roundtable + other stuff

Last week I participated in an intermittent fasting roundtable at Mike O'Donnell's blog. Nothing groundbreaking if you're familiar with the gist of my protocols and ideas, but well worth a read to see what Mike and Brad has to say about IF.

On the topic of blogs, you should also check out Lyle's six part series on the hormones of body weight regulation. A very good and comprehensive read about leptin, the body fat set point and it's implications for the dieter.

Another blog of interest is Chris Highcock's Conditioning Research which has heaps of studies on intermittent fasting.

That's all for today, but later this week I'll be announcing the winner of the anniversary/summer competition and post some new client results.

My name is Martin Berkhan and I work as a nutritional consultant, magazine writer and personal trainer.

Welcome to the Internet's leading resource on intermittent fasting and all things related.

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