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Nutrition, Diet and Supplements Discuss nutrition, diet, cutting and weight loss. Supplement discussions as well.

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Old 07-30-2014, 10:27 PM   #1
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Default On a caloric deficit, do you find yourself burnt out more often?

This week I didn't lift for 4 days. I found myself just completely burnt out and ran down. This after having taken an extra day off or 2 in early July.
I had no motivation to train, wasn't sleeping well and just felt generally tired.
After taking 4 days off, I woke up today feeling amazing. And this afternoon my training session felt great. I had plenty of energy, felt great and didn't feel like I was just trying to get the session over with.
After thinking about it, I made the observation that sense I have been on a caloric deficit, I have noticed this cycle tends to occur every 4-6 weeks. I start feeling burnt, start dreading my sessions and take a few extra days off, then I feel better.

So my question: Is it common to get burnt out more frequently when on a caloric deficit? Has anyone else experienced this or made this observation? Is this normal?

I don't feel like the deficit I am on is too extreme, I am regularly losing 1-2lbs a week, no more. And while I do keep carbs low, I am eating carbs with every meal and am not on a "low carb" diet.
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Old 07-30-2014, 10:57 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigJosh View Post
So my question: Is it common to get burnt out more frequently when on a caloric deficit? Has anyone else experienced this or made this observation? Is this normal?

I don't feel like the deficit I am on is too extreme, I am regularly losing 1-2lbs a week, no more. And while I do keep carbs low, I am eating carbs with every meal and am not on a "low carb" diet.
I feel it depends on the diet, the amount of deficit and how well that goes with your training protocol. In order to elaborate on this, let me share my own experience with losing weight this year.

I cut about 18 lbs so far this year, and yes, on numerous occasions I felt like $hit, especially in the later stages.

I started the year at 189 (dehydrated, new years eve), rose up to 194 within the 1st week of Jan, and decided to cut weight very slowly. Fast forward 7 months, I weighed in today at 176 lbs. Last week, I hit PRs in every lift (#s are still very low, and I am still weak, ). The rate of weight loss is much slower than yours - 18 lbs in 30ish weeks.

Caveat - I was at 22-23% BF in Jan, and have been able to cut to 13-14% (not really lean). And while I gained strength, prior to Jan I had taken a break from any intense physical activity for over an year. So that may color my own experience.

That said, my observations from this year are as follows -

1) Deficits DO affect how much training energy I have. Personally, low carb doesn't help me feel strong. Hence I tried to work around it. So instead of a deficit everyday, I cycled my carb intake according to the planned lifting session.

2) For the first 4 months or so, I just did a Heavy-light-medium full body - which allowed me to eat well for the heavy and medium sessions and eat at a good deficit rest of the days - so, over a week I was in a marginal deficit.

3) Once I started doing singles and doubles, a full body became too much for me, and I changed the workouts, with 1 or 2 heavy lifts everyday. This wasn't such a good experience despite progressing. I couldn't cycle the diet as effectively any more, and I would end up feeling $hit more frequently and had to take more time off from lifting.

This is the week I end my "cut", so I am going all out, cutting carbs by a lot - almost keto ish. Despite a week off only 10 days ago, I feel relatively weak and less energetic.

Cliffs
- Type of diet matters. Keto ish diet seems great to lose weight. Not so good from energy standpoint for me at least (but then, I speak only from few days experience here which may not be worth anything, so take it with a pinch of salt).
- Staying consistently in deficit for longer time also matters - long term deficit hurt my energy levels. Cycling carbs helped
- The duration during which diet and training matched up was the best phase for me. Energy was good enough on the heavier days due to sufficient food. It was low on other days when I wasn't lifting - but that was ok since I was not lifting on those days anyway .

Last edited by kitarpyar; 07-30-2014 at 11:01 PM.
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Old 07-31-2014, 08:06 AM   #3
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I eat a lot less carbs on non training days, and I feel fine as I lose weight.
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Old 07-31-2014, 08:58 AM   #4
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Thanks for the feedback thus far.
Just to clarify, I eat moderate carbs on my non lifting days. By moderate I mean 75% of my meal is protein and fat and 25% carbs (approx.)And after I workout I tend to eat a balance of carbs and protein.
So when I said I eat low carbs, i don't mean in the traditionaly keto sense. I just mean i restrict my carb intake.
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Old 07-31-2014, 09:22 AM   #5
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I think it's s recovery issue. Your CNS can't keep up with the same volume or intensity of training on a caloric deficit, so every few weeks you start to overreach and need a few days of rest to get back to it. I don't think that the programming needs to change on a deficit, however, expectations on recovery and strength gains need to be adjusted accordingly. Keep doing what you're doing but take off a set of each movement. When on a deficit the entire goal should be to work as hard as possible within the limitations of the diet. You don't want to overreach when you're resources are already tapped out because eventually it'll probably bite you in the ass.
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Old 07-31-2014, 09:24 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigJosh View Post
Thanks for the feedback thus far.
Just to clarify, I eat moderate carbs on my non lifting days. By moderate I mean 75% of my meal is protein and fat and 25% carbs (approx.)And after I workout I tend to eat a balance of carbs and protein.
So when I said I eat low carbs, i don't mean in the traditionaly keto sense. I just mean i restrict my carb intake.
If most of your carbs are coming in after training, try switching it around and put more carbs pre training. The 2 meals before training kick up your carbs a little to help you in the actual workout, when you need it. After training cut the carbs out completely to take advantage of EPOC and help with fat loss.
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Old 08-06-2014, 09:10 AM   #7
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25% carbs is way too low for energy for a workout. My pre-workout meal and snack are more like 50%. I agree with others who said consume more carbs on workout days, especially before and after the workout. Lower carbs then on off days.
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