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dallas470

How to balance the CR diet with a heavy exercise program???

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Has anybody done CR while also having a heavy exercise load? I'm 6'1, and my weight goal is to dial it down to 170. I've had a few cardiac issues in the past but the thing is that I feel a lot better when my weight is low and I regularly include aerobic exercise, so I'm trying to make that work with CR. I'm getting about 125 grams of protein and around 2000 calories a day but I'm sure I'll have to bring those calories down some to reach my weight goals. Would 1700 cals sound like a healthy CR plan for someone that needs to lose just a few more pounds? 

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Hi Dallas,

Welcome to the board! What exactly do you mean by a heavy exercise load? A few people around here have done some very heavy exercise loads. Dean had one for an extended period of time that was quite heavy - if memory serves me correct he was doing the equivalent of 30 000 - 40 000 steps daily, every day). At 6"1 and 170 it's hard to say on whether or not you would be CR'd. Perhaps mildly-so (I personally have been anywhere between 19.9 and 21.3 in the near-decade I have been observing a health-oriented lifestyle). That might put me in the mild CR group. Certainly, a lot of my bloodwork markers indicate this. My initial reaction is that 125 grams of protein is quite high and is much higher than the majority of people around here. High protein often signals growth in the body and has some problematic effects like increasing mTOR, IGF-1, and so forth. It's potentially problematic for the body to be living in a state of growth/anabolism as opposed to cellular maintenance/repair, which is what we are aiming for.  Your calorie intake already seems conservative, especially if you have a heavy exercise load. 1700 calories is certainly very doable, though perhaps you'll need more. The quality of those calories matters a lot too. 

What do your 2000 calories currently look like? Can you be more specific about your exercise demands? In periods of my life, I've run 50 miles per week or trained 9-10hours a week for Olympic distance triathlon, so I'm reasonably familiar with a heavy exercise program.  How did my weight vary? Simply put, it didn't. I just adjusted my calorie intake to match this. When my BMI dipped below 20 though I found I didn't have quite the energy (or look) that I wanted. I still felt massively better than before taking on a healthy lifestyle, but not quite as good as I do at a more generous BMI. That's just my experience.

Once again, welcome! Keep asking any questions you may have.

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In terms of exercise I concentrate on muscular endurance. Every day I do 4-5 sets of kb swings, and then 20 other sets of lower body exercises all using high reps often 2-300 or 1000, the latter for exercises with a very low level metabolic exertion. I also use my rowing machine 2x a day, and burn 400 calories each time. So I get quite a bit done. I realize that the protein load is kind of high but I'll also feel bad if I decrease that amount, so I suppose that I'm good with it. 

For my diet I'll have 4-5 eggs for breakfast, and usually eat a couple of cans of tuna for lunch. Then I'll have dinner which gives me the majority of my calories for the day. Ill also have some frozen vegetables. So my diet is pretty close to the carnivore style if that makes any difference.  My BMI is 23.2 from the app I just downloaded. Btw, is there a preferred method to calculate bmi? And would that have a particular name for the process? 

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I read an article called The Exercise Paradox which claims that the Hadza people do a lot of exercise (18000+ steps) but still only burn 2400 calories as measured by the "doubly labeled water" method. The writer hypothesises that a certain level of exercise, at least once the body adjusts to it, changes what the body expends energy rather than how much energy the body spends. This may be part of why exercise is good for your - diverting energy away from various inflammatory processes etc.

That led me to believe that you can't actually "eat back your exercise calories" in the long term.

I don't know how much that applies in the special case of a CRON lifestyle though.

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3 hours ago, elatedsquirrel said:

I read an article called The Exercise Paradox which claims that the Hadza people do a lot of exercise (18000+ steps) but still only burn 2400 calories as measured by the "doubly labeled water" method. The writer hypothesises that a certain level of exercise, at least once the body adjusts to it, changes what the body expends energy rather than how much energy the body spends. This may be part of why exercise is good for your - diverting energy away from various inflammatory processes etc.

That led me to believe that you can't actually "eat back your exercise calories" in the long term.

I don't know how much that applies in the special case of a CRON lifestyle though.

Thanks for the post.  Most hunter gatherers are always moving and have to work a lot harder for their food than people in industrialized societies and that's why obesity is unknown to them.  If they ate more then they'd gain weight just like anyone else.  

 

It also seems that I have a lot of painful work of going down from a 23 BMI to a 20, but with a will anything is possible.  Thanks for the replies, guys. 🙂

 

 

Edited by dallas470
wanted to add something

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On 5/7/2020 at 8:07 AM, dallas470 said:

It also seems that I have a lot of painful work of going down from a 23 BMI to a 20, but with a will anything is possible.

Yeah, but it should generally get easier as you get into it.

I'd suggest getting a Cronometer subscription and a decent food scale, if you don't use these already.  People are terrible calorie estimators....  Also, I like the Withings Body Cardio scale which does a reasonably good job estimating muscle mass and body fat (at least in my case, compared to a DEXA scan).

Most CR-practitioners would be horrified by your protein intake and these eggs have a lot of methionine in them, which based on some rather plausible theories contributes to aging. I am also 6'1" but my current BMI is about 19.  Over the last four weeks I've consumed an average of 1920 calories per day (I am a vegetarian, mostly vegan).

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On 5/7/2020 at 1:39 AM, dallas470 said:

Has anybody done CR while also having a heavy exercise load? I'm 6'1, and my weight goal is to dial it down to 170. I've had a few cardiac issues in the past but the thing is that I feel a lot better when my weight is low and I regularly include aerobic exercise, so I'm trying to make that work with CR. I'm getting about 125 grams of protein and around 2000 calories a day but I'm sure I'll have to bring those calories down some to reach my weight goals. Would 1700 cals sound like a healthy CR plan for someone that needs to lose just a few more pounds? 

I agree with the previous posters: why all that protein if you are not trying to build muscle tissue? Although a high ratio of protein and modest calories is sometimes favorable to weight loss. At BMI 23 you don't sound overweight. The advice most people will give to you is to keep on like that, maybe down to 1800 kCal, not less, and redesigning your diet to a more plant-based one, even by keeping some ratio of animal protein (I do not suggest quitting abruptly). The use of cronometer and targeted supplementation is highly recommended.

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You can eat whole food, plant based diet and have extreme strength (from my experience) but not fluffy size - I used to want muscle size more than strength years ago.

The more important variables are working out every day and sleeping well.

The best physique I ever had at the same time maximum strength was working out 6 or 7 days per week.  Lots of volume.

 I was almost doing dips and chins with 135lbs - 3 plates- but I never made it.  That was my goal.

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Clinton, this is seriously impressive!

I can barely do 11-12 pull-ups on my hoops, without any added iron :)  I am about 145 lbs on average.  I do a series of 3-4 sets of 10 pull-ups a couple of days every week, but it seems to be my limit.  I actually tried to do five sets over the last few months, but ended up with pain around my brachioradialis, so had to ease off.

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You can do pull-ups every day- trust me.  But every second day is pretty efficient.

If you can get a weighted belt with a chain (like what I use), start by adding just 5lbs.  Slowly and consistently increase the weight, 5lbs every 2 weeks or even sooner.

I had tendinitis issues as well- in my case it went away when I started drinking a lot more water.

 

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Be raw and lower your fat percentage to a percentage that you feel good about so you can reach over 100 years depending on your genetics, past habits, current age, etc.

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Dallas - I think just focuss on the big-picture/long term;  maybe don't set up too agressive goals like 1700kCals - consider just sticking w 2000kCals per day BUT DO IT AND STICK WITH IT!  Just my opinion.

It is more sustainable and you can also retain some muscle mass. 

I believe that goals should always be incremental so that they are more achievable (and avoid dissapointement); then when you achieve your goal, move the goal posts, rinse, repeat. 

 

 

Edited by Clinton

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On 5/19/2020 at 12:43 AM, Ron Put said:

Clinton, this is seriously impressive!

I can barely do 11-12 pull-ups on my hoops, without any added iron 🙂 I am about 145 lbs on average.  I do a series of 3-4 sets of 10 pull-ups a couple of days every week, but it seems to be my limit.  I actually tried to do five sets over the last few months, but ended up with pain around my brachioradialis, so had to ease off.

lol - Ron - this is kinda my playground.

What I can say is that if you are extremely consistent and focussed, you can nearly dip and chin your own body weight PLUS that same amount on a chain.  It feels good and looks good.- muscle strength and mass is priceless - and as Peter Attia says ... it is a massive glycogen sink - the way he describes, it is nearly impossible for a guy with lots of muscle mass to develope diabetes.  My take: lift that iron, push some, pull some and pull some off the floor each day.  (like chins, dips, deads one day and bench, rows, lunges on another). 

Edited by Clinton

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1 hour ago, Clinton said:

lol - Ron - this is kinda my playground. ...

Alright, you've inspired me.  I haven't been to a gym where I used to work, but I do simple yoga/pilates stuff at home, including pull ups on the gymnastic rings I have on the side of the house.  I'll stick a 10lbs weight in a backpack and see if I can do 10 :)

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