Sunday, January 24, 2010

New Big 5ers

A couple updates. First of all, 2 of my Jiu Jitsu training partners have taken up the Big 5. They've both  been working on it for about a week, and the transition seems to be going well for both of them. I know there have been a couple snafus with things like BBQ beef having a ton of sugary sauce, and meatloaf being full of bread crumbs, but nothing to jeopardize the major forward progress that I know they'll see, and about which I will be posting in the future (while maintaining their anonymity, of course). One of them is planning to compete in a major tournament in April, the other is simply looking to drop some pounds and have more energy. They are both already excellent athletes, so it will be interesting to see if the Big 5 takes them to another level.

Personally, I'm suffering from a bit of overtraining syndrome. I'll be taking a few days off from the gym, and training Jiu Jitsu with a bit less intensity than is typical for me. I've really pushed myself to get back from the injury, and probably went a little too hard right away. Listening to your body is definitely a Big 5 principle, and when you feel like you're pushing against a brick wall when you try to do anything physical, and when you sleep for 10 or 12 hours straight when you aren't setting an alarm, your body is asking for a little extended recovery time.

I'm also going through some extra stress factors at the moment that aren't related to my diet or fitness routines. This isn't the place to vent about them, but viewing these matters as being entirely separate from physical well-being would be naive at best.

As always, thanks for reading.


  1. Hey it's Alanna from 11 on Main! So I understand that eating protein is really healthy for you, but I'm wondering how a short girl (4'11") would be able to eat on the diet you describe without gaining large amounts of weight (assuming exorcise was not counteracting an increase in calorie intake). In order a lose weight, a person of my size can only eat about 1200 calories a day...making the problem with full fat meats and dairy that they have such a dense calorie content. Would that mean I would only be able to eat a small amount of these foods?

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  3. If you read the Taubes book, (Good Calories, Bad Calories), I think you will find that dozens and hundreds of studies suggest that it's actually hormones that regulate whether your body stores fat.

    In other words, the calculator of calories in minus calories out = net weight gain in't accurate. What you eat matters as much/more than how much you eat. Insulin, which your body produces to process fructose (which is in both refined sugars and results from your metabolism's breakdown of carbohydrates), is the hormone I believe to be most responsible for sending your body the message to store fat.

    I'm not sure how you arrived at the 1200 calories number, but that sounds like starvation to me. I always tell people to think of the following: If you give your body the fat it needs, it won't think it has to hold on to its stores. If you deprive it of the (saturated) fat it needs, it has to save what it's already accumulated.

    This is in addition to the blood sugar effects of processing carbohydrates. I know I tend to eat less overall food when I eat fat and protein because I stay full longer, and experience real hunger only after a very long time. By comparison, I feel hungry about 25 minutes after eating a meal high in starches or sugars.

    The bottom line is this: If you drop the carbs, you'll drop the weight. I truly believe this, and I've seen it in myself and in many others.

    Let me know if that helps, or if you have any further questions. And thanks for the comment!