Last week my morning weight reached an all-time high of 248 pounds.

I'm reasonably lean at this weight, but was starting to soften up a bit and also holding quite a bit of water ,so I decided to scale back on my calorie intake a bit.

By Wednesday of this week, I was already down to 236.

The scaling-back involved all macronutrients: protein, fat and carbohydrates.

By Wednesday of this week, after a week of lower calories (especially lower carbs), I was starting to look a bit "flat." By flat, I mean my muscles lacked the "pop" they normally have, when they are full of glycogen (glycogen is how our muscles store carbohydrate).

This flat feeling is very often discouraging to dieters, especially in the beginning stages of a diet, because it often looks like you're just losing muscle and not any fat.

It's necessary though, in order to lose fat.

If you have some sort of periodic refeed in your diet, such as a high carb day or a cheat meal, you will see after these periodic refeeds that your muscles "refill" and regain their "popped" look. It only lasts a day or so though, before your glycogen stores get depleted, and you're back to that flat look.

A good analogy might be a balloon: When it starts losing air, it looks saggy, and not firm. This is like your muscle losing glycogen. When you reintroduce glycogen (add air to the balloon), it regains its full, round look, and the sagging disappears.

Often when dieting, you may notice your lower back and stomach taking on a more "saggy" look after a string of low carb days. This is the same concept. Once you carb back up (and often it only takes a meal or two), the sagginess disappears and your lower back looks "tight" again (I'm speaking of relatively lean people now - if your body fat is over 15%, you probably won't notice much of a difference until you get it below that point, possibly even under 10% depending on how you as an individual carry your body fat).

So anyways, I carbed back up a bit last night, and also today, and I'm looking a lot fuller and leaner than I was just a day or so ago. I can't keep "carbing up" though, or I'll start packing on too much fat.
So I'll toggle back and forth between being a bit flat for a bit, then being more full for a bit (this is how carb cycling works, but there are other diet methods that utilize the same principles, such as the very low carb diet with a weekly refeed).

I will probably keep my weight in the 240-245 range this off-season, unless I experience some unforeseen growth spurt later this year. I still plan on competing as a light heavyweight for now, and the top end of that class is 198.25 so getting much over 245 is a bit unnecessary, unless I can guarantee that it's lean weight.

As for training, I'm still utilizing the following 4-day split:

Monday - calves and thighs
Wednesday - chest and shoulders
Friday - calves again, back and traps
Saturday OR Sunday - arms

I'm still using a higher volume approach and will probably stick with this for a while, as I'm progressing well with it and enjoying the workouts.

Lastly, my dish soap is scented like Ruby Red grapefruit.

How cool is that?

Shelby's Log