Lesson – Body Sculpting. (This article is under construction.)
15. Goal. – Drop or gain body weight, drop or gain body fat percentage.
14. Finding the start point.
13. Energy in – Energy used.
12. Controlling your metabolism.
11. Measuring body fat percentage.
10. Definition of weight loss.
9. What is organic chemistry?
8. What is a chemical reaction?
6. Table of the Elements.
5. Atoms and Elements.
3. What is a cubic centimetre?
2. Basic math.
The reason this section is called body sculpting is because it’s about altering your body to be the way you want it to be. Of course we can not alter genetic features like height and bone structure, but there is a lot we can do.
We will break this into 2 main parts.
1. Controlling body fat percentage.
2. Controlling the 2 muscle types.
If you ask most people what they would change about their body, they would say they want to control their body weight. If you ask what they want to change about the weight, they would say they want to reduce body fat in most cases. (insert link to statistical data here). Unfortunately due to the massive money making potential in the weight loss industry there are few places where you will find the truth. The first thing to do is turn off the late night television adds which show you the quick fixes. In many of these late night adverts you will see systems that will actually make you heavier and look larger.
So let us define weight loss. What do people mean when they say they want to lose weight? It can only be one of 2 things.
1. Lose muscle mass.
2. Lose body fat.
For most they want to lose body fat, which means they want to reduce their body fat percentage. Most people stand on the scales to see their progress in weight control. Herein lies a massive illusion based on the fact that (Insert tissue density analysis link here) 1 cubic centimetre of muscle weighs twice as much as one cubic centimetre of fat.
How does this fact affect us? When the person who has not done exercise in years tries a fitness regime, the first thing they do is exercise more. Because they have not done anything in years, all the muscle increases in size at a fantastic speed and only the most minute amount of fat is removed. Their body weight goes through the roof and they actually look larger because the muscle tissue grows underneath and within the fat tissue. The person looks at the scales and in the mirror and becomes disillusioned and gives up.
If our intention is fat loss the first thing we need to do is put the scales away and use the mirror. There are 2 other methods of measuring body fat, but we’ll talk about those later. For now we’ll use the visual technique. The places to look in the mirror are at the sections of skin between your deltoid and your triceps. Then the region just above your hip bone on either side of your body. Noticing definition here is a far better gauge than looking at the scales.
We do not need to exercise at this point. The first thing is to control our eating habits. Controlling our eating does not involve starving ourselves at all. In many peoples cases it will actually involve eating more. One of the concepts to understand here is metabolism. Metabolism is the rate at which our body burns energy. BMR (Base Metabolic Rate) is the energy burn rate of your body whilst you are resting. To control BMR we either
1. Do more aerobic exercise more or
2. Control our eating patterns.
At the moment we are going to concentrate on controlling our eating patterns. Going back to caveman days when we all ran around in loincloths spearing dinosaurs, we had 2 food cycles. One was a time of abundant food and one of famine. When there was an abundance of food we ate every 3 hours about 6 or 7 times a day. This regularity in eating triggered a high metabolic rate. With each meal the body took as much energy as it needed from the food and then discarded the rest as faeces. During famine we ate maybe once per day or less. The large time gap between meals triggered the metabolism to slow. With each meal the body used the smallest amount of food it could and the rest of the food it converted to fat and stored. The reason the body stored the fat was because it had no idea when it was going to acquire food again. Back to modern times. The first thing to do when stripping fat is to take the food you already eat and break it up into equal proportions to be eaten every 3 hours, 6 or 7 times a day. People with OCD will wake up during the night to make sure they eat every 3 hours all day, but this is unnecessary and futile.
To get more precise we do a calculation of ‘energy in’ minus energy used. We just want to use more than we intake to so the body will use those fat reserves for energy. Here we will control the energy in and you can keep using energy the way you normally do. Yes, this means you DO NOT have to do any more exercise than you do already. It does mean reorganising the quantities you eat. So you can keep eating hamburgers, deep fried food and chocolate if you want. It’s just how you eat it. A change of thinking is required. We must look at everything in units of energy. The name for energy units in the old imperial system is Calories and in the new metric system, Kilojoules. Use whichever one you like. The calorie is equivalent to 4.1868 multiplied by 1 Kilojoule, but the overall math is the same.
The other important variables are the proportions of carbohydrate to protein to fat. The proportions you need to eat are approximately
If any one of these is out by more than about 20% you will notice that you are running in a less than optimal state. Also if one of these is out, the body will think it is in famine once again and will function as outlined above in the section on ‘Controlling you Metabolism’ There are slight variations to these ratios for different reasons, but the 60:25:15 ratio works well for most.
Next we need to comprehend energy quantities. Fat contains more than twice the energy of protein or carbohydrate per gram. Fat is not bad at all. If anyone tells you it is they are lying. Fat is essential for many body processes and without it your body would have a hard time functioning. The calorie count for each is as follows:
Carbohydrate = 4 Calories.
Protein = 4 Calories.
Fat = 9 Calories.
Now that we have this information we can start to figure things out using a macronutrient chart or database. There are many available online, but the one we will use in this example is from bodybuilding.com
If we lookup 100grams of milk we will see that it’s breakdown is:
Carbohydrate = 4.65 grams = 4.65 * 4 Calories = 18.6 Cal
Protein = 3.28 grams = 3.24 * 4 Calories.= 12.96 Cal
Fat = 3.66 grams = 3.66 * 9 Calories = 32.94 Cal
Total Calories = 18.6 + 12.98 + 32.94 = 64.52 Calories.
To calculate the percentages we use the formula
Calories for that section / Total Calories = Calorie percentage.
Carbohydrate = 18.6 / 64.52 = 28.8%
Protein = 12.96 / 64.52 = 20.1%
Fat = 32.94 / 64.52 = 51%
Checking to see that all our results add up to 100%
28.8% + 20.1% + 51% = 99.9% which is close enough to 100% to say that it’s correct.
So the ratio Carbs/Protein/Fat is about 29:20:51.
Not exactly our ideal, but what we can do is add up all the foods we eat in one day and move the different foods around until we get as close as we can to 60/25/15
Finding the starting point.
How do we know how much to set our daily energy intake at to reduce fat. You can use the calculator below, but an easier method is to just go by feeling. Going back to the section on how metabolism works, we will need to convince the body that it exists in a time of abundant food. How do we do this? We make sure it is never hungry. So set your 3 hourly meals to a comfortable eating size. Your comfortable meal size will vary greatly depending on your body mass and environment. And then reduce your overall daily intake every week until you realise that you feel hungry at some time during the day. At the point you feel a bit hungry you should lift your daily intake back up by an increment. Each increment could be about half a meal size, but spread out over the whole day. As you decrease your body fat you may need less food as you may require less energy to carry less weight around. Recommendations will vary, but from here you could drop your daily intake once every 3 to 4 weeks and only by about 150 to 300 calories per day. You can experiment with different amounts, but too big a drop will create a shock type state which could trigger the famine type metabolic state. Aim for a more consistent loss, rather than big jumps. Below we have included a calculator to decide a starting point for your daily calorie intake depending on your body type, sex and activity level. It is more a confirmation of how you feel.
(Insert body type calorie calculator here.)
The next thing you can add to this is exercise. With exercise it has been found that if you exercise for about 4 or 5 months consistently then the new habit will form. At this point you may actually feel worse if you don’t exercise than if you do. The idea here is to get your heart rate up to somewhere between 120 and 140 beats per minute for half an hour per day. The least stressful way to do this is probably power walking. Some will argue this, but it works for this example. Power walking means to walk as fast as you can without both your feet leaving the ground at the same time. Both feet off the ground at the same time is technically running. We recommend starting easy.
Today power walk for 1 minute.
In 2 days time up that to 2 minutes.
2 more days after that up it to 3 minutes.
Keep adding 1 minute at a time for 2 months until you hit the half an hour a day goal. Try to do it in a park so you don’t have to stop for traffic lights and other obstacles.
Another suggestion to add to your diet is a good multivitamin tablet and extra vitamin C. (Show recommended dosages in mg here). You can not really overdose on vitamins as the excess gets passed in your urine stream.
Using these methods the author has seen one person lose 10kg in 11 weeks and another 20kg in about 6 months. (Not that we are checking weights or anythingâ€¦.)
Ripping (Creating muscle definition)
After a certain amount of time you will find you are trim. A damn site better than you used to be, but unless you are genetically inclined towards being ripped, most of us will find it hard to get super defined muscles using the above method. From here we use a final method called ripping if you want to go there. Being super ripped is impressive to many, but it possibly is stressful on your body. As such you may find after a while that being a little less ripped suits far better. Often the photos you see of super lean people in magazines are not sustainable by the person in the photo. In the authors personal opinion the super ripped look like they suffer from malnutrition.
Before we go into it, an important thing to note is brain chemistry. If you do not give your brain carbohydrates, it can not produce serotonin, dopamine and endorphins which must be present to feel happy. If you start to feel unhappy we’d suggest going back to the first method to take diet out of the equation.
The theory is that if you eat carbohydrates before you sleep your body will concentrate all the blood around your stomach when you are sleeping. It will do a super efficient job of digesting the carbohydrates and it will store the carbohydrates as fat. The method is to reduce your carbohydrate level after 3pm. You still want to keep your daily carb / protein/ fat ratio at 60/25/15, therefore what you do is push almost all your carbohydrates for that day to before 3pm and only eat the fats and proteins after 3pm. At the time of writing, experimentation has been done with about 1 to 2 handfuls of carbs (per meal) after 3pm to keep the brain chemistry running and this appears to be successful. You will have to monitor your emotional state. If you start having negative thoughts you may need to lift your carbohydrate intake after 3pm. Remember the overall daily carb / protein/ fat ratio intake must not change and you must NEVER be hungry. It may be beneficial to have a big carbo feed at 3pm to see you through. It is also recommended not to do this advanced section for more than 6 weeks. Take say a 4 to 6 week break in between each 4 to 6 week ripping session.
Another option to increasing metabolism speed is to eat things which promote it. A product called Thermo Blaster by the company Endura is quite impressive. Several years ago the tablet content was different to that of today and we are not sure why they changed. But now it consists of green tea leaves. Still works fantastically. Try 2 tablets twice a day. (Note: insert exact mg of green tea to take equivalent to this tablet dosage,)
BCAA (Branched Chain Amino Acids)
Absolutely amazing for keeping or building muscle mass whilst stripping fat. Put 1 to 2 serves into 1,5 to 3 litres of water and sip it over the whole day. Take an extra serve in 1.5 litres of water to sip whilst exercising.
VPX BCAA’s used to be available from asn.com.au. (Ring ASN to ask what their replacement product is.)
Their current product appears to be Amino Rush BCAA.
(Authors notes:- Links to be inserted. Insert tables in mathematical sections to make it easier to read.)
If readers would please use the contact page to send evidence supporting or dissolving the above. Comments will be greatly appreciated by the author(s).