Confused about weight loss

Southpaw1972

Novice Member
Hey all. This is the first health and fitness forum I've posted on, and I look forward to reading posts and getting opinions. I'm classic skinny fat. 5 weeks ago I had a Dexa scan. At 6'1", 182.6lbs, I was scanned at 28.2% bf. Most of the fat is around my waist. The business that did my scan made a suggestion. A 40-40-20 macro plan, with a 300-500/day caloric deficit, and a 17/7 intermittent fasting schedule. To be clear, it's 40% protein, 40% fats, 20% carbs, at 2000kcals/day. I'm 49, and have no other underlying health conditions. My current workout is a 4 day upper/lower split. I focus on compound lifts, doing 10 minutes of cardio at the start and stretching at the end of my workouts. Monday/Thursday lower, Tuesday/Friday upper, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday off. So my macros break down about 180g protein, 100g carbs, 100g fats/day. I don't have cheat days. I follow progressive overload, and my weights are going up. Here's the big question. Should I care about my overall body weight? The reason I ask is 5 weeks in to this diet I'm now 175.3lbs, but my body fat scale says I've lost more muscle than fat. How's that possible eating 180g of protein a day? I'm supposed to do another Dexa scan in 3-6 months, but I'm worried I'm losing more muscle than I should be. Anytime you cut you'll lose muscle, but this seems odd especially when my legs and chest are growing. Maybe my scale isn't accurate? I'm afraid I'll be in the 160's before I reach my goal of 15% body fat. I need some help here. Thanks all.
 

Storvay

Distinguished Member
Hey all. This is the first health and fitness forum I've posted on, and I look forward to reading posts and getting opinions. I'm classic skinny fat. 5 weeks ago I had a Dexa scan. At 6'1", 182.6lbs, I was scanned at 28.2% bf. Most of the fat is around my waist. The business that did my scan made a suggestion. A 40-40-20 macro plan, with a 300-500/day caloric deficit, and a 17/7 intermittent fasting schedule. To be clear, it's 40% protein, 40% fats, 20% carbs, at 2000kcals/day. I'm 49, and have no other underlying health conditions. My current workout is a 4 day upper/lower split. I focus on compound lifts, doing 10 minutes of cardio at the start and stretching at the end of my workouts. Monday/Thursday lower, Tuesday/Friday upper, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday off. So my macros break down about 180g protein, 100g carbs, 100g fats/day. I don't have cheat days. I follow progressive overload, and my weights are going up. Here's the big question. Should I care about my overall body weight? The reason I ask is 5 weeks in to this diet I'm now 175.3lbs, but my body fat scale says I've lost more muscle than fat. How's that possible eating 180g of protein a day? I'm supposed to do another Dexa scan in 3-6 months, but I'm worried I'm losing more muscle than I should be. Anytime you cut you'll lose muscle, but this seems odd especially when my legs and chest are growing. Maybe my scale isn't accurate? I'm afraid I'll be in the 160's before I reach my goal of 15% body fat. I need some help here. Thanks all.
Apologies if this doesn’t apply to you but…

…some people get caught up so much in the ‘details’ - body fat percentages, macro this, protein that - that they lose track of the fundamentals.

Sustainability is the main thing. Some people find the smaller details extremely helpful, some less so. Like @realfrankturner said, go with how you feel and how you look. Keep to the basics.
 

IronGiant

Moderator
Any other confessions you'd like to make? such as your real location?
 

iamsludge

Active Member
I suggest not stressing about the deficit but instead cut the carbs lower, to almost nil if you can by going more keto or paleo. Above ground veg doesn’t count. No sugar, no potato and no flour. If you get into ketosis then your body will use stored fat for energy = better than catobolising your muscle. Eating more often helps keep you anabolic. If your excess baggage is visceral then you will want to def eat more cruciferous veg. Hopefully your excess bagage is just subcutaneous.
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
Hey all. This is the first health and fitness forum I've posted on, and I look forward to reading posts and getting opinions. I'm classic skinny fat. 5 weeks ago I had a Dexa scan. At 6'1", 182.6lbs, I was scanned at 28.2% bf. Most of the fat is around my waist. The business that did my scan made a suggestion. A 40-40-20 macro plan, with a 300-500/day caloric deficit, and a 17/7 intermittent fasting schedule. To be clear, it's 40% protein, 40% fats, 20% carbs, at 2000kcals/day. I'm 49, and have no other underlying health conditions. My current workout is a 4 day upper/lower split. I focus on compound lifts, doing 10 minutes of cardio at the start and stretching at the end of my workouts. Monday/Thursday lower, Tuesday/Friday upper, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday off. So my macros break down about 180g protein, 100g carbs, 100g fats/day. I don't have cheat days. I follow progressive overload, and my weights are going up. Here's the big question. Should I care about my overall body weight? The reason I ask is 5 weeks in to this diet I'm now 175.3lbs, but my body fat scale says I've lost more muscle than fat. How's that possible eating 180g of protein a day? I'm supposed to do another Dexa scan in 3-6 months, but I'm worried I'm losing more muscle than I should be. Anytime you cut you'll lose muscle, but this seems odd especially when my legs and chest are growing. Maybe my scale isn't accurate? I'm afraid I'll be in the 160's before I reach my goal of 15% body fat. I need some help here. Thanks all.

of the 7-8lbs you've lost, a lot of it will be water weight so the reduction in BF percentage not being darastic an be... kind of explained.. also scans etc can be variable in realiability, especially over such a short time period.

I think you need to set expectations pretty realistically. If you looked skinny fat at 182 lbs, you're not going to look fantastic at 175, especially at 6'1.

If you are 28.2% body fat at 182.6 lbs, then your target weight assuming you ONLY burn fat for 15% bodyfat is 13.2% bodyweight reduction which would be approximately 25lbs of pure fat weight loss. This will be pretty difficult to do without losing SOME muscle in terms of a long cut in a sustained persistent caloric deficit.

Even when competing in BB shows, you can expect to lose some lean mass in sustained dieting phases and these are trained athletes, most of the time maintaining their PRs until the latter part of a cutting cycle. Therefore we can assume burning 25lbs of pure fat with no lean muscle loss will be tough, especially for a beginner, so you might need to dip lower than this number to hit your target.

So if you want to be 15% body fat, if we're to trust the DEXA scan, you'll need to hit 162lbs to hit your target 15% bodyfat.

15% doesn't always look very pretty. In the past with people I've trained, I've found 15% ish looks good on people who have a decent amount of muscle mass. If they don't, then really 10% and looks great with their tops off but they look malnourished with clothes on. To get to 10% bodyfat, you'll have to lose 32lbs of weight. That'll put you at 150lbs, That'll give you a BMI of 19.8 (not the most reliable indicator of much but wanted to make sure you weight was fairly healthy).

From there, you really need to work on building up a foundation of muscle mass so that you will look more muscular at higher bodyfat percentages.


Does this make sense?

By the sounds of things you've lost weight and you're probably closer to your goal of 15% than you think, but is your goal to hit 15% or is your goal to look good/aesthetic once you're diet is finished? If you're 175lsb at 6'1 an still maintaning a high bodyfat percentage, many would argue you need to train and build muscle with strong foundation and THEN cut - so essentially train in a caloric surplus and gain muscle. Trying to establish the foundations whilst within a caloric deficit is very difficult.

Skinny fat is a tough situation to be in. If you're skinny, its simple - gain weight. If you're mordibly obese - its easy, lose weight. Normally someone pretty fat will have some form of muscle under it and will have a much higher weight to leverage under a barbell leading to some great conditioning. Someone skinny has a simple goal of just gaining weight. Skinny fat is a tough position because you don't want to gain MORE fat but you don't want to look too small.



Out of interest, what're your lifts on:
1. Deadlift
2. Dumbell bench press incline and flat
3. Squat
4. Military press or Dumbbell press
5. Barbell press


This will probable gauge where your priorities should lie.




Sorry for the essay. If you just want to hit 15%, you know by the maths what the target weight is. You've lost weight so you're doing fantastically well compared to most people first dieting.
 
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