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Thread: Can You Stop LBM Loss?

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    Can You Stop LBM Loss?

    Title should have read - Can you stop lbm loss while cutting?

    Just crunched some numbers and not very happy with what I found.

    From 27 May to today I have eliminated 6.81 pounds of fat which is a very good thing! However, I've also lost 5.0 pounds of lbm. This is NOT a good thing. How can I slow down losing lbm while continuing to burn off the fat? Can it be done? At least slowed down? LBM is just too damn hard to put on so I'd like to keep as much as possible. (as we all would).

    If this trend continues I will waste away to the proverbial 98 pound weakling before I can get to my <15% bf target so I can try my first test cycle...

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    First off what are all your stats? diet? workout? supps? cardio?

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    5'10"
    185.2 lbs
    19.2% bf
    bike 15-25 miles per day in the am (fasted cardio)
    lift three times per week.
    1815 calories (2265 TDEE) 35% protein/40% carbs/25% fat

    Doing austinites fat burn stack (since 15 Jun), fish oil, multi vit, l-citrulline, beta alinine, creatin, msm, bcaa, gaspari super pump max, and casein protein shake maybe three times a week.

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    Everyone is different, but if that were MY macro split, I'd bump protein and reduce carbs, and maybe fat.

    You've been around awhile. Do we need to look at your meal plan? or have you already posted that?

    Here's the thing. When cutting, you will always lose some LBM. Get used to it. However, let's consider HOW you lose LBM in relation to BF%

    Just say you are 20% BF. That means you are 80% lbm.

    But let's dig deeper.

    Assume your skeleton weighs 20% and your internal organs weigh 12% of your total body weight.

    So this is what we end up with

    Can You Stop LBM Loss?-analysis.jpg

    these (skeleton and internal organs) are national averages based on body weight, but my point is, you probably have a muscle to fat ratio of 2.4:1, but you are losing muscle at a much slower weight than your current ratio. Your current ratio is somewhere in the neighborhood of 1:1, which means you will run out of fat to lose much quicker than you are burning through muscle.

    But here's the kicker.

    When you bulk, you have to add muscle at a higher ratio than when you cut, else you truly will be losing ground.

    These ratios will be much different for everyone, and what I just told you is based on generalities, and not specific to you.

    So do not despair! You are losing the dreaded fat, but now you see why the muscle, when lost, is such a concern.

    the other thing to think of is this...

    some people lose fat easier than they can gain muscle.

    others can gain muscle easier than they can lose fat.

    so you will have to consider where you are in this spectrum, and once you get to the target bf%, then learn to do a clean bulk?

    just some thoughts mate.

    Good luck!

    ---Roman
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    Water is considered and counted as LBM in most bf testing methods.

    Not sure how youre testing but I'd bet a good bit of that 5 lbs is just water.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Hartman View Post
    Water is considered and counted as LBM in most bf testing methods.

    Not sure how youre testing but I'd bet a good bit of that 5 lbs is just water.
    Braz, how are you testing this? Generally when I'm looking for super accuracy, I get a bodpod assessment. It's not cheap, ($30 to $40), but if you do it once or twice a year it's worth it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Hartman View Post
    Water is considered and counted as LBM in most bf testing methods.

    Not sure how youre testing but I'd bet a good bit of that 5 lbs is just water.
    All I can use on a daily basis is one of those scales that does weight/fat%/water%/muscle%/bone%. I know they are not the most accurate but as long as its consistent it can be a useful tool. I do go to a bod pod every 2-3 months and since I just got the scale I will be able to "calibrate" it to the bod pod to see if it is being consistent. I hope what you said about water is true because that would be ok with me. But...

    I have lost 1/2" to 5/8" in my bicep measurement and just a glance in the mirror seems to show I am losing some lbm. Don't get me wrong - compared to 3 months ago the man in the mirror is looking pretty good! Just don't want to reinvent the wheel and have to build 10-15 pounds of muscle lost to cutting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by austinite View Post
    Braz, how are you testing this? Generally when I'm looking for super accuracy, I get a bodpod assessment. It's not cheap, ($30 to $40), but if you do it once or twice a year it's worth it.
    I do a bod pod every two to three months and being retired military I can get it non gratis at the Health and Wellness Center on base. For in between I have one of those handy dandy bathroom scales that measures several different values. It seems to be consistent so far. It was only off 2/10ths of a pound on weight but it was off 1.5% on bf%. I checked within 30 minutes of my last bod pod assesment and will continue to check as I do more of the pods.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Times Roman View Post
    Everyone is different, but if that were MY macro split, I'd bump protein and reduce carbs, and maybe fat.

    You've been around awhile. Do we need to look at your meal plan? or have you already posted that?

    Here's the thing. When cutting, you will always lose some LBM. Get used to it. However, let's consider HOW you lose LBM in relation to BF%

    Just say you are 20% BF. That means you are 80% lbm.

    But let's dig deeper.

    Assume your skeleton weighs 20% and your internal organs weigh 12% of your total body weight.

    So this is what we end up with

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	analysis.JPG 
Views:	151 
Size:	20.4 KB 
ID:	141245

    these (skeleton and internal organs) are national averages based on body weight, but my point is, you probably have a muscle to fat ratio of 2.4:1, but you are losing muscle at a much slower weight than your current ratio. Your current ratio is somewhere in the neighborhood of 1:1, which means you will run out of fat to lose much quicker than you are burning through muscle.

    But here's the kicker.

    When you bulk, you have to add muscle at a higher ratio than when you cut, else you truly will be losing ground.

    These ratios will be much different for everyone, and what I just told you is based on generalities, and not specific to you.

    So do not despair! You are losing the dreaded fat, but now you see why the muscle, when lost, is such a concern.

    the other thing to think of is this...

    some people lose fat easier than they can gain muscle.

    others can gain muscle easier than they can lose fat.

    so you will have to consider where you are in this spectrum, and once you get to the target bf%, then learn to do a clean bulk?

    just some thoughts mate.

    Good luck!

    ---Roman
    Thanks TR! Another well thought out answer as usual. I figured I would lose at least 5 pounds of lbm while reaching my goal but it seems to have accelerated of late. I was actually gaining lbm for awhile but it seems to have reversed. I will do as you suggest with adding more protein less carbs/fat. I could post a typical day but my diet for the last 3 months has really been pretty good. Probably better than any other time in my life really. I usually hit my caloric goal and macros within a few percent every day. Very little of what I've been eating is processed. Maybe I should add a few more calories (say, tdee-250 instead of tdee-450) and even if it slows down the fat loss it might almost halt the lbm loss.

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    Yeah. I'd bump the protein from the fat. But cycle ur carbs out

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    Quote Originally Posted by austinite View Post
    Braz, how are you testing this? Generally when I'm looking for super accuracy, I get a bodpod assessment. It's not cheap, ($30 to $40), but if you do it once or twice a year it's worth it.
    I've never had bod pod done but my understanding is it counts all fat free mass as LBM?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorPectorial View Post
    Yeah. I'd bump the protein from the fat. But cycle ur carbs out
    I try to respond to threads about subjects that I have direct experience with or at least have something beneficial to offer. You should consider doing the same.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Hartman View Post
    I've never had bod pod done but my understanding is it counts all fat free mass as LBM?
    yeah, I just got on the manufacturer website and you're right.

    Body Composition
    Total Weight
    Fat Mass
    Fat-Free Mass

    Other measurements:
    Thoracic Gas Volume (TGV) estimate
    Thoracic Gas Volume (TGV) measurement
    Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) estimate
    Total Energy Expenditure (TEE) estimate
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    Gotta be careful re diet before you have it done who wants to really know their total gas volume lmfao.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Hartman View Post
    Gotta be careful re diet before you have it done who wants to really know their total gas volume lmfao.
    lmao.. no shit. But yea they tell you to come in fasted usually.
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    Quote Originally Posted by austinite View Post
    lmao.. no shit. But yea they tell you to come in fasted usually.
    dumb question time.

    where do you go to get this test performed?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Times Roman View Post
    dumb question time.

    where do you go to get this test performed?
    Great question actually. Lot's of gyms, physical therapy facilities carry them. You can use a locater below:

    COSMED Test Site Locator
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    Quote Originally Posted by austinite View Post
    Great question actually. Lot's of gyms, physical therapy facilities carry them. You can use a locater below:

    COSMED Test Site Locator
    cool! bookmarked.

    only $30 or $40, huh?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Times Roman View Post
    cool! bookmarked.

    only $30 or $40, huh?
    Some places will give you deals. I paid $100 in advance and I get 4 per year. So it only costs me $25 per assessment. I'm sure they're hoping I buy a smoothie or a T-shirt whenever I go in.
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    I'll have to check this out. I have the body fat calipers, and although I'm getting pretty good at using, i have my doubts as to how accurate. Ideally, for bf calipers to be accurate, i'd have to check all points on the body, but of course, that would be ridiculous....

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    Don't eat or exercise 2 hour prior to testing or it may throw off the accuracy. Besides the bod pod is a fairly confined area so passing gas is not recommended... lol.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Times Roman View Post
    I'll have to check this out. I have the body fat calipers, and although I'm getting pretty good at using, i have my doubts as to how accurate. Ideally, for bf calipers to be accurate, i'd have to check all points on the body, but of course, that would be ridiculous....
    I think consistency is more important. If consistent you can know whether you are trending higher or lower. I guess sometimes you don't have to know exactly where you are to get where you're going. I know my bathroom scale won't be dead accurate. I just want to know it's consistent.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brazensol View Post
    Don't eat or exercise 2 hour prior to testing or it may throw off the accuracy. Besides the bod pod is a fairly confined area so passing gas is not recommended... lol.
    That's almost fasting. But seriously, what would the standard deviation be if you did eat? I'm considering doing this as it sounds interesting.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kelkel View Post
    That's almost fasting. But seriously, what would the standard deviation be if you did eat? I'm considering doing this as it sounds interesting.
    standard deviation?

    what are you, some kind of statistician??? =)

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    Occasionally yes! I just mean how much will eating or exercise throw off the results.

    That locator showed one location about 11 miles away!
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    Quote Originally Posted by kelkel View Post
    Occasionally yes! I just mean how much will eating or exercise throw off the results.

    That locator showed one location about 11 miles away!
    think about it. it would vary by how much you ate and are holding in your stomach, compared to all the previous times.

    so maybe instead of dropping a deuce, if you hold onto it, it would "improve" your lbm profile?

    reminds me of a ron white comedy routine

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    That's some funny shiat TR!
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    Quote Originally Posted by kelkel View Post
    That's almost fasting. But seriously, what would the standard deviation be if you did eat? I'm considering doing this as it sounds interesting.
    I really don't know but that is what I am told everytime I go to test. I don't imagine it would totally throw the reading out of whack but then again, if you have to pay for it, you might as well do it according to their protocol. Of course, that is how it's done on the Air Force base where I go and other locations might be different.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kelkel View Post
    That's some funny shiat TR!
    Maybe we should start a thread...

    Kelkel's and Roman's technique for instantly improving your LBM profile....

    We can charge for this service too.

    Send LBM improvement advice fees to:

    Times Roman
    c/o general delivery
    Manteca, Ca 95337

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    This thing even accounts for the air in your lungs.
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    Quote Originally Posted by austinite View Post
    This thing even accounts for the air in your lungs.
    Exactly....eating a few chicken breasts a rice (because I'm sure that's all you guys eat)!isnt gonna cause a drastic miscalculation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Hartman View Post
    Exactly....eating a few chicken breasts a rice (because I'm sure that's all you guys eat)!isnt gonna cause a drastic miscalculation.
    2 Chicken breasts please... hold the chicken!
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    Sooooo..... Does anyone see an advantage to upping my calories to tdee -250/300 vs. my current tdee - 450? I see the benefit in upping my protein and cutting my carbs but should I leave the calorie deficit alone and just deal with the fact I'm gonna lose some lbm until I can reach my target of 15% or less bf?

    Also, in a related question, once I get to 12% bf (my goal) can I gain lbm without going over 15% bf?

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    Quote Originally Posted by austinite View Post
    2 Chicken breasts please... hold the chicken!
    damn aust

    you dumb! everyone knows chickens don't be lactating!!!

    sheesh! =)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Times Roman View Post
    damn aust

    you dumb! everyone knows chickens don't be lactating!!!

    sheesh! =)
    lmao!
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    Quote Originally Posted by kelkel View Post
    That's almost fasting. But seriously, what would the standard deviation be if you did eat? I'm considering doing this as it sounds interesting.
    you carry to much muscle mass, you will throw off the numbers...sorry

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brazensol View Post
    Sooooo..... Does anyone see an advantage to upping my calories to tdee -250/300 vs. my current tdee - 450? I see the benefit in upping my protein and cutting my carbs but should I leave the calorie deficit alone and just deal with the fact I'm gonna lose some lbm until I can reach my target of 15% or less bf?

    Also, in a related question, once I get to 12% bf (my goal) can I gain lbm without going over 15% bf?
    this should be in the diet section. I am not sure how you are losing at all. cause 25 mins on a bike is like a warm up. you probably burn 100 calories. I would not do a huge deficit at all. I would use cardio as my cutting. I would probably burn 500 calories a day on stairs or elliptical.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Hartman View Post
    Water is considered and counted as LBM in most bf testing methods.

    Not sure how youre testing but I'd bet a good bit of that 5 lbs is just water.
    Try taking your measurements when you do your next re-feed or cheat meal. You were probably carbed up (and therefore watered up) when you took your measurements before your cut. Taking them when you do a re-feed is going to be the closest thing to being in the same state during your cut.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gearbox View Post
    you carry to much muscle mass, you will throw off the numbers...sorry
    lmao. Kel needs a VascuPod.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gearbox View Post
    this should be in the diet section. I am not sure how you are losing at all. cause 25 mins on a bike is like a warm up. you probably burn 100 calories. I would not do a huge deficit at all. I would use cardio as my cutting. I would probably burn 500 calories a day on stairs or elliptical.
    Not sure where you got the 25 minutes of biking from? I am now typically biking 20-25 miles a day at 15+ mph. That's a tad more than 100 calories...

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