Article last updated: April 2018 by Oskar Faarkrog, ISSA Certified Trainer
I recently started taking on more clients for my Online Transformation Program and today I’ll show you how increasing Calories can help you lose fat, if your metabolism is slower than it should be.
To do that, I’ll use one of my new clients, Francis as an example.
Francis is 37 years old and for the last 10 years he had been gaining body-fat each year.
Here’s how he looked before starting my coaching program:
Before joining my Online Transformation Program, Francis made two attempts to transform his physique: Insanity by Beachbody and a personal trainer.
Both produced no lasting results.
The first thing I noticed in his Client Assessment Form was that he has an “all or nothing” type of personality.
“I do have the tendency to overdo things. If I work out im going to failure on each set. If I eat healthy, the world is over if I eat the wrong meal or have something junky…..so I need a way to be ready for that.” – Francis
Based on this, I thought that he might be on a very low Calorie diet to get fast results – so I asked him to track his food intake for 3 days and to check his thyroid hormones to get an idea of what kind of metabolism he has.
When the thyroid hormone results came in, his TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormones) levels were high.
When TSH is high, it’s a sign that your thyroid is about to become underactive and slow down your metabolism.
This increase in TSH was most likely a result of his daily food intake being too low, so I looked at his 3 day food report and found that he ate just ~1500 Calories per day.
This means he was in a Caloric deficit of 800 per day because I estimated his Daily Caloric Expenditure to be about 2300.
This is a very aggressive deficit, especially when you have high TSH levels and an under-muscled physique.
So the first thing we needed to do is to speed up his metabolism so he can lose body-fat while eating more food.
This is much more sustainable because it allows you to stay on a fat loss diet for a longer time and more importantly, to make it an almost effortless part of your lifestyle.
Francis agreed with this, so I wrote a diet plan for him that included about 2000 Calories per day (500 more than he was used to eating) and one weekly re-feed meal.
Adding 500 Calories to his diet means that he was able to eat the equivalent of one extra meal per day.
Guess what happened after he increased Calories to 2000?
He started losing body-fat while building strength and muscle mass at the same time.
We tracked Francis’ measurements, training progress and bodyweight.
Here’s a screenshot of his 5 week progress:
His muscle measurements all increased while his waist and hips dropped in size.
The photo here confirms his progress:
We also tracked his BioFeedback and his energy levels increased, sleep improved because he didn’t go hungry to bed and he felt much better overall.
“This is probably the most amazing thing I have done with my body, and it’s due to this program. I’m amazed. The fact that I have done no cardio is crazy. I love this program man, thank you Oskar! If it wasn’t for you keeping me in check, I would be way off and probably starving myself trying to loose weight. I can’t wait to see what I look like in another month.” – Francis
The big lesson here is that it’s a bad idea to try to lose fat in the context of a broken metabolism.
If you’re supposed to be able to lose fat at 2500 Calories per day but you’re eating 1500 to try and squeeze out more fat loss, what are you going to do next? Go down to 1000?
You want to set yourself up to lose fat while being able to eat as much food as possible!
PS: Here’s a new progress photo of Francis: