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Comments on: "Help" (116)

  1. Zfighter13 said:

    i want to know how to develope both muscular and cardio endurance easier. I work really hard at it but seem to see very little gains. And Timothy refers to lucid dreams as helping with skill developement. I was wondering if there was a way for this to help me with developing martial arts skills

  2. Definitely stalled out after three months.  I lost 16 pounds (14 fat, 2 muscle) in Jan/Feb/Mar on the slow carb diet.  Now I have been stuck between 200 and 205 for April/May/June.  

    My Doctor (not a big atkin’s or slow carb diet fan) listened to my meals and thought they were fine (except for a little too much fat…)  He recommended going to a Pritikin camp or something similar for two weeks.  He’s had good success with patients in the past.  Here’s my idea.  I’ve got a buddy in Hawaii with a big house, I’m going there for two weeks and we want to hire a trainer/cook for the time period – could live with us or just visit 5 days a week and train us.  Anyone know of a personal trainer in Hawaii (big island) they would recommend?


  3. Cwsfurniture1 said:

    first day on 4hb how do you eat all that food. and stay in a cold shower for more than two min?

    • Anonymous said:

      Cold showers are something you need to get used to.  I usually start the water fairly warm but not hot, then I reduce the heat as much as possible every 10-20 seconds.  By the end of the shower I make is super cold and I can usually stand it for about one minute.

      For food consumption just eat until satiety.  You should only be over eating if you are trying to gain weight and bulk up.

  4. I’m new to I wanted to know what SCD is?

  5. ever since I started the SCD I am getting hemorrhoids, sometimes to the point of bleeding , is there anything am doing wrong, I avoid all carbs, eat losts of salad, drink lots of fluids. 

    • I am not sure about that one.  I would make sure to avoid all grain, legumes, and dairy, eat lots of fat and see if that helps.

  6. Love the website.  Fills in a lot of blanks that the 4HR Body left when it comes to getting started.  You have (or I should say ‘Had’) the same body as myself with similar goals and similar past (before lbs).  I plan on doing the SCD for 6-8 weeks then doing your version of Leangains…  I love the fact that you have all the info so readily available because, like I said, I’m a similar type to you.  

    • I would go lean gains with slow carb or paleo sooner than later.  Good Luck

      • I’m starting the LeanGains this week with slow carb as the style of food.  Doing just Slow Carb is ‘ok’ but not losing much week to week as I know I could.  

        I’m going to count calories with it, Tim doesn’t understand how easy it is to over eat and I think the amount of legumes I was eating has been messing with my fat loss and so I will replace them with more veggies.  I need to count calories to keep me accountable. I’m thinking about 1750 calories a day… Hope that’s not too much.I like the lean gains plan… I think it will my work schedule  a lot better too but I’m having a little trouble thinking about what to eat on it.  I was hoping you could give me a little guidance on how you did it.  You listed what you ate each day but the meal 1 and meal 2 always the same.  I.E. was it always a shake and tuna for meal 1 and “just” a v8 for meal 2?My Main Questions:What was total calories per day?  —Calories each meal?Did you do cardio at all?

        Thanks for your help!!  MUCH MUCH appreciated! 

  7. Hi. My name is Helene. I am about 26% body fat. I have worked out at the gym with a trainer for years. I am at the gym most days.
    I have been on the 4 hour body diet for 4 weeks. I have lost 3 to 4 pounds only and have not cheated on any day except my free day.
    I weigh 131 and am 5 feet 5ish.. I want to lose 6 more lbs and keep them off.
    I am doing the kettle bells and getting stronger too. I just cant figure out why I have lost so little weight. Maybe I am not doing some things correctly.
    Also I do not have a thyroid and i take synthroid 10 mg and cytomel 5 mg i think.
    I eat one hard boiled egg on my way to the gym at 530 am and then come home by 644 and have an egg white omelet with veggies and beans.
    For lunch is usually salad with either chicken or salmon. Alot of mexican or steamed chinese for dinner.
    Any suggestions to los the weight. I get scared on my free days, when i load up on the fun stuff like ice cream and pizza. I eat a healthy breakfast though and go nutty for lunch and dinner.
    Thanks so much.

    • It may be a big tougher to lose that fat for you while you are on synthroid and cytomel.  I would dial back on the gym and do less, you may be adding some unneeded cortisol.  Also make sure you are getting a good amount of sleep.
      Personally I am not a fan of cheat days, and I don’t recommend them.  At least keeping them gluten free.

  8. I had a question… do you (did you) use Occams Protocol and lift 2 to 3 times a week when you were on your fat loss portion of body transformation? 

    I’ve been doing 4HB for a week now basing it a TON of your blog. When reviewing your “Goals, Routine, Tools and Supplements” page… it looks as though you lifted/worked out in some way almost every day.  

    Tim keeps saying 2-3 times a week…
    What did you do?  If more than that, why?

    Thanks, and thanks for your BLOG!

    • No I did not do Occams Protocol, I don’t think that is a very good workout program.  I did a kettle bell circuit similar to the kiwi’s full workout here

      I did not workout every day, usually 2-3 days a week, I will change that in my routine page.  I would do 50-100 pushup before every diner for a few months though.

      The only reason I would recommend someone to do more than 2-3 workouts a week is if they are training for an endurance competition or sport.

  9. Joelimkim said:

    wanted to put this out there as i’m getting increasingly demoralized.. but i don’t know… maybe after you’ve read the facts perhaps i shouldn’t be?

    5’10.5″ 196 (started)

    i got down to 186 in the first month and have plateaued for 4 weeks at 186.

    in the last 2 weeks i added resistance training and swimming 4 days a week and have actually started gaining weight (consistently weighing in at 188 lbs). 

    here’s the thing, i should’ve done that dexa or bod pod testing TF mentioned. because even though tho i thought i would just go to 165-170 range on this diet, i still fit into really really skinny clothes i haven’t worn in years.  case in point, at 188 i’m wearing the same jeans that i wore at 174 years ago. back then i dieted only and didn’t work out. so i’m thinking it’s because i did 2 rounds of p90x that i have so much more muscle mass.

    but i hate the chub chub on my midsection which i still feel i have….

    so, if i have a fat gut wouldn’t it make sense that i’d drop straight to 170, getting rid of all the fat. and THEN shoot back up to 180 range with nothing but muscle? i’ve heard repeatedly that you can’t lose fat and gain muscle at the same time.

    also another strange phenomenon: after my cheat day (sat.), i don’t return to my pre-cheat day weight within 48-72 hrs. most of the dieters i have talked to return to their pre-cheat day weight within 48-72 hours after the cheat day….mine however, goes something like this:

    186 (morning of cheat day)
    194 day after on sun
    192 mon
    191 tues, wed, thurs
    188 fri
    186 (if i’m lucky, on the following sat exactly 1 week after the cheat day).

    so the “don’t get freaked out” you’ll return to your normal body weight within 72 hrs, doesn’t really resonate with me as it takes me exactly 1 week to return to normal body weight.  this week i’m trying 1 cheat meal instead of a whole cheat day to see if that helps.

    my diet:

    1 egg yolk 4 egg whites cooked in olive oil
    1 chicken sausage
    spinach (wilted)
    refried beans

    protein (either tempeh, tofu, chicken, steak)
    salad: lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers with dressing (not lo cal dressing)
    refried beans

    same thing minus the avocado
    sometimes i swap out the salad and have cooked veggies in olive oil (asparagus, eggplant etc)

    i realize that refried beans are not the same nutritionally speaking as canned kidney beans. so this week i’m also trying to eat more whole beans.

    i have heard people talking about eating almonds or a tablespoon of some nut butter (peanut butter, cashew butter) daily?? don’t remember getting specific guidelines from the book on this. should i try this? i am never hungry, i should mention. no cravings, and feel very satisfied all throughout the week.

    also after a hard workout been drinking 100 cal canned protein shakes from trader joe’s as my recovery protein drink and have heard this triggers an insulin response. but TF admits to drinking 16oz of diet coke per day and says it won’t affect your body weight if you keep it within this limit. so i thought if i avoided the diet coke and drank a recovery drink as my “splenda” fix i’d still be within the guidelines he set…


    getting so frustrated here.


    • Anonymous said:

      Hi There,

      I saw your post on 4hbtalk as well, but I will reply here.

      The first thing that jumps out is avoiding egg yokes, just wondering why, the yoke is where all the good fat is, omega-3s etc.  

      Second make sure you are getting lots of sleep and your stress levels are low.

      Third I would keep workouts short, and for recovery eat real food if you can, fruit and starchy vegetables.  If you can’t then a plain protein powder mixed with coconut milk is what I would recommend.

      Fourth, avoid the soy products, they are not going to help with weight loss.

      Fifth, try to eat some fattier meat, preferably grass fed or wild caught.  You might also want to supplement with a fish oil for omega-3s.

      I have used almonds as a snack as well, make sure they are plain.

      I would keep beans to a minimum, and you can replace them with things like sweet potatoes and yams.  

      Good Luck, keep us up to date.

  10. Theluketeam said:

    Hi, started 4HB today.  Goal is to go from 230 to 185, male, 56 years old, goal to build Greek statue type body versus Arnold Schwarznegger (well, as much as possible at 56)

    I plan to wake up at 630 and start exercises at 645.  Kettlebells 3x week, cardio 3x times a week.

    Questions revolves around prework out and post work out eating/drinking.

    I can easily finish up my exercises and eat before one hour after waking, but NEVER before 30 minutes of waking.  Is that ok?

    I have read that some cold water would be good to start the day with, but half a liter immediately before exercise would be hard to keep down.  Should I have a small protein shake with cold water (8oz or so), to get some effect but still be able to exercise?  If so, which shake?  Or just skip it until my main breakfast?

    What eating regiment would you follow if you want to do exercise first thing in the morning.


    • Anonymous said:

      Great questions.

      For pre-workout you don’t need to drink 500mL all at once, you can keep hydrating as you workout and when you finish.   If working out I would suggest doing a full litre if possible. 

      You don’t need to have a protein shake pre-workout, and for strictly fat loss I would recommend against it.  I would also recommend to keep your workout short and mix up the intensity.  Not sure what specify type of cardio you are planing on doing, but I would suggest a walk or some sprints instead of moderate cardio.   Kettlebells are great, if you get bored of the swing you can add some cleans, snatches, deadlifts and squats.

      When you get closer to your body composition goal and performance is more of a priority then I would recommend having something pre-workout like fruit and a unflavored protein shake.

      If you are working out right after waking, in my experience it is OK not to eat within 30 mins.  If you looking at my routine when I lost the most body fat I was doing intermittent fasting and did not eat until 1pm.

      If intermittent fasting is something that you think would suit you and your schedule then I highly recommend it.


      And my routines

  11. VERY impressed with your site and your progress! Such good information!
    I’m not seeing the great results others are reporting with the 4HB.
    I’m 6’2″ 255lbs 35%FAT
    Within 30 minutes of waking I do the following:
    40 squats sometimes additional dumb bell presses
    I drink about an oz of lemon juice before eating
    Eggwhites, 2 eggs, ground hamburger, lentils and spinach (with lemon squirted on)
    Water to drink and water throughout the day
    A typical lunch is 4 hours later
    40 squats maybe some pushups too
    lemon juice (lemon water)
    cooked chicken breast, pintos, spinach or broccoli
    water to drink
    4 hours later pretty much reapeat
    40 squats
    lemon water
    couple of hamburger patties, a green veg, refried beans or pintos, or lentils.
    I’m coming up on 4 weeks and have only lost 11 pounds.
    My goal is to lose 20 lbs per month until I’m at approximately 200 lbs.  Then I’d like to increase strength, cardio and reduce body fat, not so concerned about weight then.
    Any help would be appreciated! Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you, and reading more!

    • Hi Lee,

      First off make sure you are getting good quality and quantity sleep.  See here for more info

      Second, don’t avoid the egg yoke, that is where the good stuff is.  Generally don’t avoid natural fats, they are good for you.  Artificial fats like vegetable oil are what is bad.

      Are you doing your squats with weight or just body weight?  I would add weight and do less.

      Cut back on the beans a bit, increase the fat.  I don’t see any fish on there I would add some wild caught salmon and some cod liver oil supplements like these

      The pre meal workouts look good, if you want to increase your cardio you can start doing 2-3 HIIT training sessions a week, no need to wait really.

  12. Italianqt2703 said:

    I will be starting the 4HB on monday, im 134 pounds, 5,3, and i workout every morning. First question, what should I do about eating within an hour of waking if i workout @ 630 am??? Just drink a protein shake with 30 g of protein? I take GNC multivitamin for women now. Am I supposed to continue taking it throughout the diet?? It has 25 mg of alpha-lipoic but i feel like i should not take it. Please help!!

    • I would suggest against the multivitamin and the protein shake for health and fat loss, using read food (or supplements made from real food) you will get much better benefits.  Read this explanation by Chris Kresser on why

      Don’t rush to eat if you are working out first thing.  Just eat what you need to do your workout, if you can or like to, you can workout fasted as well, that is what I did and is what many people suggest see for more info on that.  I would suggest agains working out everyday, I would say every other day is good and on days off just walk/stretch/rehab/prehab stuff.

      PAGG is great for speeding up the fat loss but is not required.  Good luck and let me know if you have any more questions.

  13. Sven-Nellen said:

    What about colitis and eating beans and lentis? Both are supposed to be starches and they are forbiden as carbohidrates?

    • Hi Sven,

      Not sure what the details of your question is but if you have ANY digestion issues I would recommend against legumes (beans and lentils) and stick to veggies for carbs.  If you are active and need lots of carbs to refill muscle glycogen you can use fruit, and roots and tubers like sweet potatoes and yams.

  14. Hi Justin,

    I post on 4HB Talk as and your feedback has been invaluable.  I spent last night reading your site and some of the associated links.  I’ve been losing weight slowly but steadily with TF’s 4HB diet, but I wanted to follow your path and try intermittent fasting.  

    I eventually want to be able to jog/run, play sports again and be more active.  I just want to strip off a good chunk of this unwanted fat so that fitness training and muscle building can be fun and rewarding.  So hopefully IF can accelerate the fat loss so I can move on to the fitness.

    Thanks for setting up and directing me to this site, and I’ll post here if I need some advice.


    • No problem.  Rough year for the colts though eh?

      If you do some fasted exercise I would advise agains the BCAAs that I used.  Try to find some un sweetened stuff or just use the pills.

      Also I would suggest to combine the Shang-ri la method of a table spoon of extra light olive oil when fasting to deal with hunger pangs.  This should help you become ‘fat adapted’ and use fat for fuel better as well.

      I actually started doing some IF again although I am not trying to lose weight, I find I have more energy and function better.

      • K, I’m curious about the pills.  Your guide said you ran out of BCAA early and didn’t continue it.  I’m pretty forgetful about taking pills and was just going to go without.  Not recommended?  

        Not a great year to be a Colts fan. Next year’s not looking great either. C’est la vie. We got one championship, that’s more than most.

      • I did end up buying more BCAA later on and didn’t finish it.  I found I had weird allergic reaction to it and got rashy from it.  I did experimented with it for a while and I am pretty sure it was the BCAA powder.

        BCAA are only recommend if you are exercising while fasting so you don’t have any muscle catabolism.  And I do recommend some  HIIT but short fasted exercise a few days a week, especially if you want to play sports etc.

        I also recommend some mobility work on the off days, I am guessing you probably have some mobility issues that you could work on, you can search the site for anything related to your specific issues.

  15. Boss Inmotion said:

    Hi Sam here. I was 21-22% body fat early this year and coming to year end now, I’m 15%. I managed this through a mixture of slow carb, fruits and fasting. I was gymming quite abit but since then have stopped.

    I have since moved to the last mile chapter in 4HB. In your experience, is this a good time to switch and also is some form of weighted physical exercise necessary?

    Thanks and congratulations on your progress!

    • Thanks Sam,

      Yup 15% would be a good time to go low carb/last mile.  

      You don’t need to workout but you should eat less if you don’t.  If you do workout then post workout is a great time to eat your biggest meal of the day.

      Consistent intermittent fasting for 30 days would be beneficial as well.  I stopped IF for a while but went back to it recently and feel much better, and leaner on it.

  16. Hey Justin,  I was interested in lowering my body fat and wanted to ask your advice.  I have been on the SCD for about 2 months.   I started at 20% body fat and now I am at 17% body fat.  My goal is 10% body fat.  I wanted to accelerate my fat loss by doing some exercise.  I was interested in getting your feedback on my new plan.  

    New Plan:
    1. Keep following the SCD
    2. Exercise 2-3 times a week. Ex: 
    Day 1: weigh lift.  multi joint exercises such bench press, squats, shoulder press
    Day 2: Sprint
    Day 3: Weight lift. multi joint exercises

    3. On days I exercise, take a preworkout/postworkout protein shake.  I have Optimim Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard (Strawberry) (
    I would take 1 scoop with water before I workout and 1 scoop with water immediately after I work out.

    Even though I have lost 3% bf, I am concerned that I am losing muscle.  So I would like to maintain and even grow muscle while continuing to lose body fat.
    Please let me know if you think  my new routine would help me reach 10% body fat.  Thanks!.

    • Hey Mat, was was your old/current plan like?
      This seems good but your fat loss stalls are mostly due to diet and sleep, I would focus on those first.

      • Thanks Justin.  Here is my current diet plan:
         Eat 30g within 30 minutes (some days are tougher than others)
        I usually have 4-5 eggs (1 whole, rest egg whites) 1 tbslp macademia oil

        Here are my typical choices for lunch:

        Chicken.  Sometimes chicken curry (cooked with olive oil, onions, red pepper, garlic/ginger, salt) with lentils

        Or Baked chicken (italian and garlic seasoning) with lentils

        Ground beef curry with lentils

        Tilapia with lentils

        Dinner: Usually same as lunch

        I usually sleep between 6-8 hours.

        I am sure there is room for improvements.  Do you have any suggestions on what changes I should make to increase my fat loss?  Thanks!

      • I forgot to mention binge days.  I usually binge 1 day a week on Saturdays.  In the morning I follow the same SCD breakfast.  I try to minimize damage from my binge snacks by :
        Drinking half a cup of OJ before each meal
        Doing air squats, wall pushups before a meal and 60-90 minutes after a meal.

      • OJ is not the same a Grapefruit juice.  OJ is probably making your insulin spike worse, where grapefruit has shown to help insulin sensitivity.

        Cheat day is a good day for a long workout too.

      • Don’t avoid fat from meat, eat the whole egg, the yoke is where all the good stuff is.  If you can get organic or omega-3 enriched eggs I recommend it.

        I would suggest more red meat and fattier fish too.

        Might be a good idea to supplement with some fish oil as well.

        Durning the winter I would suggest trying to get 9 hours of sleep.  I wrote a guest post about sleep on my Cousins financial blog here

  17. Theluketeam said:

    Great info.  I am convinced that my problem is caffeine.  I have a soda addiction which I am trying to wean off of by dropping the soda and taking small dosages of vivarin instead- less than 200mg per day (one tab).  (I don’t drink coffee or tea).  I can follow the diet until dinner and then I have heavy cravings for sweets…more so than for bread. 

    So; I blow it at dinner and after dinner.  My breakfast is eggs, some beans and a handful of spininach (raw).  Lunch is a big mexican meal-meat, beans, guacamoli, lettuce, salsa.  I do have diet gum in the afternoon.  I come home and am very hungry at 5-6pm.  Sometimes I have some more beans (black or pinto raw) around mid day.

    I don’t know if it is boredom, sugar cravings, real hunger, or all of the above.

    • Yes caffeine can be a major issue, I have not started but will need to eventually quit my morning coffee.

      Sugar + caffeinee in soda is really bad, and very addictive.  You will probably get some headaches when you quit.  You could try using some fruit to help transition away from the soda at night.  But I would suggest lowering the amount of fruit slowly as well.

      It is from boredom, sugar cravings and real hunger, they are all related.  I would suggest getting some ‘less fattening’ snacks, things like raw almonds, fruit, drink a lot of water, switch to green tea, maybe some extra dark chocolate (80% or higher).  

      Get rid of the diet gum, this will is very likely a cause of sugar cravings.  

      Instead of eating beans when you are hungry, eat something fatty like meat, fish, avocado, eggs, olive oil.  Or some fibrous green leafy veggies like spinach, cabbage, lettuce, bok choy etc.  They will fill you up.

  18. Hi! I’m On SCD for the second time. Had tremendous success with it when I last was on it (went from 178 to 155 in ~2.5 months, starting January ’11), now getting back on it again.

    Normally, Fridays or Saturdays are my binge days. Unfortunately, my work and travel schedule is fairly disruptive. One example: Work event tonight (Thur) that will involve greasy food and plenty of liquor. This coming Tue I’m traveling, so maintaining the strict diet will be more difficult.

    Is it better to turn both of these into full blown binge days and be strict in the middle (so that the carb starvation delta between today’s peak and tomorrow’s trough is greater), or would it be better to only binge at night (which introduces some “normal” level of carbs into the diet).

    I’m asking because it seems to me the effectiveness of this diet comes from the carb starvation that’s accented by the cheat day. Introducing a nominal level of carbs defeats the whole purpose of maintaining that tiny carb baseline, correct?

  19. Theluketeam said:

    I would be interested in your view of the SCD versus Primal Diet (Marksdailyapple).  It appears to be about the same diet with the exception of beans.  My wife and I have started the Primal yesterday.

    Which diet have your found to be easiest to follow through on?

  20. My wife and I have been on the regimen for the fifth week. No cheating. Typical day meals:

    AM: protein shake with ~40gm protein

    Mid morning: 2 eggs, turkey bacon, beans spinach

    Lunch: beans, spinach and meat (chicken/beef)

    Dinner: green veggies, beans or lentils, chicken or beef

    Lots of water

    Sat: cheat day

    We both saw a decrease in weight the first week in multiple pounds, now over last 3 weeks have seen a much slower weight decrease. Inches lost also seems to have slowed or almost plateaued. We are both 44. I have lost about 7 pounds from 185 to 178, can’t remember total inches lost. She has gone from about 145 to 138. I am 5’9″. She is 5’3″.

    Is this rate of loss normal? Have we really plateaued? Do you have recommendations to accelerate our loss? We eliminated all but 1 diet soda a day. We moderately exercise.


    • First thing to do is make sure you are getting good sleep.  9+ hours in winter and pitch black room is very important.  

      Next is try to get rid of the diet soda, it is very bad for gut flora (bacteria).

      Last is try to adjust some of the diet.  Add more animal fat, it is good for you and for fat loss.  Add some supplementation of Vitamin D, K, A and omega-3s.  I recommend green pastures butter oil/cod liver oil blend as it is a natural source of those vitamins.

      Good Luck

      • By add more animal fat, do you mean fattier cuts of beef like ribeye or am I missing something else?

        Sleep recommendation is good. We take multivitamins daily.

        Anything else?

      • Yup fattier cuts, and fatty fish as well.  Chicken is not the best source of fat as it is higher in omega6.

        A multivitamin will not have any omega3s or vitamin K2, and probably very little vitamin D.  A multivitamin is synthetic forms of vitamins an minerals which are not very affective and some argue useless.  Dietary and natural supplements are much more affective.

  21. James Smejlis said:

    Hi Justin,
    My name is James Smejlis. I’m starting a new research project soon (I’m a Behavioural Modeler), and I found your name through the 4HB forum.
    You’ve had an amazing transformation, and from what I can see you’ve been able to stick to the diet for a long time. I’d love to be able to interview you about it, and model what you do mentally that makes you succeed, where so many other people struggle and give up.
    Basically what I do is find people with exceptional skills and abilities, then model the beliefs, strategies, and mental processes (which they may not even be consciously aware of), that make them such high performers. I’m looking for ‘the difference that makes the difference’ in their thinking, which allows a successful person to achieve incredible things, where another person gets just mediocre results, even when they have the same info at hand (4HB Book for example).And it’s easy, all you need to do is just be yourself – it’s my job to ask the right questions. The main interview usually takes a bit over an hour, with a half hour follow up a week or two later. We could do it over the phone/skype whenever is the most convenient for you.Would you be interested in being a part of this project?Thanks Justin, have a great day. If you have any questions at all feel free to email me back directly – james.smejlis [at] gmail.comJames

  22. Hey Justin-

    The past few days have been particular confusing for me as I try to chose a new exercise regime that works for me and it wasn’t until I stumbled upon your results here that I feel like maybe there’s some hope after all.


    I started the SCD last year in February 2011 at about 205 lbs.  I didn’t stick with it as strictly as I should but decided to pick it back up and get serious about it this January.  When I restarted, I was at 193 lbs, and maybe 20% bodyfat.  About 5 weeks later, I’m at 186 and the spare tire around my waist is very close to being completely gone.

    If I had to make a comparison, right now, I’d say that right now, I look the closest to your body in this photo:  When I started, I looked basically how you looked when you started as well.


    Every day, I’ve been eating about the same thing.

    3 whole eggs (usually fried or scrambled)
    Some lean sausage
    Half a cup of low fat cottage cheese
    1/2 liter of ice water

    A small to medium sized bowl of lentil soup with turkey sausage, garlic cloves, and veggies mixed into it.

    Chicken breast, salmon, or steak
    Mixed veggies

    I consume 2 liters of water per day and take calcium and magnesium supplements in the dosages Tim Ferriss recommends.  I’ll also do a cheat day once a week on Saturday.


    For the past couple months, I go trail running and bouldering at a rock climbing park near my house about 3 times a week.  I’m not sure what classification of exercise this would fall into (other than cardio), but I’m basically using my whole body, vaulting over rocks and constantly hoisting myself over boulders, often jumping, rolling, crouching, balancing, and treating the mountain like a natural obstacle course.  At the end of the hour I run, my legs are always ready to fall out from under me, and I usually feel a little muscular soreness for a couple days after.  

    I haven’t been doing this to build muscle, but more just because I personally enjoy the activity and it helps me stay a little active.


    In the past 5 weeks just what I’ve outlined and nothing else I have dropped from 156 total body inches to 149 total body inches, and yesterday, I re-opened the book and read about Occam’s Protocol, which sounded awesome, but once I google’d some case studies, it sounds like it would help me bulk up, but at the risk of putting back on some of the fat I’ve lost.  Seeing as how it’s relatively easy for me to put on muscle, but has always taken longer for me to lose fat, this worries me.  Also, Occam’s Protocol would require a ton of eating, and while this isn’t pleasant to admit, I’m currently in a financial crunch that leaves me barely able to pay my groceries as it is, so any regime requiring expensive supplments and a ton of food just isn’t in the cards for me right now, not for at least a month or so until I start my new job.

    I’m not married to the idea of Occam’s Protocol, but I am drawn to it’s simplicity.  All I’m looking for is something that I can do at the gym down the street from my house a few times a week that will help me shed the last 10-20 pounds of fat I’m holding onto and to build up my chest (where I’m retaining a lot of my most undesirable weight).  If I develop other muscle groups or bulk up across my whole body, then great!  But for now, I just want to lose a little bit of flab in my torso and chest and replace it with a little bit of muscle.  

    Given where I am and what my current goal is, what would you best recommend?  I’m all ears and any wisdom you can impart on me is tremendously appreciated.  

    • Hi Devin,

      Rock climbing is great.  You would probably love the Movnat stuff take a look here

      I would replace the sausage with something like bacon or uncured pork belly, unless you are making the sausage or know that it is high quality and where it is coming from.  And the low fat cottage cheese is going to get an insulin response, I would avoid that

      In terms of cheap protein I would skip the chicken breast and go for more red meat like lean ground beef and stew meat.  Red meat is good for you, if you can find good priced grass fed beef then I highly recommend that.

      In terms of exercise Occam’s Protocol is good for a beginners lifting program.  I am not sure how much experience you have in the weight room.  That being said if you are looking to save money then there really is no need to pay for a gym membership.  For most of my body recomposition I did it all with 2-20lbs kettle bells that cost $45 each and a $20 chin up bar.  The gym I go to now is $35 a month so that ends up being about 3 months of gym membership.  Take a look at for some other great body weight exercises you can do.  These would probably help a lot with rock climbing too.

      Another good workout from the book is the kiwi’s full workout.  You can also find it here

      And don’t forget the most important thing for fat burning is getting lots of sleep, 9+ hours.

      Hope that helps if you need specific help with planning let me know.

  23. Laurencevmada said:

    I just started this diet yesterday.  The book never said how much exactly to eat, i.e. portions.  Is that arbitrary? 

    • Yes, it is arbitrary because that is the point of it.  You need to retrain your endocrine (hormone) system to be more sensitive to glucose and satiety via insulin and leptin.

      You will probably find as you go that the amount you eat will become less, depending on how active you are.

      Let me know if you want any more details.

  24. Laurlegge7/tryinhard said:

    Hi Justin, yes I’m sleeping well since starting the diet, usually 8 hours during the week, 9 on weekends.  I need more specific info re amounts of protein at each meal and should I take brazil nuts and almond butter in am?  Should I ditch all the other supplements I have always taken and just take the PAGG?  I take E, omega3, co-q10, C, multi-vitamin calcium, D3, tumeric and a baby aspirin.

    • Hi,

      I would need more info.  Do you take any other medication?  Do you have any other health concerns?


      • Laurlegge7/tryinhard said:

        no prescription meds no health concerns just trying to lose and after four weeks not moving the scale much pretty disappointing .  I follow the diet exactly all week and have cheat day on Sat. I started reducing beans this last week to 1 and 1/2 cup total but I need to know how much protein at lunches and dinner.  I eat at 6:30am, 1130 and 230 for lunch then dinner at 6pm.  I am 50 yrs old, 5’5′ ish and lost 155 pounds 4 years ago on my own, gained 17 in last 2 years now at 194 would like to get down to 150.  Seems like this is very slow for older women.  I work out tewice a week and walk about a mile 4x’s a week

      • I would shoot for at least 150 grams of protein per day.  And 50 grams or more in the morning.  

        Or you could experiment with intermittent fasting.  This has MANY health benefits as well. older you get the harder it is to improve sensitivity to insulin and other hormones.

      • Laurlegge7/tryinhard said:

        Thank you for the info.  as women we are not used to loading up on protein and the beans make me feel bloated. Other women have said the beans  block weightloss?  I eat about  1  and 1/4 cup a day 1 cup of that lentils and 1/4 cup black beans or cannelini.  I will try to increase protein this week, my breakfast @ 6:00 am feels too heavy now to add any more  but maybe some meat protein to the 2 eggs spinach and lentils with avocado 2x’s per week.  I did start doing cardio 4 x’s this week to see if that helps.  Previous to SCD I worked out 6x’s a week 55 min sessions, thank you again I really appreciate it and will implement your suggestions

  25. I’m a 52 yr old female. I am just starting the 4hb plan. I am a walking autoimmune nightmare. Is there any information about how this will effect me? Or anything extra I should and should not do? I would say I’m about 35% body fat. I have been a dancer/danceteacher my entire life and have always been used to being fit. My illnesses have really kicked my butt, so I am hoping for some good results with my over all health.

    •  What autoimmune issues do you have?  What meds are you taking?  Have you read up on Paleo for autoimmunity yet?

      I suggest Chris Kresser’s “Personal Paleo Plan”.  It has autoimmune meal plan generator built in.

      • Thanks for getting back so quickly. I have Lupus, Rhuematoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia and a rare disorder called Sjogrens. I take requip (for severe restless leg) plaquenil, Ambien and have been on Methyltrexate but will be on a different med to replace that one soon. I am trying to avoid steroids with everything I can. My dr is pushing that because my symptoms are severe. I suspect that I am very toxic which I think is the cause of my issues. I also avoid wheat binge or no binge. Thanks Pam

      • Avoiding wheat is a good start.  Also avoiding Dairy and legumes is necessary as well.

        All foods that contain lectins such as nightshades should be avoided as well.

        Healing the permeability of the digestive tract will help you.

      • yes the digestive tract. leaky gut issues. i have been told to take vitamen A, fish oil CoQ10 to aid in that. Are there other things to use? The apple cidar vingar? Also as far as the 4hb thing goes, no beans? anything I should add to replace them? What about the pagg? reccomended? thanks again, Pam

      • Sorry for the delay.  The best protocol I know of for leaky gut and autoimmune issues is the GAPS diet.  If I was ever sick that is what I would follow.

      • Hi! I just found this site and was reading old comments…I also have an autoimmune disease…I wa at first misdiagnosed with A.S. turns out I “only” have Sacriolit…(sorry if the name isn’t the same in English as in Swedish but perhaps you know what it is anyway…) And I just wanted to share what I experienced then…hoping it will help you! I was put on “The A.S. Diet” It’s in a was similar to the SCD (If I have a full grasp of SCD yet that is) but basically the stress is to avoid ANY starch since it’s believed that starch triggers inflammation especially in autoimmune!…I tried this w while but since it wasn’t a fat-loss diet like SCD is it didn’t give those effects but it DID help with pain A LOT! …but when I started taking vitamins and supplements etc. my pain came back… and this was for any type of pill/supplement…because some on the preservants and powder forms and coating acted as a starch… just as a heads up! I see you have it severe but I hope you will get well and be pain-free! Best//Anna

      • Anna, thanks for taking the time to reply. I do seem to feel better when I eat mostly protein and vegetables. But for the most part when I am in a flare nothing helps. But I am thinking that it is long term that I need to focus on. Have you tried acupunture? I find that and chiropractic help a lot. and so does theraputic massage but you have to be careful not to over stimulate your body. After these treatments I usually expect some more pain short term and drinking lots of water will help move toxins out faster. Thanks again Anna and I hope everything works out well for you also

      • Thanks for the posts Anna and Leviz.  Have either of you tried Cold Thermogenesis to help with pain?  Dr Jack Kruse talks about it a lot and he also talks about other 4HB principals as well.  See

  26. Hi 🙂 I have some questions and maybe you could help 🙂

    1. How much calories do you eat during cheat-day? I have never counted them but i did it one saturday and stopped eating after reaching 6000 kcal. My weight loss during following week was 2,2kg and that was my best ever. And it was not only water because i am at my 3rd month of slow-carb. Do you think limiting cheat-day to 5-6000kcal or less is good or we should eat really how much we want no matter how much calories it contains?

    2. What if there are some weeks when body weight don’t want to go back to the same level from one cheat day to another? Should i move cheat-day to the next day or keep the schedule working?

    Thanks 🙂

    • I never counted calories on cheat day.  I am against counting calories and I think that it is unnecessary unless you want to get down to 5% BF.

      I think that calories really have very little to do with it.  Cheat day you need to eat a lot of carbs, but avoiding inflammation is key.  This is why I keep cheat day gluten and dairy free.

      Intermittent fasting, especially after cheat day, has shown to have some great benefits.  I intermittent fast most days.

      • I too am a little nervous about cheat days. I’m just starting a combo of Slow Carb, Shangri-La, and Paleo “diet” program. I find the flavorless oil helps with appetite suppresion, and I already eat high protein/low carb. My challenge is cutting out cheese. I like to add some to most dishes. Adding beans makes me nervous, but I will try it for the sake of the fiber. So, if you still avoid gluten and dairy even on cheat days, what treats do you enjoy? Would love some suggestions to try!

      • Do a google search for paleo deserts. Those are what I try to stick to. Just replace milk with coconut milk and flour with coconut or almond flour. I do also eat a lot of fruit and dark chocolate.

  27. I run 5 times a week. How do you do the 4HB without carbs when you are running 40 miles a week?

    • Do you  need to run 5x a week?  Are you training for a race?  Have you read the endurance chapters of the 4hb and checkout out Brian Mckenzie’s stuff?

      For nutrition I would checkout The Paleo Diet for Athletes or

      And listen to Robb Wolf’s podcast.  He has a good PWO nutrition article here

  28. Hi!

    My name is Amy and I’m very frustrated, I have been on 4hb plan since February 3rd, 2012 and have only lost 8 lbs and I lost that the first 3 weeks.  Since then I have gone up and done 1-2 lbs a week.  I started out at 164lb and now I’m at 156lbs. I keep to the diet except for on my cheat day(although I don’t cheat too much) I’m not much of a junk food person.

    A little about me:
    Female, 47  5’6″ and have a crazy sleep schedule, which makes me wonder if it has anything to do with my inability to lose weight: 
    I wake up at 12:30am have breakfast of eggs, spinach, onion and black beans, then I have my lunch break at 6am, which usually consists of either chicken or tuna with beans and veggies.  I’m home by 11am when I take my “nap”  I sleep for about 3hours then have my 2nd breakfast around 2pm. Have dinner around 6-7pm and back in bed by 9pm.  I drink 2 cups of coffee a day and water all day long.

    I’m not sure what I’m missing in this plan.  I do work out at least 3 times a week either weights or dancing.  Also my measurements did change within those first 3 weeks but since then they have plateaued.  Total inches from waist-1, thighs-0, arms-1/2 and hips-1 1/2.

    I’m really at my wits end, this is the first diet that actually was working for me and now I don’t know what to do.  My husband keeps saying it took 10 years to put on the 50lbs it may take 10 years to take it off!!!! ugh!

    Any insight would be most helpful.

    • The sleep will make it difficult.  I would take a look at the Bulletproof Exec blog he has a lot of good stuff on there about sleep, and short sleep schedules in terms of health and fat loss.

      The other thing I notice right away is the fat content of your meals seems low.  I would try to add as much healthy saturated fat as possible, especially before bed.  

      You may also want to look into intermittent fasting.

  29. I have been following the 4H plan for approximately 2 months. I am 5′ o” began at a weight of 130.6. I currently weigh 127. My measurements reflect an all over loss of 6″, but I would like to see the scale move. I would like to reach a goal weight of 118. I follow the plan religiously. My sister who is same body type, size etc. has lost nearly 17 lbs. Help!  What can I do differently?

    • First don’t worry too much about scale weight, it is not a good measure of body composition.  I like to use pictures, daily or weekly it is up to you, there are some good apps for it.

      Second how is your sleep, this is the most important part of fat lost IMO.  Make sure you ger 9+ hours a night and your room is pitch black, not a spec of light.

      Last, try out intermittent fasting, it works very well for a lot of people.  This is my old post on it you can also check out or

  30. Hi Justin – i have a question about flavorless calories. Were you using the olive oil to REPLACE meals, or just to avoid hunger pangs? I am currently doing IF and Paleo, very much like you did, sans the BCAA. Have lost 14lbs in 3 weeks. I have to force myself to eat. First 3 days was ROUGH.
    I´m just wondering if the oil will help me lose fat faster, or simply take away hunger pangs, which I do not currently have. 

    • Hi Miguel,

      The concept of the shang-ri la diet is that the flavourless calories will help ‘reset’ your body fat set point and lose fat.  I don’t know if will work as well if you are already IFing, I think combining those two helps more just for hunger pangs.  If you do hit a plateau then I suggest cycling it in to mix thing up for 3-4 weeks and break your fast early with some flavourless calories.

  31. Bpdietzel said:

    How does nicotine(both regular and electronic cigarettes) affect the results of the slow carb diet? 

  32. Hello.  I am a 35 year old woman who is very aware that she needs to make a drastic life change.  I am 5’6″ and 240 lbs (yes I know, ridiculous isn’t it!).  In the past 4 years I have had 2 children (the second only 7 weeks old, so my sleep isn’t ideal right now) and thyroid cancer, so I have no thyroid and am on 200 mcg of Synthroid.  I am big believer in a balanced diet based on whole foods, but I have decided to jumpstart things with the 4HB diet.  I am curious if I am going face a greater challenge given my recent medical history and if you have any suggestions for greater success (I don’t think I want to follow this plan long-term though)?  Also, I was previously a runner and have some personal goals related to that, but what I read in the book doesn’t really seem to support much cardio other than the 2 days based around the kettlebell exercises.  I am looking to just start with a basic couch to 5K program.  Thoughts about ideal exercise? I obviously want/need to lose a lot of weight, but I have no problem with it taking some time.  It is more about creating a healthy lifestyle and setting a good example for my family and achieving some personal performance and size goals.  Any thoughts or suggestions are greatly appreciated.

    • Congratulations for making the first step.  The first thing I would do is find a good naturopathic doctor.  I only know of one, I listen to all of Chris Kresser’s podcasts and he does offer remote consults over skype.  Or check here for one in your area  I can send you some links but can’t make any suggestions because your situation is unique and quite complicated.

      I don’t know how much success you will have with these major changes.  

      Also for running there is specific chapters on endurance running.  They are based of Tim training with Brian Mackenzie his blog is here and site is here
      Running Faster and FartherUltraendurance I: Going from 5K to 50K in 12 Weeks—Phase IUltraendurance II: Going from 5K to 50K in 12 Weeks—Phase IINot that you have to do the program from the book but couch to 5k, in my opinion, is not an efficient way to train, and is terrible for fat loss because you lose so much muscle just running.  Running is ok for fun, but terrible for body recomposition and fat loss.

      • Thanks for the information.  I was afraid you would find some of it quite complicated.  I will say that I am completely cured, so the only obstacle is having to depend upon Synthroid completely for my thyroid function.  I wasn’t sure how that would effect the cheat day as it specifically relates to T3 and T4.  I do have a crossfit facility in my town.  In fact my four year doses crossfit kids every week.  So, I guess it comes down to; do the best I can with 4HB diet (maybe move to a Paleo diet) stick with the kettlebell based routine mentioned in the book, run for fun and to achieve my personal goals and maybe go to crossfit.  I think the biggest thing is being committed to making a change and sticking with it.  It is all about getting my health under control. Hopefully I can come back here one day and tell you how great I have done.  Best of luck with your endeavors.

      • Thanks! I just went through the links you provided and it was so helpful to not have to weed through all of that information myself.  You are the best help I have found as I am trying to figure out how to best approach this lifestyle change.

  33. Hi. I’m 59 years old, weigh 290 lbs. and have just started my 4th week. I’ve lost 11 lbs since I began but I feel I should be losing more based only on Tim’s accounts of people losing 20 lbs. per month. I just started PAGG this past Monday, my cheat day is Saturday and the last two days of meals were:
    Monday: Bfst: 4oz. , 1 whole organic egg, 2 oz. spinach, mushrooms, onions, about 2 oz. cooked lentils, all cooked in ghee and eaten with salsa after drinking a 16 oz. glass of water straight from the refrigerator. All this within 20 minutes of waking. 
    About a quart of water before early lunch which consisted of 5 romaine leaves, 1 oz. canned chick peas, 2 hard boiled egg whites, 3 oz. drained canned tuna, some red onion and jalapeno with EVOO and balsamic vinegar. With that I had 1/2 cup cooked lentils.
    More water, about 1.5 qts, then late lunch of 4 oz 90% lean beef patty with mushroom and onions and a cup of 3 bean salad (canned green beans, cannelloni, black beans, kidney beans with EVOO, balsamic vinegar s&p)
    More water about another qt and a half.
    Dinner was 6 oz. chicken breast cooked with green and red peppers and onions, 1 cup of 3 beans salad, some sauerkraut.
    More water after dinner and 4 brazil nuts.
    Coffee with a tablespoon of heavy cream.
    Tuesday: Same breakfast switching in black beans for lentils.
    Early lunch: Cup of lentils cooked with mushrooms and onions
    Late Lunch. Large chopped salad with turkey and ham (Chef salad) and hard boiled egg with olive oil and balsamic.
    Dinner 4 oz 90% lean patty with mushroom and onion, tossed salad with evoo, 1/2 cup lentils 1/2 cup 3 bean salad.
    Coffee with splash of cream
    4 brazil nuts.
    Water consumption for Tuesday same as Monday.

    When i get hungry I’ll snack on sauerkraut, bean salad, lentils, hard boiled egg whites, celery.

    Some times I eat out of boredom but never things I shouldn’t have.

    I’m on my feet a lot at work and I try to walk briskly 1/2 hour every day.

    Am I being impatient? Should I only eat until i no longer feel hungry and then grab a small snack in between meals. Is there a problem over eating (my biggest challenge) even acceptable foods?

    Thank you for any guidance you can give.

    • Thing most likely will be slow for you because hormone sensitivity at 59 is a lot different, you will need to be patient.  You are doing everything pretty good.  I think because you are snacking you may still have some issues with leptin sensitivity.  

      If you want to make some changes I can make 2 suggestions.  One is a more extreme version of SCD that Dr Jack Kruse calls leptin reset.  What I know about it is to eat 50 grams of protein for breakfast.  Details are here

      The other is intermittent fasting.  IF for me and many others if very easy and very successful, but it is not for everyone.  Here is an article with references to both Jack Kruse and IF

      I would read the series about IF on marks daily apple site

  34. Ryan Smith said:

    My name is Ryan and I’m 35 years old, 5’9″ and was 270 lbs in January when severe heartburn caused me to change my diet.  About the same time I discovered the slow carb diet in 4HB and have used it to get myself down to 208 lbs and feel great. 

    My only problem is I haven’t been able to get below this weight and have plateued.  My daily diet is consistent with 3 eggs in the morning cooked with a spat of butter.  I dring tons of coffee with dry creamer in it til lunch when I go to Old Chicago’s for a ceasar salad with no dressing, or croutons just romaine lettuce, warm chicken breats and parmesean cheese.  I also have a sort of black bean soup consisting of black beans and salsa mixed together.  For dinner I eat steak, pork chops, ground beef or turkey (one of these) and black beans and salsa again.  I use tons of organic ketchup wth my dinner, but other than that I don’t cheat.  I do drink tons of Bengal Spice tea, but no other forbidden foods. 

    Why have I plateued????  I don’t excercise, maybe that’s it. 

    • Every one plateau’s at some point if you don’t make changes.  You need to make some changes to mobilize more fat by lowering insulin and improving insulin sensitivity.  You can 
      1. Try intermittent fasting
      2. Lower or remove your carbs 1-2 meals a day and eat more fat
      3. Exercise

      Try which ever of those will work best for you.  Good Luck.

      • Ryan Smith said:

        I sure appreciate you taking the time to respond to my post.  I’ll try cutting the beans out for a week or so and see if I get back on track. 

  35. FlyingPig said:

    Hi Justin,

    FlyingPig here from the 4hbtalk forum. I’d just like your input about BCAA supplements. Would you recommend them for me before and after I do my kettlebell swings at home? Or shall I just keep doing what I am doing as I seem to be on the right track? (see for my measurement and some pictures)
    I know you had good results with leangains but I’m not sure I can follow a regimented schedule like that. Still, maybe I should experiment with carb cycling and just eat a few sweet potatoes on work-out days (which are pretty moderate so far). Or in my case would you just continue eating high fat and low carb all the time? (which suits me quite well) My main concern is losing the fat at this point.
    One last question: any thoughts about post-workout meals? (after moderate kettlebell swinging and squats for 10-15 minutes) Sometimes I’m just not hungry and I’m thinking maybe I should just not eat at all and remain fasted.
    Maybe I’m just overthinking it too much but I’d appreciate your thoughts.

    • Hey Pig,

      BCAAs are really only needed when training fasted to prevent muscle catabolism.  Are you doing IF everyday?  If you can I do recommend it, and then BCAA would be a good idea pre and post kettlebell workout.

      High fat low carb all the time for fat loss.  Just make sure you carb ‘cycle’ or ‘refeed’ at least once a week, that is what cheat day is for.  I find if you do that with ‘safe starches’ like fruit and veggies then bad carbs.  I see you mention Paleo stuff on the forum so I am sure you know about that already.

      For post workout fat loss, I would do a whey protein isolate shake with some coconut milk.  Keep it high fat and protein and low carb, but the whey will spike insulin so you don’t lose muscle.

      Remember that you lose the most fat when sleeping, so make sure sleep quality and quantity is good, if your schedule permits it.  Try to go to bed at dusk/dark and follow day/light cycles.

      • FlyingPig said:

        Hi Justin,

        Thanks for the reply, appreciated.

        I am not IF’ing every day, so far I only do it once a week on a Sunday (24 hours or 36 hours as last Sunday), although today I did my kettlebell routine in the morning (fasted), didn’t have anything after as I was not hungry, and I only had something to eat around 3pm (an oven roast with steak, sweet potato and carrots and parsnips). Do I still need BCAA then? (think once a week IF is enough for me now as I have good results, but maybe the Leangains 18/6 schedule is more efficient, who knows, in which case I would need the BCAA)
        So are you saying it is better to leave the sweet potato until refeed day (Saturday for me)? And to keep eating high fat (avocado, butter) even after work-outs? That would suit me actually, I like sweet potatoes but once a week is enough for me and fatty meals fill me more. I might start using a bit more fruit as well but for fat loss I suppose I better keep that minimal and only eat fruit on Saturday until I have leaned out more as I still have a way to go.
        Interesting to hear about the whey protein shake with coconut milk. Do you think that would benefit me then? So far I’ve been wary of these shakes but I might have to look into that. Seems like I need to spike that insulin indeed, haven’t done that so far post-workout (except today if you can count the sweet potato and carrots hours later).

      • Some sort of protein and fat is probably going to help you the most post workout.  It doesn’t have to be a shake, but if you are not hungry then a shake might make the most sense.  I would keep it pretty small though like 25 grams of protein and some coconut milk or other fat source.

        If you spike insulin with protein but have very little carbs/glucose then you have little (possibly no) chance of it being stored as fat.  This is going to be good for fat loss but bad for performance.

      • FlyingPig said:

        OK, thanks for that. Low carb whey protein shake with coconut milk sounds good. My appetite has really changed a lot for someone who used to eat everything in sight, so the drink may be needed for when I’m not hungry. 
        Performance is secondary at the moment, fat loss the priority so I’ll stick with this, give it a few months and see where we are then.
        Thanks for all your help, keep posting on the 4hb forum.

      • FlyingPig said:

        P.S.: On this guy is confusing me (post from over a year ago). He says: ”
        What is the purpose of this protein shake? Do you exercise in the morning and the protein shake is for recovery? In that case, you don’t want any fat in the protein shake. Fat slows absorption of protein, and you want it to be absorbed as quickly as possible. Adding fat to, say, a whey protein shake defeats the purpose of buying whey. Whey is the #1 protein because it’s the most quickly absorbed.”
        Shall I just ignore that kind of advice? (he seems like a contrarian  in other topics to, this guy)

      • I have read that protein synthesis is a long process that takes 24+ hrs

        Recovery is different than fat loss.  Fat loss you want to minimize muscle catabolism while keeping insulin low.

        I would guess that absorbing protein slowly would actually be better for fat loss than absorbing it fast.  Pure conjecture I have not researched it at all.

  36. Hi Justin,
    I’ve been on the SCD since January of this year and have gone from 235 and 25% bodyfat to my current 185 and 12% bodyfat.  I am a 38 yr old male, and I am considering following the IF principles that I have read about on  My goals at this point would be to get below 10%bf and and add about 5-10 lbs of lean muscle.  I was curious how to begin IF (should I keep the SCD principles and just adopt the IF schedule, or change my macronutrient mix and schedule?)  I would love to hear your advice on how and where to begin with this.  Thanks!

    • Hi GF,

      Keeping SCD principals and adding IF is pretty close to what I do.  I would try to eat more in those 8 hours that you are eating though.  If you have cravings or hunger pangs as your body learns how to fast then use some flavourless and fatty snacks.  Raw nuts, almond butter, light olive oil etc

  37. BurntWaffle said:

    Hey Justin,

    BurntWaffle here from, you’ve helped me out on the forum loads so I thought I’d do some research on you. Very interesting, determined, focused guy, definitely an inspiration!
    At the moment I’m unhappy with my diet. I spent 6 months losing weight and trying to build muscle (get lean) and I went from being 99kg to 88kg, 27% body fat to 23% body fat and overall my fitness level increased, I saw changes, my friends saw changes (confidence changes too) and overall I was pleased with my progress. I recently moved back home where, I’m not going to the gym as often (I don’t really like my new gym as much as my old one) and I’ve started eating a lot more biscuits than I did when I lived away from home. I live with my grandparents and it’s tough to diet especially when they’re buying chocolates and biscuits for themselves! I’m kinda worried that I’ll put the weight back on, I’ll loose the muscle and just waste all the hard work I put in and end up back where I started, you know?
    I wondered if you had any advice for me? I’m considering having a 2nd attempt on the Slow Carb Diet as I failed the first time round. To me it sounds like the best option for 1. staying in somewhat shape 2. dealing with my recent biscuit cravings (cheat day) and 3. seeing results in a short period of time.
    Man any help whatsoever I’d appreciate. I just don’t wanna end up like I was! Wanna stay this fit and get fitter!
    Thanks, Ryan. UK.

    • Hey Burnt,

      That is a tough situation, I am glad that you were able to get down to 23% bf.  

      This really is going to be more psychological than anything for you.  I am not an expert by any means in this type of thing but here are some ideas.

      1. Make some smaller goals ie.  eat x amount of biscuits per week
      2. Discuss this with your grandparents and they will hopefully be helpful
      3. Find a gym buddy, or just workout at home or outside.  If you have an iphone there are lots of programs this one seems good
      4. Have a goal or schedule for your workouts
      5. Have some medium term stats to track like total inches or body fat like 1x per month
      6. Do some research and experiment with different methods for goal setting.  There are probably lots of resources out there.

      Good luck let me know if you have any other questions.

      • Hey Justin,

        Thanks for your speedy response! Really appreciate that!

        I downloaded a bunch of apps that you recommended, the DailyBurn Tracker app is awesome! I really like it and I like how it sends you emails informing of stuff to add to your diet.

        I took your advice and made some goals –

        – Get to 15% body fat

        – 75kg weight

        I have others but those (for me) are the main two.

        I just moved house so I had to dig out the four hour body book and I’ve been going through that again. I looked at the kettlebell stuff in adding muscle.

        I love doing kettlebell swings which may sound weird, but for me, it’s one of the most enjoyable exercises I love doing.

        So I was reading that and thinking, how can 75 kettlebell swings make you totally ripped? Do you know? Have you tried the kettlebell stuff Tim talks about?

        Nevertheless it’s intrigued me and I’m thinking about doing it, 3 times a week, 5-10 minute sessions, probably starting off to aim for 50 reps with a minute break in between. Making sure I get those “good 20 reps” in. 12kg kettlebell is good for me, I’m pretty sure that’s where I’m at. 16kg I can do but it’s tough, I remember after about 15 I was struggling!

        So I was thinking of doing that along with the slow carb diet. Now would you recommend this? Have you tried this? As far as the SCD goes, I tried once for a week and failed but I’m getting excited to try it again and stick to it this time.

        So what are your thoughts man?


      • Oh and I have this thing in October, seeing some old classmates I haven’t seen in about a year or two. Last time they saw me I was 99kg, never even been in a gym before in my life, my diet was terrible (eat whatever I want, mostly crap) and I was just fat and unhealthy.

        So I’m motivated to look good and to try and lose even more body fat and add more muscle. Hence I’m aiming for 15% bf and 75kg weight (I’d say I’m about 88kg right now and 24% bf). Think it’s do able? Was thinking of starting in August (SCD, Kettlebell).

      • Hi Ryan,

        Yest I suggest doing SCD or paleo ‘diets’ they are not really diets but you can call it that if you like.

        Good luck and make sure you get lots of sleep.

      • Hey Justin, Ryan here again.

        Today I started the SCD, it’s 10pm now and I made it through the first day! It’s been a struggle. It shouldn’t be this way should it?

        I’m trying to see what’s wrong, why I feel this way. I like to snack in between meals (used to) not huge snacks but like a handful of nuts or biscuits. So I think I missed the snacking part of today. Also I have really low energy because I’ve not had any carbs. What’s the best way to overcome that? You said something about it takes a couple weeks to get past it?

        The other thing is, I feel as though I didn’t eat enough food. Right now, I’m not hungry but I’m not full. I’m maybe 50/50 or 60/40. I just think I need to log on to 4HBTalk and get some ideas for SCD meals.

        But, all I want to know is, how do I overcome the low energy I have due to lack of carbs?


      • Hi Ryan,

        This doesn’t happen to everyone but I have heard of it happening a few times. Some people get what is referred to as the low carb flu. There is a good article about it on Marks Daily Apple here

        I would suggest a few things.

        1. Eat more fat and protein
        2. Have some flavourless calories between meals (I use coconut oil now)
        3. Eat more legumes (if you are doing SCD not Paleo)

        4. Snack on nuts and/or fruit, do this only short term

        You should only need to do #1 and #2. #3 and #4 are if they don’t help.

        For more info on flavourless calories see my post here

        Good luck let me know if you have any more questions

  38. Sarahmaxwell17 said:

    Hello! I am very interested in getting your help; I thought it would be easier for me to come to your specific site instead of going through the 4hbtalk site, but whatever you prefer. 

    My exercise week looks like this:
    Monday-30-45 min. yoga, 80 seconds of 1 set modified Spartacus workout*
    Tuesday-30-45 min. yoga, 30-40 min. bike ride
    Wednesday-30-45 min. yoga, 80 seconds of 1 set modified Spartacus workout
    Thursday-30-45 min. yoga, 30-40 min. bike ride
    Friday-30-45 min. yoga, 80 seconds of 1 set modified Spartacus workout
    Saturday-2 hour bike ride, 1 hour yoga

    I generally workout in the mornings, though sometimes midday if I feel like I need to sleep more.  I’ve been trying 5 mg of melatonin to help my sleep, which has been bad the last month. I used to have no difficulties falling asleep around 11 and waking up around 7, but now I often can’t fall asleep until after 1, wake up frequently, and am often awake at 6 or 6:30 and fully alert.

    As for eating, I have kept a log of my food since I started the SCD about a month ago. I have created a google doc of my body measurements taken on cheat days, and my macronutrients eaten every day. If you’d like, I can add you on googledoc so you can view them if you have an email address that I could enter.

    My goal? I would love to get to be 15-16% body fat. I am 5’10, 27 years old, and have been a personal trainer for a year and a half and I am my most difficult client. I’m by no means unhealthy, and would consider myself fairly fit. Right now I weigh around 160. My body fat is probably about 20% (which is about what it was the last time I used a Bodylogic Body Fat Analyzer. The Weight Watchers scale I have now says I’m about 25%, which I think is a little high, since I’ve lost a bit of weight on SCD. I can’t seem to get my fat thermometer to drop much lower than that 20%. I’ve lost about 5-6 pounds on the SCD after a month, but my weight and body fat seem to be stuck, with a tendency to be slightly higher than my lowest weigh in of 158.

    I’d love to know what you think I could do to get down about 5% body fat. And I sure wouldn’t mind getting down to 12% if it’s possible (which I hope it is).

    *The “modified Spartacus workout” consists of the following exercises with 8 lb weights for 80 seconds:
    1. Single-arm dumbbell swing (one weight)
    2. Thrusters/squat with shoulder press (both weights)
    3. Lateral lunges (one weight)
    4. Chest cross while on exercise ball (both weights)
    5. Squats (both weights)
    6. Bent over row (both weights)
    7. Crunches on ball with legs straight (modified to immitate the BOSU ball crunch)
    8. Single leg squats (one weight)
    9. Push up with row (both weights)
    10. Wall sit with bicep curl (both weights)

    • Hi Sarah,

      Thanks for using the site.

      Your workouts don’t seem too intense so I wouldn’t call it over training but you probably do need to change it up a bit.  I would add 1 day a week of strength or hypertrophy training to replace the yoga and spartacus circuit.  Something like Starting Strength or stonglifts 5×5 or even occam’s.

      Second question would be how is your sleep?  9+ hours pitch black room?  Sleep is the most important part of fat loss in my experience.  Especially for people that eat well and can’t seem to lose fat.

      Let me know if you have more questions.

      • Sarah Maxwell said:

        Hey! I will definitely look into Occam’s and see what I can switch up for one day a week. As for sleep…I struggle. I used to sleep like clockwork from 11-7, but I moved about a month and a half ago and have not been able to get into a real groove for sleep yet. I usually wake up multiple times (usually needing to pee) but I have a REAL hard time falling asleep. Sometimes I wake up VERY early and can’t get back to sleep. I tried melatonin; not really any change. Last night I took some Doxylamine succinate and slept from about 1-8 for the first time without waking up any time. Any suggestions?
        Also…how important do you feel PAGG is? I haven’t ever taken any.

      • Hi Sarah,

        I apologize I have not had time to look at your google docs yet. As for PAGG it definitely helps. I used it for the MI40 contest I just did and had great results. I have used it 3 different times so far for about 1 month cycles and each time had good results. Not sure if it is placebo or not.

        As for sleep this is key, and probably the biggest variable with your fat loss stall. How much artificial light is in your room? It has to be pitch black remove all light. Also try to keep lights low at all times after sunset. Natural melatonin production is affected by just a pin prick of light. I wrote a bit about it here I suggest you take a look at TS Wiley’s stuff. She has a couple interviews on podcasts and a book called lights out.

        Here is another good read on sleep

        He references this article

        I would suggest a similar experiment trying to remove all artificial light for a week or so. That should help you get back to a good sleeping pattern.

        I always suggest 9+ hours of sleep in a pitch black room for fat loss. Not just 8 hours.

  39. I just got my 1st 2 months supply of PAGG. Should I take my first dosage on Sunday, and begin the following day? I thought I’d seen that in 4HB book, but can’t find it… Or does it really matter?

  40. Hey Justin!

    So I’ve been very sedentary lately (hurt my back) other than walking but have still lost about 6 pounds in 3 weeks on the slow-carb diet. I have a noticeably flatter stomach.

    I’m going to start going back to crossfit soon probably around 3 times a week. I was wondering what I should eat before and after these very intense workouts. I’m actually kinda nervous as I’m afraid it might impede my fat loss somehow.

    Thanks a ton!

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