I’ve done it!
30 days of a continuous ketogenic diet.
How has it been?
It’s been great! In fact, really easy, at least for me.
Mostly good, and some areas for concern.
During PART I, you will know I gave my first few days experience on the diet. I relayed the astounding positive energy difference I felt, but the drop in gym performance, particularly feeling flat and not as strong as I normally do when I was on a carb-based diet.
This was my biggest concern continuing the diet, and curious of how exactly my strength would hold up, especially since I lost weight transitioning to the diet (about 8 pounds: 188 to ~180).
Well, I’m here to inform you that I’ve lost some gains. Yes, unfortunately, some of my strength has diminished and it’s been frustrating, since I’ve been progressing steadily as the year has progressed (mostly).
My number ONE PRIORITY during this past month was to MAINTAIN MY STRENGTH. This was my primary goal and I attempted to follow my programming (I was on 5/3/1 during the past month). I continued everything like normal, even though my diet had changed radically.
Struggle! That’s what happened.
Struggle to maintain my strength, and struggle to maintain my endurance training (HIIT and circuit workouts, of course). I struggled to “turn it on” when the time came to lift the weight, and felt I had to exert so much more energy than usual to complete the lift and given set(s).
BUT, you know what?
I did complete the sets and reps I needed to at my required weights and intensities. Only thing, however, it didn’t always look pretty. My form often broke down more than usual because I felt fatigued at some points, but, as I mentioned, just couldn’t “TURN IT ON” like I used to. I’m referring to that slight controlled adrenaline rush you get when you lift that provides you that extra edge to complete the set (those who lift know what I’m talking about). This was at least what occurred for the first 2 and half weeks or so.
During the 3rd and 4th weeks I started to feel more of a “PUMP” and strong again. However, this return to optimal performance occurred in spurts, from one training session to another. One session I would feel great and have little time where I felt “weak.” Others times, though, I felt mediocre in my abilities.
What was the difference?
My best guess is time of day.
I felt better during my morning training sessions rather than my afternoon training sessions, despite fasting. From a previous article you will know I follow intermittent fasting as a pattern of eating, and have had great success over the past 4 years practicing it. You might think that I would feel worse, but NO. I felt and often feel better.
I’m not completely sure, but maybe it’s my routine and my body is better prepared for the work (my guess, at least).
I did all the same things for my afternoon workouts as my morning workouts. I took my electrolyte supplements (I use this one), my pre-workout, and my enthusiasm (or lack there of, lol).
I’m not sure what it was, but it was a noticeable difference.
(NOTE: afternoon workouts have always been my least favorite. I prefer mornings and evenings if possible).
The good news is that it has gotten better as I continue on the KETO diet.
All the positive effects…
- Significant increase in consistent energy throughout the day (no afternoon crash)
- Better mood day-to-day (much more positive)
- Enhanced mental performance and function (more creative and productive)
- Clearer skin (brighter complexion)
- Better body composition (less fat)
- I can handle stress better (may be due to better mood, mental performance, etc.)
is just too much for me to call it “QUITS” for the KETO DIET right now. I want to keep going and will figure out the strength part of the equation as I continue.
Where there’s a will there’s a way and I’ll get to my strength goals.
HENCE, I WILL CONTINUE KETO.
As always, thanks for reading and stopping by. Comment down below with your questions, and be sure to stay tuned as I continue my KETO series and update my strength programming.
Until next time, be strong and be you.