Like most people, I’ve been looking for that magic combination of food that will make it easier for me to stay lean with ease all year round. I know, I know, that isn’t healthy and for the most part an impossible task for someone that is not a naturally lean person. So I have decided to try keto for a 6 month period. My reasoning for this was that I wasn’t going to be that guy on the internet that shits on everything without giving it a fair shake. The truth is I have pretty much done every diet you could imagine. Intermittent fasting, 4-hour body, Atkins, high carb, low carb, no carb you name it. I have been lean on each and every one of these diets too.
So I decided to take the plunge and go all in on keto. I was dealing with some pretty severe hip pain and inflammation was a nightmare. I took some time and studied all of the material available to do it right. I will say in the beginning it was awesome! Bacon, eggs, wings, cheese… did I mention bacon? I decided to do it right and ordered the blood ketone meter as well as the breath tester. Two weeks went by and I felt amazing, dropped a quick 8 pounds of water and overall energy was great. I was sold and basically ready to get a new haircut and join a cult. Even my bloodwork was flawless! Now, I was very strict on this regimen. I went on vacation and did not stray one bit. My carb intake was always 30 or below and I kept fats very high and protein moderate to low. Long story short I decided to have my hip replaced because the pain was just too much to handle on a daily basis. I decided to have my BF tested prior to surgery and the results were okay I guess for not really being active and feeling like garbage. 14.2% at 209 pounds with skeletal muscle mass at 104. The keto experiment went for almost 6 months.
In come carbs! So after my surgery, I could not for the life of me smell or eat bacon without gagging. I have no idea what happened but it was disgusting to me. Maybe something to do with the anesthesia or who knows. I decided that I was going to figure out a way to be more active and come back leaner and stronger than before at 41 years old. I dumped the keto and decided to run with a template from RP. It seemed easy enough and I really didn’t feel like counting macros and dealing with that neurotic lifestyle. Immediately I realized that this was easy as hell! I just followed the base and ran with it. I also decided that I would go back to jiu-jitsu full time even with the fake hip. The results were remarkable, to say the least. I went from 209 at 14.2% to 206 at 8.4% today. I never even made it to cut 3 and my energy level and recovery are night and day better than when I was on keto. Now, keep in mind that 90% of what I eat is recommended on the template and I rarely eat processed foods or garbage. With that said, my inflammation and joint pain are just as low if not lower than when I was on keto. My carb intake went from 30 to over 450 a day and some days much higher. Blood work is great and health is on point yet again.
I am in no way bashing keto because it has its place for certain people. I can honestly say for me it wasn’t conducive to performance or strength and explosiveness. I would say for someone that does not plan on training or leads a sedentary lifestyle maybe it could work for them. Now, if you plan on pushing your limits and want to perform at a high level I would go higher carb and lower to moderate fat all day! I have never been leaner and fuller than I am now. At least take it from someone that took the time to get keto adapted and do it right. Again, this is completely anecdotal but my results tell me that well-timed carbs and lower fat are the best recipes for performance, health and overall happiness.
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