Fitter, but not stronger or leaner

  1 Jan. 1 Feb. 1 Mar. 1 Apr. 1 June 1 July 1 Aug.    
Morning Weight: 65.5 kg 65.2 kg 63.5Kg 62.4Kg 64.2Kg 63.1Kg 63.8 Kg
Evening Weight: 66.5 kg 66.0 kg 64.6Kg 63.7 Kg 65.5Kg 64.9Kg 65.1 Kg
Morning Body Fat: 30.0% 28.0% 29.2% 26.6% 25.9%* 28.8% 28.1%
Evening Body Fat: 31.4% 30.4% 28.5% 26.1% 25.7%* 26.9% 27.6%
Bust: 33.5” 34.0” 34.0” 33.5” 33.5” 33.5” 34.0”
Waist: 27.5” 27.5” 27.0” 27.0” 27.5” 27.0” 27.5”
Belly: 32.0” 33.0” 32.5” 31.5” 32.0” 31.0” 31.5”
Hips: 40.5” 40.5” 40.0” 39.5” 40.0” 39.0” 40.0”
Thigh: 24.0” 24.0” 23.5” 22.5” 22.5” 23.0” 23.0”

As usual, I weighed and measured myself yesterday, as it was the first of August. If you recall, after weighing myself at the start of July my goal was to increase muscle mass and get stronger. Sadly, I have not put on the muscle I was hoping to.

For starters, my weight has only gone up by 0.2-0.7 Kg, which is well within normal fluctuations. What’s more, using my body fat and body mass to calculate lean mass (muscle plus bone), gives me a morning lean mass of 44.9 Kg on July first, and 45.9 Kg on August first. But my evening values are 47.4 Kg on July first and 47.1Kg on August first. So I’ve either increased my lean mass by 1.0 Kg or reduced it by 0.3 Kg. Either way, it’s not a solid result.

It does explain why I’m not seeing the results in the gym I had hoped. While I can now run for 40 minutes without pain or strain, I’m not that much closer to being able to do a pull up/chin up. Part of the problem is that I’ve been trying to increase both my running endurance and strength at the same time. Research suggests that signals switched on by endurance training, switch off signals for strength adaptations. As such, increasing both strength and endurance at the same time is very hard to do. So it’s time to switch up my training. I’ll still be doing some heavy lifting in the gym, but rather than running continuously for 30 to 40 minutes at a moderate pace, it’s time for some sprint intervals. This is also more consistent with the Tough Mudder challenge, where you would never run for more than a kilometre before stopping for an obstacle.

And yes, I’ll need to keep better track of my diet. It’s interesting that while I have increased my calories (and not always through healthy sources) neither my body fat nor muscle mass has gone up significantly. Clearly I was burning a lot of energy through my various exercise sessions! But if I’m serious about getting stronger, it might be time for a return of the diet diary, if not the daily diet diary blog.


*Dubious values as I was not using my own scale.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *