Most of our transformations are about consistent diet and smart training, achieving rapid results. This is something a little different: Katarina is a neuroscience graduate turned bar staff who made some minor dietary and lifestyle modifications to create a effortless yet significant difference in her body composition over a year, without restricting herself. This shows that it’s very possible to make improvements by subtle changes in your meal timing and activity.
Start: 70.4kg – Month 1
End 66kg – Month 12.
What was your approach?
The spark of my transformation was 3 months of training 3x/week with full body movements. This caused some big visible changes. I ate much more food than I’d been used to eating at the beginning. After 3 months I stopped training and simply ate to satisfy my appetite and lost weight naturally. This was because:
1) – I skip breakfast: I don’t feel hungry in the mornings but have a big cup of coffee with whole milk. Just to get the ‘fat makes you fat’ misconception out of the way! (Editor’s note: Eating breakfast is suboptimal and can actually impede fat loss. None of our clients eat breakfast! More to come on this).
2) – My dietary requirements dictated that I could not eat wheat and some grains, e.g. pasta, bread, rice or potato.
This was not an atkins diet. I have the sexiest syndrome in the world: Irritable Bowel Syndrome. That meant that I basically ate a low carb diet of mostly:
– Fat: Butter, olive oil, nuts
3) – Towards the end, my activity levels increased from full time bar work.
There’s three simple steps: skip breakfast, increase your general NEPA (Non exercise physical activity), and reducing your carb intake according to expenditure. It actually works.
How have you benefited?
I lost weight without trying, and didn’t have to stop eating my peanut m&ms. That’s the big one.
What did you learn?
My mum used to yo-yo diet, weigh salad leaves and generally be overly food-conscious. This caused me to have a strange relationship to food and to resent the idea of ‘dieting’. It just seemed too painful to be worth the effort. However, considering this was effortless and was more about lifestyle tweaks, losing weight does not have to be painful.
What would you advise to someone seeking to go through the same process?
Skip breakfast, this is the most important thing. I had been doing this naturally anyway, but thanks to Yusef I found that I had been unwittingly doing ‘intermittent fasting’ – a way to optimise meal frequency to your hormonal advantage for fat loss and muscle preservation.
I’m not a health-freak, I smoke and drink and enjoy life. If I can do it, anyone can do it.