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Losing muscle :(

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Old 05-24-2011, 04:50 AM   #1
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Default Losing muscle :(

I almost titled this thread "worst fears coming true!!!" but that that was a bit overdramatic.

However, this WAS one of my fears about losing weight and it IS coming true. A trainer told me today that the sharp pain on the outside of my knee when I run was likely caused by (or exacerbated by) weak quad muscles. He then tested my quad muscles and told me in fact they were "quite weak."

Worst diagnosis ever! I hated to hear what I heard today but I believe him. I grew up very athletic and a soccer player, so I always had big quads. I've noticed in the past few weeks/month or so they are becoming visibly smaller.

I am happy to lose weight but I always feared losing muscle. Being strong and able was something I was always proud of and loved about my body, and I'd gladly take a little fat if it meant being able to keep my muscle.

I'd welcome any advice-- I suppose up my protein (I usually only get 60 g a day consistently, though I aim for 70-80) and increase strength training? Or should I accept some muscle loss as an inevitable part of weight loss and work on building muscle later? Or stop weight loss now if muscle loss is such a concern?

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Old 05-24-2011, 07:23 AM   #2
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I'm not sure if I am allowed to link other forums, I'm guessing I can't but if you have a search for some body building websites/forums they offer great advice on how to maintain muscle mass while losing weight.

I think a good start would be aiming to eat your lean body mass (your total weight minus your body fat %) in protein minimum (or as close as you can get) while lifting heavy 2-3 times a week. My knowledge is very limited but my understanding improved greatly while lurking on these forums.
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Old 05-24-2011, 07:40 AM   #3
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Have you been doing specific exercises to build your quads? Have you done any weight exercises at all?

The best way to keep muscle loss to a minimum is to keep on using the muscle. It doesn't have to be either-or, you can lose weight (fat) at the same time you are strengthening muscle. Look into an appropriate weight-lifting routine--both upper and lower body.

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Old 05-24-2011, 07:54 AM   #4
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60g protein and losing pounds is a recipe for muscle loss. Generally, it is recommended to consume 1g/lb lean body mass minimum and a solid strength training program in order to retain muscle during weight loss.

Now, when people lose weight, you will naturally lose some muscle but ^^^ will help retain as much of it as you can.

Good luck
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Old 05-24-2011, 07:59 AM   #5
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sacha - what does ^^^ mean?
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Old 05-24-2011, 08:04 AM   #6
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Haha sorry, I mean ^^to above, where I said 1g/lb lean mass protein + strength training.
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Old 05-24-2011, 08:15 AM   #7
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Thanks!
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Old 05-24-2011, 08:31 AM   #8
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You guys are right and I appreciate the reminders!

Protein: I just measured my body fat percentage using the US Navy method and found out I was obese. I think I did it incorrectly! Either way, I imagine I need to be getting closer to 80-100 g of protein a day. I find it near impossible to get that on a daily basis because I don't eat meat and live in a developing country (in other words, no access to seitan, quinoa, tempeh, tofu, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, and other sources of protein I tend to rely on). Near impossible, but not impossible.

So.... order protein powder on Amazon and have it shipped? Which one? Clif builder bars (chocolate mint, yum)? Any other recommendations for protein supplements?

Lifting: I do lift (squats, lunges, various resistance band exercises), but not consistently. I need to do more. It sounds like heavier weights at lower intervals is the key?

Thanks for all the input!
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Old 05-24-2011, 08:50 AM   #9
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If you are a vegetarian without access to those foods then yes, you'll want to supplement. It's strictly a matter of taste although I'd choose a lower carb one as the majority of your diet is probably carb based (I love AllMax, ON Whey makes a natural brand, both taste excellent).

Here's a great thorough discussion of PP r eviews:
http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=123241801

As for lifting, yes, you need to be consistent and yes, the heavier the better. ALWAYS (with injury or certain training exceptions). A solid full body routine is best.
Another good discussion on training:
http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=127023861
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Old 05-24-2011, 09:16 AM   #10
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Thanks so much sacha!

I'm usually able to keep my carbs around 100-150, so a low-carb protein powder would be ideal. Beans are a huge source of my protein and bring with them lots of carbs, so a low-carb protein powder is welcomed. The link you shared with reviews will be very helpful.
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Old 05-24-2011, 09:26 AM   #11
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Do you have access to lentils?
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Old 05-24-2011, 09:29 AM   #12
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hehe that was the site I was going to link
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Old 05-24-2011, 10:20 AM   #13
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For what its worth I am currently intaking daily - 150g protein (and 3 protein supplements on top of that) @ 230lbs, I am losing fat but was told I am building muscle. Not sure if this is relevant to you but I would say increase protein and work on quad and hamstring curls. Maybe 4 sets of 15-20 reps (At a weight that is manageable but tests you). Its great because you can sit down doing them and only using your legs so at the end of your workout get a breather, sit down and just work these muscle groups. I am no expert in it though.
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Old 05-24-2011, 11:08 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sacha View Post
Do you have access to lentils?
Yes, both beans and lentils. I live in India so I eat daal on a weekly basis . They are both in my diet, but I can always eat more of them.

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Old 05-24-2011, 11:11 AM   #15
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Do you eat eggs? Those are also a good source of protein- I know you said vegetarian but I didn't know if you also meant eggs as well.
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