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The thing they don’t tell you about getting lean

Something that most people don’t tell you about getting really lean: it takes longer and requires losing more weight than you planned, if you’ve never been super lean before.

Getting from fat to not-fat takes about as long as you’d expect, and can generally be planned out within an order of magnitude. The second part takes twice as long as you plan, even if you account for it taking twice as long. Kinda like Hofstadter’s law.

I’m on my journey to sub 10% body fat – looking for those sweet, sweet abs that men always think will get them laid more. Of course, unless you’re on the beach, by the time she sees you without a shirt on, she’s already decided to sleep with you.

Anyways, I was initially expecting to take 4 months to get to 10ish%, with a two month maintenance phase at the end before a big event.

But life doesn’t work like that. I’ve lost weight slower than I planned initially, to keep my mood stable for work so I don’t shank someone.

I was also apparently carrying a fairly significant amount more bodyfat than would be guessed by the eyeball-meter. Which means that I have had to lose a fair bit more weight than I had expected, and will probably end up about 10-15lb lighter than I had planned.

Every time I step on the scale and see the number go down a bit I get a bit of a thrill seeing that what I am doing is working, and a little bit of the thought “Should I stop? I can’t remember the last time I was this light… high school, probably.”

This is a little scary, but that’s the way life goes. And it’s a pretty good problem to have.

But, because I’ve allowed myself a two month buffer, there’s a good chance I will be in the shape I want by the big event. And I’m even starting a ten day diet break tomorrow, to help keep my body from getting too unhappy with me.

Where would I be if I hadn’t started when I did? Probably nowhere. Just like you. So get off your ass and start today.

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