Once you go fat, you never go back. Oh, sorry. Wrong slogan.
Or is it?
As much as I want to tell you about how most mainstream (common) fat loss philosophies are probably hurting you more than helping you, we have to talk about body fat in general first.
To start, let’s ponder: what’s the difference between them and us? Between true-skinny guys and skinny-fat guys?
Don’t know? Is your answer: nothing?
Then you have some attention that needs paid, so get out your mental wallet.
If you’re here, I’m assuming you’re one of us, so let’s talk about the latter half of us in the “-fat” half. Much like your body flinches out of the way in protection when something is thrown at your head, your body is currently flinching it’s way into filling up your fat cells. Yes, your body thinks that having plump fat cells is better for survival.
And you’ve told it to do this.
There are many reasons for this, but the primary one is diet. Diet is what I call supply, which is a member of S. Island — a place we will visit and a place that eventually answers all of our questions about muscle gain, fat loss, and what’s actually buried on Oak Island. (Alright, maybe not that last one, but definitely the ones before that.) Eat more than you need, your body stores the excess energy away for later use. But your body can also store stuff away in muscle, so this “excess” theory doesn’t say much, does it? Nevertheless . . .
Your body chose fat.
And it chose it for a reason.
(There’s also evidence that body fat also serves a role in stress mediation, which is a product of soul — another member of S. Island. This gem of a note is important for later We have to piece other things together first.)
Bottom line? The flinch to fat is there. You’ve paved a pathway in the forest for excess nutrient storage and it’s heavily active. It’s the only sensible path midst the trees, so it’s the go-to route. You’ve developed the flinch to fat.
And it causes two problems.
First, it seems that fat cells don’t disappear when we lose fat. All signs of research point towards fat cells either (a) reducing their contents or (b) shrinking in size themselves. So fat cells, once created, are hungry and ready to refill, even after they are emptied.
Why are they hungry? Because once you lose fat, the action is justified!
“Wow, I just spent a bunch of time and effort making these little sacks and shoving stuff inside of them in case I needed it and—whatayaknow!—now it’s all gone! This worked great and I need to do it again! What if this crisis comes around again? I have to be prepared!”
(This is a negative feedback loop—one of the most important biological concepts no one seems to talk about because they’re all focused on the short term result without the long term implication. Luckily for you, playing to the hands of these loops is built into the progression of SOLDIER.)
Second, it creates a competition. When you don’t have a flinch to fat and you break the muscles down in a way that has them begging for nutrients and energy to rebuild, a lot of what you eat goes towards muscle repair and recovery. But if you add hungry fat cells to the mix, things get opaque.
With guys like us, it’s hard enough to build muscle because of our frame — the narrow shoulders, the thin wrists, and all around smaller bone structure. The fat cells also add a second layer of complexity that true skinny guys don’t have.
This is the crux of skinny-fat syndrome, and what separates us from true-skinny guys. They don’t have the flinch to fat. The first road they pave in the forest is to muscle.
This is why they tend to do great with certain programs and philosophies that involve hunkering down and eating a lot of food to bulk up.
Before you drop to your knees and plead to the heavens for a magic pill, know that there’s a path out there for you if you’re skinny-fat. It’s just not the traditional path. It’s not the true-skinny path.
Those fat cells are always going to be there. We can’t ignore them. We can’t pray them away. We have to deal with them and outsmart them.
The sad part is that the way most people go about fixing skinny-fat syndrome has nothing to do without outsmarting and everything to do with praying. This ends up being rather ineffective and can potentially even make matters worst. What do you say we learn out how to not become our own worst enemy, shall we?