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My Fat Burning Diet

This post is for those of you who ask me what I do to drop body fat while maintaining as much muscle as I can. This is NOT my typical maintenance diet. This is a nutrition plan that I use when I want to cut my body fat down. This is a diet that can be used for up to 4 weeks so you can burn that extra body fat to show that muscle underneath. Feel free to use this as a guide for the types of foods you should be focusing on and the type of nutritional timing that has worked for me. If you need help getting started, check out my Nutrition 101: How to Eat for Results post FIRST!

Principles of Burning Fat

Focus on the RIGHT Type and Amount of Protein/Carbs/Fats

1. Protein: Protein is critical for building muscle as well as an energy source. Your protein will be high with this diet. It will consist of up to 50% of your daily calories. Lean Protein Sources include: Grass Fed Lean Beef, Chicken, Fish, Eggs, Dairy (cottage Cheese, Greek Yogurt), Whey Protein.

2. Carbs: Carbs are your bodies main energy source. In this plan, you will see a reduction of carbs, roughly 25%-30%, which will help you to make your body utilize body fat as energy. Complex Carbohydrates include: fibrous fruits, whole grains, oatmeal, whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta, sweet potatoes, brown rice, wild rice, quinoa, etc but keeping these carbs to 1-2 servings per day.

3. Fat: Healthy fats are crucial for many functions of the body, including hormone balance and protein synthesis. It is crucial you get adequate healthy fats in your diet, 20%-30%. Healthy Fats include: Avocado, Nuts, Seeds, Olives, Olive Oil, Fatty Wild Fish (salmon, sardines, anchovies) , etc.

4. Total Calories and Ratios: This will differ from person to person but I aim for roughly 12 calories per pound of body weight and roughly 45-50% protein, 25-30% carbs and 20-30% fat. This works very well for me. For example 170lbs x 12 = 2040 calories.

5. Nutrition Timing: Time is important. Protein should come throughout the day. Roughly every 2-3 hours. I try to base most of my carbs around breakfast and my workout. This helps me to get the most out of my workouts, aiding in energy and recovery. As the day goes on I focus more on veggies, protein and fat.

6. Hydration: This is a very important principle that is often overlooked. You should shoot for about a gallon of water per day. You also want to watch your sodium intake. Grab a big water bottle and take it with you where you go.

7. Log Your Food! You can’t reach your goal if you don’t have a plan. Log your food to make sure you are on the right track. Don’t guess. Guessing will just lead to frustration. Check out my post about logging your food for easy ways to do it.

Sample Diet (Resistance/Strength Days)

Pre-Workout Meal (upon waking)

- Whey Protein (1 Scoop) = 120 cal, 25g protein/0 g carb/ 0g fat
- 1 Apple or Oatmeal = 100 cal, 0g protein / 24 g carbs / 0gfat
- E&E Pre-Workout (15 mins before workout) = 40 cal, 0g protein/ 6g carb / 0g fat

- L-Carnitine

-CLA

Post Workout Meal

- Whey Protein (1 Scoop) = 120 cal, 25g protein/0 g carb/ 0g fat

- R&R (Results & Recovery Drink) = 220 cal, 15 g protein / 40 g carbs / 1 g fat

BreakFast

- 2 Whole Egg, 3 Egg White Omlette = 220 cal, 27 g protein / 0 g carb / 13 g fat

- Ezekiel Sproated Whole Grain Toast = 80 cal, 4 g protein / 15 g carb / 1 g fat

- Organic Light Cheese = 60 cal, 6 g protein / 0 carb / 3 g fat

AM Snack

-Shakeology = 150 cals, 18g protein / 17 carb /1g fat

- 4 oz Organic Skim Milk + Water = 40 cal, 4 g protein / 6 g carb / 0 g fat

- Omega 3s (2-3 gram)

Lunch

- Chicken 6 oz. =220 cals / 35g protein /1 g carb/5g fat

- Avocado = 100 cals 1g protein /5 g carbs / 9 g fat

- Salad = 30 cal, 0 g protein / 3 g carbs /4 g fat

PM Snack

- Quest Bar = 170 cal, 20 g protein / 24 g carb / 7 g fat

Dinner

- 4 0z Chicken = 220 cal, 30 g protein / 0 g carbs / 5 g fat

- Broccoli (cooked) = 100 cal, 4 g protein / 14 g carbs / 5 g fat

Evening Snack

- Greek Yogurt (plain, non-fat) = 120 cal, 22 g protein / 7 g carb / 0 g fat.

- Almond Butter = 100 Cal, 4 g protein / 3 g carb / 9 g fat

OVERALL = 2200 calories / 240 g protein / 170 g carbs / 62 g fat ( approximately 45% protein, 30% carbs, 25 % fat

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Sample Diet (Cardio Days)

Pre-Workout Meal (upon waking)

- Whey Protein (1 Scoop) = 120 cal, 25g protein/0 g carb/ 0g fat

- E&E Pre-Workout (15 mins before workout) = 40 cal, 0g protein/ 6g carb / 0g fat

- L-Carnitine

-CLA

Post Workout Meal

- Whey Protein (1 Scoop) = 120 cal, 25g protein/0 g carb/ 0g fat

- R&R (Results & Recovery Drink) (1.5 scoop) = 165 cal, 7 g protein / 30 g carbs / 0 g fat

BreakFast

- 1 Whole Egg, 4 Egg White Omlette = 160 cal, 27 g protein / 0 g carb / 8 g fat

- Ezekiel Sproated Whole Grain Toast = 80 cal, 4 g protein / 15 g carb / 1 g fat

- Organic Light Cheese = 60 cal, 6 g protein / 0 carb / 3 g fat

AM Snack

-Shakeology = 150 cals, 18g protein / 17 carb /1g fat

- Omega 3s (2-3 gram)

Lunch

- Turkey 6 oz. =220 cals / 35g protein /1 g carb/5g fat

- Avocado = 100 cals 1g protein /5 g carbs / 9 g fat

- Salad = 30 cal, 0 g protein / 3 g carbs /4 g fat

PM Snack

- Quest Bar = 170 cal, 20 g protein / 24 g carb / 7 g fat

Dinner

- 6 0z Salmon = 260 cal, 44 g protein / 0 g carbs / 9 g fat

- Broccoli (cooked) = 100 cal, 4 g protein / 14 g carbs / 5 g fat

- Mixed Green Salad = 10 cal, 1 g protein / 2 g carb

Evening Snack

- Casein Protein (1 scoop) = 120 cal, 23 g protein / 4 g carbs / 1 g fat

- Walnuts (1/2 serving) = 100 Cal, 4 g protein / 3 g carb / 9 g fat

OVERALL = 2000 calories / 245 g protein / 125 g carbs / 62 g fat ( approximately 50% protein, 25% carbs, 25 % fat 

76 comments
jasonwsu
jasonwsu

Hi Sean, I am 5 foot 10, weigh approximately 155 pounds, and am about 16% body fat give or take 2%. My goals are to reach 8%ish body fat while adding muscle weight/size sorta like you did. I plan to  do p90x intertwined with insanity, both of which I have done before. According to the nutrition guide, my total calorie burn is 2305, using 10% to calculate my daily activity burn. So this means I should be in phase 1 level 1 eating 1800 cals/day or is that a little low for my goals, and should I move up to 2000 cals/day to better reach my goal of 8% body fat while adding muscle? Also how often should I recalculate my calories and how much should I raise it by when I do? I also sent a message to you on teambeachbody as you are my coach on it; I just wanted to make sure you got the message

Duf
Duf

Hey coach Sean. I struggle with getting off the ground with calories for p90x. Currently 5'8" 234lb female. All the calculators have me close to 2800-3000 calories a day which I can't fathom eating. About 1/2 through workout and on 1500 calories/day (50, 30, 20) but can't see the scale budge. Goal is to get down to 180. Help

jilapit
jilapit

i saw you said you mix your R&R drink and your whey protein together. i was just wondering if you just use the original flavor blue bonnet whey protein isolate?

And also if there is any nutritional differences in all the flavors they have for the whey protein isolate by blue bonnet? 

ajs1850
ajs1850

Also, can this be used to start with if I'm doing P90X lean and I would like to lose some weight first?

ajs1850
ajs1850

What can be substituted for the shakeology drink? Just a high protein snack?

jk8611
jk8611

Hi Coach,

 

I've been using the fat shredder diet and am starting to see fat loss. One problem I have though is that I have some excess fat on my chest, giving me the "man boobs" appearance. Any suggestions? I'm pretty skinny to begin with.

 

Thanks,

Buddy

 

jk8611
jk8611

Sean, How did you gain so much muscle mass during your first round while eating so few calories? what was your key to that growth? thanks

Mason Irby
Mason Irby

Hey Sean, Just curious..... You said you use whey isolate, but what brand(s) do you use? Also, what brand(s) of casein do you use? I have been doing a lot of research recently on ingredients that I see in pretty much 99.99% of any kind of protein powder, even top name brands like BSN and ON Gold Standard: whey, casein, hydro, etc....... They all seem to contain either one or more of: mono and diglycerides, soy lecithin (or sometimes just lecithin), corn syrup and corn syrup solids, and/or high fructose corn syrup!!! What is your take on these ingredients and do you believe that they have an impact on fat loss?

John
John

Hi Coach – I am 6’0 and 165 lbs, and currently at about 15% BF. I am relatively skinny, but have some excess fat in the chest and stomach. I would really love to pack on some muscle though. Would you recommend that I be on the fat shredder diet to lose some BF or can I be on a diet more geared towards muscle growth? My only concern with being on the fat shredder is looking too thin afterwards. Thanks!

Ed
Ed

Sean, if I'm not working out first thing in the morning, would I just go to breakfast and then use the pre-workout meal just as that, pre-workout? Thanks Ed

Irwan
Irwan

Yes, alternative p90x recovery drink and shakeology? Because i live outside US. :D

Irwan
Irwan

Hi Sean, Great site tho! Next week i'll be starting P90X How much L-carnitine did you take a day? And should you take 30 minutes before workout? Thanks!

Joe St. Jacque
Joe St. Jacque

Thanks for all the tips, Sean! I really appreciate all the help. I started using the l-carnitine and CLA and will continue to play with the diet while I'm still on fat shredder. When you mix the protein and RR drink do you still do 2 scoops of the RR or just one with the protien scoop?

Joe St. Jacque
Joe St. Jacque

Just thought of something else. So for the L-Carnitine and CLA, did you just take those supplements when you were on the fat shredder diet? A months worth? What time of day did you take those? Was is right away in the morning or before a workout? What made you decide to increase your dosages? You recommend MRM for both brands? I found them both on Amazon and think I will give them a shot. Just wondering if I should only plan to use them for the first month of P90X fat shredding. Thanks again!

Joe St. Jacque
Joe St. Jacque

Also, do you mix the recovery drink with your protein shake? I had thought about that in the past but worried it would counter-act the ingredients or something.

Joe St. Jacque
Joe St. Jacque

I gotcha. I want to burn that last big of fat but just worry about dropping more weight. So you suggest to start at 2000 calories of the fat shredder diet you laid out for the first month of P90X, then for month two, change the diet to your mass building diet to add the lean muscle?

Joe St. Jacque
Joe St. Jacque

I'm 5' 11''. I worry by dropping to 2000 calories I would continue to lose more weight. I was averaging almost 3000 in P90X2 and still dropped to 157 pounds. If I am trying to tone up the last bit of my lower abs and add 10 lbs of lean muscle, do you still recommend starting the first P90X at 2k calories then adding? Obviously you got awesome results so I will follow your lead, but I just want to make sure! When you say strength phase, isn't P90X technically all the strength phase? Thanks again for your help. I really appreciate it.

Joe St. Jacque
Joe St. Jacque

Thanks, Sean. So I am started P90X2 at 177 lbs and after two rounds now down to 157. As I mentioned I would like to trim the rest of the mid section while adding 10lbs lean muscle to chest, back, and arms. Your plan says to take 12 cals per lbs so I would be looking at 1884. Should I change that up so I don't lose anymore mass since I am still trying to gain as well? Just keep the food clean and lean but up the cals to 3k? I appreciate your help. I just feel kind of stuck right now and not sure what to do! By the way I support the black socks in X2!

Joe St. Jacque
Joe St. Jacque

Hey Sean, wanted to get your opinion. I completed two rounds of X2 and gained great results. Cut my body fat down to 7%. Have pretty good definition but want more and a bit more size. We are now going back and doing a round of P90X to do some bulking (goal is to add 10lbs give or take of lean muscle) but I really want to finish off the last bit of fat around the mid section. My upper abs are very defined but the lower has just a bit of unwanted flab. Should I start with the fat shredder for 3 weeks? Or what do you recommend? Thanks Sean!

Jose
Jose

Thanks for answering my question Sean. I have been taking the recovery drink on yoga days. Oops, have to change that. One other question I have for you is what kind of whey protein powder are you using now? I have read your reviews and really interested in the Bluebonnet whey protein powder since it is natural. I am wanting to go as clean as possible. Do you think bluebonnet is the way to go or do you have any other recommendations? Thanks a bunch! Keep up the great work. I really enjoy your site!

Jose
Jose

Hey Sean! Great site and info! Do you recommend taking the results and recovery formula for yoga x?

Keybeck Song
Keybeck Song

Sean, I love this post and I am going to try to modify this for myself. I got some stubborn stomach fat that just won't go away! Keep kickin butt brother!

chris
chris

2000 is level 1 of the P90x nutrition guide, so should I just follow the meals outlined in it already, is 2000 too low or do you think it would shred the fat but still keep my muscle or does that just depend on my protein intake? Is it possible for you to somewhat help me with my diet and caloric needs on this hybrid for fat loss? I just want great results like you clearly got! Or can I just use your exact diet plan and still get the same results?

Mike Gurka
Mike Gurka

What dosage are you taking of the l-CArnitine and CLA on a daily basis?

chris
chris

What should my caloric intake be on this diet? I'm 6"1, 199 and 20 yrs old. Also i'm really confused about the ratios and how to calculate the grams with the calories and then how to incorporate your food for each meal according to your meals?

Aj
Aj

Coach Sean, I really need help focusing on the nutrition aspect of p90x. I already completed round one and I'm starting round 2 but I'm just concerned I won't see as good results if I don't diet. Im a student and live at home and I can't afford alot of the food that's required on the diet plan. So far I have lost 30 lbs by not eating sweets,drinking soda, and no alcohol. Do you think Ill be alright this round if I just keep up what Im doing?

Daniel
Daniel

Coach Sean, How did you space out the diet ( as in how often would you wait for the next meal) you posted above? I would like to follow it as best as i can.

mark
mark

@ coach sean , there is this site called puritan's pride, its pretty cost effective on supps. I think i got like 6 bottles of 60 cap carnitine-l for like $25 bucks. I was just wondering if you ever heard of this site.

Nathan
Nathan

I have a question. I kinda stopped hanging out with friends more often when i started working out and eating healthy but tomorrow I'm going to be spending the day from 1 P.M. to about 9 P.M. with my friends and I'm going to eat lunch before so when they have lunch i will be full but at dinner around 7, we will have it at my friends house and they eat very unhealthy. They will probably end up eating pizza and fries and other unhealthy foods. I haven't had my cheat meal this week so can i just eat my cheat meal there if i promise to not go crazy. :) Thank you!

Kevin
Kevin

Sean, what is CLA? And Carnatine? Is that the N.O 2.0 that we discussed before?

Nathan
Nathan

Hi. Im going to my friends summer house this weekend and it is possible to eat healthy but not the foods that are in the p90x nutrition guide. I'm still gonna workout there but i was wondering since it isn't the exact food on the guide (but they are still healthy) should i start over the week when i get home? Thank You!!!!

Ryan
Ryan

I too would like a 25 pack like the one in this pic! Lol

Abiye "AO"
Abiye "AO"

Sean, What brand would your recommend for L-Carnitine and CLA?

Craig T.
Craig T.

Love the site, Thanks for the fat burning tips. And i really enjoyed working out with you and gang in X2. Way to bring it!!. Once again great job on the web-site, i'll deffinitly be back for more tips, and incite/ encouragement.......

Abiye AO
Abiye AO

Sean, What brand of L-Carnitine and CLA would you recommend?