Thursday, October 7, 2010

BodPod and the OH SHIT moment.

Well, the good news is I found my motivation to see this Whole30 thing through to the end. The bad news is that I am a fucking fatass. I have a certificate to prove it. Well, it's really a printout from the BodPod ( - a hyperaccurate body fat testing thing that a few of my friends and I decided to do.

We headed down to the University of Minnesota Rec Center, which has changed in the (dear god I am old) 11 years since I graduated. First off, I usually came to the Rec Center from the west, since I lived on the West Bank. Second off, I did it on a bike. Third off, college chicks seem hotter now to me and that confused me. I had to use my Google Maps on my iPhone to guide me to the building. Kind of sad.

The Rec Center is where all the hardcore physiologists hang out. It also houses the two gyms on the Minneapolis East Bank campus. We didn't have a gym on the West Bank. We had the music hall and a library, and the dance studio, and all of the art studios. There was a lot of, uh, pride on that side of the river. It was also where my dorm was. I picked it because they had semi-private baths. The idea of communal bathrooms, even 11 years later, still doesn't jive with me. I hope it never does because I don't ever want to be one of those 70 year old guys who just wanders around the gym locker room naked for hours on end. It's like one day modesty just goes out the window at the behest of some crazy popup turkey timer in their brain. POINK - Hey, this large fluffy towel whose logical place is wrapped around my waist now belongs Burgess Meredith style across my neck like I'm cornermanning Rocky Balboa. An addendum, my balls are now named "Apollo" and "Creed."

I'd been using a handheld Omron body fat monitor for a while now. I just grabbed the handles again to see what it said - it read 23.7% body fat. That's not so bad. A ways to go, but still not so bad. I clambered into the BodPod, sat there in a spandex cap and my stretchy underarmor underpants and just hoped to hell that I didn't rip ass in this airtight container. It was over in about three minutes.

Afterwards the results came in. That's the aforementioned fat certificate. My results:
% Fat - 31.4
% Fat Free Mass - 68.6%
Fat Mass - 60.171 pounds
Fat Free Mass - 131.633 pounds
Body Mass - 191.804 pounds

This puts me in the "risky" body fat rating. Now, here I thought that at my fattest I'd only ever been about 28% body fat. I grossly overestimated my lean body mass. My first thought was "How fat was I before I started CrossFit 14 months ago?" I knew my blood work was a mess. I knew I couldn't do a single pull up. I was borderline Type II diabetic. My blood pressure was hideous. I was in bad shape.

I was in bad shape and thought I was 28% fat. Then the BodPod tells me after losing 25 - 30 pounds, eating clean (okay, much more clean than I had been), kicking ass day in and day out at CrossFit, I'm 31.4% fat. I knew I had a way to go but that was just demoralizing.

I did some math. Granted I was an English major but I still know how to work a calculator. Body fat percentage is pretty simple. Divide your lean body mass (131.633) by your total body mass (191.804). 131.633/191.804 = 0.686. Now take the result and subtract it from 1. 1-0.686 = .314. You can multiply that by 100 to get your percentage. .314*100 = 31.4.

So there's three scenarios that I figured I could test out. The first is to assume that I've had the same amount of lean body mass (i.e. muscle, skeleton, tendons, organs) ever since I started CrossFit. So therefore the only weight I lost was pure fat. Let's call my starting weight 217.5. I fluctuated between 215 and 220 around that time, so right in the middle is good enough for government cheese. I won't show my work because this is a goddamn blog and I'm not in 9th grade anymore. I have the same sense of humor, but I'm not in the 9th grade anymore.
Result - 39.5% body fat (131.633 lean body mass, 85.867 pounds of FAT).

The second scenario is that as I was losing fat weight, I was actually gaining muscle through working out. I am much much stronger than I was 14 months ago. For this scenario, let's assume that I gained 10 pounds of muscle through CrossFit as I lost the fat. So that would mean I started with 121.633 pounds of lean body mass.
Result - 44.1% body fat (121.633 lean, 95.867 pounds of FAAAAT).

The third scenario is that I gained 20 pounds of muscle over the last 14 months through CrossFit. The quick googling I did said that the upper register of lean muscle growth is 25 pounds per year. I have 2 months extra to work with. Even so, I admit this is on the "upper" register of change. So. 111.633 lean body mass...
Result - 48.2% body fat (111.633 lean, 105.867 pounds of FAAAAAAT).

Deltas of the three scenarios:
1) 8.1% bf lost. 25.7 lbs of FAT lost.
2) 12.7% bf lost. 35.7 lbs of FAAAAT lost. 10 lbs lean mass gained.
3) 16.8% bf lost. 45.7 lbs of FAAAAAAAAT lost. 20 lbs lean mass gained.

My overall feel is that what really happened is somewhere between scenario 2 & 3. I was filling out a 36 waist uncomfortably when I started. I probably should have gone up to a 38, but my ego wouldn't let me. Now I'm a little too big for a 33, but need a belt with a 34.

Seeing 31.4% as the current level has erased all of my anger and cravings and doubts about trying this diet. I have a longer journey to go than I thought I did. Not that it scares me, more that it just motivates me. I'd love to be down to 10% body fat and ripped like Jesus (I love Greg Behrendt).

Assuming my current rate of loss is, oh, split the difference between 16.8 and 12.7 - call it 14.75% body fat loss per 14 months. A shade over 1% a month. I have a year and a half to go before I can rip my shirt off at the beach and people will be all like "Man, is that JESUS?! Oh wait, nah, that's just Kevin. Nice 6-pack though." Getting to 10% will take 21 months.

Even though I wore a lab coat for these calculations (and only a lab coat) I have to say these aren't scientific at all. I have a follow up appointment after the Whole30 challenge to head back to the BodPod. Perhaps I'll actually lose a lot more body fat doing this than I'm expecting. Oh well, till then me, Apollo, and Creed are going to hang out at the Y for a few hours.

1 comment:

  1. So glad you decided to do the challenge then. Glad to see you are motivated by this; it shows your determination and value of a quality, healthy life.

    I think you should go for the win!