Just over a week ago, I finished 6 months of work with FITbody and Physique LLC, Peter and Amy Fitschen’s coaching service, during which time I have made awesome progress losing fat in a healthy and sustainable way while maintaining strength and muscle mass.
Fitbody is based in Champaign-Urbana but they do remote coaching. I would highly recommend that anyone who wants some guidance and support reaching their health, physique and performance goals.
Results: I don’t have before/after pictures (and probably wouldn’t publish them if I did), but I started out at ~28% body fat and around 160 lbs, eating 2400 calories/day. After about 14 weeks of dieting and then 10 weeks of reverse dieting, I weigh about 144 lbs and am currently eating 2350 calories/day, and am still adding food while maintaining my weight. I haven’t gotten another bodyfat measurement but I suspect I am about 3% lower than before.
To emphasize: I’ve maintained the weight I dieted down to this **entire time**, all the while adding on more food and working back up to almost exactly the amount of food I was eating before.
During this time I trained normally and my (admittedly shitty) squat and deadlift stayed about the same (relative to my bodyweight) and my bench actually got stronger (I hit a new 5 lb PR shortly after my cut stopped).
Pros of working with Fitbody as opposed to other kinds of coaching:
(1) Flexible dieting. You *do* have to be disciplined about measuring your food and staying within your allotted grams of protein, carbs and fat, but you don’t have to cut anything out. I have eaten reasonable amounts of junk food nearly every single day, including beer, chocolate and ice cream. There’s no silly bro-science bullshit (like not eating carbs before bed or not eating a particular food group).
(2) All recommendations are supported by Peter’s more than a decade of experience as a competitive bodybuilder (not to mention years of experience coaching others), as well as his (soon-to-be-awarded) PhD in Nutrition Science (I think I’m getting the field right).
(3) I feel way more confident about managing my nutrition on my own now. Peter doesn’t just want you to be dependent on him for life, he explains why/how he makes the decisions that he does so you can learn through the process.
(4) If you are in a bad mental space (as I was when I found out I was just shy of obese bodyfat levels despite spending 10+ hours/week in the gym and eating a pretty reasonable diet; the two things I thought would make me look and feel my best), the support provided by this kind of service is really invaluable. If you have problems with food and body image, this could be a really healthy experience for you and your relationship with food (I do, and it was for me).
(5) They can work with special populations (like strength athletes and people with spotty histories with food).
(6) This service is really, really affordable.