If you have any questions or subjects you would like me to write about, just drop a question in the comment section below.  I will be active in conversation and be glad to answer your questions.  If I don’t have an answer, I will definitely find one.

Willem - August 28, 2012

Hey JC

Love your website, quick question from my side, I’m on a very busy schedule (we all are haha) and only have time to hit the gym 3 times a week for about an hour each day, I use a full body workout, and my goal atm is to lose some bodyfat, I’m at about 14% atm looking to get down to about 9-10%, back to my question, how important is cardio when atempting to get my BF% into single digits, because by the time I’m finised hitting the weights I’m all spent, the thought of cardio makes me wanna hurl, should I really prioritise some cardio in somewhere, or will I be fine as long as I’m lifting heavy and hittng my macros?

    JC Deen - August 28, 2012

    not important as long as you have your calories in check

John - May 15, 2012


I really enjoy your writing which is becaoming more polished and refined over time. I read on of your most recent articles on “Objectivity”, and you mentioned intermittent fasting, and that you were fond of this method and were spreading the word of its greatness at one point. Nowadays, what is your take on intermittent fasting? I find I can get by on eating lunch and dinner. But I wonder if it is really worth doing the Pilon style 24 hour fasts where I would only eat dinner once or twice a week. our feedback would be appreciated.

    JC Deen - May 15, 2012

    My take is that it’s just a tool – nothing more or less. I don’t fast any more, but that’s just a personal preference.

Toni - May 14, 2012

Hi. I’ve been training with kettlebells for the last month and managed to drop 1% percent body fat so far. I read somewhere that my body fat percentage for my age is considered “underfat” – it’s 19% and according to the article should be 21% or above. Do I need to be concerned? By the way, I feel great and have lots of energy.

    JC Deen - May 14, 2012

    probably not a reason for concern

Ellie - May 13, 2012

Hey there :-)

Just in need of some advice really. I’m a 17 year old girl looking to just get in better shape (lose weight, lose fat, build some muscle and all that) and I’m having a hard time deciding what to do about diet. How many calories do you feel are necessary per day when looking to lose weight/fat and build muscle up at the same time? Also, is 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight really necessary, only I don’t know how I’m going to get in that amount of protein per day… Also, just to say I’m weight training 3 times a week and doing ‘light’ cardio twice a week (if things go to plan and I get to the gym :-P)

I would really appreciate your help on this one, there’s so much conflicting information around! Thanks a bunch! :-) Xxx

    JC Deen - May 13, 2012

    read this and let me know if you have questions:

      Ellie - May 14, 2012

      Ahh thanks mate :-) The only question I have is, in the article you say that to get your maintenance calories you should multiply your weight by 14, but if you look on a BMR calculator to give your maintenance calories it will always come up less than the method of multiplication by 14. Which one is correct/more accurate? Also, it is a worry that eating 2000 calories a day with cause weight gain (or perhaps, more aptly would be to say fat gain.) This is probably a stupid/laughable question, but how can I be sure that it won’t? Thanks again xxx

        JC Deen - May 14, 2012

        It really depends on your activity levels. if you’re sedentary, you might start with multiplying by 12 or 13. I’ve not found many online calculators to be very accurate for most people. Then again, you just have to try it out and see what works. You can’t be sure the 2000 won’t cause fat gain until you try it and see.

NATE - April 30, 2012

JC i have been on the starting strength and madcow routine for some time to increase strength i want to just focus on building muscle now so what muscle building workout routine do you think will be most effective?

James - April 27, 2012

Hey JC, I’ve been working out in the gym for a couple of months now, and haven’t been seeing much gains. I weight 51 kg and 166cm tall. I’m able to handle weights and can do about 20 dips, 12 pull-ups in a row, but I want to get bigger, so how do I go about doing this?

    JC Deen - April 28, 2012

    are you eating?

      James - April 29, 2012

      Yeah, I’m eating roughly about 2000 calories per day.

        JC Deen - April 29, 2012

        if you’re not gaining any weight, then you need to eat more. if you’re not gaining muscle along with the weight gain, you might need to check your training and make sure it’s good for you.

          James - April 30, 2012

          I see, thanks :) btw, I’m only 14, so is it ok for me to lift between the 10-12 reps range?

            JC Deen - April 30, 2012


L.B. - April 11, 2012

I was wondering when your “Official JCDFitness Recomp Manual” is coming out. I am anxiously waiting for it. I’ve been following your advise and routines in “Attention Ladies: Here’s PROOF that Lifting Heavy Weights will NOT make you Big and Bulky” and would like to add some variation to the routines you recommended.

    JC Deen - April 11, 2012

    2 more weeks (lame internet joke)

    But really, I’m working on the final copy right now. Just shot the videos. getting the design for the book layout all finished. very soon.

brianSan - April 10, 2012

Hey JCD,
Great website you got going here. I think it’s great that you’ve been maintaining this website for years now. As a computer programmer, respect.
So I’m 180+ pounds (it fluctuates alot) and I used to workout alot during my upperclassman years of high school. Now I’m a college freshman and the only weight I gain is from late night food runs. I’m just starting to workout again and I’m trying out your Starting Strength workout to begin with and I’m wondering if I should be supplementing this with cardio. My friend is doing a crazy 20 minutes cardio workout and I’m thinking about joining him on my rest days. I’m about 5’10” and my belly has gotten quite out of control so I wanna turn that gut into something even somewhat presentable. What’s your take??

    JC Deen - April 10, 2012

    at 5’10” and 180lbs, I can’t imagine your belly being that out of control… I’d focus on diet to create a small deficit, and focus on getting stronger.

Jeff Britt - April 8, 2012

JC, For the last 3-4 months I’ve been trying to lose fat while IFing. Cutting 3500 calories a week and It goes well til I binge every once in while. Could last 1 day or a week. I’m a classic overeater. Wondering if I should Just stay at maintenance til I can get the bingeing under control so I can have the extra calories. I’m just always hungry. Been Like that my whole life. Your take please. Thanks.

    JC Deen - April 8, 2012

    my advice is to practice something that allows you to get as far away possible from the idea or “need” to binge. then build your diet around that structure.

Rob - April 7, 2012

JC, I discovered your website recently and am really in awe at your high quality work. Maybe you have some advice for me. I weight 360lbs. I want to lose weight. I plan on lifting weights twice a week as I discovered this is ideal for my particular recovery ability.

Is “cardio” work necessary for fat loss purposes? It seems their has been a large anti-cardio campaign in recent years. What are your thoughts on this?

And how many calories should I be eating to consistently lose weight? I am looking for a sensible plan and not a temporary crash diet.

Your advice would be appreciated as I start to consider my health and need to take action for myself and family.


    JC Deen - April 8, 2012

    you don’t need to do cardio, and at that weight, I’d not recommend it due to it being hard on the joints.

    I’d honestly look into the books Rapid Fat Loss Handbook or Guide to Flexible Dieting. both are by Lyle McDonald

    Email me if you need help.

Jon - April 4, 2012

Hi JC, I’m from Norway and have been reading some of your articles plus alot of other articles about health, fitness & nutrition. I’m just wondering about one thing. Last Friday I managed to injure my shoulder while dumbbell bench pressing, and it has been hurting since. I’m 18 and have been weight-training for about 2 years now. My weight is around 190 pounds at 5 foot 8. My bench is at around 300 pounds, my deadlift at around 400 pounds and my squat around 320 pounds. What I am wondering is if there are any ways of training that will prevent further damage to the shoulder and keep my strength form declining in the period of recovering from this injury.

PS. I’m a FFB that decided to take my gains more seriously a couple of years ago, and the article you wrote about this subject kept me laughing through the entire thing (in a good way)!

    JC Deen - April 8, 2012

    Hey man – my advice is to completely remove pressing and the movements that aggravate your shoulder. Accept that you will lose strength and size while you recover and rehab. email me if you have any questions.

Jo - April 2, 2012

I’m really enjoying the website and the incredible information you provide.
I wanted to ask you about the best books/ resources in your opinion to educate ourselves about Nutrition and weight training, is there a specific go to “bible” that has everything you need to know about these topics (nutrition in particular)?
I’m currently reading Girth Control by Alan Aragon….any other resources you recommend?


    JC Deen - April 2, 2012

    Yeah, if you wanna learn nutrition, any of Lyle’s books are great. here are some ideas:

    Lyle McDonald
    Rapid Fat Loss Handbook
    The Protein Book
    Ultimate Diet 2.0

    Jamie Hale
    Knowledge and nonsense

Ann - March 28, 2012


I currently have 20% body fat and I’m wondering if there’s any real difference between 18% (which would be my ideal) and where I am now. I’m middle-aged and in relatively decent shape – 5’6 and 124 lbs. I’m just afraid if I go any lower that I might lose some of my feminine curves. I’ve seen some women at lower body fat percentages and they start to look kind of hard-looking, if that makes sense. It’s not really for aesthetics but rather for health that I’d want to go a bit lower. Was wondering if you’d give your expert opinion…

    JC Deen - March 29, 2012

    Honestly, I don’t think there’s too big a difference between the two. heck, you might actually be at 18% now? you could be at 22%. There’s no way of knowing exactly what your body fat percentage is.

Aivaras - March 2, 2012

Hey JC,

Recently I’ve started Martin approach as I’ve became addicted to 6meals a day too much. But can’t figure out if I should train fasted at 1PM and then break fast at 3PM(it takes 40min. to get home from gym) or just train in the evening between PreWO and PWO meals. So I tried today to workout after 14hours fast with 20g BCAA as preWO and at the end of workout I felt dizzy, I thought I’m gonna faint, so I ended up doing 6 exercises instead of 7. I’ve found interesting site which states:

§ Immediate preworkout protein and/or EAA+CHO increases protein synthesis more than fasted resistance training with those substrates ingested immediately postworkout.

§ It’s possible that a partial fast (as short as 4 hours) before resistance training can negatively impact muscle protein status.

btw, I’m cutting right now, should I keep trying to workout fasted or is it not that beneficial for fat loss at all?

Also one more thing. It is recommend to have very low frequency workouts on IF diet while cutting, but I’m hardcore and I’m used to working out 4-5 time a week with splits(5-9excercises). Should I reduce it to only 3 a week with only main exercises? I have around 5years of experience btw.

I really need pro opinion on this. Thanks.

    JC Deen - March 2, 2012

    I believe Alan has greatly changed his stance since writing that article.

      Rob Brenton - March 4, 2012


      I disagree with you. It tis clear in Alan’s recant that he is still not totally supportive on the concept of IF. It is like he is just appeasing Martin Berkhan. To say he “greatly” changed his stance is false.


        Andrew - March 4, 2012

        He is not just appeasing Martin – both of them agree that IF is a largely understudied area, and that anecdotal evidence predominates. When Martin himself does research reviews on relevant IF studies, he often finds them “interesting, but inconclusive”. Alan is precisely what a good academic should be – skeptical. But both of them agree IF is either neutral or beneficial in its effects.

Henrik - February 26, 2012

Hi JC,

I’ve been cutting since January 30th, starting at 85kg, currently at 80kg with what I’m guessing is 15 % bodyfat (speculating). I’m planning on doing this until the start of May and so far I’ve had no strength loss whatsoever, so that’s good. I cycle my carbs and fat and hit approx 2000 calories on all days w/ 250g protein on all days.

My question is, would there for such a short period of dieting be a need for a refeed?


roo - February 23, 2012

Is there benefits of trowing in an occasion few sets higher reps workout to compliment the regular higher sets lower reps workouts?

For example someone doing a 3 x week 5×5 program with the every other week 2-3×12-15 at lower 1rm%. Or is it just complicating things more then it needs to be?

    JC Deen - February 24, 2012

    I think it’s fine. Honestly, I’d keep the 5×5 and throw the 2×12-15 on top of the 5×5 for a few weeks, back off, then repeat.

Andrew - February 17, 2012

hi JC,

ATG or parallel? for bodyrecomposition only.


    JC Deen - February 17, 2012

    strictly body composition? leg press, bro.

      Rob Brenton - March 4, 2012


      Are you serious on the leg press or tongue in cheek? I like deadlifting and leg preseing in the same workout for an excellent lower body workout. I lost my squat technique and find I am hit or miss. 1 good squat session for every 4 bad ones so I dropped the squat and focus on the more productive exercises for my build which are deads and leg presses.


Sean - February 1, 2012


I’ve been experimenting with carb cycling following the basics that you outlined in your article for lean mass gains. I read the “Beginner’s Guide to Building Muscle” from your newsletter, and noted that you applied some of the principles in that article as well. So far, it seems to be working out very well for me. That said, I do have one question. If I habitually consume a higher amount of protein than the 1.4-1.5 mark, and reduce fats further to compensate (say about 15% of a 3k intake on training days), am I setting myself up for problems?

The additional protein is just a result of the fact that I enjoy protein in my diet, but it has occurred to me that it may not be benefiting my performance very much beyond the 1.5 mark. That doesn’t bother me that much, because I’ve been gaining in strength and size. I am, however, concerned that lowering fat below 20% to continue meeting my overall calorie goals could have adverse health effects. Thoughts or informational articles that you might recommend?

    JC Deen - February 2, 2012

    I think we emailed about this topic before as I recognize your email. I don’t know of any sources suggesting that there’s a lower threshold of fat that you need. As long as you’re diet is not full of junk, I don’t see it being too big of an issue. My only question is compliance.

abdii - January 31, 2012

JC after following you and Martin for a while i found that martin recommends fasted workout most of the time “from what i read this is due to the extra benefits you get from training fasted”. Now you experimented with 1 pre-workout meal and always gave templates with 1 pre-workout meal.

Wouldnt this defeat the purpose of the fast”Train in a depleted state” and fasted training ?

    JC Deen - January 31, 2012

    I guess it does, but I’m not too concerned about it, honestly. I mean, some do well on fasted training and others don’t. I honestly don’t see it being too big of a deal.

Comments are closed