Animal-Based Weight-Loss For MMA (How To Lose Weight for MMA Using an Animal Based Diet.)
This article is the plan I made for a friend of mine so he could regain his health and make weight for his debut amateur MMA match.
My friend, Danny, is 23 years old. He was a jiu jitsu blue belt and a top CrossFit athlete roughly 3 years ago, could clean and jerk over 300lbs for 5 reps while simultaneously able to run a 5:45 minute mile, all while, as he describes, “not feeling that tired.” Oh yeah. He weighed about 200lbs.
That was when he was 20.
When I met him less than 3 years later, he weighed nearly 260lbs. Despite being one of the most knowledgeable and technical fighters I knew, and training over 5 times a week, his weight wouldn’t budge.
I owed Danny for getting me back into MMA, and we’ve both trained for a career in the sport together. In return for his incredible coaching, endless support, and frankly much deeper passion for the sport than my own, I created a program for him to not only shed 50lbs in 3 months, but simultaneously maximize his health and energy.
I am in the works turning this program into a longer and more detailed course, ebook, and series of articles. However, with Danny’s permission, here is the unaltered plan I designed to get him down to 200lbs again for a career in MMA.
Here is Month 1 of Animal Based Weight Loss for MMA.
Here’s the plan Danny boy.
We’re gonna get you down to 200lbs by the smoker in January.
We’re doing it using an animal based diet and lifestyle plan.
The Mission: Reach 170lbs by December for a debut amateur bout.
The Method: 3 Months Animal Based Diet With Small Number of Other Tools.
My mission is to make a guide for you that is easy to follow and answers these 5 questions.
What to eat on an animal-based diet
Where to animal based food
What animal based costs and how to afford an animal based diet
How to prepare animal based meals
How to stick to an animal based diet
My goal is to explain as little as possible while keeping things completely effective. To “trim the fat” as it were.
With that in mind, here is a simple roadmap for your diet:
Month 1: 30 Days Basic Animal Based Diet
Month 2: Tweak it, add Supplements, Cold Therapy and Sauna
Month 3: Bear Down, Use Fasting & Keto Style Carnivore to Burn Fat Faster
(This article is only month 1. Month 2 and 3 will be linked as they get published.)
The biggest challenge will be that you’re doing this diet through the holidays. At the same time, this may be an advantage. Our first and foremost goal is to get you through 30 days of true animal based so you feel the changes and it becomes your new normal. If all else fails, that is our minimum effective dose.
In order to get you the material quickly while I’m also trying to turn this project into a larger guide, I’m going to focus on one month at a time for you and prepare the next month while you’re already in the first. I’m also not really going to explain animal-based too much. You can read about why the diet works at the heart and soil blog or elsewhere. This guide is all action.
Month 1: 30 Days of Animal Based Diet
Question 1: What to eat?
In simple terms, you’ll eat:
Lean non grass-fed red meat
Lean or fatty grass-fed red meat
Grass-fed fat (butter, tallow, suet, or grass-fed fatty steaks,)
Grass-finished organ meat or supplements,
Organic white rice,
Oganic sweet potatoes,
Redmond Real Salt to taste,
Goat dairy as a “cheat” meal.
1.7 pounds of meat (1 gram of protein per pound of target body weight)
6 capsules of Heart and Soil Whole Package Supplement (daily or 3oz grass fed beef liver 2 times a week
As much as you want of carbs and fats, but stay carb heavy this month as an athlete and to keep metabolism high.
Don’t count calories. Eat as many carbs as you want from the sources above, and eat breakfast and lunch daily. If you fast, skip dinner. Fastings not important now though.
You also don’t have to count protein either, but generally aim for 1 and a half to 2 pounds a day.
1 pound of meat is about 100 grams of protein.
You want to eat the same amount of grams of protein as pounds you want to weigh.
For you, since your goal is 170lbs in the long run, eat about 1.7lbs of meat a day. It’s not that big a deal if you eat more or less based on hunger, but this will help with knowing how much to buy for each day.
Question 2: Where To Get Animal Based Food
For you it’s pretty simple.
Lean meat: Aguilar’s (look for steaks that have little to no fat. I do the sirloin a lot for $6.99/lbs)
Grass fed ground beef: HEB, Sprouts
Grass fed steaks: Sprouts
Grass fed butter: Unsalted Kerrygold from HEB, Walmart, Sprouts
Organic fruit: anywhere as long as it’s organic
Lundberg Organic California Basmati White Rice: Sprouts
Honey: Heavenly organics from sprouts. Or any organic raw honey in glass containers
Organ meats: Whole Package Supplement from Heart & Soil (code KEENAN10 for discount)
Bonus: Great Lakes Collagen from Amazon (1 scoop per day)
Start by rotating Aguilar’s sirloin, HEB ground beef, and sprouts grass fed chuck roast each day for variety. Just remember, if it’s not grass fed, it must be lean.
Fat accumulates toxins from animals diets, and if it’s not grass-fed, it will have estrogens, mold toxins, pesticides, and hormones in it.
Also if you’re wondering why I haven’t mentioned them, no chicken or pork. Their stomachs can’t convert seed oils and so the fat in chicken and pork is literally fryer grease.
Red meat of all kinds is ok. Deer, lamb, goat, bison, and elk. Wild boar too if you find it. But no pork or poultry.
Question 3: What Does Animal-Based Cost & How Can I Afford It?
Being straight up, I budget $900 a month for my diet.
You don’t have to, but you probably already spend close to it. Think about it. $900 is about $30 a day. Between all fast food, restaurant, gas station, and grocery runs, you probably spend that and more.
Thankfully you probably only need $700 to $750. I do a lot of expensive ass water, berries, weird fruit, etc.
If you base your diet in rice, $6.99/lbs meat, etc, you’ll have a smaller grocery bill. Still, better to over budget than under budget.
For you we can expect this daily budget
$18 per day meat (at $10/lbs)
$2 per day heart and soil sup supplement
$1.6 per day rice (50lbs bag consumed in 30 days)
$2 honey (it’ll be less if you’re eating that much rice)
$0.33 salt ($20 thing of Redmond salt lasts a couple months)
$1 Great Lakes Collagen ($50 for 2 month supply)
Total: $25 per day or $750/month
Notice this is with $10/lbs meat. You’ll often spend less if you catch deals at sprouts or mainly eat Aguilar’s.
But let’s call it $800 for a buffer.
Divide that by your number of paychecks and take it out cash every time you get paid. Keep it in an envelope labeled “groceries” in your car and whenever you need more groceries, use that envelope to pay.
Question 4: How Do I Cook Animal Based Meals? (Get An Air Fryer)
I’m gonna keep it simple. Just get an air fryer. Other than rice, you can make all meat in an air fryer with minimal cleaning or management.
Next time you get paid, set aside $50 to $100 and hop on Facebook marketplace. Search for someone selling a used air fryer and go buy it.
Once you have it, you can make animal based meals like this:
Step 1: Salt your meat
Step 2: Cook at 350 degrees. For steaks typically 3 minutes per side for rare. Increase time for thicker steaks. Ground beef cook 12 to 15 minutes total.
Step 3: Transfer to plate. Wash fryer trays in dish washer.
After your meat is cooked, pour honey on it, eat with fruit, and add grass fed butter as a topping. Voila, you’ve just cooked 90% of animal based meals.
Bonus: Instant Pot Rice and Broth
Beyond an air fryer, the only other tool I use semi-regularly is an instant pot. This thing is great for rice and for bone broth and stew cuts, which are awesome for your gut health.
If you have an instant pot, to make rice just fill about a half inch submerged with water over the rice. Add salt and butter, and hit the “rice” feature.
For bone broth, submerge beef bones in water. Add apple cider vinegar (one good glug or so. Less is more.) Add a good bit of salt. Pressure cook for an hour. This is great for making oxtail and bone broth.
Only use bones ordered from white oak pastures though. Bones store metals and low quality isn’t worth it.
I’m only including this tip because it’s the only thing other than cooking steak that you might end up doing some day. Bone broth is awesome but not at all required.
Question 5: How Do I Stick To An Animal Based Diet?
Here’s the big one. How do I stick to it? How do I make it a lifestyle and how do I prevent sabotage.
In my opinion the best way is to hype yourself up, envision the future, set an unrealistic goal, and commit to one month without falter.
The benefits of animal based are manifold, and you want far more than a month. Gluten damages the gut for up to 2 years after an exposure, and I doubt it’s the only thing like that.
In my experience however, thinking in terms of years just makes it harder to start. We’re not here to think. We’re here to do. And anyone can stick to a lifestyle change for a month.
Our aim is to have you on animal based until at least December, and January beyond that for the smoker fight. The time is here and the urgency is now, so I’m not terribly worried about your commitment there.
With that said, first and foremost your goal is to finish a month.
We’re going to do strict animal based until at least November 1st without falter.
Now, as they say, everyone has a strategy until they get hit. Maybe tomorrow your mom buys McDonald’s for the family or there’s free pizza at work. Don’t take it. After this month, you can cheat. But for the next 4 weeks, bread is poisonous to you, you have a friend food allergy, and soda is made of plastic.
The reason it’s so important to get through 1 month is that this is the time it takes to change your foundation. You’ll start feeling better. Cleaner. More resilient and energized and less sluggish.
By the time November comes, you won’t want to cheat and risk losing the benefits of how you feel. Clean eating will be the new normal.
With all that in mind, I have some strategies for you if you need it.
Strategy 1: Do A Week
Aiming at a month, first do a week. That’s all you have to do. Commit to one week from today on the diet.
Strategy 2: Cheat With Goat Dairy
Dairy is problematic for a lot of people, and even though its animal based, I don’t recommend it. The exception is goat dairy. Personally I still get some issues from it, so I use goat dairy as my “cheat meal.”
When I’m craving sugar or poor food or whatever, I’ll get goat cheese instead. They tend to have it at some HEB or sprouts. I like the Gouda.
The biggest problem I’ll run into on animal based is craving variety. What I’ve learned is there’s tons of variety to be had, it’s just about choosing new animal based foods instead of old shitty food you’re used to.
Some recommendations I have are:
Boniato (at HEB. It’s a sweet potato).
Putting It All Together (What My Day Looks Like Eating Animal Based)
So what exactly does it all look like? Here’s what a day eating animal based looks like for me.
On Friday after getting paid I buy about 5lbs of meat from sprouts. Grass Fed chuck roast is on sale for $6.99 per pound so I’m stocking up. I also grab a few mangoes, Lundberg Organic white rice, Redmond’s real salt, some Mountain Valley Spring Water, unsalted grass fed Kerrygold butter, and Heavenly Organics Honey. I also order Whole Package Beef Organ Supplement from Heart and Soil (use code Keenan10.)
In the morning I wake up and have a mango before going for a two mile walk with my dogs. When I get back I salt then cook a chuck roast in the air fryer and eat half with honey and grass fed butter on top, along with another mango. I also take 6 capsules of Whole Package. This is around 10am.
During the day, I keep some fruit with me for snacks, usually apples, berries, or dates.
Around 4pm, I make my second big meal and eat the rest of the chuck roast along with a bowl of buttered white rice. I may eat some more honey later but generally I try not to eat any more after this, even after working out. Ideally I go to bed around 9pm after the sun goes down.
Sometimes I feel like fruit just isn’t enough carbs, especially when training heavy. Otherwise I might just be getting bored or, strange as it sounds, feel like eating something bad for me. When this happens I’ll get a thing of Goat Gouda Cheese from sprouts and eat it with honey. Dairy tends to make me feel a little beat or tired, but it almost always satisfies cheat cravings for me. When highly active I’ll go heavier on the fruit and rice. When I’m trying to cut down I’ll eat less and favor meat and fat.
These are the basics of an Animal Based Diet.