The Shortcut to the Shortcut: The 4 Key Principles of The 4-Hour Body

This short presentation, delivered in Berlin at the NEXT Conference, covers the four key principles of the #1 New York Times bestseller, The 4-Hour Body. It also includes an interview with the fantastic David Rowan, editor of Wired Magazine in the UK.

The Q&A covers smart drugs, Ambien, measurement of “thoughts” (prefrontal cortex activity), and more.

All speaker videos from NEXT can be found here, and include some gems, like the inimitable CTO of Amazon, Dr. Werner Vogels.

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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340 Replies to “The Shortcut to the Shortcut: The 4 Key Principles of The 4-Hour Body”

  1. Hi Tim,

    You mention that full-time eating was the hardest part of growth. Vaguely speaking, would this method work for someone who ate plenty, but not as much as you did? Would you need any adjustments to the frequency or intensity of the workouts?


  2. Tim,

    I am 24 years old, I have been an entrepreneur for 6 and run 3 successful businesses. Every time I can begun to fall into the wheel of working 15 hour days. I make a decision that this won’t happen again. I have done business in Toronto, Vancouver, Brisbane, Houston, Munich and I am moving to Aix-En-Provence in September. I would love to meet you. I noticed you were in Berlin and I would have loved to head up there but I ran out of time by the time you were there.

    If you are in Munich before the end of August I would love to meet up with you and talk about business.

    Tim, you are an inspiration to myself and I have now got my brother-in-law (UK pro golfer) and my sister (journalist in a few countries) on to your books and theories. Most books I read are complete and utter crap but I think the 4-hour body has had the most relevant information of any business/ life related book I have ever read.



  3. You said that you have doubts regarding the link between cholesterol/lipid and heart diseases… Can you be more specific??

  4. The opening joke about an agile pedophile is in extremely poor taste. Who jokes about that?

    1. Generally i find that people that enjoy humor once in a while – joke about this kind of thing. …uh. its a joke.

  5. Hi Tim:

    I saw on the video that you’re training for an ultramarathon. Consider joining the GoRuck Ascent, a 100-hour adventure on early September where a group of active duty Green Berets, a group of hardcore athletes and yours truly will wear some heavy packs, climb a few 14k peaks in Colorado, run/walk/ruck through some local towns and cities, learn some fun/useful mountaineering, survival, and medical skills, and of course, toss back a few beers around a bonfire.

    We’re doing this to raise funds for the Green Beret Foundation, and we’re using First Giving (just like you do for your own causes) to do it. My blog has all the information about how to participate, and how to give.

    Come join us!


  6. Dear Tim, you mention in the book that your dad took a protein shake to aid consume the required 30grams of protein per meal – can you give any recommendations or what kind of formula i should look for?

    I’m not a big meat using eggs and chicken as my main source of protein..and am finding it really hard to get enough protein.

    I’m from Germany, 27 years old, 120 pounds…and wana get into the best shape. In your words – make my friends say ‘what the *** have you been doing’ 🙂

    Thank you for your help!!

    PS: Kettle bell is sitting in my kitchen for swings every morning!

  7. I personally have found small, gradual tweaks to be most effective whether it’s weight loss or gains in muscle. Recently, I decided to do three small things with my diet. #1 was to add one small meal (for a total of four meals for the day) midmorning consisting of 1/2 cup of almonds midmorning. #2 was to have a vegetable rich salad as one of the meals for the day (lunch or dinner). #3 was to drastically cut back on sugar. No creamer for my coffee and since I couldn’t do without that, I gave up coffee for a month. I allowed myself once a week to indulge. On the exercise end, all I did was incorporate 5 to 10 minutes of shadowboxing to my usual routine.

    Approximately a month later, I was 16 pounds lighter (from 203 to 187). To put this in perspective, I haven’t weighed 187 since I was in my 20’s (I’m 45). Also, I was a little concerned with how easily the weight did come off and actually went to the doctor for some blood work to rule out some possible pathology as the reason for the rapid weight loss. Thankfully the tests revealed no pathology at work. Again, a few small tweaks produced huge results!

  8. Hi Tim,

    Love your book. Just a quick question. In adding muscle, is it ok to eat white carbs specifically white rice?

  9. Hi,

    Love the 4HB book!! I’m telling everyone to read it.

    One comment…. I’ve had amazing results with apple cider vinegar. In your book, you used it to test blood sugar (if my memory is correct) and didn’t see much of a result. Personally I found it takes 2 weeks to take effect. Also, you need to use unpasteurized, unfiltered apple cider vinegar. 1TB morning and night. The cloudy stuff in the vinegar is what creates most of the positive effects, which is only in unpasteurized/unfiltered.. One example: I would get a sinus infection every 6 weeks (Take antibiotics for 4 wks then 2 wks later get another one). Now I have only had 1 in the last 1.5 years!! I took it all through my pregnancy to control my blood sugar. (I started on it at month 3, when my Dr. warned I’d need to go on drugs to control my sugar) He said he’d never seen anyone, with my numbers, control their pregnancy sugar without drugs. I can go into detail about why it works, but I won’t here.

    My point is that if you ever are curious, or have the chance, please take another look at it.

  10. Thanks for posting this up Tim. I would not have known it was on, and I bought the ebook version of the 4HB book, on the strength of the 30 grams of protein within 30 mins of waking tip. Awesome.

  11. Tim,

    I’ve been struggling to rehabilitate my knee after ACL reconstruction over a year ago. It’s visibly smaller than the healthy knee, and just doesn’t have the strength it needs. Is this something your book would cover? I’m hoping for 1 or 2 things to incorporate into my routine. I seemed to hit a ceiling while still in physical therapy and just haven’t been able to improve since.

    If you have an idea I’ll send you before and after photos.


  12. Hi Tim,

    Your mention of adderall was very curious. I’ve been diagnosed with ADD but have been reluctant to try any medication. I’ve been researching adderall but have found no useful information on it. When it comes to researching it online, the internet seems to be saturated with the cases of high school and college kids taking it to study, not for ADD.

    I know you’re a busy guy, but please I beg.. help in my decision making by quickly telling me what you know about it. What side effects do you talk about? and do you know any alternative treatment, resources? Thanks!

    1. I have ADD and have tried Adderall and many other ADD drugs. I highly recommend Focalin. Focalin is just using the active ingredient of Ritalin. Works well with no side effects.

  13. Hi Tim,

    My names Mike. I am 20 and a I’m a self employed solo home and wholesale dairy supplier in the UK. Im looking for a major lifestyle change and most importantly a major physical appearance change. I am in no means unfit or bad looking but I would like to truly see what pertential i have by coupling my determination and work lead healthy and exercise prone lifestyle. As i wish to do in business in time. I have started my business from nothing and now consider myself well established and personally successful in my trade. This leads me to believe i have the will power and determination while high ambitions lead my motivation. I stumbled accross your site and have been in genuine ore since. A very well done sir, especially with 4HW! I am currently reading 4HW and intend to read 4HWW. Given, this might take a while. I would love to and also intend to set up a blog of my own recording my results and progress. Not just in weight loss and fitness but also in my business and social life. But as a complete and utter novice, i have no idea where to start. So i figured i should go straight to the ‘T’ man himself and see where you started out. It would be nice to understand about your young background in business too. See how you started out in that sense, any links to posts which outline this? And by the end of 4HW do you think i will completely be able to sculpt a full lifestyle plan for myself? including both exercise and diet to achive the goal i desire for the longterm? My appearance goal is much like nearly every guy here, im sure i don’t need to explain. Can the same goals be achieved even when taking my unsociable working hours into consideration? Im far from the common 9 – 5. lets just say i work nights. I have so many questions as you can tell. Just a brief reply with tips and links would be very much appreciated. Im very eager to start out on the best foot possible. Thanks alot Tim!

    All the best,


  14. Why do you promote Almond butter much more so than Peanut butter? Is it the Vit E content or the possible allergens in Peanut? Thanks

  15. Tim –

    I am a frequent international traveler to Asia and South America for over 5 years. I use melatonin for sleep on planes (over-night only) and while in-country at bed-time. I have been able to reduce and nearly eliminate jet-lag by managing my circadian rhyhm and the amount/timing of the melatonin I ingest.

    I would ingest one dose of melatonin (5mg) 1 hour prior to boarding any over-night flight >7 hours. I would not ingest on any daytime flight where I am following the sun. Once in-country reduce take 3mg’s of melatonin each night in-country and ingest at approximately 9pm local time.

    Best practice is to take a day-flight (window seat) overseas and keep the sunlight on you to extend the phase response curve (PRC) as much as possible and have nearly zero jet-lag. The sunlight is likely to piss a lot of people off by keeping the window open, but F them.

    Finally, when you rise in the morning you should eat your protein w/in 30 mins then get sunlight on your face/body immediately (minimum 30 mins) for about an hour. Example in Tokyo (

    I found this to be the best way to reset your circadian rhythm as suggested through phase response curve research.

    All the best, Andrew

  16. Hi Timothy,

    My husband was lucky enough to see your presentation at SXSW and has been saying ever since that we should read you book. So I purchase the ebook. While my first day seemed to go well, by the middle of the second day I found I had contracted food poisoning and am still recovering (nasty stuff).

    Despite that, we are loving the diet. Sushimi is among our favorite things and due to my heart issues, it works well with the Omegas, and my husband is a meat eater so any excuse to eat steak is a good one.

    However, I do have a question. In the book you state no fruit and I totally get why, but in the Appendix in some of the recipes they require berries and fruit. I’m assuming this is for after workout scenarios…correct?

    Also, I have a great recipe that I found a while back and we absolutely enjoy called Latin Chicken. The only questionable item is Sweet Potatoes, but if I’m correct, they are permitted. I will be happy to share the recipe with you and your followers if you desire…should the sweet potatoes be acceptable.

    Thank you for writing this book and the validation of the science behind why something works. I love the GA portions. Being a mom of a Sensory and ADHD child I get into to the GA excerpts for just about everything.


  17. >“Minus the hair”

    Propecia does work to keep the hair. I know Tim puts a high priority on testosterone and libido, but so far, I haven’t noticed a difference in two years of taking it. I am taking half the normal dose to hedge my bets a bit though. (.5mg) which is 1/10th the dose prostate patients take.

    I didn’t see anything on DHT or hair in the 4HB book, except a brief mention when describing the way a particular steroid works.

    Is it a bad idea to take Propecia? Are there long term risks, like the risks of adrenal fatigue from long term stimulant use?

  18. Hey Tim, It just dawned on me about the sugar water deal!! I had Tennis Elbow for months and months and couldn’t get rid of it no matter how many of those contraption at Walgreen’s I tried. I was admitted to the hospital for something and they gave me an IV of dextrose and water and the Tennis Elbow was gone! Now I know why.

  19. There are a few things I’ve noticed with sleep aids that don’t have anything to do with pharmaceuticals.

    I highly recommend Melatonin supplement as it eases your body into sleep usually. My girlfriend swears by it and has always had trouble sleeping. I find that when I take it that it gets me to sleep quite quickly but I don’t usually take it because I can get to sleep regardless because of my past meditation and sleep technique history.

    For cognition, I found two supplements which are both Ginseng and Ginkgo Biloba. These are both said to ease mood, improve cognition, along with other good benefits. Let me know Tim if you find anything else on these two supplements.

  20. Hey Tim.

    Am following the diet religiously for 2 weeks now with very good results. Amazing.

    Wanted to ask you about Quinoa and if it is ok to have it as part of the slow-carbs diet. I notice you talk about it later in the book but I have yet to get to that part.

    Would be great if you could let me know!

    br … Jay

  21. Tim

    This is probably totally out of context and never the less something that probably you’re not the right person for. I’ll nevertheless give it a shot, since you’re also involved in economics, business, investments etc.

    Mark Twain’s phrase about stopping and reflecting when you find yourself on the side of the masses appears to be a big factor in your general philosophy. With all that economic crisis going on (I am based in Greece, right in the middle of the crisis, so to speak), I was wondering:

    Theoretically speaking, how would a Tim Ferriss approach that subject of getting out of the crisis? I mean: there are a couple of ‘main stream’ opinions that the masses seem to follow. According to your philosophy of thinking of “What would happen if I did the exact opposite?”, what do you think could/would be the outome??

    As I said, probably a totally bollocks question but just out of curiosity I thought of asking. And hey, maybe a new goal for Tim Ferriss: saving the world… hahaha 😀



  22. Dear Tim

    Great presentation!

    You rock in the physical and mental body elements and seem to have emotions under “control!” So what’s your “spiritual” theory. Also I wanna know if you have ever tested some breathing techniques, if so which ones??? As you train to run a marathon…your breathe is your key to effectiveness. I would be so cool to test the effects on playing with opening your breathing system as 80% people only use 20% of your breathing system?? …Have you tried transformational breathing? I have some great guys in the US I could connect you with. I am in SA….

    Also ever heard of a guy called Mihály Csíkszentmihályi and his Flow theories:

    You are a great example of why things work for you as your are in “flow”, high challenge vs high skill. Would love to see what you think about this? You are like Mihaly’s living proof of the flow guy, but still want to understand is your heart or mind in the driver seat…are you creating or proving? maybe both?



    The theory is the way your breathe is the way your live?

  23. Tim,

    I am compelled to thank you for everything you have done for me. As it relates to this post, I got your 4 hour body book 2 weeks ago, and devoured reading it because I loved your 4 hour work week book just as much.

    About me: skinny tall (Currently 6’4″, 160 lbs, 24 years old) dude who lost 20 pounds after spraining ankle rock climbing. I am going to take you up on the ART Therapy for my ankle because it still thwarts me! Just haven’t gotten around to it yet… However, I have started following your slow-carb diet with almond butter milk concoction (MMMMmmmmm) and have gained 8 pounds of muscle my first week (Now 168 lbs). Your workouts are so easy as to be shameful if you cannot complete them, and I got my six pack back almost instantly. You are awesome for sharing this knowledge.

    Secondly, I was a wannabe entrepreneur making sandals every once in a while. Well, I read your 4 hour work week book 2 months ago, and my sales QUADRUPLED last month due to me outsourcing design jobs to make the site more professional looking. I have another entrepreneur idea, just don’t have the time with working full-time, and full-time student, among many other things. You are busy, I won’t waste your time with the details. I know that you have made me a lot of future dollars, and am very thankful for you.

    All of this being said, I owe you a drink or two, bro.

    More thanks than I can give,

    Kevin Harvell

    1. Thanks for the kind comment, Kevin. Felicitaciones! 🙂

      Look forward to hearing what you do next,


  24. I have been on the 4hb diet for about a month. I have lost maybe 5 lbs consistently. I have cut all dairy, bread, etc. meals consist of meat, beans, and baby spinach usually. Eggs, turkey bacon and spinach for breakfast. I have lost minimal inches. Any suggestions?

    1. Daniel

      I have also been waiting for that 🙂 I did have the chance to talk to Tim for a minute in Berlin about his running plans because I was kind of disappointed about that. He informed me that he has suffered from a plantar fasciitis and that his goal is to run an endurance race by end of this year.

      BTW: since I was a bit disappointed about the empty ultra page before I learnt about the injury, I started to record some ‘where the *beep* is Tim Ferriss’ videos before some races I ran, hoping to motivate him and others to join in, see here:

      Actually video nr 3 is ready, despite the fact that I know now about the reason for the delay. But it’s kind of fun, so I might just continue with the videos 🙂

      Of course, the injury is a pretty good reason for the delay. And I am sure Tim is eager to achieve his first ultra 🙂

      Regards from Greece and ‘keep on running’,


  25. Hi Tim… are a rock star, I could hardly watch the beginning of this video! I have a question about the diet. Is chicken broth okay to eat? I have made a chili according to your diet but I use chicken broth as the base and was not sure if that has a negative effect on the diet. I also add a little bit of chili oil, but other than that the ingredients are on plan. I am also curious as to whether or not I should be following the “last 10 pounds” Chapter…..I am 5’5″ and weigh between 117 and 120.

    I live in Honolulu, and find that making food at home is the easiest way for me to follow your diet. We have lots of Asian food and ppl sometimes look at me crazy when I ask them to sub the rice with an alternative…lol!

    1. oh and I forgot to mention that as far as weight goes I would like to lose 10 more pounds but as far as fat composition I do not feel that I am down to my last percentages. I would say I am around 18-20% fat and am hoping to work my way to a 6-pack. The 6-pack is more important to me than losing pounds.

  26. Hello Tim:

    Please write your book in spanish!!!

    I’ dont speak english!!!


    Thanks you



  27. Exercise Question: Really loving the diet and it has helped my weird stomach in so many ways. I am a fit, 6′ tall female that loves to exercise (to the point of obsession) have gotten to the point where maintaining is all I can do.

    I’m wondering how to determine when it’s too much? I go pretty hard 6 days a week. Lots of interval-based cardio which, from reading the book seems like it might be too much?

    Any thoughts on this? I could drive myself crazy wondering what to cut out!


  28. Tim,

    I noticed you said you had lost some 20 pounds of muscle and fat over the prior month. What is the particular program you used? I would like to walk at a lower weight for competition. Thanks

  29. Tim I love both of your books and I have just started reading them simultaneously. I am one week into the Slow Carb diet and am anxious to lose this baby fat I still have on my belly. Thank you so much for the work that you do. It literally takes years off my own personal learning curve.


  30. Hi Tim,

    You mentioned side-effects to modafinil (Provigil). Do you have any resources related to that? I haven’t found much other than rare skin conditions.

  31. Hey Tim, I think I got something very interesting for you: a ‘freak’ 🙂

    Today I picked up a Trail Running Special of the German version of Runner’s World. It contains a very interesting article about a Kilian Jornet, a 23 years young Spanish trail runner. Well, currently THE trail/alpine runner. In 2008, basically out of nowhere, he won the Ultra Trail du Mont-Blanc, one of the most difficult alpine 100 milers in the world. He won it not only out of the blue but also with basically nobody being able to be close to his time. He repeated that in 2009. Since then, basically all races he has participated in he set new records (Tahoe Rim Trail (261k), Grand Raid de la Reunion (163k), a run of 850k in the Spanish/French Alps etc etc).

    This guy seems to be a classical ‘freak’ in your sense. Too bad he wasn’t in your book. But: he still should make for a great ‘case study’, i.e. extra blog post.

    The very surprising thing seems to be his physics. While regular height and weight (168 cm and 56 kg) he seems to have an unheard of

    – VOmax of 92ml/kg/Min (while usual world class athletes have about 75-85)

    – resting pulse: 34 bpm

    His mother took him in his very early years already up the mountains. At age five he walked up the highest mountain there in the Pyrenees (3400m/ca 10k ft). He eats what he wants and when he wants, not following any special diet. And he thinks that his training is really nothing special. Of course, he “simply loves the mountains”.

    As an avid runner, I personally would be VERY, VERY interested if you ‘took that guy apart’ in your very specific way so we can find out more about his ‘secret’ 🙂

    His website:

    Regards from Greece,


  32. I recently got The Four Hour Body and trying to follow the initial 30 day Slow Carb Diet I. I have some questions: (1) I cut out all dairy, but I love Almond milk. does that count as Dairy? can I drink a glass a day? (2) you mention nothing about popcorn? should that be cut out as well?

    1 or 2 glasses of red wine a day — no damage!! great.


  33. Tim,

    I am a 5’6″ athletic female. My current weight is fluxuating between 125-129 and I’m at a standstill. I have been on the 4HB diet for about a month. I have lost some weight (5lbs) and about 1 1/2 inches. I realize I do not have a lot to lose and am wondering if you have any suggestions that may help. I workout at least twice per week and have been fighting the urge to do more. A reply from anyone on this topic would be great!

  34. Hey, will a smart person please tell me why tim said that the china study- in linking animal protein to cancer- was not quite right?

  35. Hi Tim,

    I have 100’s of questions and would like to share my two cents with the community too. The blog comments just don’t do it for me.

    Why don’t you install a forum application like vBulletin ?

    for all of us to collaborate.



      1. @David

        Yes, david I am taking bout a forum for the four hour body book.



  36. Got me my PAGG stack and a kettlebell is ordered…looking forward to beginning the journey!

  37. OMG that part where you get the biopsy is intense! And yep…GROSS!! But it’s kind of funny too…gotta love your enthusiasm…I love that you are spreading the good news that running on a treadmill everyday (or high cardio) is not the most effective way get in shape! I have just become a personal trainer here in Sydney and my teacher was taught by Paul Chek (no doubt you have heard of him?)

    Anyway so all your teachings correlate with what I’ve been taught down here. It’s nice when you see other peeps thinking the way you do. Makes you realise your not alone in your thinking! Yay I’m not crazy!!

  38. Tim,

    Did you ever run the 50K using CrossFit principles? I have my doubts that system will work for you because you do not have a history of endurance events and you will not have developed the aerobic base the vast majority of people trying CrossFit Endurance (who were endurance athletes prior to trying this protocol).

    Tim, I loved 90% of 4HB, but I thought you jumped the shark when I read this “He looked like a cross between Henry Rollins..”

    But, I do hope you succeed. Always welcome others successs, even it means I am wrong.


  39. Awesome presentation! It’s been a while since I read 4 Hour Body, so seeing you talk about the main points of the book brought back a LOT of useful information. I might have to go read some of it again.

  40. Hi Tim,

    Just wanted to share my experience with the 4 hour body.

    I started my diet in april fools and four weeks later I was 2.8 kilos lighter (97.2 – 94.4 kg), my TI had gone down six centimeters (384 – 378 cm) and for the last week I had the mother of all stomache aches. The ache disappeared in a day as I went back to my regular diet.

    Not the results I was hoping for based on your promises. In fact, these results are very similar to what I have gotten before just by cutting back on sugar and going on daily walks.

    Just wanted to share this since you stated in your book that this method of yours has never failed. I can’t really call this success. Can you?

  41. Hi Tim,

    I’m going through the 4 hour work week book now. Almost halfway through. Anyway, love what you’ve said here and I find that it reinforces certain points you’ve made in your book too.

  42. The slow carb diet is fine, but has anyone tried changing lifestyle and eating style completely as Dr. Robert O. Young recommends in his pH Miracle Living. Here you can eat as much as you like, but only food that has a positive pH value. He has a PhD in micro biology and has great references (including Tony Robbins who normally does not endorse stuff he does not believe in).

    Any comments / thoughts highly appreciated.

    Kenneth 🙂

  43. The hair loss problem has been solved actually.

    It doesn’t grow the hair back… at least not all. Depends on how far the balding has gone. And it requires regular treatments… But as far as I can tell it works.

    The method is microneedle rollers. They are used for skin rejuvenation and scar removal and are as effective for hair loss treatment.

    As I understand it stimulates blood flow in the area which as I understood is the reason why hair follicles start degrading.

  44. HA!

    Great video.

    I am in the process of creating a gym of unconventional methods in Santa Fe NM and I am totally going to use your promo idea! The whole concept is of a gym that actually wants you to come and get results so the $400 paid-back membership with the underpants photo twist seems like a good place to start! haha!

    Lemme know if you have any other great ideas and we will test them out.

    PS know you have a free gym membership any time you want to visit Tim (but if we need to charge you more we can if it helps… 😉 you’re an inspiration!

    Thanks and keep up the great work!



      1. Tim,

        I am a professional pilot that flies international. I have used kettlebells, trx, and endurance training as well as following nourishing traditions over the last couple years. Have you done anymore research on jet lag? I would be very interested in your research on this subject. Thanks so much for putting much of what I have believed in training philosophy in a great book. Awesome work, I look forward to more.

  45. Tim, regarding utilizing cold exposure to lose weight, are you familiar with the link between high blood sugar, diabetes, and cold exposure? Type I diabetes might actually be a cryoprotective evolutionary adaptation. Check out Moalem et al in Med Hypotheses 65(1):8-16, article title “The Sweet Thing About Diabetes Type 1”. Also, Google this article: “Seasonal Patterns in Monthly Hemoglobin A1c values”. Any thoughts?

  46. Haven’t seen anyone mention the cheap, tasty prepared Indian foods (Trader Joe’s, Tasty Bites) – lotta lentil and kidney-bean-based options there. And how about canned chili? Ya got your slow carbs and your protein, no fuss.

    Now, besides eggs, what other super-convenient and reasonably delicious protein foods have y’all found?

  47. I bought the book on cd. In the audio, he mentioned (many times) a pdf file with the details. The back cover says that cd 3 was enhanced so I was hoping that the pdf is there. It wasn’t. Where is the pdf?

  48. Hey Tim,

    (Note – I wasn’t sure where/ how to post/deliver some interesting information regarding my personal experience with slow-carb/Paleo/3-hour workouts. The contact page referred me to twitter or the blog – this was my best guess.)

    Hey All,

    The following is some information about what I’ve experienced via my trip (thus far) down fat reduction and muscle toning lane. (a.k.a. another case study) Hopefully you’ll find the information within either helpful or encouraging.


    Name – Jessie

    Age – 25yr. old female

    Weight – avg. 125lb. (I was overweight as a tween/teen – up to nearly 155lb. – but I have been around 125 since I was 17)

    The Dirt:

    I’ve been a slow-carb/paleo dieter on and off for about 3 years. I’ve always been interested in body efficiency versus culinary delights. How can you get the best of both worlds? Paleo is definitely the way to go that I’ve found so far, and you’re Slow-Carb adds more interesting data (and facts) to the mix.

    Recently (the past 6 months) I’ve taken it upon myself to get pretty serious about this. Yes, pizza and ice cream is so awesome but how can I continue to eat it when I know that it’s turning my body into crap?? Answer – I can’t. So, I threw out my cheeses, breads and other carbs and began.

    Each week I spend about $46 USD or ?50,000 (I’ve recently left the states and am now a teacher in South Korea) on the same food. I feed two people, two fulls meals a day and a snack for one.

    Breakfast is 3-4 large eggs worth of whites, about 5 cloves of garlic, half an onion, one whole dried red pepper cup up and about 2 cups fresh spinach (cooked down it’s about a cup). Lunch is hard due to my job. My school provides a lunch for me and the situation is I either eat what I can or not eat at all. So, I pick out what I can but often just end up eating a brothy soup with tofu, a salad of some kind and (when available) hard-boiled quail eggs or lightly fried white fish. I always have a mid-day snack (due to my poor lunches) of raw broccoli, boiled chicken breast and carrots. Dinner is pretty much the same as breakfast except I have plain boiled chicken and raw broccoli instead of eggs and spinach. Occasionally I’ll add mushrooms, bell peppers and bean sprouts. Nothing too fancy and it works. I take one day to prepare everything and for the rest of the week it’s really simple to put something together.

    On March 1st (when I finally settled into my new home) I set up a steady, 3-day-a-week workout schedule. I workout at home with only a mat, a jump rope and a makeshift kettlebell (a round plate with hand-shaped handle hold) I’ve keep a journal of every time I hit the sweat and have only skipped once due to illness. The routine goes something like:

    20min. yoga stretching

    30min. rapid jump rope

    50 reps kettle bell at 10kg.

    20 rep. myotic crunch

    30 rep. hip thrusts

    20 rep. flying dog

    and a small assortment of torso twists, leg lifts and back bends that are specific to my three separate workout days.

    I also live and work on the 6th floor of two different buildings. I go up and down those flights at least 3 times a day.

    I walk to and from work/home.

    I started keeping my body measurements once I began really hitting the diet hard (mid-December). Thus far my results are as follows:

    December 15, 2010 – beginning measurements

    bicep – 10.75”

    chest – 34”

    true waist – 27.5”

    hips (largest at ass) – 37.5”

    thigh (6” above knee cap) – 20.25”

    calf – 14.25”

    March 23, 2011 – loss of 8.75”

    bicep – 10.5”

    chest – 31.5”

    true waist – 26.5”

    hips (largest at ass) – 35.5”

    thigh (6” above knee cap) – 18.5”

    calf – 13.5”

    June 08, 2011 – gain of 3.75″

    bicep – 10.5”

    chest – 32.5”

    true waist – 26”

    hips (largest at ass) – 37”

    thigh (6” above knee cap) – 19.5”

    calf – 14.25”

    Overall, I’m better than where I started with an overall maintained loss of 5” It was interesting to note the gain in inches once I started working out regularly and walking/jogging up and down all those stairs. My body has a tendency to gain muscle bulk instead of lean growth. I’d like to change that. (tips anyone?)

    I’m definitely on my way but I could still bare to loose a nice layer of loose skin and fat from around my waist to about mid-thigh. Backs of my arms too.

    Anyway, with time I’m sure I’ll get to where I want. It’s only been three months. I’m not discouraged at all. I know all the added inches are from muscle and not fat. I’m a hellavalot stronger than I used to be, my stamina has doubled and I have some nice shape developing in my legs – especially my calves.

    Now, here’s the interesting stuff.

    Since cutting out all carbs from my diet, I’ve noticed recently that when I have a splurge day (usually every Saturday – the anticipation does help the week go by) I’ve begun having strong reactions to the raised levels of glucose and carbohydrates within my system. Reactions that have not been pleasant.

    Overall – I feel awful.

    Locally – I can feel my insulin levels jump which makes my whole body tingle and my arms and legs sore. I can’t drink enough water that i crave and I get ridiculously tired – comatose-like sometimes (if I eat a lot of bread). For example, two weeks ago I bought a pizza, shared half with my partner. Within 30 min. we were both asleep stone-cold for hours – at 2:00 pm! When I did get up, I was sore, my nose was stuffy, my throat hurt, I had a head ache and was horribly bloated. Constant constipation is also a battle for the next 48 hours. I’ve had these same symptoms crop up for the past three Saturday’s in a row and only after I begin eating carbs and sugar. It’s been rather interesting to say the least. Once I was positive that it was the carbs that were causing such problems (and not my adjustment to a new routine, new foods and a new country) I decided to cut way back on my splurge days.

    I have definitely experienced much happier days, although, I can still feel that I’ve gone off track. Come Saturday night, I’m craving simple eggs, spinach and chicken.

    One last detail – on a more feminine note. Boys, you can skip this if you’re too sensitive about the subject.

    All these changes to my diet and exercise have unset my menstruation cycle. For 13 years, I’ve been like clock work. Not a single glitch in my rhythm; down to the day and almost the hour. However, the past three months have been soooo messed up. First, I was 5 days late, then 9 days and this last month I was 12 days behind. I actually skipped the entire month of May by a day. It was the first time I’ve ever skipped a cycle in a 30-day period. With what I know about woman anatomy, exercising and diet combined within my timeline, I haven’t been too surprised since fluctuation has a high probability of occurring under these combined circumstances. However, it’s definitely been interesting to experience first-hand.

    Right, well, that’s it.

    One more for the numbers and maybe some comforting news for others out there.

    Thanks again for doing what you do, Tim, and everyone else that has taken the leap.

    – Jessie

  49. I am not the average bear, I have a very difficult time Gaining weight and I would like to know if you have any recommendations that I could look into

  50. Thank you for the gift codes to 4HB forum contributors, Tim. It’s stuff like that, that keeps me evangelizing (and hand-selling copies of) your books here at the book stores I’m involved with in Morgan Hill and Gilroy, CA. Prost!

  51. Tim,

    any experience or opinions on the use of Mild Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for work out recovery? or just the use of them in general?

    i am beginning the muscle building program next week and i have access to a oxygen chamber. just wanted to know if you came across any athletes, trainers, or coaches that used and/or recommended them.


  52. Hey Tim,

    First, thank you so much for writing this book, after having bought it less than a week ago, I am already implementing some changes you recommend and liking them very much!

    I have one question about the Effortless Superhuman section. With the Barry Ross inspired workouts, how do you progress the weight for the bench press and the deadlift?

  53. Hi Tim!

    I’m a big fan of your first book. I gave it as a gift to my friends and family. They all loved the book.

    I just ordered the 4-hour body and can’t wait to devour it!

  54. @Tim,

    I’ll make this short and sweet…hoping that leads to a direct response.

    I’m a 24-yr old female, originally from the Bay area, and have intriguing published research on different metabolic effects of ultra- and minimally-processed foods. Here is an article I recently published which elaborates on my findings: (titled “when Calories are not Calories”).

    I think we could do something interested on this…


  55. Tim,

    I’ve been on the 4 hour body diet for two weeks. I’m not losing any weight! I have only eaten carbs one day per week for the last two weeks and I’m really not losing weight.

    The only thing I am doing contradictory to the book is eating some cheese as I can’t stomach eggs plain and I love cheese. I’m eating lots of greens: collards and spinach and protein.

    It is very important for me to lose weight as I have an autoimmune disease that damages the kidneys and although I am in good health now, I must lose weight. I also must avoid developing diabetes which would cause further kidney damage. As stated, my kidney function is 100% at this time. My illness usually results in a very slow deterioration over 10 to 25 years.

    Is anyone else having such problems losing as me? Can you please advise me to what steps I should take if simply avoiding carbs six out of seven days isn’t working?

    Finally, have you researched foods which minimize inflammation? This would be helpful for me to know in regards to my autoimmune condition.

    Thank you in advance for sharing your time.

    1. Jen,

      Are you working out at all? For me personally I have a hard time losing weight if I don’t work out (with heavy weights), even when I cut carbs. The cheese may be part of the problem as well, it can be extremely fattening! As far as anti-inflammatory foods go, many vegetables, fruits and fish are good for that. Also olive oil and nuts. Hope this helps!

  56. I stumbled upon Tim’s NEXT Conference presentation and then went out and bought his 4-Hour Body book. Within the same week, I was asked to participate in a triathlon relay which entailed a 1/2 mile swim in a deep water lake. Normally, this lazy 50 year old slightly out-of-shape male would have turned down the offer. But then I thought the challenge of the competition might help me kickstart a diet and exercise program employing Tim’s principals. So I agreed to participate in the triathlon and, in preparation, lost 10 lbs in 2 weeks (so far) on the diet. The ideas in the 4 Hour Body not totally new, but the presentation is inspiring and Tim’s confidence in the science behind his ideas is what triggered in me the strength to lose weight and live healthier.

    Thanks, I owe you one.

  57. Tim,

    Today I was made aware of the cover photo of the Outside magazine. Cool! 🙂

    It reminded me that I could also leverage my loose contact with the editor-in-chief of the German Runner’s World. He answered: “Haben Sie vielen Dank für den interessanten Hinweis, den ich gleich an unseren Trainingsexperten weitergeleitet habe”.

    If that training expert is who I think it is then it might be a ‘tough cookie’, because that guy has been a runner for the last 40 years. He might not be so open to ‘new ways’ anymore, but he could as well be crazy about your approach, who knows. Would be great if they also they would have an article about you, after all it sells about 55k copies in Germany (according to their site).

    Regards from Greece,


  58. Awesome!

    I’ve heard so many good things about this book! Consider it bought here and now.

    I’ll be back with some results and such, is there a way to provide before and after pictures?

    Anyhow, keep up the good work Tim!


  59. I love the book, especially the chapters on muscle gain and fat loss.

    I have tried to find the answer to this question on the blog as I thought it would be a common query…but i’ve had no luck. Most people who I know who are trying to achieve physique transformation want both fat loss and muscle gain at the same time.

    The chapters in the book are both great for people ‘aiming’ to achieve one of these fitness ‘goals’ (i.e fat loss ‘or’muscle gain) but what if someone wants to achieve both at the same time? As you know both fat burning and muscle gain require different nutrition and training modalities. Is it just a case of manipulating your diet to fit in with your training at specific times to support either catabolism or anabolism?..i.e reduce carbs/calories on cardio days to support fat loss and increased carbs/calories on weight days to promote muscle gain?

    Also how would you combine the 2 training modalities with rest days/recovery etc? Would the amount of rest days be about the same for the weights even if you were taxing the body more with HIIT?

    What do you think an optimal fat loss/muscle gain training regime might look like with exercises/rest days/nutrition etc?

    Best rgds


  60. Hi Tim,

    You said you’re preparing for an Ultra-marathon. I’d love to know if you’re following the 12 week programme as presented in 4HB, in Ultraendurance II?

    If so, as someone with ‘mediocre recovery ability’, how’re you finding it? Have you had to reduce intensity and frequency? What modifications have you made?

    I’m definitely slow to recover and doing the first 2 weeks of the programme in preparation for my first marathon nearly killed me! I love B Mack’s approach but I over-trained just looking at the schedule! Would love to know how you get/got on?

    Great presentation, as always. Many thanks,


  61. Hi Olly

    (Tim seems to be suffering from a plantar fasciitis)

    I have also done 4 weeks of the training schedule myself (didn’t have more time because then I decided to start the race period with actual races on street, trails and moiuntain). I can’t say I am slow in recovering but I did wonder how on earth anybody can make the proposed times for the 800m sprints… you have to be a freaking Michael Johnson for those… 😀 At least that was my experience.

    Other than that I personally think it is a good program, by the way. Of course, old school runners will tell you you need a base first. I can’t really say much about that, as I am not so deep into the scientific facts as many others. But Tim posted the other day a tweet about a guy who did his 1st marathon after Tim’s 12 week plan in 3:45h, which I think is rather impressive (depending of course on his earlier fitness level).

    I wish you great running moments!


    (will have my first ultra this Sunday: 44k on Mt. Olympus, with 10k ft positive and negative elevantion 🙂 )

  62. Tim & ultra runners

    For your own upcoming ultra running experiences, here two short videos to increase your ‘appetite’ 🙂

    Kilian Jornet from Spain’s Catalunya is currently, probably without any doubt, the world’s best trail/alpine endurance runner (and I have a feeling he will remain so for many more years). The below two videos show his unbelievable record of running up and down Mt. Olympus/Greece, “The Mountain of the Gods” as they call it. That guy… is simply unbelievable. And watch out for what he says in part 2 when he was asked if he was frustrated after he found out he went the wrong way on the top (which actually made him lose time). THAT’s when you understand that running has become so much more for you than ‘just running’ 🙂

    Enjoy the videos:

    Part 1:

    Part 2:

    Regards from Greece (where tomorrow I will participate in the 44k alpine race on exactly this Mt. Olympus 🙂 ),


  63. You might be interested in this.

    2 weeks prior to being next in line for the reserved 4-hr-body (library for now, sorry), in a meeting with my mom I wished i’d get to feel the pain she;s feeling. (Latest, shoulder from car smashing into her in December). Next day, I felt the elbow pain, which my father started to complaign about lately. i did not know if it was real or not, since in romanian elbow pain is also an expression for indifference). In a matter of hours, playing with the little pain, it turned to heat sensation, coldness, numbness, switching in between, and then gone.

    Same pattern for a back pain, a few days later, which seemed to be a presence in my mom’s past.

    In the two days i read your 4-hr body, I experienced:

    – shoulder pain, same shoulder (left), to the point of inconvenience in mobility. although I’ve played with mobility, and the thought of phantom-pain, and I have ZERO injury history in that lcation or anywhere near, it’s the first I did not transform yet to cold-heat-goneness. Awesome fr the effect of it, none the less!

    – Played with 1 o’clock once (24 or 25 june),laughed profoundly at the thought it might be a clue to 12 o’clock. don’t worry, it did not ruin it, laughter added to fun. But on 26 june I experienced 1 o’clock arousal without touching!!! Which is a first, after a lifetime of 12 o’clock excitement!

    Dude, I don’t know whether to be pissed off to have ruined even the little that I get, or be awesomized at the implications of this! …probably both.

    I could not read your book straight. Every chapter or so I simply felt the need to move, do some sort of situps or just energize my body so i would sit still for the next chapter.

    Thanks for energy, experimental fun and wonder!

    Anca Sovarosi

  64. Hi Tim,

    thank you for a great book.

    It really works to lose 2kg (1,5k fat loss) in 2 weeks, perfect to fit in clothes before some events in last-minute 😉

    But it’s to much effort for long-term dieting for me, so I tested some small things and worked out that you can hold your weight by doing squats and push-ups in the morning, with coffee and a shake.

    Now 4 hour body is released in germany and I wonder whether I should buy the german version or not.

    Does it contain new content or is it translated one-to-one?

    Will there be a german trailer like the one for 4 hour work week?

    Thank you,


  65. Hey Tim, love the 4 hour body…one of the most intriguing books ive picked up in a long time so thanks for that. I am a fairly big guy but haven’t been able to amp up mass in a while because i am a raw vegan…I am planning to start Occlam’s Protocol in a week or so on a completely raw vegan diet. I am very intrigued to see the results and was wondering if you had any tips or if you thought that the protein provided mainly by nuts, seeds, sprouted grains, and sunwarrior would be enough for me to reach potential with the program.

    gimme a shout, all the best and be well


  66. HI Tim, great video. I have a quick question..Is it ok to incorporate bee pollen in this 4 hour body diet? Also I always need my cup of coffee in the morning. What can I substitute for a teaspoon of sugar and is it ok to use half and half (teaspoon) in the coffee. Thanks

    1. Hi,

      I believe the book says a bit of cream is OK. Also we’ve switched to Xylatol and it is great. Tastes just like sugar.

  67. Tim,

    I am a skinny guy but I still have a small belly and love handles. I want to gain mass but my priority is losing the fat.

    1- should I follow the slow carb diet or should I focus on following what you said in Geek to Freak chapter?

    2- If I do the slow carb, should I follow the diet or should I follow the other diet you have in the chapter that talks about losing the final 5-10 pounds (granted, I am not trying to lose much)….Because the slow carb diet, for example, requires eating beans or lentils vs. the other chapter about losing the last 5-10 pounds tells us not to do that but to eat peanut butter. Which one should I follow?

  68. Tim, Have you tried PRP Injections? Platelet Rich Plasma injections for soft tissue repair. I’ve torn my hamstring and am looking at it for a quicker recovery so that i don’t miss my football season

  69. Your book saved my life. I will never be able to repay you but I will recommend it to everyone I know. You have improved and reversed the lung disease I was diagnosed with at 40 after years of steroid inhalers, saved me from dementia by the age of 55 like my father, and cured my erectile dysfunction. Actually I cured it but I couldn’t have done it without your knowledge. I believe in fast days with binge days which is my only contribution other than personal dose levels. Vitamin d3 and krill oil in mega doses till my levels were increased have saved me. Oh I lost 24 pounds kind of following the diet. The first four days I did one of the menus in the book and lost 10lbs. I have changed my diet completely and once I can afford a doctor I’m sure my blood pressure, triglycerides, and hdl will be back to normal for the first time in 14 years.

    1. Dear Ken,

      Thanks so much for this kind email, and congratulations! You made it all happen, and I thank you for taking the time to read my writing. I just put words on paper, but you put it into action.

      All the best to you and yours,


      1. Just words on paper can change the course of civilization my friend. I truly believe your words point to the light or one way out of several epidemics that plague the citizens of this country today. I know there are others who recommend some of the same things like Dr. Amen and Dr. Mercola but I’m more like you than them so your style or approach appealed to my sensibilities.

        Having worked in the health care profession for more than a decade I have witnessed its brilliance, deficits, dishonesty, and greed. The first doctor who saw me when I first got ill or near death with pneumonia actually advised me to take several of the same things I take now but the doses were never going to be enough to help.

        I started biking and walking after this dramatic health episode and I did lose 24 pounds in 48 months but the results were slow when compared to the results I got in the first 60 days with the four hour body and honestly I cheated a lot after losing ten pounds in the first four days. The best advise is just to change one meal and stick to it. My meal changer was breakfast. I started eating blanched spinach with lemon, broccoli with cinnamon, asparagus with red pepper flakes, and a boiled egg with paprika all sauté in Darby butter every morning and I cut all bread and dairy. Now I need to pull back on the beer. I go out three days a week and sometimes consume 8 to 10 stellas with jamison chasers and still I lose weight.

        Oh yeah the PAGG(g) helped with ginko, creatine, and no explode. I switched from no loaded which is stronger than the explode! I look and feel 10 years younger. I moved to Miami and everyone thinks I’m 35. Everyone believed I was at least 45 in Austin. Sadly I was only 44. I will turn 45 next Wednesday and truly I feel I have a second chance after ten years of darkness.

        ps. Oh, I have had two growths on each gastrocnemius for 25 years at least and each year they have increased in size but after three months on all the supplements they are almost gone.


        Your truly greatful reader

      2. Thank you again, Ken. This comment made my day.

        Keep us posted on progress!


  70. Dear Tim,

    I received your book in the mail last week, immediately started reading and planning to start my slow-carb diet. Although I really need to improve my cooking skills, so far I’m following the diet quite well.

    My problem is, however, that I have IBS and believe it or not, beans are not doing me any good. I got constipated after two days on the diet.

    Now, grapefruits really help me when I’m like this, and since you mentioned in the beginning of the book that having grapefruit juice with coffee can facilitate fat loss, I was wondering whether I could have that every morning, together with my high-protein breakfast.

    I am taking my measurements every morning, and I know 3 days isn’t enough time to see any major changes, I have already seen a reduction in my legs and hips. I would really like to notice that on my waist as well, but I don’t because I’m so bloated. Because I really want to succeed, I really don’t want this to discourage me.


  71. Thank you Tim for coming out with this new way of eating. I have been on it for one week and lost 4 lbs already. It’s amazing! I want to get lean and feel more energy and leaner just within a week. Love it. I recommend it to EVERYBODY and stress the 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking up and drinking the cold water as well. Thanks again!!

  72. Hey Tim (and others),

    I have a question relaiting to the heart…

    I’ve recently (the past three weeks) been experiencing above average heart palpations(abnormal for me, at least – i have been told by several doctors that i have an abnormal heart beat but that it’s mild and isn’t serious).

    I’ve been on a slow-carb diet for 6 months now and exercising at least 4-6 hours a week with about 1/3 of the time dedicated to cardio (jogging or jumping rope). I consume about 30 grams of pure whey protein a day to supplement solid food proteins, a good multivitamin, calcium/magneseum/vitaminD tabs and a mixture of fish/primrose and flaxseed oil.

    The odd thing about it is that these palpations do not occur during my workouts but during periods of extreme relatation. When I’m at full max, my heart runs great.

    Has anyone experienced palpations caused by diet chahnge or exercise?

    I have a theory that I might be overworking a heart that is growing stronger but isn’t getting enough down time to recover? My background has always been slightly active but the past 6 months has been at a level and consistancy quite new to me.

    Note: I’ve already seen a doctor and looked into other causes such as stress, vitamin and mineral defeciencies/overdoses and my arrhythmia. Everything seems in good order – it’s just weird. Also, I’ve thought that if this continues and/or increses in the next month that i’m going to have my thyroid checked.

    Thoughts? Comments? Experiences?

    – jess

  73. I have been reading 4HB and find it really interesting. I am particularly happy at making my purchase in Kindle format, where I can access the content anywhere (on my smartphone) and access the linked sites easily. Thanks for the links!

    (Un)fortunately, I am a test engineer and by nature I tend to spot these things:

    On page 216 (Location 2666)

    you claim that your dad was “17.9 st (11.3 kg) at the time”

    The decimal point is clearly misplaced.

  74. In terms of diet my top 7 healthy foods are:

    1) Whole eggs for breakfast (protein; from time to time mixed up with a small amout of milk)

    2) Salmon (omega-3 fatty acids)

    3) Almonds (instead of chips and other snacks (but it can be really hard to resist eating all of them at one go – a lot of calories))

    4) Coconuts (selenium, potassium, healthy fat)

    5) Avocados (vitamins, minerals, healthy fat)

    6) Blueberries (antioxidants, fiber)

    7) Dark chocolate (positive effects on circulatory system, heart, brain function, skin) and low-fat chocolate milk after workouts for muscle recovery: new study:

    P.S. If you can’t stop eating toast and oatmeal for breakfast, trycoffee with a small piece of butter (grass-fed, unsalted). It’s fat, but healthy fat and will make you forget all the bad carbo-stuff. It might take getting used to at first, but it’s worth it!

  75. Very nice overview of 4HB.

    I have 1 question in addition concerning the workout system:

    Would’nt it make sense to have 1 “pumping set” (15 to 20 relatively light /non-exhausting reps) in addition to each HIT set, with the aim of flooding nutritiants (transported by blood) into the trained muscles?


    1. 4HB-book says to avoid all dairy but mentions that unsweetened yogurt is good for fat loss, so I would be very keen on getting to know the recommendation on the SCD as well.

    2. sweet potatoes even potatoes convert to sugar.. and most yogurts have too much sugar.. sour cream has less.. and I would go with full fat never low fat..

  76. Hey Tim,

    I’ve been reading your blog for a couple years and I love it! I’ve been wanting to start the slow carb diet, but I’m not sure if it will be successful for me. I’m about to turn 20, 111 pounds, 5’1″, a vegetarian and am looking to lose around 5-8 pounds. I am a long distance runner and do various work outs 6 days a week. Any advice would be great! Thank you so much and take care-

    Sarah M

  77. I have just finished reading the important parts of “The 4HB” for people wanting to lose fat. I’m anxious to start. I just have 2 questions: First, I mix 2 tablespoons of organic acacia fiber into water and drink this every morning for IBS and it seems to really work for me. That has 12 g of total Carbohydrate, 12 g of Dietary Fiber, and 12 g of Soluble Fiber. Will that be a problem for me on this diet? Also I noticed turkey isn’t mentioned in the allowable proteins. Is turkey not okay on this diet?

  78. Hey guys. I am serious now! Has anybody other than me actually GAINED weight while following the Four-Hour Body diet?

    I love Tim’s books and really have struggled to lose the 30lbs I need to get my body in the best shape it’s ever been. My build is fairly solid. I have a 43″ waist, so you can see that is where my fat problem is.

    But 4HB is not working for me.

    I am five weeks into following it strictly, after slowly adjusting over three months (30g protein breakfast first, PAGG supplementing next, finally getting on the diet). Some days I don’t feel hungry enough to eat four meals and have a protein shake as the fourth “meal” (about one day in six).

    I have even started cutting down from four eggs to three at breakfast (organic eggs) and reducing my bean portions, because since starting 4HB I have gained 2lbs. This is really depressing, as you can probably appreciate.

    I am at the point where I am ready to make binge days really restrained, because I am afraid of gaining more weight.

    I am a male aged 40.

    As a result of the weight gain, I have started working out at the gym. Weights 3 x 30mins per week, spin class 1 x per week (40-60 mins) and one or two runs or elliptical sessions.

    Help! What am I doing wrong?

    1. @Ashley Cotter-Cairns

      I have not gained any weight but I have lost 15 pounds in the first month as tim said. I am very happy and looking forward to looking the rest of my excess weight.

      If you are not loosing weight then I suggest doing a full review of what you are doing and make sure you are following all the right suggestions.

      Also you can try to increase your metabolism as mention in the advance techniques.



    2. #1 – Are you tracking your measurements? I lost 15lbs in the first 6 weeks (210 down to 195) on the diet alone w/ no exercise. I plateaued but I continued to drop inches on my waist. My body redistributed my body fat.

      #2 – Make sure you are not eating anything other than protein for breakfast. No black beans. I’ve had the best results the weeks I removed 2 tablespoons of salsa with my 3 scrambled eggs. I usually eat 3 hard-boiled eggs for breakfast.

      #3 – No dairy. No Soy. Period.

      #4 – Make sure on cheat day you eat lots of calories.

      #5 – Try Yerba Mate tea in the morning and drink until lunchtime. It’s known to help with weight loss.

      #6 – Track everything as Tim says then you’ll see where you might be going wrong.

      Good luck.

    3. @Ashley Cotter-Cairns

      #1 – Are you tracking your measurements? I lost 15lbs in the first 6 weeks (210 down to 195) on the diet alone w/ no exercise. I plateaued but I continued to drop inches on my waist. My body redistributed my body fat.

      #2 – Make sure you are not eating anything other than protein for breakfast. No black beans. I’ve had the best results the weeks I removed 2 tablespoons of salsa with my 3 scrambled eggs. I usually eat 3 hard-boiled eggs for breakfast.

      #3 – No dairy. No Soy. Period.

      #4 – Make sure on cheat day you eat lots of calories.

      #5 – Try Yerba Mate tea in the morning and drink until lunchtime. It’s known to help with weight loss.

      #6 – Track everything as Tim says then you’ll see where you might be going wrong.

      Good luck.

    4. It sounds like you are eating too much. I wouldn’t eat three eggs for breakfast and you definitely need green stuff with the eggs like spinach and broccolic not beans. Also keep in mine that your metabolism as to increase if you are over 40. I take PAGG, ginko, d3, fish oil all day, and n.o. explode. I can gain 5 pounds on a cheat day but I eat less the next day and I don’t go crazy every cheat day. No bread, potatos, or dairy. Weigh in the morning after elimination. Keep the beer to cheat days for best results. Nuts are great but they are loaded with calories.

  79. Thanks for your answers and comments.

    First two weeks I was still taking milk in my protein shakes. (Weight maintained itself.) I stopped those when I re-read the book. Absolutely NO dairy in non-binge days. No soy, can’t stand it anyway, and it’s really unhealthy for you unless fermented.

    My typical breakfast is (organic unless stated):

    three eggs, handful of fresh spinach, spoonful of beans (kidney, tinned, non-Org.), dash of chili sauce. Today I added bacon and removed beans, as I suspect the carbs in beans are holding me back.

    Lunch is normally: protein, salad (my wife makes dressing with sugar in it. I’ll liberally estimate 1tsp in the amount I eat; otherwise it’s vinegar and olive oil with sesame seeds), veg

    Lunch #2 I don’t normally eat. I am not hungry enough to fit in a second meal between lunch and dinner, as we eat dinner early with our kids.

    Dinner, similar to lunch.

    Night, usually another similar meal, or a whey concentrate shake with water. I’d say approximately half to one third of days I eat just the three meals with a shake at night, and the rest of the days four meals.

    Portion size:

    Unless I am missing something, Tim says I can eat as much of the three “allowed” groups as I want? Beans/legumes (being careful with chick peas), veg (avoiding the ‘dangerous’ veg) and protein? Or am I missing something?

    I am not eating:

    Refined carbs (apart from the home-made salad dressing mentioned above). No bread, no cake, no sugars. This is great because I have a life-long sugar addiction, and I feel healthier for sure eating this way. Shame I am gaining weight. Or at the very least, not losing it.


    Fruit (big miss for me — I used to eat berries and plain yoghurt with maple syrup every single day. Just thinking about it makes me want to cry)

    If I understand it correctly, by deleting beans and legumes I am basically departing from 4HB and becoming an Atkins, apart from the binge day?

    Binge day:

    As for intake of calories on binge day, I have no problem at all! Could this be the issue? Is it possible to do too much? I begin binge day with the protein-heavy breakfast. I precede the major meals with grapefruit juice, air squats and pushups, and follow up 90 mins later with more of the exercises.

    What the book doesn’t really make clear is what to do on those days when (say) you’re at a day-long BBQ party, and the food and drink don’t really conform to mealtimes. I have been doing the exercises every 90 minutes without really knowing if that’s the correct way to do it, and drinking either grapefruit or water with lemon or lime juice in advance of the big eats.

    On binge days I start the day with PAGG and use AGG twice, then PAGG before bed. I have not yet tried CQ, but that was on my “to order” list.

    However, at this point I wonder whether it’s really worth it. It doesn’t seem like this diet is going to work for me, and at this point I could have been eating my berries and yoghurt every day, snacking, eating dark chocolate, and enjoying my food more. I certainly don’t think about eating any less; it’s always on my mind “is this allowed, what am I going to do for lunch” etc.

    Sorry to be such a downer. Maybe I am the missing guinea pig that Tim hasn’t met yet when he said “I have never known this not to work. NEVER.”

  80. Before eating the day off meals, a small amount of grapefruit jucie is taken.

    Does it have to be grapefriut juice? I’m on meds that grapefruit jucie will interact with.

    What’s a small amount?

  81. What can I say about this book. I’ve lost weight with it, and family members of mine have. Tim’s cracked the code. Stop eating bread, rice, sugar, etc, drink lots of water and you’ll kick butt and lose weight. His idea of a ‘cheat day’ is actually useful and not just used to ‘appease’ junk food lovers. It’s brilliant. But make sure you pick up a copy so you can customize your own workout.

    One drawback is I’m not having a ton of success with the Poly phasic sleep part. Sometimes I just feel super tired.

  82. On the program and doing great but……If I look at one more egg I’m going to

    throw up. Any alternatives for breakfast besides eggs and beans

  83. Hi Tim

    Love the books and this speech.

    Any chance of getting an article on using the four hour body for BJJ training?



  84. This was a good presentation.

    I understand & agree with the ‘change one thing, protein within 30min of waking up’. I’d like to put forward my dilemma to see what recommendations others may have.

    I have a very poor digestive system, I have to wait at the very least an hour before any form of training. A friend recommended 1/2 a banana, tried this & I could still feel it creeping up even after waiting the hour!

    It’s also to my understanding for our body to digest food our blood is pooled ot our stomach to aid digestion, if we eat, then train, our blood is removed from the job of digestion to the job of our working muscles, hence digestion is slowed. Not very good for someone like me.

    I also have a liver which does not function effectively, as a result of this I drink a chinese tea first thing in the morning, I’m supposed to have it 30 mins before eating anything but I find 45 mins works best for me.

    The only time I really get to train is first thing in the morning.

    Here is the dilemma.

    If I eat first thing, I’m going to have to wait an hour before I can train, I just don’t have time in my day to waste an hour like that.

    Training first thing is my only option, it doesnt happen otherwise due to work & family. I feel fantastic training on an empty stomach & then replenishing after but I know this is not doing the best for my body.

    If anyone has any suggestions I’d be interested.

    1. Hi Helen,

      try a protein shake instead, consisting of 30-40 grams of whey protein hydrolysate (or isolate) mixed with low fat milk or – fot this purpose even better – water. This drink is digested very quickly and should not stress your digestive system at all.

      Good luck


  85. I was wondering if the diet you suggest in your book is meant to be a diet followed until you reach your goal or if it is meant to be a lifestyle? I am a picky eater and like carbs. I could probably follow the diet until my goal was reached but probably couldn’t omit carbs or “white foods” forever. If I eat carbs in moderation after successful weight loss will I gain it all back?

    Janel K.

  86. Hi Tim (or anyone that can help!)

    I’ve been following the Low Carb diet for 3½ weeks and have not lost 1lb/kg!! What’s going on?

    Help please, I’ve followed the plan completely, I eat within 30 – 45mins of waking, breakfast consisting of 2 egg whites & 3 tablespoons of baked beans (it’s a British thing!) this is between 6:15 & 7am. I then have some lentils between (9:30 – 10:30am) followed by lunch between 12-1pm, which consists of some sort of cannellini bean salad with tuna or mackerel or a lentil salad. At 4:30 – 5pm I will have a bowl of beans (berlotti) then around 7pm evening meal consisting of either salmon, chicken or turkey with roasted vegetables (Mediterranean veg selection) and either lentils or berlotti/kidney beans.

    I have a cup of hot water with lemon in the morning and about 2-3 cups of tea with about 1 tablespoon of skimmed milk (0% fat, basically water!) and around 3 glasses of water throughout the day.

    I also do an hour a week of intense exercise and walk a lot. I really cannot understand why I have not lost any weight what so ever! Please can someone tell me what I’m doing wrong??

    1. Hi Carol,

      guess you should add more protein to your meals and take maybe a little less of lentils/beans to avoid too big portions (your snacks in the morning/lentils and in the afternoon/beans do need extra protein). and try to substitute the white cannellini beans by using kidney beans or so. and don’t eat lentils or beans alone as a last meal in the evening, the salmon/chicken/turkey dinner with (some) roasted veggies I tink is the better choice.

      I hope it helps


      1. Hi Werner

        Thank you so much for your reply.

        I have a very small portion of Lentils/other beans as my snack (about 2 tablespoons), so do you think I need to add some animal protein to that? (By the way I don’t eat red meat). And I add the pulses to my meal in the evenings (so fish, chicken or turkey and a couple of tablespoons of pulses) so should I take away the pulses and increase the animal protein?


  87. Hi Carol,

    I would also stop all the milk even if its low fat or no fat. I have been trying to loose weight and I have always noticed that even a bit of milk affects my weight loss targets.

    the next thing I would do is stop the walk and join a gym where I can lift some actual weights to gain muscle. this helps alot !



    1. Hi Vishal

      Thank you for your reply, although a little harsh to make me give up my minute amount of milk that I’m having!! But I really will try anything!

      I do actually do weights in my intense training session and I also do kettle bell exercises (but still no weight loss!!).