The scale, skinny fat and malnutrition.

Scott Kratochvil 12/28/2016

I have written about why I don’t give clients diets but teach them the science behind eating right and for their goals. Read here:

They learn how to accomplish the goal that they are truly after. Many clients start with the idea of I want to be “random number” on the scale. As we work together they might hit that number and they might not. But the reason is not what you might think. They have an idea of what they want to look like physically and they think if they hit this “random number” that they will look this way. 9 out of 10 times when a client starts paying attention to the body fat % and not just the scale and they start to lose fat and not just scale weight the first “random number” that they wanted to weigh is now not correct. The scale is only part of the equation, body fat % is a more important and larger part, knowing your lean body mass, healthy structural fat and bad unhealthy unwanted body fat are the biggest parts you want to pay attention to.



Many diets, programs, detox or other fitness marketing tools just cause a first initial scale weight drop. Again this is normally mostly muscle, organs and healthy tissue and not the fat you want. This is where the term skinny fat started. You are dieting and starving your muscles, your body won’t burn fat and holds on to it to survive. So you never truly accomplish the weight and look the way you want to look. When you come off whatever program/diet you were doing and eating the way you have in the past the scale goes back up but now your scale is up and your body fat % is worse and you have lost muscle, damaged your bodies internal workings as well. This becomes your bodies never ending cycle and you thinking you are getting healthier each time.

I have trained wrestlers and fighters and many of these people can drop 10-20 pounds of scale weight in 1-4 days to weigh in to a fight. If you see before and after pictures of weigh in do they look that different?? No they don’t…because the 10-20 they lost is the density and strength of their muscle and water. In 4-18 hours they put it all back on. The goal for many of you is to lose fat but you are doing exactly what these clients are doing but a drawn out time frame. You will hear fighters and also people starting a new diet to drop weight often say “IT’s just water weight”. Think about what you are saying there…fighters know how bad that is and why they know how to add those pounds back on in a healthy way and fast.

It’s just water weight so what did you lose????


Fat is 30% water. So the”It just water weight” is really saying I just dehydrated every major healthy part of me.

The other big thing about not learning to eat right is malnutrition. When your body doesn’t get the calories, marco nutrition, micro nutrition it needs you not only lose muscle but healthy structural tissue, organs and start shutting down hormone production and body functions. The hard part for a lot of people to realize when they are doing these crash diets, detoxes, eat less and less, not eating for your bodies needs, starving yourself you are doing lots of damage. The following picture is of actor Christian Bale in 2 of his roles. The scary thing is many diet programs and diets you have been on have been destroying your body like the picture on the left. You might still have a layer of fat over you but internally you are doing the same things as the picture and outcome on the left. The good thing is you didn’t stay on the diet for as long as Christian Bale had to so he could reach this level of unhealthiness. Everyone always will go on a huge binge before things get to bad. You can read about that here:


That is why we always teach you to feed your body properly to become as healthy as possible. If your goal is to lose weight and become healthier you should stop paying attention to the scale and pay attention to your fat loss. The scale can be a great tool but also a great enemy.


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As a trainer I had to look in the mirror!

Scott Kratochvil 12/28/2016

I have been in the fitness industry for almost 15 years and have had 1000’s of clients over the years. Clients all have different goals, situations, life styles and/or health issues. After a cpl years in the industry I made a decision and change to the how/what/when/why of teaching diet. When I first started I didn’t care if my clients were becoming healthy….all I cared about was that they lost weight. Well what’s the problem with that?? I had to look in the mirror and make a decision. I had been over weight the majority of life from as far as I could remember until I was in my mid 20’s. All those years of trying diet, after diet, after diet, after diet, after diet and always going back to gaining weight was tough on my body and even more so on my mind and self-image. The decision I made was to teach my clients not a diet but the science behind their bodies. I would show them a new life style. I would show them a path to reach their goals and get off the up/ down roller coaster if they wanted to learn and change.

I can get 8 out of 10 people to lose 1-5+ lbs in one week… even you reading this. Follow this diet.M1) 2 hard boiled eggs / M2) Apple / M3) 4oz chicken ½ cup broccoli / M4) 4oz tuna with celery / M5) 4oz tilapia/ M6)scoop of proteinEat those 6 meals every day for the next 7 days and drink only water or black coffee. You will lose 1-5lbs.Or try thisM1) Your “magical $150 a month” protein shake / M2) Your “magical $150 a month” protein shake / M3) 6oz Chicken / 1 cup broccoliYes you will lose 1-5+ pounds off the scale in 7 days or less!! But where did this get you??? What did this do to you?

It got your scale to move…yes… but what actually happened? Scale went down body fat goes up, which means lean body mass lost. And??? That means you are in worse shape than when you started….you lost muscle and gained fat!!! This is how a lot of places/companies get you to keep spending your money on their products / services. Go to Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, pay some online new diet plan or any other place that gives you a point system and you will basically be getting the first diet. Follow the diet plan in this months “Fit Magazine”.Order premade foods shipped to your door and again you will be getting the first diet. Pay $100s of dollars a month for some companies “magical protein shake” and $100s more on their supplement line and you basically get diet number 2.

All over the place you see marketing like this:

10lbsweek1  10lbsweek

Or other ways of marketing with before and after pictures with 20 lbs lost in 4 weeks. I ask 20 lbs of what did you lose? I see tons of this and many of the after pics look like the same person with very little body composition change. Working with 1000s of clients over the years I know from experience if you are losing 20+ lbs in 4-6 weeks you aren’t losing just fat but just as much muscle if not more. You aren’t getting healthier but weaker and worse shape.

Where do you get with these??? Absolutely nowhere! Why do you think you see the same celebrities year after year after year endorsing the same products? They keep gaining the weight back. Yes you might see some quick results….this is how they hook you. Let’s really look at this. You lose 4 lbs the first week, you lose 2 lbs the second week, you lose 4 lbs the third week…..You have lost 10 lbs in 3 weeks!! Awesome. When I have seen people do this the average is 4 lbs of fat lost and 6 pounds of muscle lost in those 3 weeks. So what begins to happen is you are losing precious muscle and calorie burning strength/ endurance. Plus with eating these ways you are killing your hormones, especially hormones that burn FAT. So your results will start to slow down greatly from here on out until they grind to a complete stand still. Now the next week you don’t see results or worse you start gaining the weight back and you get really frustrated. Then a bad week at work comes along and you go completely off the plan and gain 3-6 lbs back….this is all fat and no muscle. So after 4-5 weeks you have lost 6-8 lbs of muscle and now gained 6-8lbs of fat. Your weight is right back where you started but your body fat has gone up by 6-8lbs. In other words you are now in worse shape than when you started. (On top of that vicious cycle….can you actually imagine living / eating like either of those diets for the rest of your life?) So you give up! A couple months later you decide to start again and you go back to the exact same plan……why??? Because you saw the scale change the first couple weeks so you think that was the correct way of doing things and you keep repeating this cycle over and over again and each time keep losing muscle and gaining fat. How do I know this?? I did this for years to myself until I learned the science of eating. I did this with my clients to get them instant results. I looked in the mirror because I couldn’t do this to clients anymore, as I knew the horrible process it was inside and out, physically and mentally. Clients would come to me to help them become healthy and lose weight, I wasn’t doing that my first cpl years in the industry. So I would get clients instant results they would be on cloud nine… then the inevitable would happen and they would gain the weight back. They would be defeated. Many would have a hard time trying again because they felt ashamed. We have new clients every month that start with us that have failed over and over again and are at the end of their ropes. They feel ashamed, defeated and a failure….. none of them have ever failed but their diets failed them. All of them have just never been taught how to truly change….. a change for life. 

That is why the scale is an enemy for lots of people. They give it power so if the scale drops they think that means success. If it goes up they think that means failure. When we track numbers with clients we track fat loss and body fat %. When we post about clients results we always say fat lost or body fat % lost. These numbers are the key to getting healthier, better, stronger and a leaner version of yourself.

fatloss2 fatloss4

These diets cause weight loss yes but they also cause many side effects that you don’t want because you are losing muscle. When you do this it also causes a situation termed “skinny fat”. Which like the picture above you might be 130 lbs but body fat % is way different, the way you look is way different and your health is way different. Losing your muscle mass also will shut down hormones, causes medical conditions or make current ones worse.

When I looked in the mirror I decided even if I didn’t get a client instant results it was more important to teach them the science of how to lose weight and keep if off for life. Do all clients succeed? No but I know I gave them tools to do so. Even if they haven’t reached their goals in weight loss everyone has left stronger and healthier. Maybe they now can do a 5k, a pull up, squat 2X their body weight, do a perfect push up, left being able to do more than they ever thought possible. As much as I care about each and every client I can’t be with them 24hrs a day and I can’t force them to change…they have to take those steps. I have clients that have been with me over 10 years because they are stronger, healthier and are always learning something new with their fitness/ health. There is always something more to learn in your health / fitness and always new goals. Getting healthy, fit and strong is a life style change…not a 1-3 month diet… it’s not a 30min workout 1-2X a week….It’s a lifestyle change.

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Part 2

Becoming Pro! Case Study Guys Addition

Here are 3 extraordinary gentlemen that are part of the Protege Pride! They all have had trials, successes, detours and results in many forms. We want to give a congrats to them and hopefully their story can help inspire you to reach for your goals. We all have an amazing story, keep writing yours gentlemen! 

Case Study: # 78383


Steve Review of us:

I highly recommend this very personable small business. Barb and Scott are great trainers who work with you and keep you motivated in a positive way to get the results you seek. I’m down nearly 90 pounds and keeping it off without the yo-yo of past diets. I am regaining the strength, stamina, and flexibility that have been absent for the last 25+ years while working in an office setting. I am now retired and in awesome shape that I can go to the park and shoot hoops and the ability to enjoy my retirement! They both are amazing teachers and are now working with my son and my father. Both have had back and spine issues, surgeries and injuries, the care and knowledge they are teaching us all is priceless.

Protege Fitness: What we have seen.

It’s been awesome working with Steve and watching him progress to becoming a Pro!!! When Steve started he was still working as a programmer and sitting at a desk all day with a diet that needed to change on many levels. He has been able to take off 90+ with diet change and keep it off!!! The other major things we have seen is his constant change of goals as he progresses! When he started he was not physically able to do a basic body squat, push up, plank, walk a flight of stairs without getting winded, proper posture, shoulder issues, not being able to touch his toes or get up off the floor without assistance to now being able to do lunges, deadlift over 200 lbs, step ups of 18″+, single hand overhead walk and carry with 45+ lbs, high intensity cardio without having to stop for 10 minutes after, 100+ push ups during a 45 minute class, plank for 3+ minutes, playing basketball again, taking our yoga classes and so much more! It is awesome to watch him taking back his health, fitness and life! Congrats Steve!!! Your dedication and consistency has changed your life, keep up the great work!

Case Study #32843


Dave review on us:

I started working with Barb and Scott about 2 years ago and had with other trainers the previous 5+ years. It has been an awesome experience and journey so far working with them and nothing like what I have experienced with past trainers. My goals for exercise when I started was for health and weight loss because I want to to get my pilot license and also for my grandchildren. Since working with them I have really learned and now understand the how’s and why’s of eating for goals and my body’s needs. I have dropped over 80 lbs of fat, I don’t take any medications and I am in amazing health! The weight loss was a major goal so I could get fly and play with my kids but I have accomplished so many other things that I didn’t think were even a possibility when I first started working with them. Barb and Scott both really care about teaching me and all their clients on real nutrition and not just some diet and also their ability to teach proper mechanics for the life long health of their clients. To be able to squat and lunge without knee pain, lift without back pain and fixed my shoulder issues. I drive from White Bear Lake and Hey 96 / 10 can be a headache at times but it is always worth it. I can thank them enough for all they do!  Whatever your age or goal your plan should be to start at Protege Fitness, you will not be disappointed.

Protege Fitness: What we’ve seen

Dave started with us to accomplish several goals and like many of our clients he had worked with a trainer before and knew the importance of hiring the right trainers. We started the first 6 months perfecting his strengths and improving his weaknesses. The first 6 months we really dove into his diet and start teaching him how to fuel his body with the proper carbs, fats and proteins and then how to adjust them to achieve goals. He was able to drop 80+ lbs of fat and keep it off! His body movement and strength have also dramatically improved! It’s so great watching clients increase their health and improve their daily lives! To watch someone go from a limited range of motion and movement to being able to move like they are 20 years younger is so rewarding. Dave started off with just 2 1on1 sessions a week and now has moved to 4 classes a week and cardio on his other days. If Dave isn’t here at 5am during the week it is a shocker he has become a daily Pro and the results show!

Case Study #279268


Bryant’s review:

I started working with Barb and Scott because my dad, mom and sister all do and love it!! I wanted to get back into shape and add muscle, stay lean and get stronger. I had never really lifted weights in the past but always active Motor Cross, snow mobile and always on the move. I had an accident many years ago with a bike jumping and landing on me and sustained several injuries. Scott and Barb were able to work with me to get these issues corrected and teach me ways of keeping myself in top shape. I started training with Scott and hopped into a session with my dad… I lasted about 15 minutes. I started off 2 days a week and then following Scotts plan 2 days by myself. In the first year I went from 140 lbs to 165 lbs and stayed in the 9%-11% body fat range the whole time. I got strong and ripped!! I couldn’t be happier with the level of knowledge I got from them. I know the tools and education I have gotten I will be able to accomplish any goal I set for myself! If you are a guy looking at getting into the best shape of your life come to Protégé Fitness and become a Pro!

What we have seen:

Bryant came in and wanted to add some strength and size. He jumped in right away. We sat down talked food and set up specifics he needed to reach. He trained with me 2-3 days a week and followed out workout plan for 1-2 other days a week. He would text me pictures of almost every meal he ate for the first 6 months. He always came to the gym ready to bust his butt for 30 minutes during our sessions and would do his “homework” for 15-20 minutes after and 2-3 other days a week never missed the planed workout routines that we had laid out for him. It’s been fun watching him go from not knowing what to do to learning what he has to do to accomplish his goal. He has been bitten by the workout “bug” and he rarely goes a week without getting in the gym 4 times a week. Congrats on the results B you put in the work and earned it! Small daily disciplines repeated become huge results in a year!

Contact us if you have any questions or need help with any of your fitness goals!

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Becoming Pro! 3 Case Studies- Ladies addition

Becoming Pro: Case studies

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Here are 3 amazing ladies that are part of the Protege Pride! They all have had trials, successes, detours and results in many forms. We want to give a congrats to them and hopefully their story can help inspire you to reach for your goals. We all have an amazing story, keep writing yours ladies!


Case Study: #58248 Lucia


Lucia Review of us:

I’ve been going to Protege Fitness for 4 months since I moved to Minnesota. I thought I was in pretty good shape since I’d been doing CrossFit for about 5 years. Yes, I was one of those who couldn’t stop talking about how great CrossFit was! I’ve been working out in some form for the 27 years I was in the Air Force to maintain my fitness level, but it was nothing like this. The first ProCircuit class I attended at Protege kicked my butt! It was harder for me than any CrossFit workout I had ever done, but in all good ways, and humbling that somethings I was only using 5 lbs or body weight movements.  Between the two of them, Scott and Barb are the complete package providing strength training, rehabilitation and nutritional education. Their goal is to educate their clients to become partners in their fitness journey. The combination of body weight, barbells and kettlebells exercises creates an extremely efficient and effective strength and cardio workout unlike any I have experienced not only in difficulty but safety that really take your body to the next level. Scott and Barb identified areas of muscle imbalance and weakness during my 1:1 sessions and targeted my training to correct them. I have stenosis in my lower back and had unknowingly been favoring my left leg due to sciatic pain. The exercises they gave me have corrected that imbalance as well as imbalance in my upper back and shoulders. I couldn’t do simple walking lunges when I started; now I can do them, pain free, carrying weight. My body composition has changed significantly as I’ve replaced body fat with muscle. Barb and Scott are always watching to provide feedback on form and challenge me to push myself to do better safely, whether I’m in a ProCircuit, Kettle bell or individual session. I honestly can say I haven’t been in such great physical condition in 40 years! I count on Protege Fitness to help me stay strong and active as I move into my middle 60s and beyond!

Protege Fitness: What we have seen

Lucia started with us with an already strong back ground in health and fitness but wanted to learn more. We have so many clients that start with us with an “injury history” or pain that they thought they just had to live with. When we first started working with Lucia doing a basic step or lunge was a painful challenge and also she had movement and strength issues with her shoulders. The first month working with her in classes we would always go body weight or light weight with certain movements. (And anyone that trains with us knows when I tell them to grab light weight that can be more scary and difficult than heavy weights.) So our 1on1 sessions we all geared towards muscle imbalances, muscle sequencing and mobility. Her body responded very fast and her pain subsided. After that we started working on getting the strength and muscle control in full range of motion of her whole body and she has seen so many huge improvements. She can do 5 strict pull ups, perfect push ups, deadlifts have gone up to 195+ pounds and her shoulder strength has gone up 250%. During this time we also have been working with her on nutrition (not a diet) to keep her muscle strong and strip off fat and is she seeing some of the lowest body fat % of her life.  So happy and proud of how far you have come in the past 4-5 months and we are so excited to walk with you in your journey of health and fitness.


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Case Study: #464743 Ingrid


Ingrid review of us:

I have had several injuries that I sustained in a car crash years ago. I was told that due to the permanent nature I would never be able to lift more then 35#. Up until a couple years ago, I believed that I couldn’t do it. I have been at Protégé now for 6 months and I am lifting way more then 35#. I feel empowered to keep going. I have lost weight also and feel great! My injuries will no longer define me. Scott and Barb are true professionals who know their stuff. All levels, ages, ranges in health. Give it a try! It’s so cool to have this support. Because for me, this will be life long. I know if I’m stronger my body will not break down so fast. I don’t want to be 45-50+ and laying on a couch. I can’t explain to people what it feels like to be an athlete, lose it all, and be told you’ll never be there again. Screw you all! I just grabbed life by the horns and am winning!! Let’s keep this going!

Protege Fitness: What we have seen

Ingrid came to work with us having a back ground in fitness and therapy but needed some help to accomplish some goals she was struggling with. There are many clients that have found us because of the same type of reasons, health or injury issue, and were told “sorry this is your new life”. We had to work with Ingrid on perfecting form, posture and muscle control. We started with very little weight so we could get her body in correct position to strengthen her from the inside out and get her body to work properly again. Her being and occupational therapist she know the importance for healing, correcting and strengthening properly to gain her health back. Overcoming some fear is always an aspect of starting any fitness program but especially if you have an injury history to start. Ingrid started with 1on1s and now has moved into doing both classes but still 1on1 to perfect, work on specifics and to get that individualized and specialized workout in so she can keep reaching new goals! Another goal was to lose weight but really she didn’t want to just have another diet but to learn how to lose fat. She wasn’t worried about the scale but wanted a body composition change that she hadn’t been able to achieve. She wanted to be leaner, stronger and healthier! 3 months: Went from 133.2 lbs and 31.6% to 132 and 25.7% body fat. An amazing 6% body fat lost and added 7 lbs of muscle in the same time. (Most will tell you this is impossible but it can be done, if done right) Her scale weight only dropped 1.2 lbs but became a stronger, leaner, healthier version of herself dropping 6% body fat!!! I am so excited to see where she takes her fitness next!!!



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Case Study: #54669 Kimmy

Kimmy review of us:

Meet my trainer Barb Lass at Protege Fitness Studios in Fridley. I am thankful everyday for this woman. She has helped me lose 60#’s. Not only is she my trainer but she is my nutritionist, my therapist ( both physical and mental) but she’s my friend. She’s helped me get off all my medication for diabetes and taught me clean healthy eating . 8 years ago diabetes took the life of the most precious women to me… now I’m taking the life from diabetes. They have helped in recovery from a major hip surgery and torn labrum. My doctors and therapist were shocked at how fast I recovered and that I didn’t have any complications. They said it was because of how strong I already was and the continued training with them that got me back to 100%! I can’t thank Barb enough for everything they have done by giving me back my health and educating me to be healthy and medication free!

If you or anyone you know needs help living a healthier life please see Barb or Scott at Protege Fitness Studios.Its truly life changing!!

Protege Fitness: What we have seen.

Kimmy started working with us to lose some weight and start exercising. The change we have seen in Kimmy in so many ways is so inspiring, from we weight loss of 60+ lbs, to getting off her medications. One of the greatest things in her transformation though has been how she has really taken control of her health, fitness and nutrition!! She now comes in several times a week with her own workout plans and even discusses proper eating and diet with our other clients. When she tore her labrum she trained with Barb for several (painful) months leading up to the surgery to make sure her body was as strong and healthy as it could be to recover. (As it is one of the worst surgeries and repairs you can have and recover from) She came back stronger than ever in determination and drive. She now is pain free! Medication Free! 60+ Lighter! And in Control of Her health and fitness future!



All 3 of these amazing ladies have had ups and downs, successes and detours but all stayed with the journey and trusted the process. You only have 1 body so learning to heal it, strengthen it and become the best version of yourself is priceless!

Contact us if you have any questions or need help with any of your fitness goals!

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