Eat More, Weigh Less!

How to get the calorie goal for you!

Get your RMR. Find it here: http://www.fitnessfrog.com/calculators/rmr-calculator.html

Mine is 2000.

Then, get your TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure)

Go to this site: http://www.fitnessfrog.com/calculators/tdee-calculator.html

Mine is 3126 (using ‘moderate’ because I go to the gym 3-5 times per week).

Once you have that number, subtract 15%:

Mine is 2657.

This is my new daily calorie goal. If I exercise, and burn enough so that my net calories for the day (calories consumed – calories burned) are less than my BMR. then I need to eat more, but Typically I should not have to.

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Below are some interesting things to read: ( I did not write these, and cited as best I could, I just wanted them both in the same place for reference!)

On Plateauing:

http://fitnesswithnatalie.blogspot.com/2011/05/most-dreaded-word-in-weight-loss.html

Body of the post reads:

The Most Dreaded Word In Weight Loss: Plateau

In the world of weight loss, metabolism is king. Everybody seems to know that a fast one is a good one. Yet, some confusion arises when confronted with the problem of who’s got a fast one, what causes a slow one, and what leads to a metabolism that just won’t do what you want it to do – burn fat!

Every day desperate pleas rain from those in the weight loss trenches begging for advice on how to get the scale moving again. Inevitably, someone is 35 or 40 pounds away from their goal weight, and for some reason, the weight has stopped coming off. Despite adhering to a strict exercise regimen and a 1200-1500 calorie-a-day diet, weight loss comes to a stand-still. Sometimes, the scale reveals a slight weight gain. For three weeks, the scale records no change. What happened? Why did it stop after such a long period of successful weight loss?
According to The Mayo Clinic, a plateau means the body has reached a state of equilibrium. The diet and exercise plan that has worked so successfully for the first round of weight loss must now change. The situation feels nothing short of infuriating. The work and sweat and willpower amount to nothing in the face of a plateau.
So what exactly needs to change? Just like all things with the human body, a one-size-fits-all solution is inappropriate. The Mayo Clinic suggests a further calorie cut or an increase in exercise. After all, weight loss happens when the body burns more than it consumes. Unfortunately, many people on calorie restricted diets exercise to their maximum capacity yet experience the plateau. Suggesting a further cut in calories or increasing exercise proves an irresponsible recommendation. Such a plan could lead to exhaustion, weight gain, decreased brain function, muscle consumption (ketosis), and inevitably, binging and burnout.
The trick to fat loss is maximizing the body’s potential to burn fat. This involves finding a balance between the three main elements of fitness: nutrient intake, cardiovascular work, and strength building. These three elements work together to supply muscles with glycogen (converted carbohydrates from the liver), build more pathways within the body to bring oxygen and nutrients to the muscles, and adapt the muscles to the stress of strength training by building more muscle fibers. Increased muscle mass consumes more fat. Cardiovascular work increases the body’s ability to endure longer periods of exercise more efficiently, making muscles more efficient fat burners. The human body can accomplish these two goals only when fed properly.
When one of these elements falls out of balance, the body adjusts to the change and adapts, as the body’s main goal is equilibrium. The goal in weight loss is to change that equilibrium point to a place of healthy weight and body fat, strong muscles, and healthy nutrient intake.
In my experience, the solution to ending a weight-loss plateau means modifying the most extreme measure of the current weight loss plan. What is the most extreme part of a plan? It’s the part of a plan that a dieter does too much or too little. It’s an extreme of too many or not enough calories, cardio work, or strength training.
For example, a relatively sedentary person initially gained weight by consuming more calories than they burned. The extra calories were stored as fat. Though counter to what we’ve been taught, their bodies actually adapted to the excess caloric intake by increasing the metabolism. Because of the extra weight, their body was forced to work harder to maintain normal body functions. Working hard uses more energy. Even with an increased metabolism, without exercise, their extra calories were stored. To take the weight back off, the first obvious solution is to identify the extreme. In this case, the extreme is excess calories, and the solution is to decrease calories. The body then adapts by lowering the metabolism to reach a balance with new, lower caloric intake. Because the process of lowering the metabolism is gradual, the body makes up the metabolic deficit with body fat. In short, the body begins consuming fat to fill energy needs in the face of minimal caloric intake. When the body has lowered the metabolism enough to accommodate the new caloric intake, the unsuspecting dieter reaches a plateau.
So, dear readers, if you’ve hit a plateau, what part of your fitness regimen needs a change? The following example is based on a real-life person on a weight loss journey as they hit a plateau.
John made the decision to lose weight when the scale tipped 240 lbs.  In an effort to get to a healthy weight of 180 lbs., he decided to go from a 3,700 calorie a day diet to a calorie-restricted diet of 1500 net calories, meaning that he would have 1500 “leftover” calories after he exercised.  His body needed these “leftover” calories to perform normal body functions like breathing, digesting, and thinking. So, if he burned 700 calories on the treadmill, he would consume 2200 calories. He exercised 5 days a week and strength trained twice a week. He eliminated processed foods from his diet and consumed an abundance of fresh fruits, vegetables, beans, and lean proteins. He lost 38 pounds but still had about 20 to go.  He’s been losing weight steadily for about 7 months. Now, the scale hasn’t budged in three weeks. He’s tired and frustrated and feels like he’s working hard for nothing! He’s got no idea what to do!
To start identifying the extreme, let’s look at the three elements of John’s weight loss journey.
John engages in cardiovascular work 5 days a week. That’s great! His heart rate doesn’t exceed 85% of his maximum (220-your age), and he works out for about 45 minutes each time. John strength trains twice a week, so he’s building more muscle to burn fat, increase bone strength, improve posture, and maximize his efficiency in movement. Both of these activities serve to increase John’s metabolism. These are both reasonable amounts of work. Attempting to increase either may lead to burnout, exhaustion, injury, or even weight gain because John’s caloric intake is still restricted. His decreased calories are now keeping his metabolism lowered. To raise his metabolism without exhausting himself, he must consume more calories. In the same way that he raised his metabolism while gaining weight, he will now do the same thing and lose weight. Only this time, cardiovascular work and strength training will prevent his increased calories from being stored as fat. By increasing his calories, John gives his muscles more energy to consume fat. In a few weeks or months, when he reaches a plateau, signaling that he’s at equilibrium again, he’ll need to increase his calories again. By that time, he might have reached his “goal weight”, so this final increase may be to reach the number of calories he’ll need to maintain.
Note that John did not increase his exercise and his calories. He increased one only – caloric intake.  He increased his calories from 1500 to 1800, still several hundred calories shy of his final number (go halfway down). He’ll still be at a caloric deficit, and thus, will continue to lose weight. While increasing calories is terrifying to someone attempting to lose weight, consistent cardiovascular and strength training will prevent weight gain.
John may represent many dieters on restricted-calorie plans. Others’ extreme may be cardiovascular work. They may work out intensely upwards of 7-8 times per week, leaving the body precious little time to heal and repair. In that case, decreasing exercise and/or intensity a few times a week might be best, or again, increasing calories. Some may eat enough and only do cardiovascular work exclusively. For them, incorporating strength training into their regimen will push them from the plateau onto the losing path again. In all of these cases, water consumption is essential. Water mobilizes fat so that muscles can access it easily. Without water, blood pumps like sludge and causes your body to work less efficiently.
Here are some general guidelines to identifying the extreme in your weight loss plan. Modifying this extreme is the likely solution to further your weight loss.
You may need to consume more calories if:
· You exercise regularly (4+ times per week), strength train 2-3 times per week, and are on a calorie-restricted diet, but you do not consume the minimum calories plus most or all of the calories you burn through exercise
· You consume less than 1200 at least once a week
· You consume less than 1500 calories most days of the week
· You regularly consume fewer calories than your BMR (basal metabolic rate)
· You have headaches, lethargy, aches, and/or lack of concentration
You may need to change cardiovascular work if:
· You are mostly sedentary
· You engage in cardiovascular work fewer than 4 times per week
· Your cardiovascular workouts last shorter than 20 minutes
· Your heart rate does not remain in the 55-70% max. range at least two times per week
· Your heart rate does not remain in the 70-85% max. range at least three times per week
You may need to modify strength training if:
· You do not currently engage in strength training
· Your weights seem very light, thereby not stressing your muscles
· You have reached your goal weight, but still feel “flabby”
This article is not a comprehensive study in why we lose. The plateau is but one obstacle in the path to health. Weight loss takes tremendous willpower and strength. Those who accomplish the goal of changing their lives through increased health are true champions, and those in the midst of the battle are nothing short of warriors. While the fight gets confusing when what has been working suddenly stops, your body, your heart, your bones, and your muscles all work best when the excess weight is gone. You can work through this frustrating time by resetting your equilibrium point. As you review your caloric intake and reflect on your exercise regimen, you can now identify the caloric, cardiovascular, or strength extreme and make the change that will move you back onto the path of weight loss.
On why eating less and less is bad!
Living With Obesity At 700 Calories Per Day!
By: David Greenwalt

I want you to consider a common female client. She’s a woman about 5’5″ and 185 pounds. A combination of a mostly sedentary lifestyle, quick-fix, processed foods and consistent excessively low calories has resulted in an incredibly stubborn fat loss scenario. Not only has it created a stubborn fat loss scenario but her ability to add body fat is remarkably strong.

Most would believe there is simply no possible way she could be 185 pounds eating mostly low calories. While it’s true the average obese American created their own obesity by being a huge over consumer, a sedentary glutton if you will, many are able to maintain their level of obesity with the following formula in very precise ratios: starvation + binges + sedentary lifestyle.

An initial review of this woman’s calories indicates she is just above starvation level in the 400-700 per day range. The food choices are mostly protein in this case (low-carb is all the rage you know) and there are virtually no vegetables or fruits to speak of.

Five or six days per week the calories remain low in this range, however, there are nighttime binges from time to time and weekend binges where carbs loaded with fat (doughnuts, rolls, cookies, pizza etc.) are consumed.

So while the calories are very low the majority of the time, there are one to two days per week where this isn’t always the case. Even so, the nighttime binges and weekend slack offs don’t amount to what you might presume would be thousands of extra calories, thus explaining the 185-pound body weight.

Very few foods are prepared from home. There are lots of fast foods being consumed. Convenience and taste rule.

I must say. Early on in my coaching and teaching career this woman was a real head scratcher for me. Isn’t it calories in and calories out? Even if she’s not active she’s starving!

How in the heck does she stay at 185 eating an average, including all binges, of maybe 750 calories per day? She’s frustrated beyond belief. She sees her friends and coworkers eating more and weighing less. Is she simply unlucky? Is everyone else blessed? And what in the world is she supposed to do to fix this, if it can be fixed?

Why Is She Not Losing Weight?

First, let me tell you why she’s not losing weight. Then I’ll tell you what she has to do to fix the situation. With a chronic (months and months) intake of less than 1000 calories per day and a 185-pound body weight her metabolism is suffering greatly. It’s running cool, not hot. It’s basically running at a snail’s pace.

Think of it this way. Her metabolism has matched itself to her intake. She could, indeed, lose body fat but she’s in that gray area where she is eating too few calories but not quite at the concentration-camp level yet.

If she were to consume 100-300 calories per day her body would have virtually no choice but to begin liberating stored body fat. This is NOT the solution. It’s unhealthy and, in fact, quite stupid.

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Not only has her metabolism matched her intake, her body has maximized production of enzymes that are designed to help store any additional calories as fat. Anytime additional, immediately-unnecessary calories are consumed the enzymes are there and waiting to store the additional calories as fat. Her body is starved nutritionally and it has one thing on its mind – survival.

Being mostly sedentary, her metabolism (hormones play a large role here) can do a pretty good job of keeping things slow enough so that the pathetically low calories she’s consuming are just enough to maintain.

But since certain enzymes are elevated, waiting for more calories so more bodyfat can be stored, every nighttime binge or weekend mini-feast will contribute to fat stores.

So on the days she’s not bingeing her body does not lose fat, or if it does, it’s very little. And on the few days or times she does binge a bit her body is quite efficient at storing fat. So, while she may lose a smidge of fat from starving it is quickly replaced with every binge.

Remember, these binges aren’t a gluttonous 4000-calorie feast. Oh no, a binge might be 4-5 cookies worth about 500-700 calories. Nevertheless, since the binge foods are mostly carbs and fat it’s very easy for the enzymes to shuttle the dietary fat into stored body fat. It’s what they were designed to do.

So, What’s The Solution?

Well then, now that we presumably know some valid reasons why she’s not seeing a scale change and definitely no body fat change how do we fix her? We have to do something she’s going to freak out over.

We have to get her eating more. Not only do we have to get her eating more but more of the right, whole foods need to be eaten. Foods lower in fat that aren’t as easily STORED as body fat have to be consumed. And we have to warn her.

A Discouraging Start

We have to warn her that since she’s been sedentarily living on protein with binges of carbs and fats she is likely to see a weight gain right away. It’s true.
Once we begin really feeding her body with nutritious carbohydrates so she can become more active, her glycogen-depleted body will hang on to some of those carbohydrates (in skeletal muscle and liver) so she has stored energy for activity.

When her body hangs on to those carbohydrates it has no choice but to hang on to more water too. For every gram of glycogen (stored carbs) she stores she’ll hang on to three grams of water.

This is not a negative response by the body but it will be interpreted by her as quite negative when she steps on the scale.

It’s quite likely she’ll see a five to seven pound weight gain when she really starts eating properly again. This weight gain will remain for one to three weeks before it starts moving in the other direction.

For argument’s sake let’s assume my Calorie Calculator and Goal Setter at Club Lifestyle suggests a 1500-calorie per day average in week one for a one-pound loss per week. First, she is going to freak out about this many calories.

For months she’s been eating less than 1000 and usually around 400-700 in one to three feedings total per day. To her 1500 calories is a ton of food. And if she even begins to eat less fast and packaged-foods it will be a ton of food.

There is no doubt whatsoever that she will resist the increase. This resistance may take one to three weeks to overcome. During this period no weight loss will occur. She is too fat already in her mind and believes it will only hurt her to increase her food intake.

I mean, after all, isn’t that how she got fat to begin with? In her early stages of fat gain this was probably true. She overconsumed. But as I’ve said already, that’s not why she’s staying heavy.

In addition to a freaked-out mindset about adding more food to her already overfat body she will simply find that it’s all but impossible to eat four or more times per day.

She’s just not hungry at first. Makes sense when you think about it. Why would she be hungry three hours after eating a 300-calorie, balanced breakfast? Her body is used to 400-700 calories per day!

So, even though she gets a plan and begins using my nutrition analyzer to log foods and meals she finds after having a balanced breakfast of 250 calories she couldn’t force herself to eat meal number two on time.

It’ll take several more days of realizing what is going on and being one-hundred percent honest and diligent with her logging and planning before she begins to eat her meals as planned no matter what – even if she’s not hungry.

By now two to four weeks have passed and the only thing she’s seen on the scale is it going up–not very encouraging if I say so myself.

Raising The Grade

After the first two to four weeks have passed she’s probably beginning to consume her meals as planned although not quite like an “A” student yet. That is coming. She feels better because she’s working out and is more active.
And she feels like she has more energy throughout the day because she’s feeding her body more calories and the right kinds of calories.

She has finally begun eating the right kinds of fast foods (low in fat, moderate in protein) and less packaged food overall. She is making more meals from home and taking them to work for lunch rather than always grabbing something quick from a vending machine or the break room that always has some treat another employee brought in.

After another two weeks or so she’s moved from a “B” grade to more consistent “A”s. She’s planning her days one day ahead in the Nutrition Analyzer; she’s consuming fresh veggies and fruits on a daily basis.

Her calories are almost ALWAYS in line with what is recommended by my Lean Account and she has seen her first signs of the scale moving in the right direction.

She is now dropping from 190 pounds (her high after reintroducing food and carbohydrates again) to 189.3! “Progress at last!” she says. In actuality, the entire process was progress. But that’s not how she saw it in the beginning.

With a total of two to four weeks of increased caloric intake behind her and eating more consistently the right kinds of foods her metabolism has truly begun to rebound.

She didn’t kill it as she thought. She only wounded it. And since our metabolisms are like kids (they are quite resilient) and she doesn’t have thyroid issues or diabetes or any known wrench that could be thrown into the spokes of fat loss, she will begin, for the first time in months or years, to see results that make sense and that one would expect of someone who is active (30-60 minutes five or more days per week) and consuming a caloric intake of 1300-1500 calories per day.

Butterfly Effect: The Basics Of The Thyroid – Part 1.
Avoiding Sabotage

This process is in no way easy. I think you can see a plethora of ways it could be screwed up, sabotaged, given up on too early and so forth.
A key to success for this very common woman (men too) is not giving up too soon, having faith in the fix, and moving sooner rather than later to the increased, quality food intake.

It’s going to take effort to overcome the mental hurdles of eating more food as well as the increase in scale weight that is going to occur in weeks one to three or so. It’s disheartening, however, to charge hard down the weight-loss field only to get to the one-yard line and decide it’s time to quit.

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Many don’t realize they only had one more yard to go and they’d have had a touchdown. You gotta hang in there with this plan. It’s going to take some time for the glycogen levels to be replenished and level out. It’s going to take some time for mental adjustments to occur.
It’s going to take some time before hunger signals are restored to anything close to normal. It’s going to take time for the metabolism to rebound and not be in its protective mode.

Giving A Stubborn Body The Message

In certain, very stubborn cases, it may be necessary to eat at a eucaloric (maintenance) or hypercaloric (over maintenance) level for a few weeks to ensure the metabolism does get the signal that everything is alright and you aren’t going to kill the body.
Remember, your body could care less about your desire for fat loss. It just wants to survive.

Some Take-Home Points

The most common cause of obesity is Americans are sedentary overeaters/drinkers. Nothing in this article should be construed as to say that under eating is the root cause of obesity. It’s not.

It IS common for many men and women to be under eating with sporadic binges as I described here. This creates a perfect environment for continued obesity even if total caloric intake is quite low on average.

Low-carb followers or “starvers” WILL see the scale go up when calories are consumed at reasonable levels again and carbohydrates are reintroduced. Live with it. Deal with it. It’s going to happen. 98% of the gain will be water.

The time it takes for mental acceptance and other adjustments to occur will vary but one should expect a two to four week window for these things to take place. Being forewarned with an article like this may speed this process up some.

Once the right types of foods are consumed and the right caloric intake is consumed and the right ratios of carbohydrates, proteins and fats are consumed on a consistent basis, then, and only then, will metabolism begin to be restored and the key to fat loss be inserted into the lock with a noticeable drop in the scale resulting.
This may take an additional two to four weeks to occur. Your metabolism is never dead or broken for good. But it may take several weeks of proper eating and activity for it to be restored.

From day one, until the first, noticeable drop in the scale occurs may be four to six weeks–maybe one to two weeks longer. Those who give up on the one-yard line will never see the scale drop as will occur when intelligent persistence and consistency over time are adhered to.
David Greenwalt

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