40-Somethings - Let's talk about realistic weight goals?




Hermit Girl
08-25-2008, 03:36 PM
I have noticed that for the last few times any numbers on my weight ticker have changed, it has only been the goal weight. Bottom line : if the goal weight seems too far off, it's going to psychologically make a difference when I see it.

I'm middle-aged now ~ 46 yrs ~ and last time I was in my healthy weight range, I was in my 30's. Since turning 40 , the first few years of rapid weight gain sent me into depression and denial, and well, I just haven't made that much of an effort to improve the situation. Fact is, I hardly know what a proper goal weight should be at this time. When I was in my most athletic prime, of mid thirties I weighed between 120 and 130. In my twenties I guess 120 had always been my goal if I went on a diet (a cyclist, I was always very muscular, in my legs and butt) I climbed Mt Whitney at 38 years old weighing 135, and I would love to weigh that again ! 140 lbs use to be my "OH MY GAWD I"M SO FAT" upper threshold, but now I'd do anything to weigh that much even. Seriously, I think for my height and age , I am clueless as to what I ought to weigh. Should I change my ticker to 140 ? I had a close friend (male) say he thought I should weigh around 130. What I 'should' weigh, what I fantasize weighing, and what I can maintain are all different.

Maybe some of you can relate? Lets talk about it.


kaplods
08-25-2008, 03:48 PM
I don't think anyone can tell you what you should weight, or even what the healthiest weight for you would be (though a conversation with your doctor may help you decide).

There are so many factors that go into making a good choice of goal. What you believe you can accomplish, what health problems you have or are wishing to avoid, your family history of some diseases, how much exercise/activity you are wanting to achieve/maintain...

When I asked my doctor for my goal slip for TOPS, I suggested 200 lbs as my goal. Knowing it wasn't an optimal weight for me, but it felt like a weight, I thought I'd be able to maintain for a while before deciding whether to go lower. My doctor actually suggested a higher goal, so I chose 250. Do I think I will leave it there? Nope, however maintaining a loss of 144 lbs would be such an amazing feat, that if I did decide to stop there, I wouldn't feel bad about deciding not to go further. I've left the days behind me when I felt weight was all or nothing and only absolute successfully reaching some weight chart's "ideal weight" mattered.

I think you also have to remember that your goal today doesn't have to be your goal tomorrow. If you want to set 150 (or even 175) as your goal weight for a while - there's nothing wrong with that. Maintain it for a while and THEN decide whether you want to lose a little more.

There is no magic number to this. As long as you're not venturing into dangerously low weight goals, you should continue to keep going until you're ready to stop. And if you're ready to stop before some chart tells you to, that's ok.

Hermit Girl
08-25-2008, 07:12 PM
Good Advice, thanks ! :hug:


hopefuldreamer
08-26-2008, 08:24 AM
I like kaplods' advice. I think it's ok to set a goal weight a little on the high side, hang out there a while, and then decide if you think you should lose more. I think that's more realistic than setting it excessively low.

I've set my goal weight relatively high, and maybe I'll decide to lose more, but for now,that's enough. I weighed a VERY muscular 148 in high school (actually was a competitive weightlifter at that point believe it or not) but I know I am kidding myself to think I could ever weigh that again. For now, my pre-baby weight is enough.

I'm taking things slow and steady, trying to make changes that can really stick. I lost a half pound last week. Not a lot, but I'd rather do that and have it last than drop 3 pounds only to gain 4 back later.

Maybe set short term and long term goals. One of our members (can't remember name! sorry...) has a long term "goddess" goal ticker, and a short term ticker. I take it 5 lbs at a time. Now, I'm aiming for 215.

Good luck. Group hug!! :grouphug:


hopefuldreamer

dolphinlvr
08-26-2008, 02:12 PM
I used to do Weight watchers and this was the chart they used. This is what I used to determine my goal number. But like the other gals said you can shorten your goal if it makes it easier for you to achieve and then once you start getting close to your new goal, change it to the original goal. Just my two cents :dizzy:


Height Weight Ranges (in pounds)

(Column 2)Minimum for all adults (BMI=20) (Column 3)Recommended maximum for ages up to 25 years (column 4)Recommended maximum for ages between 25 & 45 years (column 5)Maximum for all Adults (45+) (BMI=25)
4' 9" 92 106 111 116
4' 10" 96 110 115 120
4' 11" 99 114 119 124
5' 102 118 123 128
5' 1" 106 121 127 132
5' 2" 109 125 131 137
5' 3" 113 130 135 141
5' 4" 117 134 140 146
5' 5" 120 138 144 150
5' 6" 124 142 148 155
5' 7" 128 147 153 160
5' 8" 132 151 158 164
5' 9" 135 155 162 169
5' 10" 139 160 167 174
5' 11" 143 165 172 179
6' 147 169 177 184
6' 1" 152 174 182 189
6' 2" 156 179 187 195
6' 3" 160 184 192 200
6' 4" 164 189 197 205
6' 5" 169 194 202 211

Weight ranges are used to recommend appropriate weights for different groups of people. Weight Watchers uses ranges based on Body Mass Index (BMI). Based on our Weight Ranges table, a recommended weight is in the general range of about 20 pounds from the low- to the high-end of the range.

This just a guideline as you see it says " a recommended weight is in the general range of about 20 pounds from the low- to the high-end of the range." So if you are 5' 6" then to me that means I could be 175to 135 which gives you quite a stretch. Me I think I would be comfortable at 150 or 155.

Hope this helps!

Karen

PhotoChick
08-26-2008, 02:23 PM
My goal weight has changed as I've lost weight and gotten into better shape.

I'm 40 and I knew when I started losing (at 240) that I wasn't ever going to be 120 lbs again. I was pretty sure that I could hit 135, which is what I weighed in college, but at the time losing 100 lbs seemed like pie-in-the-sky.

So I compromised. I set my goal at 170, which is what I weighed when I got married, 10 years ago. I figured that was something achievable and reasonable. When I dropped under 200, I realized that I could do more, so I set my goal back to 140. As I've lost more, I've dropped my goal even further and now (as you can see from my ticker), it's 130.

Right now I think 130 is reasonable, reachable, and not overwhelming. Maybe when I hit 150 or 140 I'll drop it even more. Or maybe I won't.

One thing that I am noticing is that now that I'm in the 160s my goals have become less about the weight itself, and more about other things. Lately I have 2 size 10 dresses I want to fit into ... so that's a goal. I want to squat 60 lbs - there's a big goal. I want to see more definition in my shoulders and back - another goal.

I think for most people starting out on a diet losing weight is the only goal they see. For those people who really change their lifestyles to eat better and be healther, the more they learn, the more they begin to incorporate other goals into their plan and it becomes a series of overall achievements, rather than just a number on a scale.

.

Hermit Girl
08-27-2008, 09:22 AM
Photochick ~ I think you're right about when one is overweight, that's all they see > the fat, thus, the diet. Not slender or light enough to get back on my bicycles at this point and make goals with the riding, as I use to sort of do , or for clothes to matter much , etc. I agree, once at a certain threshold of obesity, one gets apathetic about it all. I know I have.

klmetz ~ the weight chart still puts my weight in a category I don't believe is me. My shape and weight are not 'normal' that way. I am very dense and muscular, so I'm going to set my goal for what would be considered off that chart, and I'm not going to feel it is a bad decision. Maybe one day I'll be in that chart's range, but not this year.

I have changed my ticker goal to a weight I last knew to be a reasonable weight for riding, and I know I still cared about how I looked, and my husband wasn't entirely sure I was that overweight. I was in denial at the time I was 149, and it was probably for only a blink of an eye as I was gaining rapidly into the 150's then 160's then 170's. Crazy denial ! So, 140's is what I want to see, even if the highest number. 149 for now, and you can believe seeing only "26 lb to go. Keep going!" sounds a heck of a lot more exciting than 45 lbs to go. Thanks.

momforever
08-28-2008, 10:20 AM
:wave:I love what I read through this post. While I set mini goals per week that I wanted to lose, I never thought about setting a weight goal so that the ultimate goal is overwhelming!

Now that I am in my mid 40's (and hopefully wiser) I know it is more important to healthy and eat good foods. My down fall is junk food, portion sizes and not making time to exercise. For me, my first goal is to evaluate my priorities and move exercising to the top of the list! I know I have the time---I have done it before!

Thanks allowing me to read along! :wave:

Beth61
08-29-2008, 07:35 AM
In my thrities, when I weighed 136 pounds I felt the best I had in my entire life - body-image wise. That certainly seems a far way off from where I am at today. I sure don't feel as fat as the scales say though, but remember when I weighed 145 and I thought I was HUGE. Later down the road - 155 and then 165 felt like 145 had.... now if I was 165 I'd probably throw a party :-) Boy do times change... and weight loss goals right along with it. Now I just want to feel good about how I look - be healthy and well... I'll know it (my actual weight goal) when I get there and what this final number is on the scales, well that is yet to be determined.

hopefuldreamer
08-29-2008, 08:19 AM
I think in all our talk about our weight in the past, we also have to deal with the other aspects of our looks that have changed, and come to terms with those. Even if I dropped 60 pounds today, I would still look 40 something. I've got a couple grey hairs, a few weird rogue stray hairs on my face, the wrinkles around my eyes are noticable, and my skin texture is just not what it used to be (large pores). I've got stretch marks, and spider veins that came with the kids and never left. None of that changes even if I lose weight.

Part of my task at 42 is to learn to love myself as-is, even if there are things I'm not thrilled about.

hopefuldreamer

Hermit Girl
08-29-2008, 10:38 AM
I think in all our talk about our weight in the past, we also have to deal with the other aspects of our looks that have changed, and come to terms with those. Even if I dropped 60 pounds today, I would still look 40 something. I've got a couple grey hairs, a few weird rogue stray hairs on my face, the wrinkles around my eyes are noticable, and my skin texture is just not what it used to be (large pores). I've got stretch marks, and spider veins that came with the kids and never left. None of that changes even if I lose weight.

Part of my task at 42 is to learn to love myself as-is, even if there are things I'm not thrilled about.

hopefuldreamerI hear you loud and clear darlin' !!! I'm really loving reading the posts on this thread. This is the reason I stay on the 40's something forum, because I just can't relate to the typical posts of the younger girls who want nothing more in life than to be rail thin , and have not experienced life's humilities like we 40's girls have gotten a little too use to already ; the rogue hairs, skin that's shrivelling, spots on our complexion that don't go away, weight that seems to have gained permanant title on our bodies, hot flashes from nowhere, you name it......... ! :dizzy: All those other things just sort of put It All into perspective, don't you think ? :hug:

lovnmom
08-29-2008, 11:04 PM
Hi Hermit Girl, I'm also 5'2" and when I first started losing "this time" I weighed 175 soooooo, we have a great deal in common...
My first goal : too eat fruits and veggies every day, drink 2 quarts of water every day, and move SOME every day...
2nd goal : to reach 150#...I maintained that for about 4 months
3rd goal : 140#.....I maintained that for about 3 months
4th goal : 135#...I hit that just a couple days ago and I'm planning to maintain that until November and then try to reach 125# (if it takes until November '09 or even '10 that's ok...I'm 44 I'm not planning any big ta do)
I've found that learning to maintain each small loss has made it possible FOR ME to go on and lose more...both mentally and physically it has helped tremendously
but yes, love yourself and aim for happy and healthy rather than svelt and sexy and you and the hubs both will find you svelt and sexy!!
Good luck to you and your hubby!

Hermit Girl
08-30-2008, 10:38 AM
Hi Hermit Girl, I'm also 5'2" and when I first started losing "this time" I weighed 175 soooooo, we have a great deal in common... Yes, our starting weight are the same. I use to have 125 as my goal weight, but have had the 175 to 125 goal for too long without change. I figure, if I bring up my goal weight, I am going to not feel so overwhelmed.

hopefuldreamer
08-30-2008, 12:02 PM
My first goal : too eat fruits and veggies every day, drink 2 quarts of water every day, and move SOME every day...
2nd goal : to reach 150#...I maintained that for about 4 months
3rd goal : 140#.....I maintained that for about 3 months
4th goal : 135#...I hit that just a couple days ago and I'm planning to maintain that until November and then try to reach 125# (if it takes until November '09 or even '10 that's ok...I'm 44 I'm not planning any big ta do)



I really love this, and appreciate the voice of experience. Thank you, lovnmom!! :hug:

I think to plan a period of maintaining is a good thing. This allows new habits and new metabolisms (is that a word?? LOL) to really settle in and get permanent.

I also love the non-weight goals. (like the fruits/vegs/water) That is do-able!! I need a veggie/fruit goal. I don't eat as much fruit as I should. I have an easier time with veggies cooked into dinner (we frequently eat vegetarian meals, but not exclusively... tonight is eggplant mykonos since I'm drowning in eggplant and tomatoes)

Here's to all the 40 somethings who have gained wisdom!! :carrot::cb::broc:

hopefuldreamer

lovnmom
08-30-2008, 05:37 PM
hopeful, The fruits and veggies, water and exercise was my only goal for about a year. It really helped me get my head on straight that I was doing this for my health not the size of my jeans...it's taken me 27 months to lose the 40 pounds...some would think that's way too slow, but I'm able to do this and my life got better and easier in just the first week...the food, water and exercise just gave me more energy right away even though I was still 175# @ 5'2". I do believe metabolisms is a word if not you and I both know what you mean and every time I let my body adjust for a time my weightloss gets a nice jump start when I try to lose again...I do most of my losing by walking more and eating "cleaner" not necessarily fewer calories. I am loving my 40's. There are so many things that used to seem so important that are just insignificant now. I'm much more relaxed. I don't spend time comparing myself to others anymore. I now look back at journals (journalling my feelings has been a huge help in the weightloss journey) from years past and go, "yeah I'm better than I was then!" And that's all the matters. So what is eggplant mykonos. If it has eggplant and toms it must be good.
Have a great weekend!

yoyoma
08-30-2008, 06:55 PM
I originally set my weight goal at 150 (and notched it down to 149 just cuz that sounded so much lighter, lol!). I chose a relatively high starting goal for the reason the OP outlined -- it seemed like I could accomplish it (and did!).

Of course, I was happy to reach that mark, but I wasn't happy with the way I looked, so I reset it ten lbs lower. We'll see how that goes. More of my weight stays in my lower abdomen now than when I was younger, so I am still coming to grips with my 40-something proportions. DH was a help with that this morning -- said I was "looking good" :) !

lovnmom
09-01-2008, 09:51 AM
yoyoma, At 5'6.5" and 143# I bet you're looking better than good...probably d_m_n fine. WTG!!!!

JulieJ08
09-01-2008, 12:47 PM
I picked a goal weight just so it doesn't all feel endless, but really, my goal is based more on my lifestyle changes. In theory, my "goal weight" is whatever weight I maintain when I'm eating really well and exercising moderately. Of course, if that happened at a much higher weight than I thought it should, I'd have to re-evaluate what I consider good eating and moderate exercise. But even though my goal is 130, I wouldn't be surprised (or unhappy at all) if I really settled at, say 140-145, or even say 125. My idea of an "ideal" body has changed a lot, and I might enjoy and prefer a curvier figure than I thought I needed when I was 25-30ish.

catalystmb
09-01-2008, 01:06 PM
I'm 5'4". I loved myself at 135. Looking back(20 + years) I was fine even at 150.:)
With that as my goal I still have about 130 pounds to lose.
My goal realistically is just to be in a normal BMI.
Mary(longtime lurker, finally posting..waiting for sig privies)

Hermit Girl
09-01-2008, 07:22 PM
My first goal : eat fruits and veggies every day, drink 2 quarts of water every day, and move SOME every day...
2nd goal : to reach 150#...I maintained that for about 4 monthsOkay, so , for me I've been hiking about 30 minutes to 1 hour most mornings of the week now, averaging 1 to 3 days off a week. I have been doing this for well over a year, more like two. There have been times when I got lazy and for a few months my average was different, but for the most part, I've gotten the meaning of *daily exercise*.

I think I eat fruits and veggies (salads mostly) most days, and could definitely drink a bit more water, however, I don't think that part needs so much work, but I'll definitely try to drink more water.

I'm ready for the 2nd goal part.... getting to 150 . I don't know how to *diet* anymore because I am not willing to perpetuate abnormal eating habits by excluding foods while on programs, etc. I insist on changing for lifestyle, such as ; I am cutting out buttered toast (trigger foods) and quit caffeine for life, (I suspect it was messing with my total physiology)...and next will be to temporarily abstain from chocolate (also trigger food because of the sugar I think)

It seems as if I have no tactics left in losing weight but portion control, as I am ademant about staying neutral about foods (other than the above mentioned trigger foods) , and not allowing myself an abnormal unbalanced relationship with food. Lovnmom, can you recommend to me/us, how you changed things to suddenly lose?

lovnmom
09-02-2008, 02:13 PM
Hermit, When I decide it's time for lose mode I eat very clean...very few processed foods and I do portion control to a tee. I choose how many calories to eat based on 10x my weight so at 175 pounds I ate no more than 1,750 calories a day. I know that sounds high, but it's always worked for me. The less I weigh the less I eat. Key to my loss is the push in my exercise. When I'm trying to lose I don't just allow myself a 30 minute walk I push so that every mile takes 15 min or less, each walk is at least 4 miles and includes hills. I will add a couple of hours of yoga each week to help buil more muscle. I exercise at the increased rate 6 days a week and do some kind of "playground" fun the other day.
I never cut out any food completely. That just makes me want it that much more, but I will withold my afternoon oz of chocolate until my exercise is complete and I can just sit and enjoy it. My yummy foods I can't live without are never ate on the run so I end up going "crap I didn't even taste that" thus sending me for another one. I also try to drink closer to 3 quarts of water rather than just two...the water is very important and if you push your exercise intensity drinking 3 qts isn't difficult. Not for me anyway. By following these guidelines I lose about 2# a month sometimes 3#. I'm sure I'd lose more quickly if I lowered my calories, but that wouldn't work for me. I like to eat real cheese, dark chocolate and drink red wine almost every day. I've learned to enjoy an ounce each of the foods and 6 oz of the wine. If I lowered my calories these would be the foods I would have to cut out and then life wouldn't be as enjoyable IMO.
So, it's pretty basic. Most food choices are good healthy ones, lots of water, and more calories used than eaten.
When I plateau for two or three months then I take a break and maintain for 3 months and then my metabolism resets and I can lose again.
I'm no Dr or even a nurse, but its' worked for me for more than two years now and I'm really happy with how I look and feel.
I hope you can find "your way" too.

Hermit Girl
09-03-2008, 09:33 AM
Lovnmom ~ I wish I knew what a proper portion is, or even close to it. I keep piling foods of choice on my plate (including salad) and though I try to pare it down, it's still too much. I wonder if I drink a ton of water before dinner, if that would help. I keep gaining lately, though I've been walking extra distance, and in recent couple of weeks, even cut out number one worst food offenders --buttered toast and pasta lunches. I don't even drink any alchohol. About 3 months ago I also started iodine drops in the morning with a full vitamin regimen morning and night, and quit caffein, thinking the possibility of thyroid and adrenal could be lazy and need a boost. I'm up to almost 177, though I haven't changed my ticker yet. I xeem to gain weight regardless of all the little things I'm doing to improve my general health.

Today I am going to try to drink water all day, especially when I feel like nibbling. I need to get my head on straight. I am definitely off balance with food and it's been eating *me* instead of the other way around. I will begin to drink water and find my way to balance. Back to my visualization of the water washing the fat off. I need help bad, I'm a housewife and though I exercize and eat healthy whole foods, I just nibble out of habit, all day long probably. I'm safe, today there's no TJ's milk choc w/ almonds in the house and I'm holed up here on the mountain , and going to stay busy with a new quilt I'm starting. Water.... more water... and then some more.

Hermit Girl
09-03-2008, 09:46 AM
Lovnmom ~ the fact that you've been losing 2 or 3 pounds a month is great, your body is accepting and adjusting, and you will likely not gain it back. You are a great role model :hug:

Hermit Girl
09-03-2008, 10:02 AM
I picked a goal weight just so it doesn't all feel endless, but really, my goal is based more on my lifestyle changes. In theory, my "goal weight" is whatever weight I maintain when I'm eating really well and exercising moderately. Of course, if that happened at a much higher weight than I thought it should, I'd have to re-evaluate what I consider good eating and moderate exercise. But even though my goal is 130, I wouldn't be surprised (or unhappy at all) if I really settled at, say 140-145, or even say 125. My idea of an "ideal" body has changed a lot, and I might enjoy and prefer a curvier figure than I thought I needed when I was 25-30ish.Looks like you have a good thing going Julie. I really need to hang with you people who are into the process and not some fantasy skinny weight goal. congratulations on your significant weight loss ! What are you doing to lose the weight?

Debala
09-03-2008, 10:10 AM
Hermit Girl, proper portion is what is on the labels under suggested serving size. If there is no nutrition guide (such as for meats), then remember its 3 oz of cooked meat, poultry or fish (about the size of your palm minus the fingers). Most other side dishes is between a 1/2 cup to a full cup. Cereal is 1 cup.

I'd suggest getting a food scale and use it religiously. You'll be surprised how much more food we tend to put on our plate per serving then if we weighed it. I got a food scale that measures in ounces and grams because a number of foods out there only give you serving size in grams not ounces.

Another thing that has helped me control the nibbling all day long is writing everything and I do mean everything I eat down in a journal! If I don't journal what I eat, I forget about it and wonder why I'm gaining weight. Why not try journaling to see if that helps you avoid the nibbling all day long?

Good luck.

PhotoChick
09-03-2008, 10:11 AM
I wish I knew what a proper portion is, or even close to it. I keep piling foods of choice on my plate and though I try to pare it down, it's still too much.Measure measure measure. That's the only way you'll learn what a proper serving size is. Read the packages and see what they call a "serving" and then measure out exactly that much. Even if you "pare down" there's a really good chance you're eating much more than what a real serving is.

For example did you know that a serving of:
cereal = 1/2 cup
lean protein = 4 oz
milk = 8 oz
fruit/veg = 1/2 cup chopped
beans = 1/2 cup
pasta = 2oz uncooked
oatmeal = 1/4 cup dry

In fact, this is a really good resource to give you an idea of general serving sizes:
http://www.extension.iastate.edu/nutrition/portions/servingsize.html

.

Hermit Girl
09-03-2008, 10:30 AM
Hermit Girl, proper portion is what is on the labels under suggested serving size. If there is no nutrition guide (such as for meats), then remember its 3 oz of cooked meat, poultry or fish (about the size of your palm minus the fingers). Most other side dishes is between a 1/2 cup to a full cup. Cereal is 1 cup.

I'd suggest getting a food scale and use it religiously. You'll be surprised how much more food we tend to put on our plate per serving then if we weighed it. I got a food scale that measures in ounces and grams because a number of foods out there only give you serving size in grams not ounces.

Another thing that has helped me control the nibbling all day long is writing everything and I do mean everything I eat down in a journal! If I don't journal what I eat, I forget about it and wonder why I'm gaining weight. Why not try journaling to see if that helps you avoid the nibbling all day long?

Good luck.Thanks Debbie ~ Um, first off, I don't eat *anything* from a package hardly, and cook very complex meals, so I don't have serving size suggestions handy. I am talking about how I need to have better instinct about what portion size is appropriate for say , high fat sides like gratin potatoes (the real thing) , or lean chicken, or green salads, or hearty soups and stews of many variations, etc >>> all dishes which have very different nutritional and fat ratios. I'm needing to know and have better self control is the bottom line, *how* to eat more of one, and less of another. I am a real wholefoods home chef, and will not count calories, way way way too impossible, because I'm talking about hundreds of different ingredients in always different amounts as I never use a recipe. I know, I know, what am I expecting ???..... however, I just know I can get eventually suppress the ravenous person in me and let the moderate person take over.
I know I nibble all day, and don't need to write it down, though I have, I know they say it's best. I probably devour a couple K calories just in my thoughtless nibbling. I should make myself a pot of herb tea and put it on a really pretty lacey tray, and everytime I wander into the kitchen (about 100 times a day) I will see that beautiful teapot and want to pour a cup. I ought to have my prettyest heirloom tea cup and saucer out for the occasion too. There's an idea I need to focus on > beautiful presentation of the non-offenders.

Thank you for your suggestions, I will implement what I can. :hug:

lovnmom
09-03-2008, 10:36 AM
Hermit, Deb and Photo both have done a terrific job of explaining a serving size...and the journalling is important and very helpful. When you first start controlling portions it can be very, almost sad, the servings all looked so tiny at first. I was sure I would never be able to eat such small amounts, but when you eat the right foods fruits, veggies, whole grains, lean meats etc...they really do fill you up and keep you going so much better than Hostess and Hershey....I do not measure my fruits and veggies though. Not even the canned kind...I figure if I've decided to have peaches rather than chocolate for my afternoon snack I'm having a nice sized dish not the two halves that barely fit into the 1/2 cup and if I pile on a whole or close to a whole can of green beans I'm more likely to be too full to want more than my 2 oz of pasta....it can all be frustrating at first, but hang in there. Post and cry if you need to. Sooner or later you'll be posting success stories. Remember though just because the package says one muffin is a serving at 475 calories....it's not it's closer to 5 ;)

PhotoChick
09-03-2008, 10:41 AM
I don't eat *anything* from a package hardly, and cook very complex meals, so I don't have serving size suggestions handy. I hardly ever eat anything from a package either. :)

But serving sizes still apply.
A serving of potato = 1 small potato = 150 g = 5.25 oz
A serving of cheese = 1 oz
A serving of milk = 8 oz
etc.

If you're cooking some kind of side dish, a general rule of thumb is that a serving is going to be about 1/2 cup.

Any lean meat, a serving is about 3-4 oz

I need to know to eat more of one, and less of another.There's a lot of data out there on balancing your diet. You can obviously start with the modified food pyramid, but there's tons of other information as well. Most people, once the manage their calorie intake (or whatever variation they're doing) start focusing on their macronutrient levels. In other words what percentage of their diet is carbs / protein / fat. Depending on what you're trying to do, those percentages may change. I personally am focusing a lot right now on exercise, weight lifting, building muscle definition - so I am trying to eat more protein than is standard. I try to keep my macros at 40/35/25 for that reason.

But at it's most basic, your diet should be stacked to be mostly veggies and fruits, then complex carbs, then lean proteins, then healthy fats.

.

Hermit Girl
09-03-2008, 10:41 AM
Measure measure measure. That's the only way you'll learn what a proper serving size is. Read the packages and see what they call a "serving" and then measure out exactly that much. Even if you "pare down" there's a really good chance you're eating much more than what a real serving is.

For example did you know that a serving of:
cereal = 1/2 cup
lean protein = 4 oz
milk = 8 oz
fruit/veg = 1/2 cup chopped
beans = 1/2 cup
pasta = 2oz uncooked
oatmeal = 1/4 cup dry

In fact, this is a really good resource to give you an idea of general serving sizes:
http://www.extension.iastate.edu/nutrition/portions/servingsize.html

.This is very helpful for things that are cooked really simply. I know I sound like I'm arguing a stupid point, like I am different or something, and I'm sorry for my frustration. I can count the things that are easy, but there's just so much that cant be measured and counted. Anyway, I appreciate it all, thank you very much :hug:

JulieJ08
09-03-2008, 10:43 AM
Looks like you have a good thing going Julie. I really need to hang with you people who are into the process and not some fantasy skinny weight goal. congratulations on your significant weight loss ! What are you doing to lose the weight?Thanks

Thanks :D. In a nutshell, it's healthy eating, activity, water and sleep. I'm into whole foods, so lots of produce and whole grains and beans, and I include healthy fats like nuts and avocado. I'm not a huge fan of the term portion control, so I think in terms of portion re-training. I'm not off diet sodas entirely, but have gone from 2 and more of those giant cups a day to 3-4 cans per week. I'm avoiding processed food and additives, and that's always an area for ongoing improvement. And I avoid daily sugar. I do "relax" my diet about one day a week, but I don't actually go very crazy. I had to learn to cook:o, and that's been fun.

At first, I tried increasing protein, since that seems to be what everyone is into now. But I just don't like meat that much. I'm transitioning (slowly) to vegetarian now, and just quit the cow's milk a few weeks ago (except yogurt and cheese as yet), so now my diet is kinda up in the air. It will probably take a month or so to settle back into a pattern. My calories were about 1465. I'm really aiming for 1500, but they're been 1200-1300-ish (unintentionally) since changing my diet and I'm working on getting it back up.

I really haven't been doing low carb, but most definitely whole grains. I did cut way back on carbs (I could just about eat only carbs left to my own devices). At lowest, I was maybe ~150 net carbs, so not very low except in comparison to my old eating. It's going to go up a bit with the switch to vegetarian and cutting the milk.

Activity-wise, I started out with yoga every day. 1 1/2 hours, so it really was a good work-out. Then I decided I wanted to try running again, so I'm doing the C25K program 3 mornings a week, and still the yoga on the other 4.

Strangely enough, going from a horrible sleeper-inner to getting up everyday at 5:15 (~6-630 on weekends) has made a huge difference. I sleep better at night. The whole tone of my day is different. It's easier to make good choices all day after the morning starts off so right. Sometimes I'm tired during the day, but it's a very different kind of tired (sleepy-ish) than what sleeping in did to me (foggy).

The weight came off pretty fast in the beginning. I chart it daily in a spreadsheet. I drew a line showing what 2 pounds a week would be. For about the first 10 weeks, I was below the line. Then I was at the line for about 5 weeks. Now I'm above it :o.

But that's normal :dizzy:.

I guess really the answer to "What are you doing to lose the weight?" is that I'm trying to build something I can do for the rest of my life, and enjoy it. It's still evolving. But the point is that it doesn't feel like something I'm enduring until I can go off of it. It feels like my life is getting better and better, completely apart from my weight. Good food, a body that feels good, clearer mind, much better sleep, and so on. And making all these changes draws you into making other changes in your life, because you start losing your tolerance for just settling in life ;).

Wow, didn't mean to be so long-winded. I hope that helps. I know it helps me to periodically put into words what I'm doing, where I've been, where I'm going.

Hermit Girl
09-03-2008, 10:46 AM
I hardly ever eat anything from a package either. :) If you're cooking some kind of side dish, a general rule of thumb is that a serving is going to be about 1/2 cup.

Any lean meat, a serving is about 3-4 oz.

There's a lot of data out there on balancing your diet. You can obviously start with the modified food pyramid, but there's tons of other information as well. Most people, once the manage their calorie intake (or whatever variation they're doing) start focusing on their macronutrient levels. In other words what percentage of their diet is carbs / protein / fat. Depending on what you're trying to do, those percentages may change. I personally am focusing a lot right now on exercise, weight lifting, building muscle definition - so I am trying to eat more protein than is standard. I try to keep my macros at 40/35/25 for that reason.

But at it's most basic, your diet should be stacked to be mostly veggies and fruits, then complex carbs, then lean proteins, then healthy fats.

.
That's *very* helpful Photochick , thank you. I never eat much meat anyway, but I guess if I"m going to be honest with myself , it's the carbs I just can't handle well. 1/2 cup portions of the carb sides sounds like something I can shoot for, thank you. Lets just hope I can maintain my head and don't have too many follow up 1/2 cup portions. :o

lovnmom
09-03-2008, 10:48 AM
Hermit, Ok we were posting at the same time....as for your whole cooking chef thing, I too make most everything from scratch including hardy soups etc...When I first started a couple years ago I took the time to break down my recipes and then measured the entire batch either by weight or volume and then divided until I knew how much I could eat...I know how many cals are in everything, even sweet breads, that I cook....difficult and time consuming? Yep. Worth it? You bet...and the time it took me was time this stay at home mom wasn't nibbling on things I shouldn't be. Don't be offended, this remark isn't inteneded to, but if you continue to use words like impossible, can't and won't you won't.
Carringly,
Kristi

PhotoChick
09-03-2008, 10:48 AM
but there's just so much that cant be measured and counted.I can't agree with you. I cook a lot. I like to cook. I like to make complex recipes and play around. EVERYTHING can be measured.

I'll give you an example - last night I made a middle eastern inspired meal. I say "inspired" because it wasn't anything authentic, I just wanted certain flavors and googled some recipes and then adjusted them to be more healthy and to take advantage of the ingredients I had at home.

I made a yogurt/garlic/garam marinade for my chicken. I measured carefully, added up all the parts, divided by 6 (6 pieces of chicken). Figured out that I was adding ~20ish calories to each piece of chicken.

I grilled 2.5 oz chicken tenders - knew that I could have 2 of them and that was about 1.5 servings of chicken.

I made tzatzki sauce - yogurt, cucmbers, lemon juice, salt, garlic, mint. Added up each ingredient and divided by 4. Now I know that my homemade tzatzki is about 45 cals per 1/4 cup serving.

I made couscous with broth, dates, golden raisins, cinnamon, tumeric, etc. Added up each ingredient and measured the finished product (which made 6 1/2 cup amounts). Each serving was about 182 cals.

Nothing is unmeasurable. Sure, it might take a little time at first, but eventually you do get used to it and you learn. I now know for sure that my tzatzki sauce is 45 cals a serving - so the next time I wont' have to go through all the calculations - I just know about what it is. I know what my couscous dish measures. And actually at this point, after having measured for so long, I know that 1 cup of cooked couscous is 172 cals (dont' even have to look that up). So I know if I add feta cheese, or dates, or whatever, and have 1/2 cup, I can easily estimate about how many calories the hwole thing has. And 99% of the time I come within 5% of what the number really is.

There is nothing that cannot be measured.

.

lovnmom
09-03-2008, 10:53 AM
Julie, Your journey sounds very much like my own. You are doing terrific. It helps others toread what you're doing.
Thanks for sharing!

lovnmom
09-03-2008, 10:55 AM
Photos got it!

Hermit Girl
09-03-2008, 11:39 AM
...I guess really the answer to "What are you doing to lose the weight?" is that I'm trying to build something I can do for the rest of my life, and enjoy it. It's still evolving. But the point is that it doesn't feel like something I'm enduring until I can go off of it. It feels like my life is getting better and better, completely apart from my weight. Good food, a body that feels good, clearer mind, much better sleep, and so on. And making all these changes draws you into making other changes in your life, because you start losing your tolerance for just settling in life ;). Julie, you say it so perfectly for me , right here in this paragraph. I want the same thing, lifestyle changes, not a program. If I lose 1 pound a month or week it shouldn't matter, because success won't be on the scale , but in my outlook about the pleasure of eating moderately and enjoying the reward of a better feeling body. I'm healthy now ~ I excercize almost everyday, eat whole foods, very little junk, get plenty of sleep, most days in bed at 9 and up at 5:30, no alchohol, decaff only now, I mean, so what can I do to jolt myself into change for the better? I am ready to try water sipping instead of snacking. It's all about being conscious in the moment though, because I do a lot of calories without paying attention. It will have to almost be like constant meditation at first, not for pansies. ;) , and, I'll be up to pee 3 x every night, but oh well. Thanks so much ~ :hug:

Hermit Girl
09-03-2008, 11:48 AM
I can't agree with you. I cook a lot. I like to cook. I like to make complex recipes and play around. EVERYTHING can be measured.

I'll give you an example - last night I made a middle eastern inspired meal. I say "inspired" because it wasn't anything authentic, I just wanted certain flavors and googled some recipes and then adjusted them to be more healthy and to take advantage of the ingredients I had at home.

I made a yogurt/garlic/garam marinade for my chicken. I measured carefully, added up all the parts, divided by 6 (6 pieces of chicken). Figured out that I was adding ~20ish calories to each piece of chicken.

I grilled 2.5 oz chicken tenders - knew that I could have 2 of them and that was about 1.5 servings of chicken.

I made tzatzki sauce - yogurt, cucmbers, lemon juice, salt, garlic, mint. Added up each ingredient and divided by 4. Now I know that my homemade tzatzki is about 45 cals per 1/4 cup serving.

I made couscous with broth, dates, golden raisins, cinnamon, tumeric, etc. Added up each ingredient and measured the finished product (which made 6 1/2 cup amounts). Each serving was about 182 cals.

Nothing is unmeasurable. Sure, it might take a little time at first, but eventually you do get used to it and you learn. I now know for sure that my tzatzki sauce is 45 cals a serving - so the next time I wont' have to go through all the calculations - I just know about what it is. I know what my couscous dish measures. And actually at this point, after having measured for so long, I know that 1 cup of cooked couscous is 172 cals (dont' even have to look that up). So I know if I add feta cheese, or dates, or whatever, and have 1/2 cup, I can easily estimate about how many calories the hwole thing has. And 99% of the time I come within 5% of what the number really is.

There is nothing that cannot be measured.

. Okay Photochick, I totally get you. :D I think my resistance to counting and measuring is a basic abhorance of math. I am a person who lives in the non-calculating end of things, more visually, and I've been cooking long enough to know by eye what a half cup, or even a half tablespoon looks like. I think need to use a few bottom line tips and tricks, and to not overeat the finished dish, to somehow not need to stuff myself to the gills, but to leave a little hungry. I really appreciate your trying to make me understand the importance of measuring and counting and calculating, and well, it's like there is a FourStar French/Italian chef trapped inside of my body :D and to let her have reign of her kitchen is what I must do, however, the person who sits down at the table, must learn to eye what an appropriate portion is for losing weight, and what one is thereafter for maintaining weight for life.

Thanks SO much ~ :hug:

Hermit Girl
09-04-2008, 09:01 AM
I want to apologize for my whining on this thread. I appreciate all the advice and thoughtful posts everybody has contributed.

Anyway, I had a pretty successful day yesterday, incorporating water, and making better choices, thus yesterday has empowered me a little more for today. Just one single day of focusing on one thing, such as water, really makes a difference in my confidence and ability to visualize a real possibility I can be slender again. I think it's like having something positive that is *doable* each day to focus on is paramount to staying proactive in doing this . When I get use to drinking all this water, when it becomes habit, I will then be able to move on to another little effort to focus on. I've already cut out caffein for life, and trigger foods like buttered toast, and pasta for the time being, now the water.

I want to add that I have been in denial, I think, by moving my ticker goal weight upwards to make the effort seem less significant and overwhelming. The fact is, I have to face the whole thing, or I'm just cheating myself. I've adjusted it to what I instinctively feel a healthy slender weight will be, (what I weighed when I climbed Mt Whitney 7 years ago, and that's where the ticker is going to stay.

:hug: 's to all !

lovnmom
09-04-2008, 09:44 AM
Hermit, A little whining is acceptable. Most of us feel like we've tried EVERYTHING and nothing works when we first start out. Most of us think we're different. It's wonderful that you took a step yesterday that has made you feel positive and more confident. Good for you!

Hermit Girl
09-04-2008, 09:53 AM
Most of us think we're different. Yeah, I think that is part of the Denial mechanism, which I'm guessing to be the number one problem with most people who aren't seeing results with their weightloss efforts. Moving out of denial and negative self-talk are the two biggest hurdles I must get past before I can really accomplish anything. Thanks. :hug:

Shy Moment
09-04-2008, 10:37 AM
A good weight for a person isn't the same for each person. It isn't just height and weight and age. How we are built can make a big difference. At my height I can weigh 120 and look great. I hold my weight evenly so I can weigh more than say someone who is built like Twiggy. There are those that can weigh way more than I can because of muscle mass. I never thought I was even going to have to think about my weight. I weighed 120 for ever. Then the meads, don't we all love the meads, packed on the pounds. We all are the same in many many ways. A nice healthy diet ( for me that means the required amounts of the four basic food groups ) and exercise give us the side effects of weight loss and a toned body.

This journey we are all on isn't about doing without. It isn't about potions or pills or powders. This journey is about eating right and exercising to make our body the best it can be. When, like myself, we have to get back on the meads again and put on 18 pounds that we just lost lol, we have to stick with what we know is good for the body and work ourself thru the rough spots. No one said life was never going to get in the way of us trying to get our body's back in shape lol.

Just keep in mind. Our journey lasts a life time. The journey doesn't stop when we reach a magic number. You can have many goal weights along the way. For some it is much better to set little goal weights. Achieve those goals, maintain for a bit and then change the goal weight.

Don't we all wish we looked like Christie Brinkley lol. Heck I didn't look like her at 20 I am sure not going to look like her at 46 lol. We have to be realistic with our selfs.

I happen to count calories, fats and carbs. I stay around 23% fat, 55% carbs and about 22% protein, calories between 1200 and 1400. I measure everything. I cook everything from scratch and am pretty good at guesstimating BUT guessing isn't accurate and I find I am only cheating myself if I don't know exactly what is going into my body. If I don't know what is in it, I don't eat it. A great tool I use is fit day. Yes it took a little time to get all my foods in, I never use their readings I find that are not accurate. I broke down the things I make like meatloaf. All my foods are now in there and it is very easy to click on something and add it to what has been eaten. The one big thing I thing that has made a difference for me is planning. I plan tonight what I am going to eat tomorrow. That way I know I have all the food groups eaten and I have staying within what I allow myself. Sometimes weighing food is much better than measuring.

I think for most of us the biggest challenge is that we need to look at, think about and eat food differently than we did before.

JulieJ08
09-04-2008, 10:57 AM
(what I weighed when I climbed Mt Whitney

Done that!! :D Never mind it was .... ummm .... over two decades ago.

Drove past it twice (goin' north, goin' south) last week, made me think maybe someday ...

PhotoChick
09-04-2008, 11:13 AM
Oh I so don't think you were whining! :)

I think it's hard when you're trying to make this kind of lifestyle change. And I'll be honest and say that I think in some ways it's harder for people like us who already cook a lot and like to cook. (In some ways it's easier, too, don't get me wrong.)

But when you're used to cooking - and especially when you cook intuitively by tasting and watching and smelling - the idea that you have to completely rethink and measure everything out and be so recipe-aware is really difficult.

The good news is that after doing this for 18+ months, I've been able to (somewhat) go back to my regular method of cooking - by taste and smell. I've been measuring and logging long enough that I am confident in my ability to judge the calories in a dish. I still measure when I'm doing something new, but not as obsessively as I would have had to say, 6 months ago.

I also find that as I go along, I'm able to easily substitute lower fat, lower calorie, healthier options in recipes without compromising the recipe. Having that ability to cook intuitively has been a huge help there.

So .. you'll get the hang of it. Not even any whining involved. :) Just figuring out how not to completely disrupt everything that's "normal" for you .. and still make these big life changes.

.

Debala
09-04-2008, 11:20 AM
I'm reading this book, Burn the Fat Feed the Muscle, and he talks about not putting your goals in future terms because your subconscious won't let you achieve your goal as it will keep thinking future, as to your subconscious, there is no future. Instead, make your goals in present tense and to use positive statements. Some of my favorites positive statements from the book are:

I am 100% responsible for my results.
Whatever it takes, I’ll do it.
I like eating healthy foods.
I love working out.
I have time for anything I am committed to.
I can do it.

So, find a positive statement for yourself, and keep repeating it yourself. Repeat it everyday until your subconscious catches up.

Make mini-goals and use a statement like "I am so happy I drank 8 glasses of water today". That will train your subconscious to help you achieve that goal.

Good luck!

Hermit Girl
09-05-2008, 04:52 PM
I'm reading this book, Burn the Fat Feed the Muscle, and he talks about not putting your goals in future terms because your subconscious won't let you achieve your goal as it will keep thinking future, as to your subconscious, there is no future. Instead, make your goals in present tense and to use positive statements. Some of my favorites positive statements from the book are:

I am 100% responsible for my results.
Whatever it takes, Iíll do it.
I like eating healthy foods.
I love working out.
I have time for anything I am committed to.
I can do it.

So, find a positive statement for yourself, and keep repeating it yourself. Repeat it everyday until your subconscious catches up.

Make mini-goals and use a statement like "I am so happy I drank 8 glasses of water today". That will train your subconscious to help you achieve that goal.

Good luck!EXCELLENT !!!!!!!!!! :carrot:
I am going to definitely use these techniques..... present tense. Thank you :hug:

hopefuldreamer
09-09-2008, 09:51 PM
hopeful, The fruits and veggies, water and exercise was my only goal for about a year. It really helped me get my head on straight that I was doing this for my health not the size of my jeans...it's taken me 27 months to lose the 40 pounds...some would think that's way too slow, but I'm able to do this and my life got better and easier in just the first week...the food, water and exercise just gave me more energy right away even though I was still 175# @ 5'2".

Sorry it's taken me forever to reply. Life has been crazybusy (that's a new word I just made up!) and I simply did not have time to check in on the boards.

I REALLY like these goals. My attitude at this point is that if I can't maintain a change for life, then it's not a realistic change. When I lost 20 lbs a couple years back, I did it with intense daily exercise sessions. But, that was unsustainable! My knees rebelled, and so did my ankles. What is sustainable is 4-5 days per week at a moderate pace. I'd put money that you can keep off those 40 lbs better than someone who dropped it more quickly. I read somewhere that 95% of diets fail (defined as regaining the weight + more a year after stopping the "diet") That's an absurd number! Why would anyone "diet"?



What do you mean by "cleaner" calories??


[QUOTE] So what is eggplant mykonos. If it has eggplant and toms it must be good.

It's from "Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home" . It starts with onions, garlic and eggplant sauteed in olive oil, then stewed with tomatoes, dill and lemon. Top it off with fresh spinach or basil stirred in at the last minute and sprinkle with low-fat feta. It begs for a slice of crusty bread, and I usually give in to that!! It's delicious, and uses eggplant, tomatoes and basil which are all nice and fresh this time of year.

hopefuldreamer

hopefuldreamer
09-09-2008, 09:55 PM
Hermitgirl! I just noticed your updated ticker!! Congrats. You're on the right track. I've had an unbelievably busy week and am trying to catch up on things here.

Great job!

hopefuldreamer

lovnmom
09-10-2008, 08:53 AM
hopefuldreamer, By cleaner calories or food I mean mostly low calorie, high fiber, natural foods...when I'm maintaining I keep a general off the cuff record of what I've eaten throughout the day in my head. It isn't odd for me to substitute a cookie for a half of a large baked sweet potato or maybe I'll eat a snickers bar instead of cottage cheese and fruit. They have roughly the same calories, but nowhere near the same nutritional value. When I'm eating clean there is no substituting. I eat only good for me whole foods. Ultimately I end up eating fewer calories, because the good for me foods fill me up and keep me going A LOT longer. Plus I'm in a better mood, because my blood sugar doesn't fluctuate so much and I have the energy I need to exercise more. So, why would I ever do anything else?? Because just like anything you do that's good for you or is the "right thing" to do eating good healthy foods all the time is time consuming and takes more thought and energy. That's another reason why I do maintenance times. Just to get a break from all the thinking and planning, but never for too long, because I do feel better when I'm doing the right thing...Sorry this got so long and kind of repetative!!

hopefuldreamer
09-10-2008, 06:23 PM
hopefuldreamer, By cleaner calories or food I mean mostly low calorie, high fiber, natural foods...



Aahh.. I understand. I know what you mean about the "right thing" taking far more energy. We garden, and buy a lot from local farmers (CSA and farmer's markets), a food co-op, etc.. It's a hodgepodge of sources that are all trying to give us a good quality natural diet. But it's a LOT of extra work and hassle at times. Sometimes I just want to have a quick heat/eat... or pizza take out!! That's a lot easier, but it's not as good in the long run.

Still, what kills me are cravings!

hopefuldreamer

lovnmom
09-11-2008, 09:03 AM
What's killing me is the business of my children's lives....Many nights I'm sitting down with 2-3 6oz glasses of red wine and a couple oz of cheese and calling it supper...I'm feeding everyone else in shifts because soccer, football, and volleyball all get done at different times and then about 8:30pm I just sit with my wine and cheese while everyone finishes school work around me...