Hi, just wondering if someone can help me figure out what is going on with my body??
I officially started my lifestyle change about 3 weeks ago: Initially I lost a good amount of weight, by Monday last week I was down 11 lb. I now weigh 248 (I'm 5 ft 10" tall) I'm using mydailyplate, which first recommended I eat around 2500 calories, but I felt that was too much. I also do 30 minutes on the treadmill most days, alternating walking and jogging. For the past week I've been eating 1300 kcal per day, sometimes a little less, but never under 1200 kcal, or over 1400 kcal. And I'm GAINING weight, about half a pound a day - . I've gained 2 lb from last week. How the heck is that possible??!! I actually find it more than a little worrying.. :?:
I'm eating all good whole food: typical day would be:
breakfast: 4 fruit smoothie, 2 slices low cal toast, one with cheese spread, one with homemade low sugar jam
lunch: yesterday I had omelette made with 1 egg, 1 eggwhite, and vegetables
afternoon: had a small amount of chocolate (my 4 year old wanted to share hers), about 90 kcals worth
dinner: vegetables and a small amount of fat-free bacon
no oil or anything in any of the cooking.
I'm drinking plenty and making sure I do at least one active thing a day (yesterday we went for a 1 1/2 hour walk along the canal).
So why am I gaining?? It's really weird, this has never happened to me before :(
If you've any ideas, please let me know..
06-21-2009, 02:43 AM
Your body thinks you are starving.
You've gone from whatever you used to eat, at nearly 260lb and 5'10" tall, to at least 1/2 hour exercise plus activity (I'd class a 1 1/2 hour walk as really "exercise", but that doesn't matter).
And you've cut down to 1200-1400 calories per day. To your body, that is starvation.
So it's essentially saying "ok, if she's going to make us do all this extra activity and not feed us, we'd better hang on to everything we have. Because who knows WHEN we'll get fed enough again!" Hence the 2lb gain.
It may seem counterintuitive, but you need to eat more. More good fats (cook with some olive oil, have avocado on your toast, eat some nuts). Make sure you get plenty of quality protein - lean meats for example. And up your calorie intake.
The initial loss was water loss. Your body was in shock, and dumped all its excess water. But now it's clinging to what it has left.
Do me a favour. Eat what the daily plate recommend. Just for a month. And see what happens.
If it doesn't work, fine. Cut back more. But remember that as you lose weight you will need less calories to maintain, so if you start too low you leave yourself nowhere to go.
Eat more, and keep posting. Well done on the loss so far.
06-21-2009, 03:02 AM
Sometimes it takes a little time to find that perfect recipe for the amount of calories you burn/eat to teeter that weight loss scale to the down side. I didn't have any problems when I started WW, but when I went on a three-month hiatus and went back to food journaling and started counting calories, it took about five weeks to get back into losing. Finally, I am in maintenance, which for me, is the hardest of all. I don't know if it is because of looking at it as a lifetime constant struggle is exhausting -- could be part of it. With losing, the goal was so finite and I was always working towards something very tangible -- a goal outfit or losing a few more pounds in time for some event. You will figure it out, and once you do, all the seemingly unrewarded hard work will pay off.
06-21-2009, 03:51 AM
Like Primm said, your body is most likely in starvation mode. It's holding on to every calorie you eat. Try uping your calorie intake to around 1800 to 2000. What is your fruit smoothies made out of? Instead of smoothies try eating whole fruit. Your omelette lunch, try adding an additional egg and fruit. For you snack do almonds and granola and dinner instead of the bacon do chicken or fish. You need to eat to lose weight. It's a weird concept but true. Good luck and keep us posted.
06-21-2009, 05:10 AM
Hi, thanks for the replies! Nice to know I'm not going mad anyway..hehe. every time I looked at the scales recently I was like :?: and was really starting to doubt myself (like, .. eh.. am I sleepwalking and raiding the fridge in my sleep or something? hehehe)
My smoothies are generally 1 cup of fresh pineapple, 1 banana, 1 orange and 1 peach (or 1 handful of strawberries or blueberries or something) pureed in my Vitamix blender (so I am getting all the cellulose and fruit pulp etc; I'm not juicing the fruit). I don't like chewing fruit very much because I have sensitive teeth and the fruit acid makes it uncomfortable, hence the smoothies instead :-)
I actually do eat some walnuts fairly frequently.. maybe every other day I'll have a couple sprinkled over salads or zucchini noodles, and I've got pecans and cashews as well. I eat lots of fresh vegetables, salads etc.. the list I wrote up there is a bit misleading because it makes it look like I just had an egg, smoothie, toast and some bacon all day (I was just writing down the things with the most calories) - but it was actually an omelette with ham cubes, tomatoes, zucchini, spinach, spring onions etc, and dinner was cauliflower rice with tomato sauce, zucchini spring onions etc. again... I certainly don't feel like I'm starving myself, it's weird..I eat chicken and fish regularly, salads with nuts, beans, fruit and fresh herbs and loads of greens... infact I feel less hungry and more satisfied than before I started dieting! I've always cooked healthy whole food, even when not dieting.. I just tended to overdo it on snacks and portions and not do enough exercise. Aaaaaanyway.. I do think you may be right about the number of calories.. it certainly doesn't make sense for someone to be gaining weight on 1300 kcal a day :?: I'll try having 2000 for the next two days (which is fairly close to my BMR: 1950), if I gain, I gain. I can always start readjusting downwards again afterwards (I hope!).
I think if it is "starvation mode", then it started off last Monday: I got very stressed last Monday, (work/recession scare related .. argh), couldn't eat my dinner because I was that nervous.. next day weight had plummeted by nearly 3 lb.. and after that I haven't been eating a great deal (not as much as before, I'd probably been eating between 1300 - 1600 before).. didn't have much appetite anyway. I regained weight after Monday quite quickly but I figured it was just water weight, but it's been steadily going up since then.. so maybe my "shock day" on Monday shoved my body over into starvation mode or something.. who knows :?: I've never had this happen before though, it's very weird. I'm going out with the family today anyway and I'm just going to enjoy my food, not think about calories too much, choose healthy options, exercise and see what happens.
06-21-2009, 11:05 PM
Ah, that makes sense too then.
Cortisol, which is the "stress" hormone in your body, is thought to initiate a fat-retention response, which means again that your body will hang onto every little calorie you give it. The "starvation response" doesn't usually kick in that soon, but reducing your calories dramatically in conjunction with excessive stress may cause this response.
Just relax, and it will hopefully all even itself out. But if, as you say, you are eating less calories than your BMI, your body is concerned about staying alive, so that's what it's doing. Just staying alive...
06-21-2009, 11:20 PM
It could also just be normal scale fluctuations! See the sticky at the top of the page about this. Scales don't just measure our fat and are subject to lots of changes that are frustrating to us, who just want to see fat loss (and sometimes muscle gain!)