100 lb. Club - Difference between then and now...my theory.




Eliana
01-13-2010, 07:48 AM
I have now lost 30 pounds in just over two months. :dizzy:

I have done this before, many, many times. And staying on plan is not hard for me. But this has never worked before and I keep trying to figure out why. I have a theory about just the last push and now. What do you think?

Before: 30 lbs in six months and then I gave up. :( It was too hard.
Perfect South Beach, 0 cheats. My workouts included swimming a mile daily, two miles if I had time (took two hours). Weight lifting, got up to some pretty heavy weights. Cycling class. Ball class. HIIT (high intensity interval training- did wonders for my BP) All this 6 days a week, interchanging things to keep my body guessing. On the seventh day I walked for an hour and a half around my hilly neighborhood so it was like interval training.

Now: 30 lbs in 2 months.
I'm calorie counting. That's it. 1200 calories.

My theory is that the first time I did not eat enough to support the ridiculous exercise. South Beach should have worked well because I have PCOS and am insulin resistant. In fact, I'm totally shocked that calorie counting works! SHOCKED! I've taken some principals from South Beach, but then I would only allow one carb per day. Now I eat steal cut oats, apples, berries, WHITE baked potatoes and even baked tortilla chips on occasion, and of course :corn:. So my guess is I was not eating enough.

I think I started this thread for two reasons. 1. I want a second opinion. 2. So that maybe someone who is also exercising like a maniac will see this and EAT MORE.


marigrace
01-13-2010, 08:21 AM
I had the same thing happen, Elaina. Went to the gym 6 days a week ate low carb(ish) and plateaud for a whole year. Now I am doing 1550 calories a day, still keeping it relatively low glycemic, and I am loosing weight...go figah...

Meg
01-13-2010, 08:29 AM
Congratulations on the 30 pounds, Eliana! That's awesome! :high:

Do you have any idea how many calories you were eating when you did South Beach? The 1200 you're eating now might be considerably less than you ate when you did SBD and might possibly explain the difference in your rate of weight loss. In the end, it boils down to calories in vs. calories out. :)

Also, it could be that some amount of your current weight loss is muscle loss. The studies I've read show that about 40% of weight that's lost without exercise is muscle. I'm wondering if you've checked your body fat % since you began your weight loss? That might be useful in figuring out how much of your 30 lost pounds is pounds of fat and how much might be lean body mass.

In the end, our goal is fat loss, not pounds on the scale. It's generally not a good idea to lose a lot of muscle because muscle is what burns calories in our bodies. Every pound of muscle burns about 20 - 25 calories a day, awake, asleep, 24/7/365. A pound of fat burns about 3 calories a day. Quite a difference! So the result of losing a lot of muscle is a slower metabolism, where we have to eat less and less in order to lose or maintain our weight.

Plus getting to goal without exercise means a "skinny-fat" body, meaning that it's a normal weight but with a high body fat percentage. Skinny fat people are looser and jigglier and wear several sizes larger than people who exercised and maintained their muscle mass while they were losing weight.

As you can tell, I'm a huge advocate of exercise as a key component to successful weight loss! In my mind, cardio and weight training to sustain muscle are just as important as nutrition for long-term weight loss success. I don't know if you've ever heard of the National Weight Loss Registry but it's a study group of people who have lost at least 30 pounds and maintained it for at least a year (a lot of maintainers here at 3FC are members :) ). Anyway, surveys of the maintainers in the NWLR show that they averaged an hour of exercise a day while losing and they keep it up in maintenance. Study after study shows that exercise is the biggest predictor of long term weight loss success. Have you read Anne Fletcher's Thin For Life? She goes into some of the research in detail and we have a discussion of the book in the Maintenance Library. Well worth checking out!

You're doing wonderfully well but I'll hope at some point in your journey that you'll reconsider your decision not to exercise. :carrot:


JayEll
01-13-2010, 08:44 AM
Hey Eliana!

For some reason, there are always some folks who think that to embark on weight loss, they have to become super athletes working out all the time. That's not really necessary, IMO.

I agree with Meg's idea that it could be you are now eating less in terms of calories than you were eating on SBD. If you have any old daily records, you might see what you were eating then.

I think there is a middle ground between zero exercise and all-out exercise. During my weight loss I exercised 5-6 days a week for an hour and a half a day. Exercise meant aerobic (treadmill, rowing machine, elliptical, bike) and weight training with different muscle groups every day. I couldn't afford more time than that, and when I've tried to get really gung-ho, I end up hurting in my joints.

As for intake, it's possible that at your current size, you could set your target at a higher average than 1200 and still lose just fine. I only mention this because 1200 is the ballpark minimum for healthy loss, unless you are on a medically supervised program where you are being assessed for proper nutrition.

So--you're doing good! But if I were you, I'd add in some exercise and increase calories a little.

Good luck! :cheer2:

Jay

Eliana
01-13-2010, 09:05 AM
Meg and Jay, you guys are right, of course. ;) I'm very much an all or nothing person. That's probably why I went with 1200 and just can't make myself stop. I mean, IT'S WORKING. I will add in the exercise after a bit. I know that once I do, I'll need to increase the calories. Heck, I'm so lethargic, I know I really should increase them now. But it's working. :tantrum: And I need to find a happy balance of exercise that I can sustain. I couldn't sustain what I was doing before.

Weight loss is such a mental game. I need to see that scale move right now. I'm hoping that will ease up. I feel stronger mentally this time. I'm more aware of normal fluctuations. I've given myself a time goal of a year instead of a weight goal.

Basically, I will start to exercise. I enjoyed exercise. I remember feeling like I had the flu on days I could not exercise. But for now...well gosh...it's working.

Kae
01-13-2010, 09:38 AM
30 lbs is awesome!!! Congrats! :)

ubergirl
01-13-2010, 09:45 AM
Weight loss is such a mental game. I need to see that scale move right now. I'm hoping that will ease up. I feel stronger mentally this time. I'm more aware of normal fluctuations. I've given myself a time goal of a year instead of a weight goal.


It is, and that's why it's important not to get too attached to your theories....;)

I lost fifty pounds in four months, starting June of this year. In the beginning, I did not exercise at all. When I started, my fitness level was very low, and just shedding pounds allowed me to do more things.

But now, I am probably 200% fitter than I was when I started. I never thought running was in the cards for me, but now I run. I couldn't swim two laps in the pool front crawl, and now I swim fast for 45 minutes.

The fitness changes have been AT LEAST as important as the weight changes, probably more.

But maybe even more important-- working on fitness carries me through when the scale is not budging in spite of my best efforts....

When I was losing 15 pounds a month, I assumed that I'd be one of those people who sailed along, never hitting a plateau.

I also feared that if I ever did hit a plateau I would never be able to see it through.

I was wrong on both counts, but if I did not have exercise to fall back on, it would be much harder.

What we put in our mouth and our exercise are within our control.

What the scale does is NOT within our control.

I prefer to concentrate on the things I can control and let the rest follow as it may.

nelie
01-13-2010, 10:30 AM
I had a similar struggle. When I first decided to lose weight, about 10 years ago, I went to Jenny Craig, followed the plan perfectly, went to the gym every day, worked out for at least an hour, I lost 30 lbs in 3 months, then didn't lose a lb for 9 months. Near the end of the 9 months I started to waiver. I was frustrated beyond belief and the Jenny Craig 'coach' thought I was basically lying about my eating.

I had many times of losing those same 30 lbs but when it finally happened and I went beyond the 30 lbs, my heart and head were totally in it and I was doing my own thing rather than a specific plan and I was tweaking as necessary.

Of course now I've been bouncing around the same 10-15 lbs for 2 years and I keep trying to figure out what can free me of the block and again it is a heart/mental thing I know. Right now though I feel like this time is different, more than any other time I've tried to get below 200 so really I think I am going to do it this time.

Eliana
01-13-2010, 11:11 AM
I had a similar struggle. When I first decided to lose weight, about 10 years ago, I went to Jenny Craig, followed the plan perfectly, went to the gym every day, worked out for at least an hour, I lost 30 lbs in 3 months, then didn't lose a lb for 9 months. Near the end of the 9 months I started to waiver. I was frustrated beyond belief and the Jenny Craig 'coach' thought I was basically lying about my eating.

I had many times of losing those same 30 lbs but when it finally happened and I went beyond the 30 lbs, my heart and head were totally in it and I was doing my own thing rather than a specific plan and I was tweaking as necessary.

Of course now I've been bouncing around the same 10-15 lbs for 2 years and I keep trying to figure out what can free me of the block and again it is a heart/mental thing I know. Right now though I feel like this time is different, more than any other time I've tried to get below 200 so really I think I am going to do it this time.

You are so close to under 200!! You can so do this!

And don't you just sometimes feel like posting a sign on your forehead that says "I don't cheat...my body just isn't responding!" LOL! I don't feel that way THIS time but boy do I remember!

calluna
01-13-2010, 11:37 AM
For what it is worth, I would add a bit of a caveat on the exercise...when one is very heavy, doing some high-burning but low/no impact cardio (e.g. swimming, elliptical) seems like a good thing. I am terrified of what I would do to my joints if I tried to run right now, for example.

Common sense, I guess, but if it is common sense then it probably bears repeating. :)

Meg
01-13-2010, 12:12 PM
Good advice, Calluna! The elliptical was my best friend during the year that I lost weight because of my bad knees. It's a fantastic workout that's no impact on joints. Even in the months before I had my knees replaced in 2008, I was able to use the elliptical even when I couldn't walk. I :love: ellipticals!

Eliana
01-13-2010, 12:15 PM
I credit the elliptical with straightening out my plantar fasciitis. I don't know if it's true or not. I don't really care! I'm all better! :D But it strengthened my calf muscles considerably.

Violet73
01-13-2010, 12:19 PM
We are all so different....I do not lose on counting calories...but I lost 9 pounds in a week on low-carb. It is what works for me just like low-calorie works for others. I'm glad you found something that works for you! Congrats on the 30 pounds! :woohoo:

Eliana
01-13-2010, 12:39 PM
We are all so different....I do not lose on counting calories...but I lost 9 pounds in a week on low-carb. It is what works for me just like low-calorie works for others. I'm glad you found something that works for you! Congrats on the 30 pounds! :woohoo:

It absolutely works for others! I still believe in the basic principles. I don't know what my problem was! But that's ok...I'm moving on:D

FitGirlyGirl
01-15-2010, 11:27 AM
Eliana - You are not the only one. I have PCOS and am now a type 2 diabetic. I think part of why I ended up diabetic has to do with sticking to the low carb idea for so long even though it didn't work for ME. It's what I was 'supposed' to do for the PCOS. I would do the low carb thing, sometimes have some success, sometimes feel miserable, give up and gain back more than I lost. I did this for a few years. I was diagnosed type 2 in July. Of course I was told to do a low carb diet. I just told the nurse ok, took the papers she gave me for my low carb diet and went home and started reading. I ended up doing a calorie management program using a body bugg. At my 3 month check up in October I had non-diabetic lab results. I had also improved my cholesterol and blood pressure quite a bit. I've lost nearly 60 pounds now (I was actually slightly over 60 before the holidays and a week 1/2 of bronchitis). I don't see me giving up in the near future, in fact I just renewed my body bugg subscription for a full year (up to Feb. 11, 2011). I love my carbs and I love not having to keep them so low now. I do work to make sure I have a decent carb/protein balance though. Yesterday for lunch I had chili over brown and red rice. Afterward I was wanting a grapefruit, so I had it. When I was doing low carb I would not have been allowed either of those things alone, let alone both. Low carb is great for some people. My niece tackled her weight issues early on using a low carb approach and thanks to that I no longer worry that she will develop PCOS. It also works well for my brother. Everyone is different, and we each need to do what works for us personally. I have learned that calorie management is what works for me.

I do agree with the others that you should add some exercise though. Don't go overboard and push so hard that you give up, but do get moving. Start slow and work up to a level you are comfy with and that works for you. Set goals for yourself. Say you are going to do so much the first week or 2 and then start adding a little each week (or when the level you are at becomes too easy for you). The exercise will also help with the lethargy, I know it did for me.

Creeech
01-15-2010, 11:34 AM
Hey Eliana :)

I have PCOS as well, are you taking medication for it and dieting/exercising to help it or just controlling it through the latter?

-Stephy

Eliana
01-15-2010, 11:45 AM
Hey Eliana :)

I have PCOS as well, are you taking medication for it and dieting/exercising to help it or just controlling it through the latter?

-Stephy

No, I'm not taking medication. I took Metformin when I was first diagnosed because at the time we were trying to conceive baby number three. My doctor's only purpose was to get me ovulating again. Now that we are no longer TTC, she decided I didn't need it anymore?? :?: Whatever, I'm over it. ;) I'm just trying to control it through getting this weight off. My biggest issue is the weight and I think it has probably messed with our chances of having a third child. But having lost number 3, we've decided to focus on the two blessings we already have and they are 8 and 9 now. So medication just doesn't seem like something I now need to pursue.

Losing just 5% can return your cycle back to normal. I've read that many, many places and it was true for me.

cfmama
01-15-2010, 01:37 PM
It's a very good thing to know your body so well and know what your LIMITS are as far as food and exercise! You'll go far with that attitude and knowledge!