Weight Loss Support - Beyond frustrated - in need of kind words and guidance




Softykins
11-30-2010, 11:48 AM
Starting weight: 319 lbs
Age: 32
Height: 5' 8"

For the past two and a half months, my friend and I have been trying our hardest to lose weight. We've changed our eating habits (no fast food, slurpees, soda pop, etc) and have added healthy alternatives such as oily fish (salmon, sardines), avocados, Quinoa, nuts, veggies, fruit, whole grains, and even green tea :barf: We have cut down on our carb intake as well.
And of course we have been exercising, as we have a three month long bootcamp challenge at work.
Once a week we work with a fitness trainer, where we do a "circuit". The other days of the week, we walk on the treadmill or do the elliptical trainer and/or lift weights.
I understand that lifting weights gives you muscle, which means gaining weight but I should be at least losing something more than 5 pounds within a 2 and a half month time period by changing my lifestyle. Something is not right.
I get enough sleep. I eat enough but not too much (around 2800 cals per day). I exercise. I get enough sleep on a regular basis. I don't have a thyroid problem. I drink 8 cups of water per day. I'm obese and I haven't lost any weight in a month. I've flat-lined. I need help. Please! :cry:

Thanks,
Kristy


fattymcfatty
11-30-2010, 11:57 AM
I'd cut the calories down to 2000 per day and I would give it acouple weeks

Eliana
11-30-2010, 11:57 AM
Were you losing faster at the start on 2800 calories a day? Maybe that's close to the calories you need to maintain your current weight. I think you should try decreasing your calories, perhaps to 2500 calories? I'm just randomly picking a number here based on your original number. ;) That's IF you want to lose faster than you are. Otherwise a loss is a loss is a loss.

Also, you mentioned switching over to whole foods, which is awesome! BUT whole foods can be really caloric too, especially the oily fish, nuts and avocados you mentioned. Sadly even the Quinoa has a lot of calories...shame really. I love the stuff. I believe all these are great in moderation but a steady diet of them is too caloric for me.

I think your plan sounds absolutely awesome! It sounds sustainable and I don't think you'll get bored. I just think perhaps the calories are too high.


winning the war
11-30-2010, 12:00 PM
Maybe try cutting 100 or so calories from your daily intake? Your workout may also need an overhaul. Sometimes we get into a rut (weight-loss wise) if the workout stays the same for a period of time. You are doing good things for your body and mind by eating well and exercising regularly, so keep up the good work! It's amazing what a little "tweak" in the routine can do! Good luck!

mkroyer
11-30-2010, 12:00 PM
Well, if you arent losing weight, then you are not in a caloric deficit, PERIOD.

How are you tracking your food? Are you weighing it with a digital scale? Are you eyeballing portions? how do you KNOW you are eating 2800 cals a day? Do you say "that looks like a bout 4 ozs of chicken-- 120 cals? Thats just a big salad, i dont have to count the calories from vegetables?
ESPECIALLY with all the "good " fat you are eating (and it looks like a lot) you need to be DILLIGENT and precise and accurate when measuring it out! If you use olive oil, or peanut butter, then WEIGH it, dont use a tablespoon-- the differentce in cals between what yoou can pack into a tablespoon, and 15 grams ( a serving)can be over a hundred cals!
salmon is pretty calorically dense... avacados are the same deal....weigh it!

Anyway, my point is you are eating more than you are burning, if you arent losing fat. Despite what we think we are OWED, food wise.... you have to eat less!m I bet if you took a day to precisely weigh everything you are eating, it would be an eye-opener! You are either consuming way more than 2800 a day, OR your body only needs 2800 a day to maintain (unlikely, given your weight)

bargoo
11-30-2010, 12:02 PM
I think 2800 calories a day is a lot, if I were you I would go for about 1900 maybe 2000.

Softykins
11-30-2010, 12:19 PM
Thanks for the replies, ladies!!

I thought I was eating too many calories as well but then I was told by the
fitness trainer that I wasn't eating enough and it takes fat to lose fat.
It was explained like this:

you take your current weight and times that by 11. The number you get means that you eat that amount in calories per day to maintain your current weight. Now if you take your goal weight and times that by 11, that will give you the amount you should be eating to reach that goal. My first goal is 280, so: 280 x 11 = 2800 calories per day.
To answer mkroyer's question, I have been tracking my calories via a weight loss app on my itouch and I mark down everything.

I'm kinda scared to eat too little of calories... my body will go into starvation mode and it won't lose then either.... :(

LindseyLou
11-30-2010, 12:20 PM
I would say definitely cutting more calories like the ladies above suggested..Maybe cut down 200 or 300 for a week and see how that goes, then maybe another 200 or so...there are calculators out there that can determine that a little better..
http://caloriecount.about.com/cc/calories-goal.php
Just keep your head up, you're doing amazing things to your body, even if the weight isn't coming off as fast as you'd like! :hug:

Eliana
11-30-2010, 12:22 PM
Our trainers mean well, but sometimes they're just not right. ;) Those of us who have been morbidly obese have bodies that work just a bit differently.

You are definitely not in danger of eating to few calories even if you bump down to 2000. You DO want to be careful not lose too much muscle mass, but if you are strength training you've got that covered. You're fine. ;) I'm not a big believer in starvation mode anyway, but even if we said it does exist for the sake of argument, it isn't going to happen at 2000 calories.

mkroyer
11-30-2010, 12:22 PM
Ok, you TRACK it on a weightloss app, but how do you WEIGH your food? do you eyeball? Guesstimate? use measuring cups? Digital scales?

and fat is definitely good! The only caution is to make sure you are precise about how you measure it, because its so calorically dense

nationalparker
11-30-2010, 01:01 PM
And don't worry about gaining muscle - it takes a LOT of working out to add muscle that shows up on the scale. Sounds like you have a good plan and just need to track your intake solidly and perhaps reduce the calories until you're working at a deficit. Drop down a bit and try that for a few weeks - don't give up after a few days of no loss. I know that I cannot lose weight at the weight x 11 formula that's out there, so don't be discouraged. Just work at it each meal, each day and don't worry about starvation mode - you have to drop down a LOT for that.

Softykins
11-30-2010, 01:29 PM
Alright, I will reduce my calories. But is there anything else you guys can recommend, which worked for you?
mkroyer, I'm not a food tracking fanatic, no. But I can work on that too. lol

thesame7lbs
11-30-2010, 02:04 PM
Hi Kristy,

When I first started counting calories, I secretly thought all the ladies here with their food scales were crazy. ;) Then I broke down and got one and it is great. It is actually way easier than measuring with cups and spoons, and I realized I was doing a very poor job of estimating and eyeballing things. You can get them quite inexpensively. I second what MK said -- especially with such calorie-dense food, being off by a little (in volume) can mean being off by a lot (in calories).

Sounds like you have a good plan in place! I'm sure the results will follow.

Glory87
11-30-2010, 02:06 PM
You don't need to be a food tracking fanatic for your lifetime, but I think it would be valuable to be a food tracking fanatic for 2 weeks. Just so you can REALLY see what you are eating and REALLY see what a portion size is supposed to look like. I remember the first time I weighed out 2 oz of dry pasta and I was like "holy **** - THAT'S a serving of pasta? It's so wee!"

shannonmb
11-30-2010, 02:13 PM
Alright, I will reduce my calories. But is there anything else you guys can recommend, which worked for you?
mkroyer, I'm not a food tracking fanatic, no. But I can work on that too. lol

Just doing those 2 things should be all it takes. :)

Eliana
11-30-2010, 02:25 PM
Alright, I will reduce my calories. But is there anything else you guys can recommend, which worked for you?
mkroyer, I'm not a food tracking fanatic, no. But I can work on that too. lol

I agree with Glory on this one. I'm not much of a food tracker either, but there are times I still fall back on it. I was strict for the first few months because really, our eyeballs are lousy. Lousy!!

I needed something sustainable, and it sounds like you do too. I don't even journal because I know that if there comes a day I decide I don't feel like journaling, then BAM, I'll throw the whole thing out! And that day would come. So I like to eat 6 mini meals of equal caloric value. If you did 2000 calories that would be about 330 calories per "meal". That way I never had to count more than 330. It has worked really well for me.

Other suggestions? Calories and exercise have been pretty much the key to my success. You've got the exercise down. I can tell you that weight loss tends to be 80% diet and 20% exercise. You can not exercise away bad eating. (Not that you're trying to. :D I'm just throwing stuff out there.) It took me a while to figure that one out.

I have learned some tricks along the way, but they're highly personal, targeted specifically to my personality. For instance, I learned that weighing daily was the way to go for me. It has helped me to obsess LESS, the opposite of the advice typically given. So I weigh and track my weight every single day. Another trick I have used is that I committed to being on plan each and every day for an entire year. I did that because one of my problems has always been giving up because the weight was too slow. I got really curious about where I could be if for one year I just didn't give up. It got me nearly 80 pounds. That was the best thing I ever did toward weight loss. I learned to love, really LOVE, exercise. I joined a spin class and am a die hard spinner now. I learned that I thrive in the class environment, and I'm like a dog...I work so hard for "treats". LOL! I love the "atta girls" that come my way from my instructor. :D

But tricks aside, it's really about calories in vs. calories out.

matt_H
11-30-2010, 02:25 PM
You trainer is off track!

As other people have said, your calorie count is too high. I think you need to focus on lower calorie filling foods. For right now I'd shoot for 2000 calories a day based primarily on whole grains, lean meats, and lots and lots of fruits and veggies.

JayEll
11-30-2010, 04:49 PM
I just wanted to add that those calculations are based on averages and estimates usually on normal-weight people. Many folks believe that those calculations just don't apply to people who have become overweight or obese and who aren't binge eaters.

You are not going to go into any "starvation mode" on 2000 calories a day. I wouldn't worry about that. If you'd like a better calorie target, see a registered dietitian who specializes in weight loss and obesity.

Jay

rockinrobin
11-30-2010, 05:27 PM
you take your current weight and times that by 11. The number you get means that you eat that amount in calories per day to maintain your current weight. Now if you take your goal weight and times that by 11, that will give you the amount you should be eating to reach that goal. My first goal is 280, so: 280 x 11 = 2800 calories per day.

Yes, those calculators and little thing a ma jigs don't work when you reach a certain weight. Unfortunately, people are very ignorant spreading around the info when it comes to obese and super morbidly obese folks. Besides, it really is an individual thing, what works for one, won't necessarily work for another.

2800 calories is way on the high side.

You're also eating very calorie dense foods. Quinoa, salmon, avocado. If you're off with your measurements just a tad, you have taken in even more calories than you think, more than the 2800 that you've been shooting for.

I'd make certain that you are accurately measuring those items as well as oil, peanut butter and nuts and other high calorie foods items.

If your measurements are a bit off on for instance cauliflower, it's not a huge difference. One cup of cauliflower has 48 calories, so if it's really a cup and a quarter, you're only off by 12 calories. But if you're eating peanut butter and are off by a tablespoon, that's an additional unaccounted for 100 calories. Quinoa? You're off by a half cup, that's an additional 135 calories. Little things add up.

Since you are cutting back on the calories, so as not to be hungry, I'd add in some more voluminous foods - such as piles and piles of roasted veggies, large stir-frys, thick hearty veggies soups, enormous salads. I wouldn't worry all that much about getting that fat in, as your trainer suggests. I'd focus on that volume. Filling power and pure chewing satisfaction.. Very important to me.

Please don't be daunted by all these numbers. Once you get the hang of it, it's quite simple. Really. It will take some time though.

It sounds like a little hard work doesn't scare you though! Sounds like you're up for the task. You are SO going to do this.

I look forward to hearing of your progress. :)

dragonwoman64
11-30-2010, 08:52 PM
You are not going to go into any "starvation mode" on 2000 calories a day. I wouldn't worry about that. If you'd like a better calorie target, see a registered dietitian who specializes in weight loss and obesity.
Jay

I second this advice. Just like going to a good trainer can help you get started in the right way and amount to exercise (saving you time and effort from not only trial and error but possible injuries), going to someone who has real experience with nutrition and weight loss (esp someone who has worked with people who have larger amounts to lose), can help steer you faster and more efficiently in the direction you want to go.

good luck with everything! and congrats on what sounds like a great start :)

Rosinante
12-01-2010, 03:33 AM
What works for me is:

Being a calorie fanatic - I weigh and track absolutely everything.
Drinking a lot of plain water - I keep a 6oz glass in the bathroom, and every time I go, I top up again.
Not eating processed muck - 99.99% of the time it's healthy, wholefood stuff, and meals made from scratch.
Weighing daily - once a day, after bathroom. It keeps me focussed and, even more importantly, it is teaching me about fluctuations over which I have no control. It helps me focus more on the things I Can control.
Saying no to unexpected food - if anyone offers me a cake, cookie, whatever, the answer is always no thankyou.
Reading and posting here - it keeps me focussed on days when I want to throw in the towel.

:hug:

Softykins
12-01-2010, 12:21 PM
A special thank you to all the ladies and gentleman that replied to my
post. I really appreciated all of your warm wishes and your insights.
I love knowing that there are so many amazing people here to always
come back to. :hug:
I'm determined to get this right, so I will begin lowering my calorie intake!

Thank you again!!!!