40-Somethings - Question for those of you successful at losing weight.




kandyrews
01-10-2012, 07:28 PM
What are you doing exercise wise and eating wise that works. I'm a simple kinda gal and like things simple not complicated. Not that I'm not willing to put the work in, I am. ;) I just don't want this crazy exercise schedule or crazy diet or way of eating. Not to mention, I'm a simple kinda cook. I just want what works. Right now, I'm walking briskly 5 days a week and eating whatever I want using portion control and calorie counting.


carter
01-10-2012, 09:32 PM
Just what Kara said - my plan is exactly the same.

I've developed a lot of routines so that I always have healthy, on plan choices available to me - this helps me avoid getting stuck with "no choice" but to go off plan. For example, I cook large quantities of good proteins (usually fish, chicken, or lentils) on the weekends, so that when I get home from a long day at work all I have to do is prep some vegetables and dinner is ready.

The only other element I'd add is patience. weight loss doesn't happen overnight, and it doesn't happen in a nice smooth downward curve. Some weeks I don't see a loss. But over time, over weeks and months, I do. That is the time scale I focus on. Focusing on a longer time scale also makes it easier to recover from slip-ups. I can't ruin my whole plan with one poor choice or indulgence - it is just one eating event, among weeks and weeks of on-plan days and good choices.

You can do this! Just stick to your plan, no matter what.

lin43
01-11-2012, 07:20 AM
In June of 2011, I decided to get serious about losing weight (I had been steadily gaining for 5-6 years and had not had the motivation to do anything about it). I examined my past mistakes and thought about what I was willing to do, not what I "should" do. I realized that I was willing to give up some "goodies" but not all. I realized that I was willing to move more but not get into the gym 5 days a week. So, I decided to calorie count since that would allow me to incorporate some of the more indulgent foods. I also committed to one hour of activity per day (6 days a week), even if the activity was cleaning my house vigorously. On 2-3 days a week, I did a short (and I mean SHORT---10 minutes or so) routine of push-ups, squats, & tricep extensions. I was able to stick with that for quite a while because it wasn't too demanding. Also, calorie counting was easier for me because I used a smartphone app and I started my "day's" counting with dinner, which has always been my most unpredictable meal. I calorie cycled naturally because some days I needed more calories than others.

As I lost weight, I got inspired and got more energy. I added some fitness classes at the gym, and I really like them. The weight started falling off. I reached my goal by October.

I think it's important to really think about your limitations. I know that seems discouraging, but it really isn't. For example, in past attempts, I would commit to doing 10 minutes of sit-ups, 3 times a week, but I always quit because I HATE any sort of ab exercise (even though I need it). This time, I didn't make that commitment because I knew that trying and failing again would just discourage me. I also did not make the commitment to strength train 3 days a week because, again, I dislike ST. I identified what had discouraged me in the past, eliminated those from my plan, and figured what was left over was better than the status quo.

Also, realize that your motivation & what you're willing to do will change. Be flexible. What works for you at the beginning may be different from what works for you six months from now. In the past, I would keep trying to plug a square peg in a round hole by sticking to a plan that had clearly lost its appeal. Now, I'm trying to be more flexible, so if something starts to because drudgery, I'm willing to try to think of something else to replace it. The only thing that is not an option is giving up.


andrew80k
01-11-2012, 07:48 AM
What works for me:

Counting calories (eating at a healthy level, not too few)
Prioritizing protein and healthy fats
Doing a combination of weight lifting and cardio (3x per week weights and 2-3x per week cardio)

When I do those things consistently I lose weight. It's not rocket science, it's not hard, it's not complex. It's sticking with it that I have issues with. ;)

This is what works for me too. I try really hard to make sure I make healthy choices.

I'm learning about the science behind fat loss and it's really not that complicated. There are a couple of things you need to understand but after that it's easy.

I think the 3 things that really mess people up and slow their progress are:

1. Not eating the right number calories. They can be too low.
2. Net eating enough healthy fats.
3. Not having any patience with the process.

For some reason people think that starving themselves is the way to fat loss. On the contrary, that's the way to lean mass loss and fat gain. The human body will do much to protect itself and it seems counter-intuitive to people that actually eating more will often spur people on to success. And there is such a thing as eating too little fat. As long as you're eating the good fats, poly and mono -unsaturated fats, then you can eat up to 25-30% of your calories from them. You shouldn't get less than 15% from them. It takes fat to burn fat.

You CAN have success with portion control as long as your portions are right for you. That's the biggest problem with some of these portion control diets. One size does not fit all. Portion control diets are really calorie control diets, you just don't have to count them.

I think everyone should go through the exercise of time-to-time counting their caloric intake for a few days, just to get a ball park of where they are. If you don't what your intake is, how can you possibly understand what you need to do to lose weight?

kandyrews
01-11-2012, 11:53 AM
Thanks everyone! I'm trying to keep track of my calories on livestrong.com I had switched to LoseIt.com but their was a bug on their website so I ditched it. But livestrong gives you lower calories to eat than what LoseIt.com did...it gives around 1300 to lose 1 1/2 pds a week whereas Livestrong.com only gives you 1,000 so I don't understand how they can be different. I'm just shooting for somewhere in between. I agree about doing exercises that discourage me. I also hate ab exercises, so I haven't incorporated them yet. I did ad some light free weight lifting ...only like 5 minutes worth of squats, bicep curls, etc. That I can handle. Then I'm doing 30 minutes of brisk walking on the treadmill 5 times a week. Well this week it's been everyday so far except one. The eating is tough...staying under those calories. I'm not fond of chicken, fish or turkey....I like beef 100%. I like pork chops, country fried steak, italian sausage, etc., so those things are dinner items. I just try to eat healthier all day then eat dinner in moderation. I'm just trying to stay consistant and not give up even if I mess up some days.

andrew80k
01-11-2012, 02:07 PM
kandy - I say this with all concern .. you keep jumping around from place to place to place to place like you're looking for something magic.

I know you've been given a ton of advice on the proper amount of calories to eat. If livestrong is giving you 1000 cals, then you put data in wrong because it won't recommend below 1200 for a woman. it's not healthy.

Honey you need to pick something and stick with it. Start at 1500 cals and give it at LEAST 4 weeks before you jump to something else.

This!

Patience, grasshopper. :D You should be eating NO LESS than 1200 and 1500 is a better starting spot. It takes time for your body to adjust. I know it's hard. It's hard for me too. It helps that it's hard for other people as well. I need to lose 67 pounds. That'll take 8 months. I'm not even half done with the first month and I'm ready to be at GOAL!

lin43
01-11-2012, 05:51 PM
Thanks everyone! I'm trying to keep track of my calories on livestrong.com I had switched to LoseIt.com but their was a bug on their website so I ditched it. But livestrong gives you lower calories to eat than what LoseIt.com did...it gives around 1300 to lose 1 1/2 pds a week whereas Livestrong.com only gives you 1,000 so I don't understand how they can be different. I'm just shooting for somewhere in between. I agree about doing exercises that discourage me. I also hate ab exercises, so I haven't incorporated them yet. I did ad some light free weight lifting ...only like 5 minutes worth of squats, bicep curls, etc. That I can handle. Then I'm doing 30 minutes of brisk walking on the treadmill 5 times a week. Well this week it's been everyday so far except one. The eating is tough...staying under those calories. I'm not fond of chicken, fish or turkey....I like beef 100%. I like pork chops, country fried steak, italian sausage, etc., so those things are dinner items. I just try to eat healthier all day then eat dinner in moderation. I'm just trying to stay consistant and not give up even if I mess up some days.


Sounds like a plan! Also, have you tried bison or buffalo rather than regular ground beef? It's just as good and it's lower in calories and fat.

kandyrews
01-11-2012, 06:36 PM
I know it may sound like I'm all over the place, but I do have a plan. Do Cardio 5x week for 30 minutes, light weights 3x week and eat around 1300 calories a day. I got the calorie amount from the website...I did not punch anything in wrong. I simply put in my height, weight and that I wanted to lose 1 1/2 a week and it gave me 1,087 to be exact. But I'm going with an average between all the different numbers I got. Someone else on here also said that same website did the same thing to her...gave her really low calories. But I just did another calorie calculator and it says 1476 I've used two or three different calculators and they're all different numbers, so my question is simply which one is correct...how many calories should I be eating 1087 or 1476 ...that's where they all range. So that's why I said I was going to go with somewhere in the middle such as 1300 calories. The only thing about my program that was in question was exactly how many calories I should be consuming. Oh and thank you for your concern, sorry I seem like I'm all over the place.

inglesita64
01-29-2012, 03:48 PM
I think the calories you have to consume are proportional not to how much weight you want to lose --that is up to your liver, not to you-- but with your build and activity level. I would trust my body to tell me how much food I need, considering always healthy choices. Starving youself won't allow you to keep on for the long haul, which is what it takes to lose weight, so I suppose your policy --going for about 1300-- is wise!

angelskeep
02-13-2012, 10:20 PM
For me, it has been move more eat less. Of course, that is the simple version. I should say eat less and eat clean. And it seems like I have to increase the activity somehow as I continue (now that I'm working at it again after some time off) to lose weight. I can tell a difference on the rare times when I have crap and garbage as part of my food intake compared to when I have protein and veg and whole grains. It is easier to lose with good, healthy, nutritious food, plus I don't seem to crave the junk if I stay away from the junk!

I have had to add distance to my walks, longer time, or hills. I ride the bicycle quite a bit further and again, add in hills. Next up for the walks...the little two lb weights for each hand.

But gosh, it sure does work well (for me) when I keep on plan and get it right!

Barb

fiona46
02-14-2012, 06:01 AM
After reading your threads i went and did a calorie count on what i'm eating most days and found i'm not eating enough !!! I'm trying to keep low carb so i'm not eating pasta, rice, potatoes, cereal...... MMMMM might have to re-think my plan.

kcoftx
02-14-2012, 06:16 AM
Here's what I consider. I go for the highest I can while still able to lose weight. It may take a week or so before you can ascertain whether this high amount will actually lose weight. The reason being is because as you go to a lower weight, you are going to need to decrease. If you are already close to the 1200 calorie mark (don't advocate below), then you have nowhere to adjust. Plus you want something you can maintain reasonably. Furthermore, when you add exercise, you actually should be consuming more calories so your deficit isn't too low. You will still lose, but perhaps not as efficiently as if you fueled your body enough.

runningfromfat
02-14-2012, 07:14 AM
I've taken a series of small steps that got me to where I am today. The pseudo order of them (and I've been at this for over 1.5 years so these were done over many, many months)

- Started running
- Gave up sugar/artificial sweetners
- Switched from white flour to whole wheat/whole grains
- Cut back on eating out/increased meat/veggie intake
- Started 30 Day Shred
- Started heavy weight lifting
- started swimming
- saw a nutritionist (started working on planned snacks between meals, increased fiber and fruit)
- no longer keep anything sweet in the house but do eat sugar on occasion (but only buy single size portions about once per week)
- when cooking i only use natural sweeters and whole wheat flour (sometimes with a bit of white flour mixed in)

kandyrews
02-14-2012, 06:52 PM
Thanks for all your input. Right now, what I'm doing is 35 minutes of walking with different inclines up to 6.0 and then also mixing walking with jogging every 4 minutes. Running is so hard. It's been a long time since I've ran and my knees bother me as well as the muscles in my shins, so I'm trying to ease into it gradually and slowly. I lift light weights with high reps and do a few exercises 2-3 times a week. I keep my calories under 1350 a day. I eat healthy all day, then eat a regular dinner with portion control. I have two cups of coffee in the mornings in which I cut out the sugar. I drink water all day. And I eat clementines and almonds for snacks.

fiona46
02-20-2012, 11:21 PM
thanx for the advice ladies. I've decided to incorporate more healthy things at breakfast and lunch...although brekky is hard as i'm not hungry enough to eat much.
started the gym program today. Did 70mins of cardio. hoping to do this at least 4 times a week along with my walk at night with DH. Will have to see if i can fit it all in to my work schedule..

happybug
02-20-2012, 11:50 PM
Exercise-wise I do very little. When I exercise I tend to lose weight slower and sometimes gain instead. Diet is very important in my weight loss. WW works for me, because I don't have to deprive myself. I keep healthy food and snacks in the house, finish off a meal with something sweet if I feel like it, and keep a food diary every day, so that I don't go over my points. I've stopped eating fast food, and shop every few days for fresh fruit and veg.

ksails
03-26-2012, 11:50 AM
Thanks for all your input. Right now, what I'm doing is 35 minutes of walking with different inclines up to 6.0 and then also mixing walking with jogging every 4 minutes. Running is so hard. It's been a long time since I've ran and my knees bother me as well as the muscles in my shins, so I'm trying to ease into it gradually and slowly. I lift light weights with high reps and do a few exercises 2-3 times a week. I keep my calories under 1350 a day. I eat healthy all day, then eat a regular dinner with portion control. I have two cups of coffee in the mornings in which I cut out the sugar. I drink water all day. And I eat clementines and almonds for snacks.

be careful of running with your knees hurting! One of the first things my Dr. told me when i started losing was do not put stress on your knees, if they hurt at all get in the pool and walk, or run. I did water arobics and water running for the first 6 months of my weightloss journey, and it worked great. My knees are strong now, and they never hurt. You can burn good calories wlking slowly with a big incline.. 2 mph at a 15% incline is good to start and do it for 10 mins, or however long you can make yourself, then lower it to 5% for 5 mins.. if you do intervals for an hour you can burn a ton of calories and it is so much easier on your knees. Take care and be careful.

threenorns
03-26-2012, 12:05 PM
i would seriously advise you not to do light weights with lots of reps. you won't get much benefit from that and you really do open up a world of possibility in the repetitive strain injury department.

for large muscle groups, stick in the 8-12 rep range (where the weight you choose allows you to do absolutely no more than 12 reps) and for smaller groups, 12-15 although even that is pushing it for me - i don't go over 12 reps for anything at all because my joints loosen up way too much.

that's also why i never stretch before a workout - if i do, it grosses everybody at the gym listening to my shoulders and hips clicking and popping with every movement and it's also far too easy to hurt myself. i do 3-5 warmup sets instead (warmup sets are never done to exhaustion).

eg, for my benchpress, my working sets are usually 145 - 155lbs but that's not at all your option (i prefer powerlifting); at 155, i can only do 3 reps and my 1rep max is 175.

so a typical workout *for me* would be:

warmup set #1: just the bar with a smooth, rhythmic, continuous motion until everything feels warm and flushed with blood. could be 10 reps, might take 20.

warmup set #2: just the bar, but this time it's more intense - i power the bar up so it's almost lifting off my hands at the top of the rep, then grip hard and, flexing all muscles possible, bring it down for a count of ten. this will be anywhere from 8 to 10 reps.

warmup set #3: 65lbs - 10 reps

warmup set #4: 95lbs - 8 reps

warmup set #5: 115lbs - 6 reps

then into my 3 working sets.

for smaller muscles, same idea for 1 and 2 but then after that, it's usually only one more step-up before i hit my working weight (you don't get a lot of wiggle room for bicep curls or tricep extensions).

my whole workout has me out of the gym in less than an hour, lots of energy for the rest of the day, and visible results very quickly.

if you're interested, i can send you the link to where i found it.

kandyrews
03-28-2012, 11:05 AM
Right now I walk 35 minutes with an incline up to 6.0 and it does show that I burn just as many calories than when I used jogging intervals. I haven't been back on my treadmill in two weeks because I've been sick, but when I was my knees seemed to be better, they didn't bother me as much. I'm not really a water person. But yes, maybe I should stick to walking for a while. As far as lifting heavier weights. I don't belong to a gym. I lift at home and all I have are 3, 5 and 12 pd weights, that's all I can afford right now.