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Student In Need of Help!!!

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Old 02-14-2013, 01:24 PM   #1
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Default Student In Need of Help!!!

Hello everyone. So, I've decided to make this thread to see if anybody may have tips or solutions to help me out. A little background on me: I'm 24, a full time student, work 40-45 hours a week, while still trying to have a life. When I was in high school I was very tiny, 100 pounds at most. Since then, I have fluctuated with my weight tremendously. At my heaviest I was 165. I have always been very petite (I'm only 4'11'') so that sort of weight on my frame doesn't work well. Since then, I have lost some weight but I still struggle all the time. I am one of those people where if I'm working out, my weight will either stay the same or slowly go back down, but the minute I don't go to the gym or maybe eat one snack out of my ordinary routine, the scale will jump up.

Now, here is my concern. I have been working out religiously for a month and a half now. When I say religiously, I mean almost everyday I am supposed to with 2 rest days when I can. I have searched and searched and been on numerous forums trying to find programs/diets/workouts that will help me in losing weight. In that month and a half, the scale "says" I've lost about 4 pounds, but I feel no difference. My clothes still fit the same, if not a little tighter around my calves and thighs if anything. I don't feel like I'm seeing the results I should be seeing by now. I know weight loss takes time and this isn't something that is going to happen over night and I completely get that.

My big question is, and what I truly am searching for is maybe somebody who has any insight on a great diet I can get on with how busy I am. When I say I'm busy, I cannot stress enough what busy really means. I'm up and out of the house before anybody in my house is up and I'm usually getting home when my mom leaves for work at 10:30. I work, then go to school, then back to work or stay in school and then go to the gym, etc. I don't have the option of cooking at work because we don't have a kitchen. Our "kitchen" consists of a fridge, coffee maker and microwave. To make things easier for myself I have been "meal prepping'' on Sundays because I literally just don't have the time. Any diet I've looked up calls for a lot of cooking, and again, I just don't have the time. I wouldn't mind meal prepping my breakfasts on Sundays either but I feel like eggs or anything like that will go bad quicker than the lunches/dinners I make. For the last 2 weeks, my prepped lunches have consisted of brown rice, chicken and a fresh vegetable. I obviously can't eat that forever, so maybe some ideas on other things I could be making. I'm trying to stay away from anything processed and stick with fresh ingredients so I can control how many calories I'm putting into my body.

As far as working out goes, I've recently added weights into my program whereas before I didn't. For cardio, I'm on the ellyptical for 30 minutes/treadmill for 30 minutes and I chose the stair stepper yesterday. But again, I'm not seeing any sort of results. I know that stress/not sleeping well can have a huge impact on weight loss as well but I feel that for a month and a half of eating better than I've ever eaten and working out more than I have in the last couple years I should be seeing something. I also will do a "piloxing" class every now and then to change it up and I was doing pole classes when I wasn't in school, but since then have had to cut that out of my routine since the classes are while I'm in school. Since I'm so busy and have so many things to think about throughout my day I just don't want to have to sit there and think about what sort of things are good for me and what I can snack on between my meals. I remember my mom found a great diet years ago that she was following when she was working out and it seemed so great for how busy she was but since it was so long ago she can't remember where she found it and I'm yet to find anything that can coincide with my lifestyle.

I know this seems like a long, drawn out story of excuses but it's really not. I've been very dedicated this time around to losing weight and I have never been so adamant about really doing it this time. Unfortunately, I probably picked the worst time to be so strict with myself because of what my days look like. If anybody can point me in the right direction of what diets will work well, what workouts I should start trying or ANYTHING that can help me start seeing some results, it would be so great. I've been trying hard this time around and I'm starting to get frustrated and I don't want that!!
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Old 02-14-2013, 04:53 PM   #2
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It sounds like you have a pretty good foundation so far, such as prepping your meal ahead of time, your work outs, etc. I do want to make a point though, usually more petite people have a really hard time losing weight. A /really/ hard time. As far as you diet, I would just recommend upping your veggie intake, carbs are important, but since you are naturally petite, a serving for you would be slightly smaller: perhaps try halving your rice portion and upping your veggies? For exercising I'd recommend trying something, even on your own, like yoga or really mix it up. If you're not really sweating from your work out, you're probably not buring much calories. Or try upping your intensity. Do you try intervals for cardio? As far as not seeing much of a difference, you probably gained muscle in those areas that clothes are tighter.
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Old 02-14-2013, 06:21 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Miss Mallee View Post
It sounds like you have a pretty good foundation so far, such as prepping your meal ahead of time, your work outs, etc. I do want to make a point though, usually more petite people have a really hard time losing weight. A /really/ hard time. As far as you diet, I would just recommend upping your veggie intake, carbs are important, but since you are naturally petite, a serving for you would be slightly smaller: perhaps try halving your rice portion and upping your veggies? For exercising I'd recommend trying something, even on your own, like yoga or really mix it up. If you're not really sweating from your work out, you're probably not buring much calories. Or try upping your intensity. Do you try intervals for cardio? As far as not seeing much of a difference, you probably gained muscle in those areas that clothes are tighter.
I tried a HIIT on the elliptical and about 5 minutes in I felt really light headed so I stopped and haven't tried it since. I have upped the resistance a lot more than I had in the beginning. I've never really heard of petite people having a harder time to lose weight, is there a specific reason why? I could definitely try cutting the rice in half and upping the veggies. I'm probably one of the few people that actually enjoys veggies believe it or not so I could try that as well. I do feel like my thighs have gotten a bit more toned along with my calves. I only know of one place that has fitness classes around me because unfortunately my gym doesn't offer them which is one of the cons of it. I'm still looking for another facility, but its funny you mention yoga because my friend actually suggested hot yoga? She said you feel amazing afterwards but again, I'm afraid of getting light headed. I don't do well in crazy heat like that! I've also tried looking into meal delivery plans but with all the bills I already have something like that isn't in the cards for me.
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Old 02-15-2013, 01:38 PM   #4
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Hot yoga is absolutely amazing. There is two different degree rooms. I don't recommend Bikram yoga. They're too extreme for me. As far as petit people it's because you need much less calories, than say me, I'm 5"6.5. So when you cut calories you can go too low and your body to into starvation mode. And the light headedness; while not fun, that is actually meaning your hitting more than one energy system. Meaning it's pushing your endurance and upping fat burning. However you HAVE to stop until it goes away and then pick it back up. That's what my trainer says to me. At first it sucks cause it happens a lot. But it's the quickest way to up your endurance. My trainer went to college for training. Sorry for the slow response! My work computer hates 3FC, it always freezes and I had a date with the trainer and gym last night. XD Does that help at all? Oh and my trainer is a believer in eating every 2-3 hrs!
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Old 02-15-2013, 01:40 PM   #5
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I'm at work and responding on my phone, so if I'm a little too short and sweet, that's why! :-) I love to help if I can.
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Old 02-15-2013, 05:04 PM   #6
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Hot yoga is absolutely amazing. There is two different degree rooms. I don't recommend Bikram yoga. They're too extreme for me. As far as petit people it's because you need much less calories, than say me, I'm 5"6.5. So when you cut calories you can go too low and your body to into starvation mode. And the light headedness; while not fun, that is actually meaning your hitting more than one energy system. Meaning it's pushing your endurance and upping fat burning. However you HAVE to stop until it goes away and then pick it back up. That's what my trainer says to me. At first it sucks cause it happens a lot. But it's the quickest way to up your endurance. My trainer went to college for training. Sorry for the slow response! My work computer hates 3FC, it always freezes and I had a date with the trainer and gym last night. XD Does that help at all? Oh and my trainer is a believer in eating every 2-3 hrs!
No problem!! I was going to ask how often I should eat, I try to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner with healthy snacks in between but sometimes I find myself almost STARVING to the point where I cannot wait to eat my next meal. I know that since I'm working out a lot more my body is going to need more food, but sometimes it's out of hand! I've tried so many different things but when I get to the grocery store I find myself just wandering around trying to think of things I can eat or cook and eat later on because I just don't have the time to cook during the week. So far my list is chicken, salmon/tilapia and a veggie. That's about the extent of what I have. I think I need more "snack" type ideas and especially breakfast.
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Old 02-15-2013, 08:25 PM   #7
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I thought I would post because we are of the same height/weight. I have tried numerous diets and exercise routines in the last 5 years. The most successful results that I have done is to do weight training, yes weight training. When I did weight training for 6 months (2-3x a week) without changing my diet, I lost 20 lbs and went from a size 16 to a size 8. I took a break because I went back to school, and even 7 months later, I am still a size 8; again with no changes to my diet. I tried the whole eating 5x a day, doing like an hour of cardio, etcetc for a whole summer. From that I went from 150 to 135 in 3 months, but I gained it all back and then some. So I cannot stress enough the effectiveness of weight training because it ups your metabolism because of the needs of the bigger muscles "eating" fat.

So in terms of your time issue, 5 minute cardio warmup, 30 minutes section muscle training (arm day, leg day, back day, etc.) and 15-30 minutes low-medium intensity cardio 2-3x a week, with 15-30 minute medium cardio every other day. So you won't be working out more than an hour a day.
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Old 02-17-2013, 01:20 PM   #8
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I thought I would post because we are of the same height/weight. I have tried numerous diets and exercise routines in the last 5 years. The most successful results that I have done is to do weight training, yes weight training. When I did weight training for 6 months (2-3x a week) without changing my diet, I lost 20 lbs and went from a size 16 to a size 8. I took a break because I went back to school, and even 7 months later, I am still a size 8; again with no changes to my diet. I tried the whole eating 5x a day, doing like an hour of cardio, etcetc for a whole summer. From that I went from 150 to 135 in 3 months, but I gained it all back and then some. So I cannot stress enough the effectiveness of weight training because it ups your metabolism because of the needs of the bigger muscles "eating" fat.

So in terms of your time issue, 5 minute cardio warmup, 30 minutes section muscle training (arm day, leg day, back day, etc.) and 15-30 minutes low-medium intensity cardio 2-3x a week, with 15-30 minute medium cardio every other day. So you won't be working out more than an hour a day.
Thank you!! That is actually really helpful. Unfortunately, I was always afraid to venture past the cardio section of the gym because I was afraid of being so unfamiliar with the machines and not knowing how to use them. But every site I've read or the more research I do I find that weight training is a must. I have been trying to target different days like you said (legs, abs, arms, chest, etc etc). My arms routine I got pretty down since there are so many different exercises I can do. Legs, I am still struggling I bit, I only have about 4-5 things that I have been doing but let me tell you my legs were on fire today after legs.
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Old 02-20-2013, 06:47 PM   #9
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Yep, weight train, build muscle and see what happens. I highly recommend it.
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Old 03-08-2013, 01:14 PM   #10
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Yep, weight train, build muscle and see what happens. I highly recommend it.
Just wanted to bump this to let everyone know that I have been incorporating more weights into my workouts. I do an arm day, leg day, etc etc. Since then I have noticed a quicker drop in my weight. The pounds aren't "melting" off like I would want them to but I was stuck at this one number in my weight and it wouldn't budge. I've gotten it down quite a bit but still am working hard. I think once I dial in my diet I will be able to shed a lot more in a better amount of time.
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Old 03-12-2013, 06:44 AM   #11
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Just wanted to bump this to let everyone know that I have been incorporating more weights into my workouts. I do an arm day, leg day, etc etc. Since then I have noticed a quicker drop in my weight. The pounds aren't "melting" off like I would want them to but I was stuck at this one number in my weight and it wouldn't budge. I've gotten it down quite a bit but still am working hard. I think once I dial in my diet I will be able to shed a lot more in a better amount of time.
Good to hear you're making some progress. However, I would strongly recommend to someone in your situation to perform full body workouts rather than individual body parts. Focus on compound exercises (squat, deadlift etc.), and only perform any cardio work after you've done your weights.

Is there any particular areas of your body you'd like to focus on?
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Old 03-12-2013, 09:32 AM   #12
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Myfitnesspal. It's this app you can get for your smart phone, ipod, or you can just go to their website from any computer. Log what you're eating, drinking, what vitamins you're taking, if any, and it will show you if you're getting enough calories, fats, carbs, vitamins and all that stuff. Also log any work outs you do as well. This will help you see how many calories you're burning, if you're eating too many calories and too much fat or not enough, and if you're getting enough vitamins or not. It's super helpful. Also, a smoothie I do that's awesome that might also help you is, I take a banana, blend it with a little water in my blender, then take a 1 cup measuring cup and take 1 to 2 cups of spinach. 1 or 2 cups that are really packed down into the cup, then blend that and add water as need it and just blend super well. Then I add 1 and 1/2 cups of frozen berries. I like the mix of blueberries, raspberries and strawberries. i can find them all mixed in one bag, usually. Love that mix. The strong fruit flavors mask the taste of the spinach and the colors of the berries make the smoothie a blue or purple color, rather than an ugly green. After I add the berries I just blend until there's no chucks, adding water as needed until it's the consistency and thickness I want. Spinach is full of vitamins and is just awesome for you, and the berries and banana are delicious. Of course you can adjust this smoothie to make it how you like, but I highly recommend the 1-2 cups of spinach in there because spinach is an awesome food that is great for your body, and it's filling.
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Old 03-12-2013, 09:42 AM   #13
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Also, oatmeal is a good breakfast. I buy old fashioned oats, take a pan and put it on the stove with the 1 cup water and some salt (i usually don't like salt in things but i like my oatmeal with butter and brown sugar, so to stay away from the butter i just add some salt) then once it boils, I throw in the oatmeal. Takes 5-6 minutes to cook. about 2 minutes into the cooking i throw in around 2 ounces of dried cranberries, finish the cooking, take it off the stove and put a lid on for a few minutes like the directions say, then take the lid off and add more water if i need to, or maybe a little skim milk and call it good. Takes less than 15 minutes from start to finish, and you can make a big batch and then divide into individual servings and put it in a Tupperware container and you should be set for awhile. Make as much as you want, it should stay good for at least a few days, if not more. If you're not gonna eat it right then, i would suggest not adding the milk or extra water at that point, just add it to each one right before you eat it, or right before you re heat, and same with the fruit, if you use fruit, maybe leave that out until right before you reheat it or right before you eat it. Quick, easy, good for you, filling, and you could make enough to last the whole week if need be.
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Old 03-13-2013, 01:26 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by smclen View Post
Good to hear you're making some progress. However, I would strongly recommend to someone in your situation to perform full body workouts rather than individual body parts. Focus on compound exercises (squat, deadlift etc.), and only perform any cardio work after you've done your weights.

Is there any particular areas of your body you'd like to focus on?
Probably just my stomach and arms. My legs are still pretty decent looking from all the years of cheerleading/gymnastics. Those would probably be the only two areas I would want to focus on. I've seen a lot of people mention you should do weights before cardio. Any particular reason why?

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Originally Posted by beccaboo19842 View Post
Myfitnesspal. It's this app you can get for your smart phone, ipod, or you can just go to their website from any computer. Log what you're eating, drinking, what vitamins you're taking, if any, and it will show you if you're getting enough calories, fats, carbs, vitamins and all that stuff. Also log any work outs you do as well. This will help you see how many calories you're burning, if you're eating too many calories and too much fat or not enough, and if you're getting enough vitamins or not. It's super helpful. Also, a smoothie I do that's awesome that might also help you is, I take a banana, blend it with a little water in my blender, then take a 1 cup measuring cup and take 1 to 2 cups of spinach. 1 or 2 cups that are really packed down into the cup, then blend that and add water as need it and just blend super well. Then I add 1 and 1/2 cups of frozen berries. I like the mix of blueberries, raspberries and strawberries. i can find them all mixed in one bag, usually. Love that mix. The strong fruit flavors mask the taste of the spinach and the colors of the berries make the smoothie a blue or purple color, rather than an ugly green. After I add the berries I just blend until there's no chucks, adding water as needed until it's the consistency and thickness I want. Spinach is full of vitamins and is just awesome for you, and the berries and banana are delicious. Of course you can adjust this smoothie to make it how you like, but I highly recommend the 1-2 cups of spinach in there because spinach is an awesome food that is great for your body, and it's filling.
I actually have that app! If you would like to add me my user name is Jlynn913. I do eat oatmeal at work because we have the water cooler so it makes it easier to have hot water for it!
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