Weight Loss Advice please(11 Posts)
My first post - here goes: I'm getting desperate now and I'm wondering if anyone else has been in my position and can offer some insight.
Really struggling to lose any weight, I think I eat really well - meals consist mainly of chicken or fish with salad or vegetables, hardly ever eat potatoes or bread and very little pasta and no processed food. I drink about 2 litres of water each day and very little alcohol. I don't do loads of exercise but I walk for about 90 minutes each day and use my bicycle for going to the local shops. Started going to the gym a couple of times a week but started to gain even more weight - bonkers!
I'm about 2.5 stone overweight and no matter what I do the weight refuses to shift.
Health wise I have a slightly under active thyroid which I take medication for, and I'm on a low dosage steroid for fibromyalgia, other than that the blood work checks out and my doctor is at a loss to explain what's going on. Being in my late fifties I'm sure isn't helping.
In the past I lost about 2 stone on Herbalife and I've recently gone back to it again but even that is now failing me. I've tried the blood sugar diet as recommended on here and I've tried the 5:2 diet both which I find fairly easy to do as I don't have a huge appetite anyway so getting by on 500 or 800 calories per day is no problem. I lose a couple of pounds and then gain it back again over the next day or so. On a normal day I eat approximately 1200 calories.
Does anyone have some suggestions? I feel I'm running out of options (and clothes that fit).
Boring question but are measuring/weighing everything you eat? It so easy get complacent and just think I know how many calories xyz is.
Other than that I can't see an obvious reason for not losing weight. I don't think your age will necessarily be the problem.
No, not measuring and weighing as such but a main meal might consist of a baked or grilled chicken breast with no skin with a salad or veg which might be asparagus, broccoli, green beans with a small knob of butter. Rarely have dessert. For portion sizes I tend to go by my fist size for portions of veg etc. Is it possible I am not eating enough and my bod has gone into starvation mode? I certainly don't feel as if I'm starving.
How tall are you? I've seen a lot of evidence discarding the idea of a starvation mode so that might be unlikely.
I would say it would be worth doing a week or two of measuring and recording everything. See where you are and then reassess. how long have you been sticking to your current plan?
I'm 5'4" tall and I've been eating what I would call a Mediterranean diet for approximately 8 months which, I think you'll agree, is long enough to see if it's working. I'm thinking something has knackered my metabolism good and proper. I will focus on measuring and recording and see if that makes a difference, thanks for the suggestion. I could understand the weight gain if I was eating loads of processed food, takeaways, ice cream, crisps, chocolate and all those things, but seriously I am not. It's not bloody fair!
Sorry, thought your weight was in the original post. If you don't mind, how much do you currently weigh and what are you aiming for?
What has worked for me is calculating my TDEE - total daily energy expenditure - to see how much energy I burn in a normal sedentary day. I do this using my goal weight so I know what calories I need when I get to that weight and maintain it. Once I have calculated, I remove 500 calories per day or 3500 a week to give myself a deficit of 1lb of weight loss per week. Any additional calories I burn through exercise, I do not eat back. My DM lost 15kg in her fifties with this method plus 16:8 and has kept it off for the past 4-5 years.
Weighing portions is absolutely key for this. It is near impossible to estimate by eye. I've lost about 10kg over a few months and kept it off - the last 4kg have come off in the last 4 weeks so something is working. If you are eating lots of calorific but healthy things, that would make it difficult to lose weight - things like banana, avocados, oils etc.
Thanks for that info JamieVardysParty - I have now calculated my TDEE using my goal weight as you suggested which gives me a reading of 1400 at sedentary level, so to lose 1lb a week I will need to modify my intake to around 900 calories per day. My current weight is 11st 6lb or 73kg and my ideal weight is around 9st or 57kg so I'm looking for a loss of around 16kg. I will also give the 16:8 a try too.
I do occasionally like avocados in my salad with a little olive oil but will give them a miss and see what happens.
Any idea why when I go to the gym and burn off around 5/600 calories each time my weight actually goes up? I have been going to the gym recently having not gone for a few years to try and shift the blubber but I stopped as the scales were going the wrong way - and I didn't eat to compensate for the extra exercise either. Bah!
Weight may temporarily go up during exercise as the body holds on to water. Over time, and especially if you drink enough fluid, it will lose the weight. But I tend to appear to have put weight on after the gym even though my overall trend since April is actually down.
I assume you are doing cardio? Might be worth trying weights as altough you burn less in a session, it keeps burning calories longer.
You say when I go to the gym and burn off around 5/600 calories each time - what do you do at the gym?
That amount of calorie burn seems high, and unlikely, which makes me think your other calorie calculations could be off as well?
I say that because I'm taller than you but I don't burn 600 cals in a fast 10k run, so I struggle to see how you'd burn that in one gym session.
I use the cross trainer, exercise bike and rowing machine and they have a readout on there showing calories burned in each session, so I just add up each session and that's how I arrive at 500/600 calories - this is over a period of about an hour. I suppose it's possible the machines are not 100% accurate with their calculations. I do drink a lot of water normally and drink extra when working out and I did wonder about water retention playing a part here. Usually after the workout I go for a swim too.
I will give the weights a go next time, it's good to vary the routine.
Thanks for everyone's input - it's really appreciated. Looks like I will have to weigh and measure food like a boss from now on.
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