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Road Cycling and drastic weight loss.

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Road Cycling and drastic weight loss.

Old 03-10-15, 11:11 AM
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dpostelnicu
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Road Cycling and drastic weight loss.

Simple enough question? Can one loose 50lbs in 6 months and be able to maintain high performance output. Weight loss simple calculation burn more than intake! I have mixed thoughts about weight loss and biking. Need to loose weight (fat) but maintain muscle. That seems impossible to me. I have been told that weight loss happens off the bike and not while on it! Which makes sense, if one does not intake enough Cabs, you will CRASH for sure. I like long rides centuries(100 miles). I like to push my self training for LATOJA 206 miles in one day! I have completed it the last couple years and want to keep improving. At 190lbs last September I was able to complete it under 12hr ride time. My ultimate goal is under 10hr ride time. Yes that is a century under 5hr. I have come close to that last year but not close enough. I need to be 165's in order to meet that goal. Has anyone lost drastic amount of weight while still doing centuries?

I am 48 this year, 5'7" 215lbs. I should be ideal 138-168 depending on the frame size, so lets say 165.
Over the years I have done multiple diets including: weight watchers 2-3 times, HCG 2 times, body for life on so on. Moral of the story is that the harder I try, the harder it is to loose.
In the past I had enormous appetite, no so now days. I used to eat not so well balanced meals, low on vegetables intake. I always loved fruit since majority is sweet. I eat balanced portions and various grain, vegetable and MEAT. Yes I do have an appetite for meat still. I see myself as a CARNIVORE. My dad worked at a meat processing plant in Romania, and therefore I got to eat best of the best for years while going up. Needles to say when I got married at 23 I was a whopping 125 lbs wet. I am RED personality, never can stand still and always moving. I got a job back in 95 that was a desk job and over the years lbs come on, not that I have tried to manage the weight since I was 180 back in 2000.

Any experience dealing with weight loss and road cycling (that I love), will be appreciated.
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Old 03-10-15, 11:30 AM
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50 pounds is a lot to lose in 6 months.

IMHO, weight loss and control is a matter of changing your lifestyle to one that is weight control-friendly. If you rely on willpower, even if you lose the weight, you'll eventually gain the weight back. Or you'll be miserable.

Everyone is different, but for me, I have a lot less trouble saying "NO" than I do "NO MORE." So the key for me is:

1. Regular (almost daily) exercise.
2. Eschew tasty high calorie foods. Focus instead on foods that are more filling, and nutritious, and less tasty. Bye bye chips and ice cream.
3. Learn to love vegetables and fruits.

Don't be a weekend warrior. If you really want to lose weight, recognize that your lifestyle caused you to gain weight, and if you want to lose it, you have to adopt a new lifestyle ... one of eating healthy and regular exercise. Make it a priority, pick an exercise you truly love, and it will happen ... just as surely as you'll gain weight if you don't.
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Old 03-10-15, 12:12 PM
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As Biker395 says, 50 pounds in six months is a lot. That said, the key to actually losing weight and biking is creating a realistic diet and sticking to it. Use the diet to control your weight loss and biking to build muscle and fitness. Until you get accustomed to biking (or any vigorous exercise), you're going to have to fight the tendency to overeat because you'll likely feel ravenous after exercise and replace more calories than you need.

This phenomenon is why some advocate eating 4 or 5 "smaller meals" in a day rather than the traditional three. It helps you pace yourself and get over the initial hump. The starving feeling will go away over time.
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Old 03-10-15, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by cafzali View Post
As Biker395 says, 50 pounds in six months is a lot. That said, the key to actually losing weight and biking is creating a realistic diet and sticking to it. Use the diet to control your weight loss and biking to build muscle and fitness. Until you get accustomed to biking (or any vigorous exercise), you're going to have to fight the tendency to overeat because you'll likely feel ravenous after exercise and replace more calories than you need.

This phenomenon is why some advocate eating 4 or 5 "smaller meals" in a day rather than the traditional three. It helps you pace yourself and get over the initial hump. The starving feeling will go away over time.
Thank you for the reply, Yes and I agree with both. 50 is unrealistic maybe, but not impossible. 6 months is 26 weeks at 2lb/week recommended weight loss, that is 52 lbs. Of course this is extremely strict diet. like I have learn, at current weight I need 2500 calories/day to maintain without exercise. To loose 2 lbs a week I need to have 7000 less a week so that means 1000 / day or 1500 intake without exercise. with exercise add additional amount of calories in good food, but not over do it (which is extremely easy). The human boy gets more efficient in burning calories and tends to hold on to the fat.
But this is the gotcha, as I loose wight the calories recommended intake decrease, the workout burn ration decreases to the point where it dips below 1200/day. This is the min amount recommended for anyone, any lower and that is starvation mode.

I know it is common for cyclist to put on the pounds over winter and slowly get them off in the early season. Has anyone lost more than 30lbs in a season?
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Old 03-10-15, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
50 pounds is a lot to lose in 6 months.

IMHO, weight loss and control is a matter of changing your lifestyle to one that is weight control-friendly. If you rely on willpower, even if you lose the weight, you'll eventually gain the weight back. Or you'll be miserable.

Everyone is different, but for me, I have a lot less trouble saying "NO" than I do "NO MORE." So the key for me is:

1. Regular (almost daily) exercise.
2. Eschew tasty high calorie foods. Focus instead on foods that are more filling, and nutritious, and less tasty. Bye bye chips and ice cream.
3. Learn to love vegetables and fruits.

Don't be a weekend warrior. If you really want to lose weight, recognize that your lifestyle caused you to gain weight, and if you want to lose it, you have to adopt a new lifestyle ... one of eating healthy and regular exercise. Make it a priority, pick an exercise you truly love, and it will happen ... just as surely as you'll gain weight if you don't.
+1. I also recommend the following equation:
Weight gain or loss = calories out - calories in. And keep in mind that 3500 calories burns 1 pound.

So, do not starve yourself, so as Biker states above, simply change the way you eat and keep exercising -you'll do just fine.

Good luck and best regards
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Old 03-10-15, 01:37 PM
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Why does it have to be in 6 months? After that you declare victory and quit riding?

If you improve your diet, keep riding, and the pounds come off gradually, you'll be just as happy, won't you?

Binge dieting, binge riding, etc. are not the solution. If the new lifestyle suits you, you'll make steady progress and keep the pounds off indefinitely.
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Old 03-10-15, 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
50 pounds is a lot to lose in 6 months.

IMHO, weight loss and control is a matter of changing your lifestyle to one that is weight control-friendly. If you rely on willpower, even if you lose the weight, you'll eventually gain the weight back. Or you'll be miserable.

Everyone is different, but for me, I have a lot less trouble saying "NO" than I do "NO MORE." So the key for me is:

1. Regular (almost daily) exercise.
2. Eschew tasty high calorie foods. Focus instead on foods that are more filling, and nutritious, and less tasty. Bye bye chips and ice cream.
3. Learn to love vegetables and fruits.

Don't be a weekend warrior. If you really want to lose weight, recognize that your lifestyle caused you to gain weight, and if you want to lose it, you have to adopt a new lifestyle ... one of eating healthy and regular exercise. Make it a priority, pick an exercise you truly love, and it will happen ... just as surely as you'll gain weight if you don't.
This is as solid information as you'll get. A lifestyle change is in order to achieve your goal. You have to change the way you think about food and what it does for you.
I started with Paleo 18 months ago and I have lost 55lbs.
The things that helped along with the mentioned points are:
Eat several small meals or snacks(not candy and chips) during the day.
Portion control! You can actually live without that extra large potato or extra trip to the buffet.
Don't eat midnight snacks, ever. Personally, I won't eat anything after my evening meal.
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Old 03-10-15, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
Why does it have to be in 6 months? After that you declare victory and quit riding?

If you improve your diet, keep riding, and the pounds come off gradually, you'll be just as happy, won't you?

Binge dieting, binge riding, etc. are not the solution. If the new lifestyle suits you, you'll make steady progress and keep the pounds off indefinitely.
in 6 months is the 206 miles LATOJA. Do you think a person that would work that hard would go binge and gain all that and more? That is insane, I have not been down to 165 since 1995, that is 20 years ago. I would do everything in my power to maintain and work on body compositions fat to muscle ratio, in order to start competing in cycling.
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Old 03-10-15, 03:09 PM
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47? what kind of pie do you like have you had a colonoscopy....? get off my lawn! i forgot the rest of the questions.
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Old 03-10-15, 03:57 PM
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A pound of body fat ~3500 calories. *50=175,000 calories. 6 months = 182 days = 960 daily calorie deficit. Too much, IMO. I like the pound-a-week plan. That's only 500 calories/day and it's totally doable while retaining or increasing strength. Small portions, cut back on the carbs a little, lift heavy weights twice a week, and ride 5-6 days/week. No problem.

I'm a 1/2" shorter than you and down to 149 this morning. I gained strength, both upper and lower body, meaning squat and bench, etc., and lost weight at the same time, but slowly. I'm down from a max of 170 two years ago. I've been training consistently for a long time and decided to get a little faster by getting a little lighter.
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Old 03-10-15, 05:05 PM
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In the end of August, 2010, I weighed 251 lbs. I lost 67 lbs in 6 months and by the year anniversary, I was down 33 lbs more, 100 lbs total. My loss was due to a change in diabetic meds, eating less, eating better, walking(which is what I did to loose the 67 lbs), and cycling. It is now 4 years later after beginning to live better and I'm about 150 lbs.

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Old 03-10-15, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Bikey Mikey View Post
In the end of August, 2010, I weighed 251 lbs. I lost 67 lbs in 6 months and by a the year anniversary, I was down 33 lbs more, 100 lbs total. My loss was due to a change in diabetic meds, eating less, eating better, walking(which is what I did to loose the 67 lbs), and cycling. It is now 4 years later after beginning to live better and I'm about 150 lbs.
Cripes. 100 pounds! That is impressive, no matter how you slice it.
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Old 03-10-15, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by flan48 View Post
+1. I also recommend the following equation:
Weight gain or loss = calories out - calories in. And keep in mind that 3500 calories burns 1 pound.

So, do not starve yourself, so as Biker states above, simply change the way you eat and keep exercising -you'll do just fine.

Good luck and best regards

The calories in and out theory has been disproved. Read Gary Taubes' "Why We Get Fat". He's spelled it out for us non scientists in this book, and really killed it in another 500+ page book. Eat the right food, and counting calories no longer matters. Worked for me dropping 50 pounds from 217 to 167. By the way, lost the first 26 in exactly 26 weeks. Then lost the remaining 24 in the following 12 months. Basically over an 18 month period, lost a pound a week for six months, then a half pound a week for a year. Yes, it can be done faster.

I'd also suggest Dr. Hyman's excellent books like Ultra Metabolism. There he explains how 300 calories of Reese's Cups is different from 300 calories of broccoli or salmon. It's how your body metabolizes different calories that matters, not the calorie count. I think this is why almost nobody succeeds when using a calorie deficit "diet"

Personally, I didn't see a huge connection to weight loss from my cycling, even with a 5,000 mile year. I think more came from running, swimming, walking, and most importantly, eating. You simply cannot outrun your fork.
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Old 03-10-15, 07:34 PM
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Your goal seems really ambitious to me. But even if you fall short of the 50lbs and/or 10hours targets, I bet in six months you will look and feel much better and be happy with those results. Good luck!
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Old 03-10-15, 08:27 PM
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Calories consumed certainly matters. It is impossible to lose weight while eating excessive amounts of food.

The kind of food consumed also really matters. It is harder to lose weight while eating crap food, even if you're not eating much of it. The worst crap is sugar, whether sucrose or fructose.

Losing weight is mostly about what and how much you eat. You can't exercise enough to counteract excess eating. A hour on a bike, riding fast and hard, burns up about as many calories as two donuts, which most of us can eat in one minute.

When your body is forced to lose weight, it protects fat and sacrifices muscle. There are evolutionary reasons for this. If you simply diet and do no exercise, about 1/3 of the loss is fat and 2/3 is muscle. If you do aerobic exercise, it is about the same. If you do resistance exercise, as much as 9/10 of the loss can be fat and 1/10 muscle.

Binge diets usually result in big rebounds, you end up as fat or fatter than you were. OP's prior history illustrates this. Slow and steady works best.

So, OP, I recommend you
- eat about 1600 cal/day
- no sugar or HFCS (no soda, sweets, pastries, etc), extremely limited alcohol, very limited starchy food (things made from wheat flour, rice, potatoes, etc), limited fruit (has a lot of fructose), eat mostly meat, fish, eggs, lots of vegetables, especially green veggies, and fat. Fat is fine. Keep carbs under 100 gram/day.
- work out your muscles so your body knows it has to keep them. Can be weightlifting, or body weight (pushups, planks, pull ups, etc).
- ride your bike, a lot, after all that's kind of the purpose of all this!
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Old 03-10-15, 09:59 PM
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I always recommend the Mediterranean Food Pyramid. Also, the body absorbs less calories from raw veggies and such compared to cooked.

Don't forget, the body is made in the kitchen, neither in the gym (12+ hrs a week), nor on the bike.



At 63, I am 5'10", weigh 154 lbs, 6% BF, can still do serious cardio and long fast rides. The bike IS the passion. I train folks to shoot and like Sporting Clays, but the bike is number one on the list of things I love doing.
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Old 03-11-15, 06:29 AM
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Personally, I find it much easier to lose it faster rather than slower. I religiously count calories and seeing the weight decrease week to week keeps me motivated to stick with the plan. On the strict diet I can ride for 1 to 1.5 hrs without issue. For longer rides I eat a few hundred extra calories an hour or two before the ride and 100cal every 30 minutes during the ride. I also try to eat several hundred calories and protein right after any hard exercise. When on a diet, calculate your protein intake. Current recommendations have gone up for older people and for physically active people so be sure you're getting enough to help forestall muscle catabolisis.
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Old 03-11-15, 06:48 AM
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Originally Posted by dpostelnicu View Post
Simple enough question? Can one loose 50lbs in 6 months and be able to maintain high performance output. Weight loss simple calculation burn more than intake!
The is nothing "drastic" about losing a couple pounds a week!!! But...... You can NOT out-train a bad diet. PERIOD.

I use a calorie counting app to help me watch my intake. I struggle to keep my weight under check... and I bicycle a solid 2000+ miles a year. I also weight train and exercise. Don't kid yourself about what makes people fat. It isn't a desk job that packs on pounds... it's excessive calories that makes people fat. Lack of exercise will make you soft... but it won't make you fat.

Food/eating can be pretty addictive. You may be in over your head. If cutting off the food doesn't seem do-able you may want to seek a little professional help.
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Old 03-11-15, 06:49 AM
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Originally Posted by dpostelnicu View Post
Thank you for the reply, Yes and I agree with both. 50 is unrealistic maybe, but not impossible. 6 months is 26 weeks at 2lb/week recommended weight loss, that is 52 lbs. Of course this is extremely strict diet. like I have learn, at current weight I need 2500 calories/day to maintain without exercise. To loose 2 lbs a week I need to have 7000 less a week so that means 1000 / day or 1500 intake without exercise. with exercise add additional amount of calories in good food, but not over do it (which is extremely easy). The human boy gets more efficient in burning calories and tends to hold on to the fat.
But this is the gotcha, as I loose wight the calories recommended intake decrease, the workout burn ration decreases to the point where it dips below 1200/day. This is the min amount recommended for anyone, any lower and that is starvation mode.

I know it is common for cyclist to put on the pounds over winter and slowly get them off in the early season. Has anyone lost more than 30lbs in a season?
I have lost that much weight multiple times and it never stayed off until I decided to do it slowly and let my body adapt to the lost weight. When I do that, it seems my "set point" gets altered until I've finally been able to keep it off. When I took off that much weight hard and fast, it came back hard and fast - seemed to me that my metabolism was fighting back.

How I fixed that problem was to take the weight off slowly and carefully and then to hold to regime where I continued logging everything I eat and weighing myself every day. I get daily exercise too. It took a while for me to realize that this was going to be a lifelong monitoring regime.

I use a combination of a smartphone app for exercise and Loseit for tracking calories in/out.

J
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Old 03-11-15, 07:31 AM
  #20  
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I am 7 months in and I have lost 53 pounds. I hit the 50 pound mark at 6 1/2 months. I did not have the goal of 50 pounds in 6 months, though. Now, I am 7 pounds away from my original goal of losing 60 pounds. I have not done anything crazy, but instead eat less and exercise more. I am in better shape than I have been in about 15 years. So, I do believe 50 pounds in 6 months is very doable, if you really have 50+ pounds to lose (I did). My only thought about food is that I no longer eat anything ( about 99.9% true) unless it is fuel for my body. No junk food, candy, cake, pop of any kind. Research shows one of the highest predictors of successful weight loss is tracking your food intake accurately every day, so I use the Lose It app on my iPad. So, good luck. One suggestion, though, is to set a goal weight that is reasonable and go for it without a time constraint. I believe taking a little longer is healthier and more likely to work over the long run.
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Old 03-11-15, 07:37 AM
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Originally Posted by uprightbent View Post
The calories in and out theory has been disproved. Read Gary Taubes' "Why We Get Fat". He's spelled it out for us non scientists in this book, and really killed it in another 500+ page book. Eat the right food, and counting calories no longer matters.
It's semantics, when you think about it. Everyone's essentially saying the same thing in that I don't think anyone's really saying you can have your daily calorie allotment in sweets, forgoing all necessary nutrients. What the book you're citing appears to be saying is that if you focus on what foods you eat, you can avoid counting calories.

For some, counting calories will allow them to have a greater variety, along with the occasional splurge, that more rigid approaches might not.
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Old 03-11-15, 07:46 AM
  #22  
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I lost a lot more than your target within 6 months. I learned a LOT of things, the common denominator being that there's a LOT of myths circulated about diet, food choices, exercise, metabolism etc etc. ('Myths' is a nice word for 'crap')

I was extremely unfit when I started out, so my burn rate was quite high.

I watched my calories and quickly decided that there wasn't any simple correlation between intake and weight loss during periods of high intensity exercise. You burn like crazy, different food types impact the rate at which the weight comes off, counting calories had little bearing on the rate of loss. Looking at the calorie burn on a typical ride as determined by one of the (many) cycling apps, then looking at the rate of calorie consumption as determined by calorie-counting foods, there was no real correlation.

Looking at your cycling app and seeing that you rode 50 miles and burned off 1000 calories is erroneous in my humble opinion. Calorie burn as a result of exercise is like charging up a flywheel. It continues to spin long after the exercise is over. The trick is to come back frequently enough and to keep it spinning at a good rate. As long is it's spinning at a decent rate your metabolism can take care of what you're putting into your body, at least to a significant degree. If you exercise too infrequently and the spinning flywheel grinds to a halt, then you're susceptible to rapid weight gain and then you need to start to really watch your intake.

People say things like 'avoid carbs', or 'don't eat sugar' or whatever. If you take out all of the food that people say to avoid, there's absolutely nothing left. You'd be eating the chamois out of your shorts after every ride.. Even water is bad for us, I read somewhere online.

Where were all these nutrition geniuses before Google came along?

I have a sugar addiction. I eat sweet stuff like it's going out of fashion. I like it. Cycling and exercise is my ticket to eat the things that I like to eat. Which is pretty much everything. I don't eat much processed food as I actually like real food - steak, chicken, fish, pork (bacon) eggs, pasta, salads, veggies etc. But sure, I'll scoff down a pizza or a bratwurst or whatever, when the mood takes me. I just don't worry about it anymore now that I'm active.

During the late summer when I was riding the most I would eat 5000+ calories per day and still loose weight. At one point I was having to go in search of calorie dense foods to stop the weight slide.
My biggest mistake was not taking care of my upper body and arms. I lost a LOT of muscle mass and have a LOT of toning to do, still.

My performance didn't change much, at least using 'average mph' as a gauge. I got fitter, my distances increased, my recovery rate was quicker, but my muscle loss balanced the other gains and my speeds didn't change much. That's still something of a dichotomy that I deal with now that my weight is stable. But I'm not looking to set any records, just to do enough to keep that big old flywheel spinning so I can eat what I want to eat and not worry about it.

There are so many variables and so much information, it's no wonder we're statistically fat and unhappy as a society. How the heck do you process all of the information and still lead a normal life? You don't. And shouldn't, 'cos so much of it is crap, IMHO. Even the information passed down from up on high seems to change periodically, with the latest information often contradicting that which went before - it's as if they're deliberately trying to perpetuate a unhealthy society.

And of course the above is relative to me, and me only. We're all different, our flywheels all have a different rotational mass and require different levels of energy input to keep them spinning. And the flywheel mass/speed changes as you become fitter so it's always fluid, always a moving target.

It's entertaining to read when someone has a system that works for them (do this do that eat this don't eat that), and the person assumes that because it works for them, it must be the only system that will work for everyone, and that all others are worthless....

Now where were we..

Last edited by bruised; 03-11-15 at 07:51 AM.
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Old 03-11-15, 07:57 AM
  #23  
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I lost 30 lbs using LoseIt! over a 10-month period in 2012 and maintained that weight until early last year. However, I've regained about 10 lbs since early 2014 and I cannot discern why. I am following the same calorie budget and exercise regularly. In fact, my intake is typically 3,000-4,000 calories under budget each week including calories burned from exercise. I followed the same approach in 2012 and steadily lost weight at about 1 lb/week, but for reason it quit working for me in 2014. Very frustrating because I exercise religiously and track every calorie of food that I consume.

The only thing that changed in my routine in 2014 is that I joined a gym and started working out there 1-2 days/week (mainly lifting weights upper body and riding the exercise bike). I seriously doubt that I have added 10 lbs of muscle over the past year, but my waist doesn't seem to expanding. However, I don't understand how a calories-in/calories-out diet such as LoseIt could help me lose 30 lbs, keep the weight off for more than two years, and then suddenly quit working. I eat a healthy diet and exercise 1-3+ hours almost every day. I cycled more 9,000 miles/year the past three years and ride year-round.

Last edited by tarwheel; 03-11-15 at 08:06 AM.
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Old 03-11-15, 08:28 AM
  #24  
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Nutritional science is outpacing the official party line by leaps and bounds. There is a lot of fascinating reading out there.

My weight loss success is based on high fat low carb. You seem willing to try diet plans. I always recommend the good old Atkins Diet. The weight will just fall off if you follow the rules. You can recalibrate your diet after you've reached your weight goal.
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Old 03-11-15, 08:36 AM
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I followed the Atkins diet about 10 years ago and lost 10 lbs fairly quickly. However, I had trouble cutting carbs out of my diet due to the amount of exercise that I get and the fact that many of my favorite foods are carbs. I stuck with the Atkins diet for at least a year until I developed a kidney stone, which I found out later is a demonstrated risk of high-protein diets. I decided at that time that it was probably not a healthy option for me.
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