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Old 09-14-2010, 10:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Struggling...need advice from those having success who are over 40

Hi! I'm new, but not new to trying to lose weight. I am a yo yo dieter....but usually have better success than whats been going on this past year.

I joined FD about a week ago. I am trying to lose about 20 pounds by Jan. 1

When I plugged in all my information....FD said I should eat less than 1000 cals a day.

The other day...it seemed I lost 1/2 pound...but today I got on the scale and it was back.

I've been eating about 1000 cals a day (having great trouble getting to that very low # recommended by FD) I had one day when I went over 1000 cals and one day that I went under 1000 cals this week. But my average this week was about 1000 cals a day. I am on the short side...

I was dismayed when today I realized I have not made progress this week eating about 1000 cals a day, exercising HARD 4x days a week, heating very healthy foods, no bread and no sugar (except what comes naturally in some foods). I eat lots of veggies, a little fruit, a little meat, nuts once in a while...I put everything in the fit day food 'journal.'

My water intake is moderate. Inconsistent. Some days are good...some days just ok.

Does anyone have any advice? What has worked for you?

Thank you.

Last edited by AAFlaca; 09-14-2010 at 10:10 AM.
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Old 09-14-2010, 01:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hmm...

Okay, when you say "on the short side," that could definitely be a factor. I am the same; I'm 42, and yes, it stinks that we don't burn as many calories as taller people do. So that leaves the options of exercising more or being more patient for the weight to come off, since it's harder for us to have a calorie deficit as a result of the lower burn to begin with.

Is the weight you're trying to get to something that you have done before, and is it in the healthy range for your height? 20 pounds by Jan 1 is a little more than a pound a week, so that seems like a good rate, but you have to keep in mind that the closer you get to your goal the harder it is to get off, and <insert the complaints about being smaller to begin with here>.

Also, there has been a bit of discussion here about the 1000 calories, starvation mode, etc. etc. There are people who do great on it and people who don't. I found that I completely stalled if I went below about 1100-1200. I found this calculator Calorie Calculator - Daily Caloric Needs and used it to determine my daily intake, rather than FitDay. I also did the zig zag link at the bottom of it and it was effective, a couple plateaus notwithstanding. The idea is that it keeps your metabolism going by keeping it guessing.

Other than that, all I can say is maybe try to increase your protein, try to get consistent on the water intake, and put in some weight training if you don't do it already. Muscle is active tissue that burns energy, unlike fat. My metabolism did speed up once I started strength training. Oh, and try not to sweat the daily variations of the scale; maybe once a week weighing in might give you a better idea of where you stand.

Good luck!
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Old 09-14-2010, 03:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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1000 cal sounds low to me, what do your meals consist of?
When I started my new eating habits, my Doc put me on a 1,400 cal per day quota ( I was 42, 5'-9", 215 lbs) but I found I needed more once I started to exercise regularly.
I tried to keep my cal intake to 1600-1800 per day which seemed to work fine for awhile.
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Old 09-14-2010, 04:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AAFlaca View Post
Hi! I'm new, but not new to trying to lose weight. I am a yo yo dieter....but usually have better success than whats been going on this past year.

I joined FD about a week ago. I am trying to lose about 20 pounds by Jan. 1

When I plugged in all my information....FD said I should eat less than 1000 cals a day.

The other day...it seemed I lost 1/2 pound...but today I got on the scale and it was back.

I've been eating about 1000 cals a day (having great trouble getting to that very low # recommended by FD) I had one day when I went over 1000 cals and one day that I went under 1000 cals this week. But my average this week was about 1000 cals a day. I am on the short side...

I was dismayed when today I realized I have not made progress this week eating about 1000 cals a day, exercising HARD 4x days a week, heating very healthy foods, no bread and no sugar (except what comes naturally in some foods). I eat lots of veggies, a little fruit, a little meat, nuts once in a while...I put everything in the fit day food 'journal.'

My water intake is moderate. Inconsistent. Some days are good...some days just ok.

Does anyone have any advice? What has worked for you?

Thank you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sw07 View Post
1000 cal sounds low to me, what do your meals consist of?
When I started my new eating habits, my Doc put me on a 1,400 cal per day quota ( I was 42, 5'-9", 215 lbs) but I found I needed more once I started to exercise regularly.
I tried to keep my cal intake to 1600-1800 per day which seemed to work fine for awhile.
Ok we have at least 2 common denominators. #1 were over 40 and previous yo-yo dieter who couldnt lose the lbs this year.
Now I will share my solution to this common problem. First of all you have a better chance burning off fat than starving it off.
Also eat clean and eat often(5 or six times a day. Now everything you are doing seems to be good to a fault ie. working out hard, not eating enough, counting everything etc etc.

Now what worked for me patience and consistance. look at my food journal and you will see that I dont starve and I dont go completly crazy at the gym either but I do workout consistantly and eat the right amounts etc.

I have only found this success since july11th 2010 and am getting very fit and confident along with losing 20 lbs of scale weight. My goal in this current month is to be 5 lbs lighter than last month. Slow and easy wins the race period.

Now enough about that I am going to give you some specific examples of what works.
First of all daily determine what your maintenance calories are for the day and add whatever excercise you are going to do at the gym and subtract about 500 calories only from that total and plan your day around that number for a couple of weeks straight.

Use eggwhites, cottage cheese, fish,lettuce , healthy carbs, and protien to make up your daily intake. spread that out over the day and stick to it. Dont deprive yourself of most any food if it is really important to you to eat or drink it, do it, just count it and work your diet around it. I like Bud light so I put a couple in there and count em.

You can go through peoples food logs on here and see all kinds of different foods eaten and people lose weight so eat the kinds of food you like but limit the amount of calories and portions to stay whithin your guidelines. I like protien so I go that way because I am lifting weights and Cardio and want to try to keep my muscles while loosing fat.

I am following this workout program this month Bodybuilding.com - 2 Week Training Schedule To Lose Fat And Gain Muscle, Continued! - Mercedes Khani
check it out

Also dont be tempted to do a bunch more stuff at the gym than you have planned because more isnt neccessarily better I do HIIT cardio and never do over 30-35 min gets the job done.

Plan a balanced whey protien shake after you lift to replenish your muscles.

Drink a lot of water lay off junky liquids as much as possible.

Get it going but dont overdo it or be tempted to skip a meal because you need to stay on a certain deficiet to keep burning and losing so you dont stall.

I also do my Cardio in the AM and go back later for weights 35-45 min tops in the gym (make it count dont piddle around) per visit then go home and go on with your life.
Dont sweat the scale use it as a motivator not a detraction. Stick with it and adjust your calories and excercise up or down after a couple weeks to only lose a pound or 2 a week
Good luck hope this helps
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Old 09-14-2010, 05:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I am short, 5'-2"ish, I am 41, and I have lost doing the following:

1,350-1,650 calories/day
I eat pretty clean, almost no fast food and nothing out of a can or box
calorie pie chart 40% carbs, 40% protein, 20% fats (this is ideal, but day to day it varies, but I always try and keep my carbs at 50% or less)
96 oz of water - I can't lose without it
45-60 minutes of cardio 5-6 days/week, I try and keep my HR at around 140-145 bpm for at least 30 min
10-30 minutes of weight lifting 5-6 days/week, 4 days light hand weights, 2 days heavy lifting at the gym
10,000 steps on my pedometer/daily
park the car in the farthest spot from whatever door and hoof it.
Limited white sugar and white flour. I still eat white rice occasionally and non-russet potatoes (I figure if I put in the work to grow the potatoes I've burnt enough calories to eat them).
Limit beef, corn and peas to 2-3 servings per week.
Limit alcohol to 1 drink/week (and frequently I skip it).

Well that should be enough to get you started.
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Old 09-30-2010, 03:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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At 5'6", I'm not short, but I am over 40 (44 to be exact). I've been hovering at about 180 pounds for a couple of years and decided recently to get serious about getting closer to my target weight of 155. I've been successful so far and have lost about 5 pounds and more than an inch off of my waist. Hooray!

Anyway, what you said about eating only 1000 calories per day or less and exercising hard 4X per week concerns me. That sounds anorexic, and people get sick that way. Starving yourself isn't going to make weight come off. In fact, it's going to make your body hoard every calorie that it can, so every little bit you do eat will be saved. Plus you're going to crave food so much that you're likely to binge or to quit trying altogether. You're better off making dietary changes that can be sustained, and 1000 calories per day isn't sustainable. You're better off with a range of probably around 1200-1500, which allows for you to have different things to eat every day.

Include a lot of fresh or cooked frozen vegetables in your diet without a lot of extra sauces or butter. Those are fairly low-calorie, and you can eat until you're full without overdoing it on calories. Add some lean meat with it, and you have a good meal. For lunch every day, I have a salad made with half of a 12-oz bag of salad mix, tomatoes and cucumbers if I have any, a few slices of lunch meat or whatever other meat I have on hand (yesterday, it was 4 oz of meatloaf), and topped with a Tablespoon of shredded Italian cheese and 2 Tablespoons of Thousand Island dressing. That amounts to less than 500 calories. For dinner, have at least 1 cup if not 2 or more of some vegetable and some more meat. It could be a pound of cooked baby carrots and a cooked chicken breast or a small steak. Skip things like baked potatoes, pasta, French fries, and anything sugary on most days. And avoid too much fruit, which is usually high in calories and low in fiber as well as being all carbohydrates. If you have fruit, have a spoonful of peanut butter or a handful of nuts with it so you feel full longer.

Then one day per week (I like to choose Friday), forget about what you're eating (within reason) and have stuff that's a treat. We eat pizza on Friday. My biggest change is in how much of it I eat. One large slice of pizza and a piece of cheese bread is plenty to fill me up without breaking the calorie bank. I used to eat two or three slices of pizza and several slices of cheese bread. That really added up. Oh, and on any day of the week, if I feel like having ice cream or chocolate, I do. I have some Hershey's miniatures, and I will eat one of those slowly if I choose to. I also use a small bowl and scoop about half a cup of ice cream into it, which I eat slowly with a smaller spoon. My tastebuds get the sensation they desire, and my brain stops telling me that I'm deprived. It's all about portion control.

Remember as you go that muscle weighs more than fat, so as you exercise, you're going to lose the lighter-weight fat and have it replaced with heavier muscle. But obviously you'll be thinner and in better shape, so you have nothing to worry about. I recommend forgetting what the scale says on a daily basis. It's going to fluctuate slightly up and down no matter what you do. Weigh yourself once or twice per week, but also keep a measuring tape handy. Even when the scale isn't moving, the tape frequently shows you that you're getting smaller. Who cares if the scale hasn't budged if you lose an inch in your waist or hips?

And drinking plenty of water is a must. Your body uses it to help flush out stuff in your urine as well as to keep your bowels moving. And if your bowels aren't moving because of dehydration, your weight is going to go up until you're able to pass that stuff out. If you're eating plenty of veggies like I mentioned here, you'll have plenty of fiber, and the water will help your body take care of it.

I hope this helps!
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Old 10-01-2010, 04:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I just wanted to reiterate two things previous posters have already mentioned.

1. Weight training:
I believe this is even more important for women than men. Many women lack the musculature that drives metabolism. Short women especially seem to need to add muscle to increase their metabolism. If you aren't already, begin including weight lifting into your exercise plan.

2. Protein:
Protein is the only nutrient that can build and repair muscle. Without adequate protein (.5 to 1.0 grams per pound of lean body weight) your body will catabolize your muscle while dieting. This will cause your metabolism to slow even more and you will have to eat less and less to continue your weight loss progress. I personnally try to keep my protein intake at 30% or more of my calories.

Good luck.
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Old 10-02-2010, 02:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I am 51 and after years of yo yo dieting, I found that my metabolism was all messed up. I am 5'4" and 226 lbs. It took a bit of consistency to get going. I eat around 1500 cals a day, and I log all my exercise. Some weeks its a lot and some weeks it isn't. Some days I eat 1400 and some days I eat 1600 or 1700, but I try to keep my fat intake down to 30g a day and my protein up to about 150. Other than that I have tended to eat pretty much what I like, but I do eat often. Its surprising how the fat mounts up but what I like about FD is that it makes you AWARE of what you are having. The other thing I thing is that you have to be a little more relaxed about it and not worry too much if your cals/fat are up one day. Just be careful the next day. I don't really try and compensate the next day, just be careful. Consistency is the key.

The other thing I had to do is break the habit with the scales - very difficult!! They were like a crutch and if I did not have access to them I felt very "vulnerable". I made a commitment to only weigh once a week once I joined FD, and most weeks I have managed it. They now feel less like a crutch.

I have been doing this for about six weeks and have lost 12 lbs! My metabolism has settled down and I have not been in binge-starve mode! I don't eat any "Diet" stuff unless I genuinely like it. Any fat I use like butter, oil or mayonnaise I measure carefully. 0% fat fromage frais and protein powder is a saviour when my protein is low, or I want a pudding but don't want to add any more fat.

I want to get to 140 lb so a way to go yet - but I agree, slowly, slowly wins the race. I was 238 and now I'm 226 - This is not a diet to me - this is a change in habits for life, and because I can eat anything I want to, I don't feel deprived at all. Just keep going!
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Old 10-09-2010, 12:43 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I am quite successful in keeping my calorie intake to 1000. I eat nothing but vegetables and fruits - absolutely no nuts and no avocados. I do NOT cook anything with any [added] oil. Nothing that I eat has eyes that move [ pineapple's eyes do no move, cow's does ]. So, if your diet is 100% plant based diet, you can and WILL lose weight.

If you want to eat more than 1000 cal, then take up walking. I walk 2 miles in the morning and then two miles in the evening. I have lost a good amount of weight. And so will you if you adopt the lifestyle for about only 3 months. You will lose at a minimum of 20 pounds - easy! Added bonus will be lower cholesterol level and lower risk of cardiovascular disease, higher HDL level !!
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Old 10-22-2010, 11:35 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Are you sure it said less than 1000 calories a day? You're going to starve and then set yourself up for failure. BTDT! LOL

Check to make sure you are looking at the "Calorie Balance" tab and not the "Calorie Restriction" tab. Calorie Restriction tells you how many less calories a day you should be eating. Calorie Balance tells you how many calories a day you're allowed.

Good luck! And don't give up!!

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