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Author Topic: Zarkon Needs to Lose Weight  (Read 1273 times)
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Zarkon
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« on: October 03, 2011, 09:03:11 PM »

So I'm sitting here about 350 pounds (maybe 360), and my diet starts today.  I'm use going to be logging what I eat and can take any tips.

Current weight @ 1:07 AM 10/4/11:  350.3 pounds (wearing a pair of shorts)

10/3
Breakfast:
Small cup of basil/tomato soup from work's cafe (ingredients are all vegetables, approx. size is around 8-12 oz)
Can of Zevia Ginger Root Beer (0 cal)
Approx. Calories:  200

Snack:  Peanuts (Full serving is 330 calories, 4 net carbs.  Not eating the entire thing right now; ate half bag):
Calories:  165

Lunch:
4 oz chopped BBQ beef
4 oz sliced BBQ pork sausage
1 32 oz iced tea
Approx Calories:  Um...700-800?  I dunno ,can't find nutritional info for Pok-e-Jo's.  No additional sauce, though.  

Dinner:  Chicken Pot Roast
1 marinated garlic herb chicken breast
pieces of:  Sweet Onion, Granny Smith apple, baby carrots and butternut squash, cooked in milk.

Drink:  Reduced-sugar Kool-aid (made with Smart Sugar):  Approx 25 cal per 8oz, drank about 8-12 oz

10/4
Breakfast:  Spinach salad with approx. 8oz toppings including:  Butternut squash, edamame, beet, green beans, cauliflower, cucumber, carrot, bean sprouts, feta cheese, dried cranberry, sunflower seeds, salt, pepper and flax seeds with Red Wine vinaigrette for dressing.
Drink during work:  Iced Tea (again, forgot my Ideal, so 140-180 calories per 32 oz)

Lunch:  6-8 inch wrap made with spinach wrap.  Whole-grain mustard, 4 oz beef, lettuce, tomato, dill pickle, spinach, cucumber and bean sprouts.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2011, 08:19:20 PM by Zarkon » Logged
wonderpug
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« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2011, 09:08:06 PM »

You're not going on a diet. Diets usually end after some period of time. You are switching to a healthier and maintainable new lifestyle.

What are you using to find your calorie estimates?
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naednek
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« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2011, 09:12:25 PM »

That's a weird breakfast Tongue
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« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2011, 09:19:58 PM »

Quote from: wonderpug on October 03, 2011, 09:08:06 PM

What are you using to find your calorie estimates?

I overhauled my diet about a month ago, and have found the DailyBurn app to be invaluable in the process.  I'd highly recommend you use it (or something like it).
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Zarkon
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« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2011, 09:28:29 PM »

Quote from: wonderpug on October 03, 2011, 09:08:06 PM

You're not going on a diet. Diets usually end after some period of time. You are switching to a healthier and maintainable new lifestyle.

What are you using to find your calorie estimates?

I haven't gotten that far yet.
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Zarkon
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« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2011, 09:28:57 PM »

Quote from: naednek on October 03, 2011, 09:12:25 PM

That's a weird breakfast Tongue

I work 2:30p-11:30p.  smile 

But given that most breakfast foods are high in carbs, it works out. 
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« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2011, 10:20:22 PM »

Watch your salt intake. That is a killer. Despite you having soup - the salt will make you retain water.


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« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2011, 10:22:55 PM »

Quote from: Zarkon on October 03, 2011, 09:28:29 PM

Quote from: wonderpug on October 03, 2011, 09:08:06 PM

You're not going on a diet. Diets usually end after some period of time. You are switching to a healthier and maintainable new lifestyle.

What are you using to find your calorie estimates?

I haven't gotten that far yet.

It'll really make the process a lot easier if you use some kind of tracking software.  I like MyPlate, but Gratch's DailyBurn or any of the other ones available will of course do the trick just fine as well.  You more or less just have to type in what you're eating and have it tell you the calorie totals.  It can still be annoying and difficult to estimate portion/serving sizes, but that's going to be a challenge even if you're tracking things solo.

Quote from: Roman on October 03, 2011, 10:20:22 PM

Watch your salt intake. That is a killer. Despite you having soup - the salt will make you retain water.
I'm going to hazard a guess that water retention isn't his biggest issue right now.
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« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2011, 10:47:37 PM »

Quote from: wonderpug on October 03, 2011, 10:22:55 PM

Quote from: Zarkon on October 03, 2011, 09:28:29 PM

Quote from: wonderpug on October 03, 2011, 09:08:06 PM

You're not going on a diet. Diets usually end after some period of time. You are switching to a healthier and maintainable new lifestyle.

What are you using to find your calorie estimates?

I haven't gotten that far yet.

It'll really make the process a lot easier if you use some kind of tracking software.  I like MyPlate, but Gratch's DailyBurn or any of the other ones available will of course do the trick just fine as well.  You more or less just have to type in what you're eating and have it tell you the calorie totals.  It can still be annoying and difficult to estimate portion/serving sizes, but that's going to be a challenge even if you're tracking things solo.

Quote from: Roman on October 03, 2011, 10:20:22 PM

Watch your salt intake. That is a killer. Despite you having soup - the salt will make you retain water.
I'm going to hazard a guess that water retention isn't his biggest issue right now.

If he's trying to lose weight than it should be. I just lost 35lbs by eating healthier - and that included reduced salt intake among other things.
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« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2011, 12:09:13 AM »

I used Daily Plate on livestrong as well.  It's free and really effective.

Can't stress enough the importance of exercise... you can change the way you eat and lose weight slowly and be frustrated at how long it takes, or you can change the way you eat and start working out and watch the weight drop like a stone.  I dropped 60 pounds in 4 months by tracking calories, working out 6 times a week for an hour or so, and being disciplined - all without going to any gyms (just going outside, and doing DVD workouts in my living room).  I'm down more than 80 pounds from my heaviest, and life is so, so much better now.

I'd say start with something that won't murder you (like a 20 - 30 minute workout 3 times a week) for a couple of weeks, then start adding days... then start adding time.  It will be really, really hard when you start, but it will be really, really worth it if you stick it out and see your life start to change.  18 months ago I was 280lbs and feeling like crap... this past summer I did 72 and 50 mile mountain bike races, and I feel great. I'm at a point where my activity level is so high that I can maintain my current weight (215 - 220) without having to worry that much about what I'm eating.

Feel free to PM if you need advice or support.  If you have the discipline to stick with it, and remember why you are doing it, you can get it done!  Good luck!
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« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2011, 12:49:48 AM »

Oh and if you're at all interested in a support group style atmosphere (aside from this thread, that is) you should definitely consider joining in the Octopus Overlord Weight Loss Thread.  It can be immensely encouraging to be around others having the same kinds of successes and struggles you're going to have.
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« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2011, 12:56:38 AM »

Congrats man. It isn't an easy road. Don't get discouraged by the scale.

Also, remember your body is a giant sack of water (even skinny people!). Your weight will fluctuate throughout the day. What I do is, first thing in the morning I go to the bathroom (1 or 2, whatever is in the tubes slywink) and then I weigh myself. Everyday. Even if I don't like the numbers, I'll also comment on the recent happenings so that I can revisit it later and find patterns.

I highly recommend using the online tool tracker for hacker diet. It will graph your progress, and, given the data you put in, give you a reasonable measure of your actual weight. (what is on the scale is merely a measurement in time- it isn't actually your body weight).

Link: http://www.fourmilab.ch/hackdiet/online/
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« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2011, 01:03:00 AM »

Third vote for My Plate from Livestrong.

Before the potato hating anti-carb cavemen jump in, here's a delicious side dish that I make pretty often: Weight Watchers Oven Fries.

Get 2-3 red potatoes (about 8 oz) and slice them into french-fry sized strips.
Soak them in water for 10-30 minutes, then drain and pat dry with paper towel.
Preheat oven to 375.
Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray (canola or olive oil).
Arrange the fries in a single layer on the sheet and spray them lightly with cooking spray.
Salt and pepper the fries (I like cayenne pepper).
Bake on the top oven rack for about 30 minutes, flipping them once halfway through.

Yields a generous serving of crispy fries with just 200-250 calories. I had these tonight with a grilled chicken breast and an ear of corn for a very hearty meal of about 600 calories. I've come to like them as much as, or more than, real french fries.
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« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2011, 01:07:37 AM »

I'm not taking over someone else's thread. I'm proud that Zark is working on himself. I've provided links to what is working for me over in my thread, and if he chooses to want to hear about the science, power to him. If he's just going to jump right in and make changes that yield results (even temporary) chances are he won't bounce back up to his current weight - at least, not in any rapid fashion.

Good for you man, good for you.

Also, Ironrod, your fries sound tasty. biggrin
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« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2011, 01:08:41 AM »

Just one piece of advice.  Please be careful taking your advice from people on the internet.  They can tell you what works for them but they dont know your situation and advice involving exercise and diet should be cleared with your physician.  Good Luck!
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« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2011, 01:10:16 AM »

Interesting, I have also just started my own healthier eating plan to lose weight.  Tomorrow morning will be my first week weigh-in, but hopefully it is the first of many.  

I have a problem sticking with long-term life changes, and I tend not to join those weight loss threads since so many people start out waaay healthier than me to begin with and it is just a bit depressing to see them complaining about being 5 pounds overweight or something.
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« Reply #16 on: October 04, 2011, 01:18:24 AM »

Quote from: rshetts2 on October 04, 2011, 01:08:41 AM

Just one piece of advice.  Please be careful taking your advice from people on the internet.  They can tell you what works for them but they dont know your situation and advice involving exercise and diet should be cleared with your physician.  Good Luck!

Well... on this one I can say that perhaps having your physician assist you in tracking progress and monitoring key elements (such as cholesterol etc) during your change. You may consider his or her advice, but they are just as reliable on the advice portion as anyone else. If they had the cure, then we wouldn't have an epidemic.
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« Reply #17 on: October 04, 2011, 01:43:33 AM »

I did this: http://www.fourmilab.ch/hackdiet/ and lost around 60 pounds. Whether or not you go through with it I recommend the tools to track your weight. Your weight will fluctuate wildly but don't get discouraged! The graphs on this help because it tracks the trend. Also the main purpose of exercising is that you maintain your muscle since that is what will go first and then the fat. You have a lot of muscle right now since you are carrying around that 350 pounds. The exercise will help focus your weight loss into the fat. I wish I did more exercising when I was losing weight.  And I also can't stress enough that your diet has to go into a lifestyle change, and it is the little things, if you go to subway or a sandwhich place get a small sandwich not a large, switch to ice tea and cut out all soda. And you have to cut down on snacks or switch to low/no calorie snacks. Portion control is the best to keep eating what you enjoy eating, you just have to regulate and not eat nearly as much of it. Those are the main things that changed with me. Basically you have to get into the mindset of you eat what your body NEEDS, not what your stomach/brain WANTS.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2011, 01:46:17 AM by SkyLander » Logged

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« Reply #18 on: October 04, 2011, 01:45:40 AM »

Quote from: wonderpug on October 04, 2011, 12:49:48 AM

Oh and if you're at all interested in a support group style atmosphere (aside from this thread, that is) you should definitely consider joining in the Octopus Overlord Weight Loss Thread.  It can be immensely encouraging to be around others having the same kinds of successes and struggles you're going to have.

Thanks for the plug, pug.
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« Reply #19 on: October 04, 2011, 03:04:49 AM »

My thoughts on weigh ins (e.g. what worked for me):

Do them once a week, and always do them at the same time of day... e.g. I would do them on Tuesday morning's after I worked out.  If the number is depressing, weigh yourself at the next time a day or two later, and you might be pleasantly surprised - as noted, we are sacks of water, and stuff fluctuates.  I think weighing every day (for me) is counter productive, because it's hard to see progress, and it's easy to go up a pound one day to the next and feel discouraged - a more infrequent interval gives you a good indication of your overall progress.

Like any endurance event, weight loss is mostly mental - if you can get yourself in that mindset of 'I am going to do this, and I am absolutely not going to quit. Now put one foot in front of the other', then you will find success.

There are great stories in various running/cycling mags about people doing exactly what you are trying to do, and changing their lives - look for great examples like that. Make a ritual of finding reinforcement that your path will yield results - make it your monday morning stoke out or something. smile
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« Reply #20 on: October 04, 2011, 03:13:43 AM »

Yeah, most people will recommend doing weigh-ins no more than weekly.  You're looking for long-term trends, not day-to-day progress, and a daily weigh-in increases your odds of getting needlessly discouraged.

If you're familiar with how to do it, a progress graph with trend lines charted is even better than just plotting points.  You can get the occasional low-to-no progress week or even the dreaded uptick week but see that in the big picture you're still on target.
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« Reply #21 on: October 04, 2011, 04:12:22 AM »

Quote from: Purge on October 04, 2011, 01:18:24 AM

Quote from: rshetts2 on October 04, 2011, 01:08:41 AM

Just one piece of advice.  Please be careful taking your advice from people on the internet.  They can tell you what works for them but they dont know your situation and advice involving exercise and diet should be cleared with your physician.  Good Luck!

Well... on this one I can say that perhaps having your physician assist you in tracking progress and monitoring key elements (such as cholesterol etc) during your change. You may consider his or her advice, but they are just as reliable on the advice portion as anyone else. If they had the cure, then we wouldn't have an epidemic.

Seriously?!  You find the advice of a trained physician to be on par with your average joe on the internet?  Interesting
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« Reply #22 on: October 04, 2011, 04:20:25 AM »

Oh please let us not go down that road. 
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« Reply #23 on: October 04, 2011, 05:58:26 AM »

I honestly don't know that your average physician is any more useful in terms of *advice* than people who have lost the weight... look at what has actually, *sustainably worked* for people, and pick a route that makes sense and seems sustainable *to you*.

That is not to say that a physician won't know of things that are effective... but it's not like getting healthy is a medical condition that *requires* treatment.

That is a lot of *.
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« Reply #24 on: October 04, 2011, 12:11:48 PM »

I have started putting on the pounds and I need to change my diet habits, but I have no idea on where to begin.  I am not at active as I used to be, so I am assuming this where the weight is coming from.  So where do I start? 
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« Reply #25 on: October 04, 2011, 12:18:38 PM »

Quote from: Soulchilde on October 04, 2011, 12:11:48 PM

I have started putting on the pounds and I need to change my diet habits, but I have no idea on where to begin.  I am not at active as I used to be, so I am assuming this where the weight is coming from.  So where do I start? 

It all starts with little things.  Do you eat out often, especially fast food?  Try planning ahead and preparing a lunch from home rather than depending on a quick fast food fix.  Do you drink a lot of sugar-laden soda or energy drinks?  Try drinking more water instead.  But the biggest challenge may be portion control.  Pretty simple changes in portions can go a long way in reversing the weight gain trend.

It really doesn't require a complete lifestyle overhaul, at least not at first, as small adjustments can make a big difference.
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« Reply #26 on: October 04, 2011, 12:39:05 PM »

Quote from: PeteRock on October 04, 2011, 12:18:38 PM

Quote from: Soulchilde on October 04, 2011, 12:11:48 PM

I have started putting on the pounds and I need to change my diet habits, but I have no idea on where to begin.  I am not at active as I used to be, so I am assuming this where the weight is coming from.  So where do I start? 

It all starts with little things.  Do you eat out often, especially fast food?  Try planning ahead and preparing a lunch from home rather than depending on a quick fast food fix.  Do you drink a lot of sugar-laden soda or energy drinks?  Try drinking more water instead.  But the biggest challenge may be portion control.  Pretty simple changes in portions can go a long way in reversing the weight gain trend.

It really doesn't require a complete lifestyle overhaul, at least not at first, as small adjustments can make a big difference.

Yeah, I tend to eat out alot...   I hate to cook and I tend to eat out more when I am actively dating.  So I already figured I need to stop the fast food  and late night snacking.  I don't drink soda, but drink iced tea, juices and beer. Beer is the one thing I will struggle with to ween myself off of.  It was suggested to me to start drinking wine, but I have never been a wine drinker...
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« Reply #27 on: October 04, 2011, 12:57:45 PM »

Quote from: Soulchilde on October 04, 2011, 12:39:05 PM

Yeah, I tend to eat out alot...   I hate to cook and I tend to eat out more when I am actively dating.

One thing to consider is depending on the type of restaurant or what you have for dinner, if a large portion try taking some home.  Or not necessarily feeling like you have to finish every bite.  Obviously this is counter intuitive to our culture as we've all heard about the starving children in China, but taking some food home isn't a bad idea, or enjoying a cup of coffee rather than getting dessert AND coffee.

Quote
So I already figured I need to stop the fast food  and late night snacking.

Eating after a certain time at night is kind of a myth, especially since growth hormone and thyroid hormone (responsible for metabolism) peak at night.  Of course, WHAT you eat will certainly have some effect on weight gain.  Try to limit your snacks to things with more protein and less processed carbs.  Proteins and healthy fats are better than sugars and starches.

Quote
I don't drink soda, but drink iced tea, juices and beer.

Juices, while assumed to be a healthier alternative to soda, often contain a TON of sugar.  Check the packages to see just how much.  Consider natural or unsweetened juices.  And while many don't like it, water is simply better for you.  Hydration is an important aspect of living healthier and cutting out unnecessary sugars.

Quote
Beer is the one thing I will struggle with to ween myself off of.  It was suggested to me to start drinking wine, but I have never been a wine drinker...

As much as I drink, I'd be a hypocrite if I told YOU that you had to cut out beer to lose weight.  Sure, you'll lose weight FASTER if you do, but you can still lose weight and not sacrifice EVERYTHING you enjoy.  I lost 40 pounds back in 2009 and have still kept it off despite my drinking habits.  Granted, I lift three days a week, play competitive softball twice a week, and am down to around 10% body fat, not to mention maintaining a fairly active lifestyle, but you CAN lose weight and STILL drink beer.   icon_cool

I'd say start with little changes.  Don't make too drastic a change or cut out all you enjoy or else you risk burning out rather quickly.  Grab a bottled water instead of juice with lunch, say no to a late-night craving and as my wife likes to say, "Go to bed having won."  Or try something low in sugar and higher in protein.  Take home some of your lunch or dinner if a large portion.  But if you go straight to living on salads and rice cakes you'll go mad and eventually kick down the door of an area McDonalds and wrap your lips directly around the ice cream machine.  Also, I'd recommend avoiding weighing yourself every day.  Little to no progress can be discouraging, but if you make changes for an entire week you WILL see a difference during weekly weigh-ins. 

Finally, what about doing something more active during a date?  Instead of the stereotypical "dinner and a movie", which can often involve soda, popcorn, candy, etc, why not go biking, hiking, or even walking around an area museum.  Playing basketball, frisbee, or something else at the park?  You're less likely to eat something heavy or calorie-ridden when active, and active dates can be just as much fun if not more so.
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« Reply #28 on: October 04, 2011, 01:09:58 PM »

One other thing I just thought of.  Are you planning to try to be a little more active?  For example, exercising, lifting weights, doing a little cardio, or playing a sport?  If so, and you might be looking for some added motivation, the Fitocracy site a few of us frequent is completely addictive as Fitocracy appeals to the gamer in me by offering experience points, achievements, and quest challenges to achieve while pursuing general fitness goals.  You can even earn points for taking the stairs instead of the elevator.  If you thought achievement points on Xbox 360 sometimes motivated points whoring, you have no idea how bad it can be on Fitocracy (found myself doing 20 squats JUST to earn the achievement - wound up waddling out of the gym like John Wayne).  Just something to consider if fitness is next on your list. 
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« Reply #29 on: October 04, 2011, 01:16:30 PM »

Quote from: Soulchilde on October 04, 2011, 12:11:48 PM

I have started putting on the pounds and I need to change my diet habits, but I have no idea on where to begin.  I am not at active as I used to be, so I am assuming this where the weight is coming from.  So where do I start? 

Two words, At Kins!

You don't have to be active to lose weight on atkins, and you can eat just about as much as you want. The new atkins book (2010 publish date I believe) was written by three doctors all of whom were carrying on where Atkins left off and included a ton of new information including fast food and restaurant choices when you eat out.
Believe it or not you can eat fast food every day on atkins, not be very active, and still lose weight. (Although of course being active helps but the weight disappears regardless.)

I'm coming very close to getting back on it again.. I lost so much weight on atkins last time I was on it while eating so much (eating 20 wings late night was a common thing) that it's a worth wild diet that actually works. The problem is, sticking to it. Being of an irish background I love potatoes.. french fries especially, and those are a big no on atkins. You can drink diet soda (preferably ones sweetened with splenda - like diet rite) all you want, but no "regular" soda and unfortunately, no beer.

If I do make the decision to go back on atkins again (very likely) I'm going to go out one last time and fill up on tons of baked potatoes, french fries, pizza, a few cold beers, an x-large pepsi, and maybe a milk shake to water it all down!
When I went through the corrections academy our first day our instructor said something similar, for those who didn't get in shape before the academy, you better go out tonight and get those double quarterpounder meals with super sized fries because come tomorrow, we're going to kick your ass! Enjoy it while you can..
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« Reply #30 on: October 04, 2011, 01:34:45 PM »

Quote from: rshetts2 on October 04, 2011, 04:12:22 AM

Quote from: Purge on October 04, 2011, 01:18:24 AM

Quote from: rshetts2 on October 04, 2011, 01:08:41 AM

Just one piece of advice.  Please be careful taking your advice from people on the internet.  They can tell you what works for them but they dont know your situation and advice involving exercise and diet should be cleared with your physician.  Good Luck!

Well... on this one I can say that perhaps having your physician assist you in tracking progress and monitoring key elements (such as cholesterol etc) during your change. You may consider his or her advice, but they are just as reliable on the advice portion as anyone else. If they had the cure, then we wouldn't have an epidemic.

Seriously?!  You find the advice of a trained physician to be on par with your average joe on the internet?  Interesting

You can read my response here as I'm not interested in spinning out Zarkon's thread in a conversation that is really part of my thread.

In short, a physician can give you advice, but they are likely going to regurgitate the same stuff that people have been saying for years : eat less, move more. That isn't valuable information, and if you choose to take a path that isn't congruent with that advice you're going to be second-guessing yourself.

Your body will show you what works for you.

My advice, and I'm sure Crux's as well, is trying to go more primal/paleo - basically cut your simple carbs (glucose, corn and grain based products and tuber vegetables such as potatoes) and up your protein and natural fat consumption to compensate. For the first week expect to be cranky and wanting to dive into a pool filled with ice cream - it's an addiction like any other.

It's nice to be able to trust your hunger. I now eat several small snacks a day, based on my bodies demands and not the reflex of saying "oh, it's time to eat!". I didn't have lunch yesterday, simply because I wasn't hungry. We had a crappy evening with all kinds of time constraints and we ended up picking up A&W.

I had two burgers with no sauce or buns. I ate tomato, lettuce, cheese and bacon on the first burger. I got two bites into the second burger, and stopped. I wasn't hungry any more. No 20 minute waiting crap. I didn't eat any onion rings or fries, and I drink either water or caffeine-free teas (generally herbal). A little later I had maybe 10 concord grapes grown off the vine next door.

Didn't eat anything else, only because I wasn't hungry. "Mealtime" is now based on my body, and not my mind. It's hard though, sometimes I catch myself going to graze with the herd even though I'm not hungry.  Three months ago, I doubt I could NOT eat when everyone was eating.

As for late-night snacking, your body goes into a state of ketosis overnight which is a good thing (energy operation without carbs). Having high protein snacks (esp. slow release proteins found in things like cottage cheese or Syntha-6) can help. I used to do that, I don't bother anymore. I'm not hungry.
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« Reply #31 on: October 04, 2011, 01:37:46 PM »

Oh, about my comment on weighing every day - I use it in conjunction with the hacker diet online tool (as stated above). The comment about today's weight is a plot point that it uses to trend and calculate your actual weight (the red line) - I'm not suggesting you weigh yourself every day and not use the tool - it would lead to frustration. The thing is, with the tool you'll get to trend your weight loss and be able to look back on it, and also read your comments. 10 years from now some other GT'er will ask for help, and you'll be able to point to more than just anecdotal evidence ... you'll have tracked your success in a measurable format.
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« Reply #32 on: October 04, 2011, 01:53:51 PM »

Lots of good ideas in this thread, thought I'd throw in one more that's been working for me so far.  I got it from a workout guru buddy of mine, and have been pleasantly surprised by the results.  Losing weight is all about simple math, really.  Here's the formulas he gave me:

Quote
Step 1. Measure your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR).
o   Men: use this equation to determine your BMR:  67 + (6.24 x weight in pounds) + (12.7 x height in inches) – (6.9 x age) = BMR

Step 2. Multiply your BMR by your Activity Level to determine how many calories you burn daily.
o   Sedentary:  1.15 multiplier
o   Light activity (normal, everyday activities):  1.3 multiplier
o   Moderately active (exercise 3 to 4 times per week):  1.4 multiplier
o   Very active (exercise 4 to 5 times per week)   :  1.5 multiplier
o   Extremely active (exercise 6 to 7 times per week):  1.6 multiplier

3,500 calories equals one pound. Every calorie counts…so should you. Calories are much more important than fat content.

Calculate the required calorie intake to meet your personal goal. This will give you an idea of how many calories you need to cut and/or the impact of gaining just one pound of new muscle. So here is the artistry of this approach: You may not need to “diet” in the traditional sense, but you do need to measure your caloric intake.

So in my case, my BMR (the number of calories I naturally burn during the day with my activity level) is 2,769, which adds up to 19,383 over the course of a week.  If I want to lose my goal of 1 pound per week, I need to eat 3,500 calories less than that, or 15,883 (2,269/day, on average).  Pretty simple, right?

I've been using this approach for 4 weeks now, and am right on track so far (have lost 4 pounds).  This is where a calorie counting app or software becomes critical so you know how much you are eating each day.  I've also tried to generally be more healthy (i.e. cut out sodas, eat more fruits & vegetables, stay away from junk food, etc.) and work out for at least 45 minutes every day (25 minutes intensive lifting, 20 minutes cardio), which makes me feel significantly better.  It's nothing fancy, but I can tell it's working.  I've got a Excel spreadsheet "scoreboard" that I've been using...happy to share if anyone wants it.

Of course, there's ways to make this significantly more complex when you start calculating carbs/fat/protein intake, how much muscle vs. fat you are burning, etc.  I'll probably get into that once this new routine becomes more of a habit, but I'm not too worried about it right now.
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« Reply #33 on: October 04, 2011, 08:20:30 PM »

So.  How do you determine the # of calories in a salad? :p
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« Reply #34 on: October 04, 2011, 08:35:45 PM »

Quote from: Zarkon on October 04, 2011, 08:20:30 PM

So.  How do you determine the # of calories in a salad? :p

You put a Tongue but it's worth taking seriously. smile

First, health benefits for something as simple as even lettuce isn't as straightforward as it would seem to be.  Iceberg lettuce isn't bad for you, but it's mostly useless.  Some fiber, I guess.  Other types of lettuce and greens have immensely higher nutrition values, and more fiber to boot.  Calorie content is negligible all around.

Other veggie salad fixin's like tomatoes & carrots have some small amount of calories, but the health benefits are so great that I personally think it's better to just think of them as 'free' foods, calorie restriction-wise.

Then you've got the not so calorie-free toppings.  Croutons are high in them, as is cheese, of course.  Eggs and meat will also be significant additions.

Then there's salad dressing.  I think completely avoiding the obviously 'bad for you' dressings, like buttermilk ranch, is probably a good idea.  But I also think people overdo it on the low-cal or no-cal dressing options.  I believe the thinking that some quantity of 'good fat', like olive oil, is good to include in your diet.  It helps the meal feel more satisfying (and taste better) so you don't feel as tempted to eat something more substantial afterward.

Just don't fall into the trap of thinking that salad automatically = healthy.  Some McDonald's salad options can have just as many calories as a Big Mac.
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« Reply #35 on: October 04, 2011, 09:36:34 PM »

Right.  So this was my breakfast today (always updated in the original post, btw!)

 Spinach salad with approx. 8oz toppings including:  Butternut squash, edamame, beet, green beans, cauliflower, cucumber, carrot, bean sprouts, feta cheese, dried cranberry, sunflower seeds, salt, pepper and flax seeds with Red Wine vinaigrette for dressing.
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« Reply #36 on: October 04, 2011, 09:56:23 PM »

Quote from: Zarkon on October 04, 2011, 09:36:34 PM

Right.  So this was my breakfast today (always updated in the original post, btw!)

 Spinach salad with approx. 8oz toppings including:  Butternut squash, edamame, beet, green beans, cauliflower, cucumber, carrot, bean sprouts, feta cheese, dried cranberry, sunflower seeds, salt, pepper and flax seeds with Red Wine vinaigrette for dressing.

Ah, gotcha.  Watch out for the sunflower seeds - when I get them in the shell they're time consuming enough to eat that I don't overdo it, but if I get them preshelled it's ridiculously easy to consume a huge amount of calories fast with them.  Dried cranberries can also border on candy-like depending on if they're sweetened and by how much. 

With a dish as complex as that, I would either just eyeball it or find a similar enough type of salad listed in the Daily Plate to use for the calorie estimate.  If it's something I expected to have often, I'd take the time to measure everything one time around and save it as a favorite meal so that I could just type "Zarkon's Salad Surprise" for each future time eating it.
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« Reply #37 on: October 04, 2011, 10:19:35 PM »

Quote from: Purge on October 04, 2011, 01:34:45 PM

Quote from: rshetts2 on October 04, 2011, 04:12:22 AM

Quote from: Purge on October 04, 2011, 01:18:24 AM

Quote from: rshetts2 on October 04, 2011, 01:08:41 AM

Just one piece of advice.  Please be careful taking your advice from people on the internet.  They can tell you what works for them but they dont know your situation and advice involving exercise and diet should be cleared with your physician.  Good Luck!

Well... on this one I can say that perhaps having your physician assist you in tracking progress and monitoring key elements (such as cholesterol etc) during your change. You may consider his or her advice, but they are just as reliable on the advice portion as anyone else. If they had the cure, then we wouldn't have an epidemic.

Seriously?!  You find the advice of a trained physician to be on par with your average joe on the internet?  Interesting

You can read my response here as I'm not interested in spinning out Zarkon's thread in a conversation that is really part of my thread.

In short, a physician can give you advice, but they are likely going to regurgitate the same stuff that people have been saying for years : eat less, move more. That isn't valuable information, and if you choose to take a path that isn't congruent with that advice you're going to be second-guessing yourself.

Your body will show you what works for you.

My advice, and I'm sure Crux's as well, is trying to go more primal/paleo - basically cut your simple carbs (glucose, corn and grain based products and tuber vegetables such as potatoes) and up your protein and natural fat consumption to compensate. For the first week expect to be cranky and wanting to dive into a pool filled with ice cream - it's an addiction like any other.

It's nice to be able to trust your hunger. I now eat several small snacks a day, based on my bodies demands and not the reflex of saying "oh, it's time to eat!". I didn't have lunch yesterday, simply because I wasn't hungry. We had a crappy evening with all kinds of time constraints and we ended up picking up A&W.

I had two burgers with no sauce or buns. I ate tomato, lettuce, cheese and bacon on the first burger. I got two bites into the second burger, and stopped. I wasn't hungry any more. No 20 minute waiting crap. I didn't eat any onion rings or fries, and I drink either water or caffeine-free teas (generally herbal). A little later I had maybe 10 concord grapes grown off the vine next door.

Didn't eat anything else, only because I wasn't hungry. "Mealtime" is now based on my body, and not my mind. It's hard though, sometimes I catch myself going to graze with the herd even though I'm not hungry.  Three months ago, I doubt I could NOT eat when everyone was eating.

As for late-night snacking, your body goes into a state of ketosis overnight which is a good thing (energy operation without carbs). Having high protein snacks (esp. slow release proteins found in things like cottage cheese or Syntha-6) can help. I used to do that, I don't bother anymore. I'm not hungry.

I don't want to spin this off either but my point was if Z is weighing in at 360 lbs,  unless hes 7'2" hes significantly overweight and there are serious health risks involved when changing your diet and activity level.  My recommendation was for him to be able to do so safely, with a physicians guidance.   How foolish of me.  Carry on.
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« Reply #38 on: October 04, 2011, 11:49:37 PM »

Quote from: kratz on October 04, 2011, 03:04:49 AM


Like any endurance event, weight loss is mostly mental - if you can get yourself in that mindset of 'I am going to do this, and I am absolutely not going to quit. Now put one foot in front of the other', then you will find success.


My wife always gets discouraged and falls off the wagon after a few weeks because she gets overwhelmed by her overall goal -- 60 pounds -- instead of focusing on the realistic and manageable 1-2 pounds a week. Concentrate on what's achievable, not on what seems impossible.
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« Reply #39 on: October 05, 2011, 12:30:20 AM »

And I did say the physician has their place in his plan- just be aware that their advice isn't gospel. Monitoring blood/sugar, bp, cholesterol and the like is important- certainly at that weight. I was there (365lbs), at 5'10ish.

But I don't go to an electrician to fix my PC. Their knowledge applies to part of your structure, but what they advise doesn't achieve long-term weight loss. There's a reason they call it yo-yo dieting. You need to make it stick and doctors advising the same "sensible" that hasn't worked and lay it on peoples brains (guilt, willpower) ain't helping.

All I did was point that the "moderation" crap that's being fed to us doesn't work, and I'm pretty passionate about it. I want Zark to succeed- not for my own edification, but for his own health. I've been thee, and it is very discouraging.
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