The Neverending Story

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The Neverending Story

Postby Zohar » Thu Dec 10, 2009 6:36 am UTC

I've been thinking for a while now whether to open up a thread about myself or not. Last night when I got on the scale I decided it's time to make a difference and this morning I thought I should start something here, maybe it will make me more committed.

Some history:
I've been overweight since practically forever. I remember extravagant eating as early as age six, my dad told me I wasn't thin before that either. I was never into any sports. I know most of the theory behind weight loss - it's not a one-time-operation, it's changing the way I live. It's not about starving myself or stricting myself, it's about moderation. I know a lot about what foods are good and so on, and I can cook. I'm also vegetarian (no fish, yes eggs and dairy).

I'm about 190 cms tall. The most I ever weighed was 115 kilograms (BMI of 31.9). This was my "normal weight" - if I did nothing, I would get there and not more. I tried to lose weight before my military service, during it and again about a six months ago. Six months ago I started from about 115, got down to 105 or so and kind of stuck. For a few weeks I haven't weighed myself, mostly because I knew I gained some. Last night I weighed myself and I was a bit over 110. It was the end of the day and I weigh myself in the morning, so you could probably take about 1-1.5 kilos (or even more) from that, but still, it's bad.

The plan:
I don't want to change what I'm doing very drastically. My main problem is not being able to say no. For example, I once ordered in and the place had a minimum amount to order, so I got two meals instead of one and told myself I'll eat the other one the next day. I ate both of them on the same night. Last night I made "hot cocoa" out of two whole packets of bitter chocolate (200 grams) and 1 small carton of whipping cream (250 ml). So you see, I have a problem with convincing myself not to do something.

I do yoga, but I have trouble sticking with it, since I have to go after I come back home from work. A lot of times I eat something when I get back to work and I feel heavy and can't exercise. I'll talk mostly about weekdays (I work about 7.30-16.30 at an office).

My breakfasts are just a bowl of low-fat, whole wheat cereals (without sugar) with some low-fat milk. I don't mind sticking with that, I think it's OK. I usually eat them at 8.00-9.00.
I have lunch at 13.00. Most days I bring food from home, once or maybe twice a week I'll eat out. I try to stick to relatively healthy food. If I'm eating any carbs they'll be whole-grain (pasta, rice etc) and maybe accompanied with a salad. This week, for example, I had a veggie baked dish and bean soup. When I eat out, I'll try to stick with big salads and so on.
Afternoons when I get home (17.00) are problematic. I usually feel like eating something and it's not always good. I think I'll try sticking with two slices of whole-wheat bread and a fruit (apple or orange for example).
I'll try to make evening meals around 19.00-21.30 and have them be lighter than lunch. Some eggs, a salad, stuff like that. The main thing though, is being aware of quantity.
After that, maybe a yogurt, if I need it.

The question is where do I put sports in? I tried running in the past but it's difficult for me to stick with it. Yoga is very nice but it's not particularly aerobic (though hopefully if I do eat light during the afternoons I'll feel better about yoga). Swimming worked pretty well but I didn't have a plan, so I didn't stick with it. Plus, paying for both yoga and swimming is expensive. So I'm kind of at a loss about that...

For starters, I want to get back to double digits. I'm sure I wouldn't be too thin if I weighed 90 kgs, but let's start with weighing 99 and have that psychological ceiling of 1000 above my head.

I'm hoping to keep this as a food diary and maybe hear some advice and encouragement.
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Re: The Neverending Story

Postby TGM » Thu Dec 10, 2009 7:02 am UTC

Good to hear that you've started on the right track.

I really like bikes for exercise. The advantage of a stationary bike is that you can do it while watching TV, and you can do endurance or higher intensity work as needed. It's also good on your knees.

I lost about 15+ kilos a while ago by doing some endurance training (cycling at a reasonable pace) for 40-80 minutes every day. I started with just 20-30 minute "rides" every other day and worked up from that. In the end I could do 80 minutes every day without being sore or feeling tired the next day. I lost 10 kilos in the first four months and the other seven took about five months, If I had done some interval training I could have done this more efficiently.

As for diet, I wasn't really on one. I tried to just restrict myself to only having one bad piece of food a day, e.d. only one chocolate bar a day. I also wasn't drinking any soft drink at the time.

I'm not saying this will work for you or that this is the best way to go about losing weight, but it worked for me.

If I were to recommend something to you it'd be to do some strength training and focus on cardio, with high intensity interval training being the most efficient way to lose fat. (I think.)

Someone else would be able to advise you about diet better than I could.
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Re: The Neverending Story

Postby jtw » Thu Dec 10, 2009 12:46 pm UTC

To get started, you might try and find one thing that you can give up which might make a difference. Don't start out trying to transform yourself in a day.

Do you drink pop/soda/soft drinks? Replace with water or tea. Those calories alone can help you lose weight.
Do you have a "snack routine" or regular dessert after a meal? Skip the cookie or candy bar after lunch every day, or skip the bowl of ice cream after dinner.

Pick one sacrifice and stick with it, and then when you can see that you have enough self control to "quit," you'll be able to convince yourself to make bigger changes.
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Re: The Neverending Story

Postby Zohar » Thu Dec 10, 2009 1:01 pm UTC

That's basically what I'm going for. I think I generally eat OK, but I have some bad habits I need to get rid of and I need to control my quantities. I've started today - didn't have anything sweet after lunch. I hope I'll be able to stick by it.
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Re: The Neverending Story

Postby Zohar » Sun Dec 13, 2009 7:57 pm UTC

An update:
I weighed myself on Friday morning, on an empty stomach, and things are not that bad - I was 107.8. Still more than the last time I weighed myself, but definitely not as bad as I thought.

I've started skipping a sweet after lunch. I also thought of a way to convince me to go to yoga - only go on days when I don't have to do something between work and yoga, and eat a fruit at work before I leave so I don't get home hungry. With that in mind, today I ate:
One pita for breakfast (because I forgot my cereal, won't happen again I promise!)
For lunch I had whole wheat couscous with lentil sauce, and rattatouille (will be standard lunch until Thursday).
I had an orange in the afternoon, then a coffee with three small biscuits (like, 15 grams of biscuit total, maybe 80 calories?)
Then I went to yoga and now that I got back had shakshouka (two eggs over a tomato sauce base) with two slices of bread and some humus.
For dessert I had a low-fat yogurt with some nuts, two more biscuits and a teaspoon of silan (a sort of syrup made of dates, not sure how it's called in English).

I think it's a good day, overall. Maybe I could have cut down on the biscuits, and definitely I should avoid the pita in the future, but not bad.
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Re: The Neverending Story

Postby PictureSarah » Sun Dec 13, 2009 8:27 pm UTC

Have you tried using some kind of tracking site or device, Zohar? I use sparkpeople.com. It gives you a daily amount of calories needed to lose, gain or maintain your weight, along with daily fitness goals (how many calories you need to burn). It really helps me quantify everything. If you want, it even gives you daily menus and workout routines.
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Re: The Neverending Story

Postby Zohar » Sun Dec 13, 2009 9:35 pm UTC

I haven't, but so far I've been pretty comfortable keeping track of what I eat by hand, not really counting everything. If I see it doesn't work, maybe I'll switch to stricter regimes.
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