Intake help

sun_fish
sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
I hope you two can provide some help for me, I am frustrated with my stall in weight loss. Some weeks I know it is because I am eating too much, but overall I feel I should be losing on my average intake. I would like to lose about 20 more pounds. It seems like I need to be around 1400 calories to lose, but what is happening now is that my lifting is really hard on that intake. I do All Pro, and the last 2 weeks on heavy day I found myself shaking towards the end of my workout, and even medium days felt really difficult to just get through it. At the beginning of this cycle (4) I retested my 10RM, and am still under those weights by about 20% so I don’t feel like I am lifting more than I should. Well, maybe more than I should on 1400 calories :grumble:

Provide your stats (height/weight/age/bodyfat% if you know it/etc)
5 ft 1 inch/135 pounds/52 years old (in 2 weeks)/around 30% according to online calculators

What's your current gross intake of calories, on average?
Last 2 weeks: 1350
2 weeks before that: 1800 (2075 and 1350)
4 weeks before that: 1529 (a 5 week time period but incomplete log for 1 of the weeks)
4 weeks before that: 1671

What's your current average intake of protein, carbs, and fats, in grams? (GRAMS, not percent!)
Last 2 weeks: 92/139/48
2 weeks before that: 96/186/68
4 weeks before that: 96/162/53

Do you use a food scale and measure everything?
Yes

Do you track all of your intake, daily? (Everything?)
Yes, with very few exceptions. Last time I didn’t log was around Halloween week when I started eating a lot of candy and it evolved into a 6 day candy fest with some other high calorie food thrown in for good measure. Prior to that I had a 2 week period in June that I didn’t log. Otherwise, when I log, I log every bite.

Do you take cheat days or days off?
It is my intention to work treats into my daily goal, with holidays and events going slightly over, and still having my calories average out through the week. However, it doesn’t always work this way, as I find myself (like Halloween week) impulsively eating the way I did my whole life, not paying attention to calories and macros. So yes, I would call those cheat days, though they are not planned. I am really working to stop being so impulsive and practice portion control, but it is a work in progress.

How much weight have you lost so far and over what time period?
43 pounds since April 2012

Describe your activity (exercise and non exercise) and did you change that activity within the last couple of months?
In general I am lightly active. I work as a pre-school/kindergarten teacher full time. I do the usual housework, errands, etc. I have made an effort to increase my NEAT over the last several months. My exercise routine is this:
MWF
AM: Yoga – 25 minutes
PM: All Pro minus bicep curls and calf raises, 2 core exercises (2x10-12), 2 glute exercises (2x10-12), mobility/foam rolling, stretching. All Pro I do goblet squats and DB single arm floor raises, others with barbell.
TTh
AM: 30 min exercise bike (light effort, about 10 mph)
PM: mobility/foam roll
Sat & Sun: generally a walk (2 miles) or hike (one hour) one or both days
Additionally I will sometimes walk during the week, schedule permitting (2 miles)
Walking, hiking and yoga have done for years.
Exercise bike started 8 months ago.
All Pro started 5 months ago.
Mobility work started about 4 months ago.
Additional core work started doing consistently about 2 months ago, but was doing it off and on for about a year.
Glute stuff started last week on the recommendation of a sports medicine doctor and physical therapist I have been seeing for about a year (for pain in knees, shoulder, and SI joint dysfunction) but had also done it earlier in the year when I was doing physical therapy (Jan-June).
So only the glute stuff is new.

How long have you been stalled and if it is not a complete stall please be very specific as to how much you have lost over the stalled period.
On September 16 I hit 136.6.The following 11 weeks I bounced between that and 142.2. Last week I was 136.2. The last 2 weeks I have been averaging 1350 calories and weighed in at 134.8 this week. Measurements have stayed the same.
From the end of April to September 16 (20 weeks) my total loss was 12 pounds and averaged 1562 calories for the weeks I logged, but during that time I had 2 weeks I didn’t log and know I went over most of those days. Around the middle of that time is when I started All Pro (July 8).
For 2 weeks Oct 7-21 I was able to do very little exercise due to SI joint pain.

Are you breastfeeding?
No

Do you have thyroid issues/risks or PCOS?
No

Also, please ensure that you have your diary open. NOTE: It needs to be set as public even if you are on our friends list. Do not set it to friends only, set it to public
It’s open

I would really appreciate any help you can offer.
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Replies

  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
    Tagging
  • Sarauk2sf
    Sarauk2sf Posts: 28,072 Member
    Tagging also.
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    55 hours 17 minute bump :flowerforyou:
    I was going to bump at 48 hours but I wanted to sleep in :smile:
  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
    Please set your calories and macronutrients as follows. This is gross calorie intake, you will not eat back exercise calories on this intake. We would like a follow up in 1 week with performance and weight updates.

    1350 calories
    135 carbohydrate
    45 fat
    100 protein

    Let us know if you have any questions. We don't intend to ignore your performance issues, but we'd like to see what your weight does on this intake.

    Within this next week, you may want to evaluate your pre-workout nutrition in case you have the ability to position some of your carbs prior to training to see if that improves performance.
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    Thanks so much for the help! I will follow your advice and check back in a week.
  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
    Thanks, locking this thread. Please PM me, or Sara, in week when it comes time to update. Include a link to this thread in your PM.
  • Sarauk2sf
    Sarauk2sf Posts: 28,072 Member
    Unlocked at OPs request.
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    Despite the onslaught of daily holiday goodies coming into work, a Christmas party, and my husbands birthday, I was able to stick to my calorie goal (averaged 1348) this past week. Challenging, but not impossible, and I am very happy to be on the weight loss train again. Weight was 132 this morning, yay! I know you guys know this – but for anyone else who is reading this - pre-logging was the key to hitting my macros. I’m kinda proud of myself for getting so close each day.

    Regarding the lifting, I did as you advised and ate some carbs prior, which did improve things some. On my heavy day it was hard to get through it and I still got shaky but not as bad as the 2 weeks before. Medium day was difficult to get through too, and had more of a wobbly in the legs feeling rather than shaky. I am starting to think that it is mainly squats that are giving me problems. Of course it is hard to know for sure, unless I take a day to do only squats, and a different day to do everything except squats. I noticed that my heart rate rises and I end up breathing pretty heavy by the end of my work sets (just on squats). I don’t think I am doing my reps too fast, but I did slow things down a bit and rested longer between work sets. I still felt pretty wiped out though, and I guess that made the rest of the exercises harder than normal. And just to add, squats have always been really hard for me. Earlier this year, I was unable to do even one bodyweight squat. Yep, that’s right, not even one. So to be doing 32 to 48 – with weights - is great progress I know. But still, they are damn hard.

    Being very new to lifting, I don’t know how much of what I am experiencing is normal. I keep reading that lifting can be very difficult on a deficit. While I was at a deficit when I started All Pro, obviously I have cut calories further now as well as the weights being heavier (I have gone up each cycle). If you think it’s normal then I will put on my big girl panties and get on with it. If you don’t think it is normal, I am willing to change things up and try a different approach or modification. Overall, I am really enjoying lifting and I like All Pro, and I am concerned that I will stop liking it if I continue to have problems.
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    This is not an impatient bump - I know you guys have been busy with the holidays, setting PR's and puking - just wanted to add one more piece of info about where I am cycle wise that might be helpful.

    This was week 5 for me, must have been a Christmas miracle that I got all 12 reps on everything. So due to start a new cycle on Monday the 30th.

    Still hovering around 132 and did my measurements, 1 inch off waist, 1 inch off *kitten* (I have so been wanting to use that word Sara!), and 1/2 inch off thighs. Very happy about that!

    Ok, I will now wait patiently! Thanks again.
  • Sarauk2sf
    Sarauk2sf Posts: 28,072 Member
    Despite the onslaught of daily holiday goodies coming into work, a Christmas party, and my husbands birthday, I was able to stick to my calorie goal (averaged 1348) this past week. Challenging, but not impossible, and I am very happy to be on the weight loss train again. Weight was 132 this morning, yay! I know you guys know this – but for anyone else who is reading this - pre-logging was the key to hitting my macros. I’m kinda proud of myself for getting so close each day.

    Regarding the lifting, I did as you advised and ate some carbs prior, which did improve things some. On my heavy day it was hard to get through it and I still got shaky but not as bad as the 2 weeks before. Medium day was difficult to get through too, and had more of a wobbly in the legs feeling rather than shaky. I am starting to think that it is mainly squats that are giving me problems. Of course it is hard to know for sure, unless I take a day to do only squats, and a different day to do everything except squats. I noticed that my heart rate rises and I end up breathing pretty heavy by the end of my work sets (just on squats). I don’t think I am doing my reps too fast, but I did slow things down a bit and rested longer between work sets. I still felt pretty wiped out though, and I guess that made the rest of the exercises harder than normal. And just to add, squats have always been really hard for me. Earlier this year, I was unable to do even one bodyweight squat. Yep, that’s right, not even one. So to be doing 32 to 48 – with weights - is great progress I know. But still, they are damn hard.

    Being very new to lifting, I don’t know how much of what I am experiencing is normal. I keep reading that lifting can be very difficult on a deficit. While I was at a deficit when I started All Pro, obviously I have cut calories further now as well as the weights being heavier (I have gone up each cycle). If you think it’s normal then I will put on my big girl panties and get on with it. If you don’t think it is normal, I am willing to change things up and try a different approach or modification. Overall, I am really enjoying lifting and I like All Pro, and I am concerned that I will stop liking it if I continue to have problems.

    Addressing your comment re squats. Yep, they can get your heart rate up and wipe you out sometimes.

    I start panting if I go above about 5 reps - it's my version of cardio ;-P

    As well as trying to time your carbs, make sure you get enough rest between sets.

    Excellent progress on the lift as well as the eats and your weight.

    My lifts start to struggle while on a deficit, and I get whiny and grumpy. This is not good for adherence for me, at all, as I tend to focus on my lifting progress as it takes my mind off my swingy weight and the fact that I have to restrict my ice cream consumption to one serving a day. When my lifting starts getting hard to progress (or even goes down), it is not pretty. This is the stage when generally I would recommend a diet/training break if it makes sense based on your diet/weight loss to date. So, with that in mind, please keep us apprised of how your lifting and related motivation is going.

    Very good news about your decrease in inches.

    Could you check back with us in a week with your weight as well as how you are feeling with your workouts.
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    Thanks Sara, I will continue on and check back in a week. One question regarding rest time - All Pro says 90 seconds between work sets, (there was some reason for the 90 seconds, can't find it now of course) which is what I had been doing until last week when I went 2 1/2 minutes. That seemed to be very helpful. Is there a maximum time that I should not be going over? Is 2 1/2 minutes ok?

    Right now, I feel pretty motivated to keep going. I think the longer rest time and carbs before, as well as starting a new cycle (8 reps sounds heavenly!) will help keep me on track for a while longer. I do have a trip coming up in about 6 weeks, with no access to weights, so that will be a training break and will take a diet break too. It's a yoga retreat so there will be yoga (obviously) and lots of other physical activity and nutritious meals served, so while it will be a nice break, it shouldn't set me back too far.

    Thanks again for your help.

    Edit to add from All Pro regarding rest times:

    4. Question: Why should I keep to 60 s rest between warm up sets and 90 s between work sets?
    A: The rest times are cut a bit short on purpose. If you make them longer strength gains will out pace endurance and size gains.....and the program will stall long before it should. You have to push the endurance side hard to increase work capacity up as fast as possible. The programs beyond this level require a higher work capacity.
  • Sarauk2sf
    Sarauk2sf Posts: 28,072 Member
    Rest times of about 90 seconds are more optimal for hypertrophy. However, as you are on a deficit, and I am a big believer that enjoying your lifting session > any minor possible gains in any event, if having slightly longer rest times means you will get through the workout better, then take slightly longer. 2 - 3 minutes is fine imo.

    Sounds like the retreat is an ideal break for you.
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    Rest times of about 90 seconds are more optimal for hypertrophy. However, as you are on a deficit, and I am a big believer that enjoying your lifting session > any minor possible gains in any event, if having slightly longer rest times means you will get through the workout better, then take slightly longer. 2 - 3 minutes is fine imo.

    Sounds like the retreat is an ideal break for you.

    Makes sense - thank you!
  • Sarauk2sf
    Sarauk2sf Posts: 28,072 Member
    Locking so we can track active threads better. Please PM either myself or SideSteel when you are ready to update us, including a link to this thread, and we will unlock so you can do so.
  • Sarauk2sf
    Sarauk2sf Posts: 28,072 Member
    Unlocked at OPs request
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    Hi and Happy New Year! Thanks for unlocking for an update.

    Weight was 130.2 Monday (1/6) morning, yay! Just to recap (calories in parenthesis from previous week):
    12/9, 134.8 (1329)
    12/16, 133.4 (1415)
    12/23, 132 (1348)
    12/30, 133 (1471 but possibly higher due to not weighing/measuring a couple of meals and one restaurant meal)
    1/6, 130.2 (1311 - much higher activity level this past week, about 4 ½ more hours than usual of walking, hiking and yoga)

    So definitely consistent losses after reducing my calories. Mostly feeling ok as far as not a lot of hunger, but at times hard to stick to mentally. I try to include treats but there isn’t a lot of room for something really deliciously good or a couple of cosmopolitans. But I feel like I can see the finish line, so that is motivating me through tougher times.

    Lifting is going well overall, finished week 1. I toyed with the idea of not increasing the weights on squats, but decided to go ahead and do 5%. So far, so good, no shakiness, but then week 1 is usually easy! Keeping with carbs before my workout along with longer rest times both seem to help. I think I have also wrapped my head around the fact that it is just going to be hard.

    Sara, your post on goals made me think about ….well, goals! So I’m sorry if this next part is a bit rambly, I will try to keep it concise. I do goblet squats, and the DB is getting a bit hard to hoist it into position. But, no squat or power rack to do BB squats (I did actually try them early on by having hubby lift it onto my back, but went to goblet when BB squats didn’t feel right form wise). What I’m doing is getting the plates on the DB, squatting down to pick it up with both hands, then standing up and getting my hands into position. And for OHP, I use a BB, but again no power rack so I have to clean the bar, which I know isn’t ideal. For OHP I was thinking it might be better to use DB’s, and I know a lot of people use DB’s for quite a long time and to much higher weights than I am doing (cmeirun comes to mind), but wouldn’t it be the same as cleaning the bar, just getting those things into position? Am I missing something on using DB’s? So, I guess my question is – is there any benefit to doing OHP with DB’s vs cleaning the bar, and is there a better way to get the DB into position for goblet squats. Or....you could just tell me to quit messing around and get a rack. I have the space, and can swing the mula. Which brings us back to the whole goal thingy, since I started lifting I guess I have always envisioned just that. I see myself doing free weights for a long time, and don’t plan on joining a gym. The other piece of information that complicates this for me is that I have mild scoliosis, and I think I have been reading too much online about the “dangers” (oh noes!) of BB training and scoliosis. Though I think even after reading the warnings I am not exactly sure why I shouldn’t. I haven’t had any problems so far, but I guess the information I am coming across makes me a little concerned about when the weights get heavier. Your advice would be greatly appreciated!

    Thank you so much for all your help.
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    :flowerforyou: (bump!)
  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
    1) Your rate of weight loss looks great. Keep intake and activity where they are at.

    2) Regarding OHP dumbbell vs barbell there are some differences. Barbell will be easier to load since DB's force you to load in 5lb increments (typically). Barbell OHP requires more core stability, slightly more technique involved as you push the hips/torso/head underneath the bar. DB's tend to be better to address imbalances vs barbell movements.

    This doesn't make one movement arbitrarily superior to another, just some differences to keep in mind.

    In your case (I'll defer to Sara regarding the scoliosis piece), you may want to consider getting a rack if space and money aren't an issue, mainly for squatting.
  • Sarauk2sf
    Sarauk2sf Posts: 28,072 Member
    I think that a rack would be a great investment (but I am biased) as you could do the BB squats, OHP etc far more easily (and safely). Due to your scoliosis, I would still keep DB work in to work on any imbalance. This is not to say that you should not use BBs - just that you should be more conscious of also using DBs.
  • sun_fish
    sun_fish Posts: 864 Member
    Thanks so much - I will keep with the intake and activity. I am thinking of having a cheat meal one of these days, just to stay sane! But really overall, I am feeling ok and definitely like my results.

    I am excited about the idea of buying a rack! A little nervous too, but mostly excited. I see this one talked about in the forums a lot. Your thoughts? http://www.amazon.com/Powerline-PPR200X-PowerLine-Power-Rack/dp/B000VLRVSC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1389460397&sr=8-1&keywords=power+rack

    Regarding incorporating DB's, what would that look like? For example, for OHP, would I say on Monday use DB's, then on Wednesday use the BB? Or use DB's for a week, then the following week use the BB? Or would I just use the DB's if I am feeling an imbalance? Not sure if I am overthinking this, just want to make sure I am using them in the most optimum way.

    Thanks again, I really appreciate your help.
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