Maintaining is hard work.

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You can't exactly under-eat because you'd lose weight but of course you can't over-eat because then you'd gain. And there's no additional caloric intake so you're not getting bigger at the gym either. It's like a weight-control limbo... a balancing act.

Am I the only one?

Replies

  • nxd10
    nxd10 Posts: 4,570 Member
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    I don't think that's true.

    You've upped your calories from the calorie deficit you lost on. You want to average that over a week.

    If you eat back your exercise calories, you can bulk up all you want and put on muscle at the gym. If you work out a LOT at the gym and eating back your calories doesn't do it - you're still losing weight - eat some more.

    But yes, it's a balancing act. All food intake v. weight gain is a balancing act. We got here because we erred on too much input for our output. Now we need to find a good balance. On average.
  • twinketta
    twinketta Posts: 2,130 Member
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    I have been in maintenance for over a year.

    I feel like I eat a lot better and of course exercise a lot more than I did before I got on the weight loss wagon.

    I don`t feel like it is a balancing act... I feel like it is knowledge, having learnt what I can eat, how much I can eat, learning about macros. How exercise is not to be seen as something to avoid.

    If I want to have a meal out/glass of wine/chocolate/crisps for sure I will. But I won`t over indulge like I used to and I will push myself for the next few days with exercise.

    Balancing or knowledge I don`t know for sure
  • auntiebabs
    auntiebabs Posts: 1,754 Member
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    True, it's tough, much harder than losing I think.
    I really glad it occurred to me gradually increase my calories when losing my last 10 lbs so that I was eating near maintenance when I reached my goal.

    (Okay MFP gives me 1600 cal to Maintain 140 lb @ 50 y.o., but eating 1500 and I'm maintaining 145-148 lbs, which is well inside the healthy range and a heck of a lot better than the 175-180 lbs that I was at 3 years ago.)

    Still always trying to tweak and come up with new strategies.
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,874 Member
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    I've actually found maintenance to be pretty easy. That's what the body wants to do and is best at....I don't stress if I'm not right on the number...some days I'm over my theoretical maintenance calories and some days I'm under...in general I consume about 2700 - 2900 calories per day, and on occasion, even more. I've found it to be more of a range of calories than one particular number. I'd say I average out to be around 2800 per day or so over the course of a week.

    Really, you have to consistently and chronically under-eat or over-eat to override your body's ability to maintain weight or to cut/gain fat stores. And really, as far as maintaining goes, I've personally found that as long as I rock my fitness I don't really put on any fat and can eat pretty much whatever I feel like eating.

    Actually I should have prefaced this by saying I've actually gained about 5 Lbs in the past 7 months...but I'm leaner for it; it's not fat so I'm not concerned with it.
  • Roz2889
    Roz2889 Posts: 71 Member
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    Omg maintaining is so much harder than losing weight! Really struggling not to over eat. How do I find the balance and just eat normally i.e. Not constantly think about food!?
  • Seesawboomerang
    Seesawboomerang Posts: 296 Member
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    I find maintenance easiest if I don't stress about numbers. The number on the scale, and the calorie goal.

    That said, I do like to log because I stay a little more accountable to myself. When I didn't log my food and exercise for 6-8 months or so, my weight began to slowly creep up.

    Even though I quite often go over calories day to day, keeping an eye on it seems be enough to stabilise my weight and measurements.
  • twinketta
    twinketta Posts: 2,130 Member
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    Omg maintaining is so much harder than losing weight! Really struggling not to over eat. How do I find the balance and just eat normally i.e. Not constantly think about food!?

    IMHO maintaining is when you reach a point of jumping from the weight loss or putting on weight if that is what you are wanting to do....and not worrying about food/calories/exercise like you used to when you started here.

    All I can suggest Roz, is that you have to find a happy medium and move from thinking about food. If you are unsure, then keep logging your diary each and every day. Learn what foods make you feel full, what exercise you are happy with and keep working at it.

    If I can do it you can too x
  • acogg
    acogg Posts: 1,871 Member
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    Tomorrow we will all wake up thin. Do you have any idea how many people would love to be in our shoes? Learning and memorizing what it takes to REMAIN thin and healthy is worth every bit of effort.
  • Jestinia
    Jestinia Posts: 1,154 Member
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    Tomorrow we will all wake up thin. Do you have any idea how many people would love to be in our shoes? Learning and memorizing what it takes to REMAIN thin and healthy is worth every bit of effort.

    Maintaining drives me berserk. But yeah, there is this.
  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,811 Member
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    You can't exactly under-eat because you'd lose weight but of course you can't over-eat because then you'd gain. And there's no additional caloric intake so you're not getting bigger at the gym either. It's like a weight-control limbo... a balancing act.

    Completely disagree! It's far easier than dieting to lose weight. More nice food to eat for a start. :drinker:
    Plus more energy, look better, feel better - what's not to like?

    As for "not getting bigger" - I'm consistently losing fat and gaining muscle while strength and fitness improves markedly. I don't want to be bigger or smaller but that shouldn't be your sole measure of success anyway.
  • rachjenn
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    You can't exactly under-eat because you'd lose weight but of course you can't over-eat because then you'd gain. And there's no additional caloric intake so you're not getting bigger at the gym either. It's like a weight-control limbo... a balancing act.

    Completely disagree! It's far easier than dieting to lose weight. More nice food to eat for a start. :drinker:
    Plus more energy, look better, feel better - what's not to like?

    As for "not getting bigger" - I'm consistently losing fat and gaining muscle while strength and fitness improves markedly. I don't want to be bigger or smaller but that shouldn't be your sole measure of success anyway.

    It can be their measure of success if they wish - everybody is different.
  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,811 Member
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    You can't exactly under-eat because you'd lose weight but of course you can't over-eat because then you'd gain. And there's no additional caloric intake so you're not getting bigger at the gym either. It's like a weight-control limbo... a balancing act.

    Completely disagree! It's far easier than dieting to lose weight. More nice food to eat for a start. :drinker:
    Plus more energy, look better, feel better - what's not to like?

    As for "not getting bigger" - I'm consistently losing fat and gaining muscle while strength and fitness improves markedly. I don't want to be bigger or smaller but that shouldn't be your sole measure of success anyway.

    It can be their measure of success if they wish - everybody is different.
    But how does that work when you are at maintenance? That would be doomed to failure! You either fail to maintain or you fail to get smaller/bigger. I think you overlooked the word "sole" by the way.

    I'm assuming that wanting to "get bigger in the gym" and being at maintenance means the OP wants to build muscle and lose fat - which is a recomp.
    If the OP already has the body composition he wants and wants to get bigger then maintenance is the wrong thing to do - he should be bulking.
  • PaytraB
    PaytraB Posts: 2,360 Member
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    Omg maintaining is so much harder than losing weight! Really struggling not to over eat. How do I find the balance and just eat normally i.e. Not constantly think about food!?

    I found this, too, for the first few months of maintenance. I've been on maintenance for about 9 months now and the best way (for me) to make it work is to average out my weekly calories. Each day, I eat normally and try to keep a reasonably balanced diet and I listen to my stomach (some days are hungrier than others) and try not to eat "just because" the food is there. In this way I go over my daily calories on some days and am under on others. But at the end of the week and/or at the end of a month, it balances out pretty well.
    The best tool I've learned here is to be more aware of what I'm putting in my mouth and whether it's for reasons of boredom, being social, seeing a tasty morsel, etc. I can work around these things now.

    Maintenance is good once we relax and realize that we have learned a lot through our weight loss journeys.
  • brenn24179
    brenn24179 Posts: 2,144 Member
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    yes it is hard work, that is why most put their weight back on. We like eating and don't want to do the work. I know I don't have a full button so I have to log. If I don't, consequences are not good. I struggle during this time of year badly, all the stress. I struggle when I am sick, just had a cold and wanted to eat salty stuff constantly. I struggle when I am sad, bored, cold. I just keep telling myself I have to do this, I have to take care of me. I am worth it.
  • perrinjoshua
    perrinjoshua Posts: 286 Member
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    I love that comment! Yes, count our blessings we have arrived at a healthy weight.
  • ibleedunionblue
    ibleedunionblue Posts: 324 Member
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    I'm finding it difficult too. First, my weight continued to drop so I added more calories. Then I put 4 pounds back on, and I got scared so I started to cut calories again. I struggle to find that right number of calories I need to maintain. I would like to stay between 142 - 145 pounds. I'm running between 60 - 80 miles a week. Trying to determine the number of calories I am truly burning, and maintain. Part of me still feels like I need to be in deficit mode, even though I have lost enough weight. Part of me struggles to let go of that phase. But the other part of me is trying to maintain. I eat more, than I am scared to weigh-in and afraid that the scales might climb.
  • rybo
    rybo Posts: 5,424 Member
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    I've found it very easy. I haven't logged in a very long time.
  • forevermaryb
    forevermaryb Posts: 108 Member
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    I am very close to maintenance. I would start now, but with the holidays coming up, I didn't think it would be a good idea. Back in 2006, I lost 50+ pounds and kept it off for 3 years. However, my bad habits slowly started coming back (eating whatever/whenever and not exercising), and by the end of the 5th year, I put on over 60 pounds. I felt like such a failure. I felt that everyone was looking at me and judging me for putting the weight (plus some) back on and I was uncomfortable in my own skin. Honestly, the idea of maintenance terrifies me. I was "successful" for a while, but then I wasn't. I worked SO hard to lose this weight again and I'm hoping that I've learned a better lesson. I think I'm always going to have to work at maintenance.
  • bbywajohny
    bbywajohny Posts: 4 Member
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    I'm finding it difficult too. First, my weight continued to drop so I added more calories. Then I put 4 pounds back on, and I got scared so I started to cut calories again. I struggle to find that right number of calories I need to maintain. I would like to stay between 142 - 145 pounds. I'm running between 60 - 80 miles a week. Trying to determine the number of calories I am truly burning, and maintain. Part of me still feels like I need to be in deficit mode, even though I have lost enough weight. Part of me struggles to let go of that phase. But the other part of me is trying to maintain. I eat more, than I am scared to weigh-in and afraid that the scales might climb.
  • bbywajohny
    bbywajohny Posts: 4 Member
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    Lol that sounds like me