Close to maintenance and suddenly HUNGRY!

245

Replies

  • Chris_Pierce
    Chris_Pierce Posts: 267 Member
    On days that I want to eat more I work out more to cover it. Carbs tend to be less filling than protein and fats, so that might help?
  • Try switching some of your protein intake from liquids (supplements, smoothies, etc) to solids, such as grilled chicken breast, etc. That usually helps me feel a LOT more satisfied!
  • Newbeginnings46
    Newbeginnings46 Posts: 40 Member
    Thank you very much for your original post and peoples responses. I have been experiencing huge cravings and usually give in with high sugary foods usually chocs. Was feeling pretty disgusted with myself because I have worked hard to get to this weight and had visions of weight increasing again. Thank you again.
  • DancingMoosie
    DancingMoosie Posts: 8,589 Member
    I would still recommend increasing calories gradually as you approach maintenance. I say this because I had to go to the ER for bradycardia, and the only thing the doctor could tell me was to eat at least 1800 calories. I had been at around 1600 then. Slowly increasing to 1950 NET was to stabilize between 110 and 115lb, and I'm 5'3". Yes, your maintenance for 5'1" will be slightly lower, but it might not be as low as you think. If you eat at maintenance for your goal weight, you sill still be in a deficit now, just a smaller one.
  • zoeysasha37
    zoeysasha37 Posts: 7,089 Member
    Bump
    ( don't wanna lose this, cuz I wanna read threw later)
  • nxd10
    nxd10 Posts: 4,571 Member
    I said this on another thread recently, but . . .

    When I get near my 'ideal' weight, I have fewer reserves to draw on when it's been a while since I ate. It's not that I need more calories, but when I am hungry, I'm not a little peckish, I need to eat NOW.

    The same thing happened when I was pregnant and when I was a skinny teenager - not enough reserves.

    To get around this I . . .

    Never skip meals
    Have something small around for a snack when I feel hungry. 5 or 6 cashews a piece of fruit, or a cookie stave me for a couple hours if I'm hungry at 11 or 4 and don't add a lot of calories.
    Eat more protein.

    If you've been overweight, you may be somewhat insulin resistant - especially if anyone in your family has diabetes. I'd just barely hit overweight when I started this, but had been on the edge of it for 15 years. For me, if my carbs get over 50% I get really hungry and I can't lose weight no matter what I do. More protein and fat, not hungry, weight falls off.

    For me, the worst thing I can do when I'm feeling really hungry is eat something too sweet and high in carbs. Frosted cake (yum) makes me want more. Just a few nuts and I'm good. If I eat a cookie, it's something boring, small, and not sweet.

    I'd also note that in the Spring we tend to underdress for the weather and may actually use more calories keeping ourselves warm.
  • Foodiethinking
    Foodiethinking Posts: 240 Member
    I can't comment on the majority of your post, but to being cold, definitely!
    I get cold, and my parents call me weird but I'll be wrapped up with the heating on and still cold! Then it's time to break out a cuppa to clutch onto and sip :)
  • nxd10
    nxd10 Posts: 4,571 Member
    I spent two weeks cleaning my cold basement last year and thought I was going to starve to death if I didn't up my calories. BRRR!!!
  • adorable_aly
    adorable_aly Posts: 401 Member
    Have you fiddled about with your meal timings? Obviously it doesn't make a difference to weight loss, but it could help with the hunger. For example, snacking for me just seems to make me more hungry, so I try to stick to breakfast, lunch and dinner, and a post workout shake. Or possibly another snack could help you. I'd play around with it.
  • SoSheDid_
    SoSheDid_ Posts: 16 Member
    This is happening to me too right now. I just upped my calories from 1400 to 1550 (changed to the TDEE - 20% method). I've been feeling better with more energy, but also way more hungry. I've only done this for about a week, so I may just need more time to adjust. My macro goals are 40/30/30, but my carbs usually end up low for the day.

    Did anyone watch the HBO video that was linked? It's fascinating (and scary!), but the way the conducted the study makes me wonder about the validity of the results for someone who is losing weight slowly and adding weight training to help offset the metabolic rate drop. They fed participants in the study 800 calories a day of an all-liquid diet until they lost a little over 10% of their body weight - I would feel like crap with tons of cravings too if I ate like that! Anyone have links to studies where they followed people maintaining significant weight loss by following a modest calorie reduction and cardio/weight training regimen? I'd love to know if these people's metabolic rates were that much slower when they reached their goal weight, too.
  • heybales
    heybales Posts: 18,841 Member
    This is happening to me too right now. I just upped my calories from 1400 to 1550 (changed to the TDEE - 20% method). I've been feeling better with more energy, but also way more hungry. I've only done this for about a week, so I may just need more time to adjust. My macro goals are 40/30/30, but my carbs usually end up low for the day.

    Did anyone watch the HBO video that was linked? It's fascinating (and scary!), but the way the conducted the study makes me wonder about the validity of the results for someone who is losing weight slowly and adding weight training to help offset the metabolic rate drop. They fed participants in the study 800 calories a day of an all-liquid diet until they lost a little over 10% of their body weight - I would feel like crap with tons of cravings too if I ate like that! Anyone have links to studies where they followed people maintaining significant weight loss by following a modest calorie reduction and cardio/weight training regimen? I'd love to know if these people's metabolic rates were that much slower when they reached their goal weight, too.

    Very true, rarely are there studies with slow reasonable loss, takes too long to get enough data to be useful, and expensive.

    The blog link did show even with retaining LBM, the RMR and TDEE dropped below expected for awhile, and then started to recover.
    But the blog link did show recovery is possible, which also points out if reasonable in the first place, likely wouldn't have been a problem.

    Here's study with more reasonable and lifting, they maintained RMR, but that still doesn't speak to TDEE. As blog link shows, you can have RMR at one point, but body is forcing TDEE slower to compensate.

    http://fampra.oxfordjournals.org/content/16/2/196.full

    "The calorie level may be of greater importance in explaining retention of fat-free mass. Much of the work regarding changes in fat-free mass and resting metabolic rate in response to hypocaloric diets have implemented diets containing 800–1200 kilocalories per day. Such low calorie diets result in a severe calorie deficit and the need to oxidize protein. Information regarding the participants' dietary intake in this study is scant. "

    Meaning, they think the folks ate more than they reported (not surprising) causing the deficit to not be as great. Not sure why they didn't do the math on the loss amount to see that indeed the deficit wasn't that great.
  • jillyrobb
    jillyrobb Posts: 36 Member
    What kind of workouts are you doing? (Sorry if you said, and I missed it.) I recently started with kettlebells to try to reshape and get stronger, and I find that I'm ravenous all day long on those days when I work out in the morning.

    When I burn 600 calories in a morning swim, I'll eat a good breakfast, and maybe an apple or a some string cheese to keep me going if lunch will be late, and I'll be fine. But 15-20 minutes of intense kettlebells--which, if you judge by a HRM, burns maybe 250 calories, max--and I'll get hungry every few hours all day (and I know it's hunger, because I get weak or woozy if I don't eat something). It's really clear that I'm burning more calories during the day than my heart rate during the workout would indicate. I was skeptical, but I'm beginning to realize that there's definitely something to that claim that lifting weights causes a greater sustained calorie burn than plain cardio.

    So if you're doing new/more frequent, heavier, or longer weightlifting workouts, maybe that's the reason you're hungry all the time?
  • imjolly
    imjolly Posts: 176 Member
    Interesting that I found your post. I have been feeling the same way, I feel like I am always hungry. I am about 3-5 pounds from my target weight.
    I am currently 125 lbs and I was going to try to lose another 3-5 lb but recently I was considering maintaining since I am experiencing the same thing you discussed. I thought maybe it was because I had surgery 3 weeks ago and maybe my body needed more fuel to heal, though I'm not sure if that is true. I am not exercising like I normally would, I'm only allowed to walk for 6 weeks. Pre-surgery I usually exercise 5-6x a week and would either bike, swim, run, lift or do yoga. Now I eat more often when I am hungry and I have been going over my calorie count almost everyday. It is strange since I never felt hungry getting to this point.

    I also am colder than usual.

    Thanks for your post. It is nice to know I'm not the only one.
  • iknowit
    iknowit Posts: 8 Member
    Did you recalculate your current maintenance calorie limit (according to your weight, height, sex) & then subtract 500 from that (if you are trying to loose 1 lb /week)?
  • Francl27
    Francl27 Posts: 26,373 Member
    What kind of workouts are you doing? (Sorry if you said, and I missed it.) I recently started with kettlebells to try to reshape and get stronger, and I find that I'm ravenous all day long on those days when I work out in the morning.

    When I burn 600 calories in a morning swim, I'll eat a good breakfast, and maybe an apple or a some string cheese to keep me going if lunch will be late, and I'll be fine. But 15-20 minutes of intense kettlebells--which, if you judge by a HRM, burns maybe 250 calories, max--and I'll get hungry every few hours all day (and I know it's hunger, because I get weak or woozy if I don't eat something). It's really clear that I'm burning more calories during the day than my heart rate during the workout would indicate. I was skeptical, but I'm beginning to realize that there's definitely something to that claim that lifting weights causes a greater sustained calorie burn than plain cardio.

    So if you're doing new/more frequent, heavier, or longer weightlifting workouts, maybe that's the reason you're hungry all the time?

    Lol so much this. It's ridiculous. 20 minutes of heavy lifting and I'm starving all day. It sucks.
  • Linnaea27
    Linnaea27 Posts: 639 Member

    If you haven't been at a weight long, it is entirely possible and even likely for your body to be rebelling and trying to put weight back on. But at least you know what it's doing. :-) If you are not at a certain weight for a while, your body remembers your heavier setpoint weight and tries to bring you back there. Stay strong and don't give. You won't die from being hungry. But if you give in, old habits will reappear very fast, robbing you of progress. Don't give in, but a weekly splurge day doesn't hurt and can even make up for losses.

    As far as being cold, yes, that is a symptom of a calorie deficit. I know that from December to February, I was so, SO cold and even a gentle breeze of just remotely cool air would tear a hole in me. The solution, I found, was to drink milk at one of your meals, which can replenish any lost magnesium and otherwise offer up some very good nutrients all-round. Your body will continue to adapt in time.

    EDIT: Make sure your weight loss goals are reasonable.

    Thanks! I'm definitely not going to give in-- I want to get to my goal! I have been 105 lbs at certain times in my adult life and was healthy and liked myself at that weight, so I think my goal is reasonable for short, medium-to-small-framed me. :) It's interesting that you bring up getting enough magnesium-- I recently was told by a naturopathic doctor friend that I am likely low in magnesium and just started taking a supplement that will give me extra magnesium.

    I do hate feeling kind of hungry. :P I'm ready to be done with losing weight-- I'm impatient but being small and having never had much to lose in the first place (about 10 lbs), I've been going at it slowly to make sure it's healthy and sustainable.
  • Linnaea27
    Linnaea27 Posts: 639 Member
    I would still recommend increasing calories gradually as you approach maintenance. I say this because I had to go to the ER for bradycardia, and the only thing the doctor could tell me was to eat at least 1800 calories. I had been at around 1600 then. Slowly increasing to 1950 NET was to stabilize between 110 and 115lb, and I'm 5'3". Yes, your maintenance for 5'1" will be slightly lower, but it might not be as low as you think. If you eat at maintenance for your goal weight, you sill still be in a deficit now, just a smaller one.

    Thanks! I sort of forgot about the weight-loss method of eating at the maintenance level for your desired end weight. I'm going to see what that might be and see what happens if I aim for that number instead of what I'm being given by the site. I imagine that would make this easier and more pleasant for me. :)
  • Linnaea27
    Linnaea27 Posts: 639 Member
    I said this on another thread recently, but . . .

    When I get near my 'ideal' weight, I have fewer reserves to draw on when it's been a while since I ate. It's not that I need more calories, but when I am hungry, I'm not a little peckish, I need to eat NOW.

    The same thing happened when I was pregnant and when I was a skinny teenager - not enough reserves.

    To get around this I . . .

    Never skip meals
    Have something small around for a snack when I feel hungry. 5 or 6 cashews a piece of fruit, or a cookie stave me for a couple hours if I'm hungry at 11 or 4 and don't add a lot of calories.
    Eat more protein.

    If you've been overweight, you may be somewhat insulin resistant - especially if anyone in your family has diabetes. I'd just barely hit overweight when I started this, but had been on the edge of it for 15 years. For me, if my carbs get over 50% I get really hungry and I can't lose weight no matter what I do. More protein and fat, not hungry, weight falls off.

    For me, the worst thing I can do when I'm feeling really hungry is eat something too sweet and high in carbs. Frosted cake (yum) makes me want more. Just a few nuts and I'm good. If I eat a cookie, it's something boring, small, and not sweet.

    I'd also note that in the Spring we tend to underdress for the weather and may actually use more calories keeping ourselves warm.

    I'm definitely noticing that I need to have snacks available all the time, and if I get really hungry, I also get VERY grouchy. I've never been overweight (though when I started losing weight I was on the high end of the "healthy/normal" BMI) and am not diabetic (though my grandfather was). I am, however, somewhat hypoglycemic-- undiagnosed but it's pretty obvious that's an issue I have. So I agree about keeping good low-sugar snacks around! And good point about keeping carbs relatively low, I guess that is something I should try-- I started my weight loss journey by eating far fewer carbs than I was used to, but have been increasing them slightly. I'm still losing weight-- but more slowly. Maybe that's part of the reason why.
  • Linnaea27
    Linnaea27 Posts: 639 Member
    Thanks everyone! I did not expect my thread to be the top thread in the Maintenance board for so long! I guess it's struck a chord.

    I feel like if I quote everyone, my replies will go on and on, as I'm not sure how to quote multiple people in a single post (is that even possible on this site?). So I'm going to respond to people's questions all at once here.

    Snacking/meal timing: I do sometimes think that if I were to eat dinner earlier (right away when I get home from work around 6 pm) I would end up eating less each day; even if I snack on my way home, I'm always too hungry when I get home to go an exercise, and I much prefer exercising in the afternoon/after I come home, so I end up snacking a bit more before I can go work out. That's one thing I think I'm going to try to change. It definitely seems like eating small snacks makes me hungrier, but I need to snack so I don't plunge into the hungry dumps! I think I have some meal timing and macro experimentation to do.

    Trying the TDEE-20% method: I guess that might be a good option; the trouble with it is that the amount I exercise varies a good deal from day to day. I suppose I could try to average that out to figure TDEE and try that method for a few weeks and see how it works. However, I really do like how MFP's method encourages more exercise directly by telling you you can eat more-- that helps motivate me.

    Heybales, thanks for your input-- unfortunately my internet is painfully slow so it's difficult to watch videos online. :( I have certainly heard various things about hormones and the desire to eat-- leptin increasing when one increases one's food intake after a while at a deficit, and so on. I figure that is a big reason why I'm feeling hungrier!

    Workout type and timing: I usually work out in the afternoon/evening since I'm totally not a morning person and just getting up, making food, and getting to work in the morning is plenty to worry about. :) Recently, though, I was still taking classes for my master's degree and I often had more time in the mornings and could work out before leaving the house for the day-- and did I ever notice the effect of weight workouts on being hungry! I often do circuit training routines with 6-12 lb dumbbells for my exercises, and those in particular made me super hungry if I did them in the morning. Part of the reason I haven't made an effort to keep doing morning exercise is because I decided it made me too hungry for the whole day, though that is decently mitigated by having enough fat & protein for breakfast and lunch.

    Recalculating current maintenance calories, etc.: No, I haven't recalculated those to subtract weight loss calories-- someone else suggested that earlier and I'm definitely going to do so! :)

    I think I got everyone's questions/feedback. Sorry for the wall of text!! :flowerforyou: