Newbie needing help - muscle soreness, sleep, etc

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thestoryofangelina
thestoryofangelina Posts: 34 Member
edited June 2022 in Health and Weight Loss
Hi there! I am sorry this may be long but don't want to leave any details out. I am needing help with muscle soreness, sleep, what to do with your daily calories when you sleep in, etc...

I am 37, started at 370 lbs and the big goal is to lose 200 lbs. For a girl, I do have a lot of strength (farm kid) but also, a lot of fat obviously. I recently went from couch potato, no activity except one PT session a week and alcohol intake 15+ alcohol drinks a week, 4-5 times eating out a week, averaging 5-6 hours of sleep per day to starting a HITT program (3x 30 min per week), trying to hit 5000 steps a day, 1 time eating out per week, 2-3 alcohol drinks per week and 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

In 5 weeks I am down 13 lbs and while my brain is saying that isn't good enough I know it is great progress (of course we expect to lose it overnight right?)

My questions...
1. Muscle soreness question - As I have started ramping up trying to get more cardio and walking in during the past 2 weeks, my calves are killing me! I have done foam rolling and stretching, putting on icy gel and I've gone for a massage but can't do that everyday... They are fine until at night when I got to bed and then they ache something fierce and I cannot sleep. There is some relief from all of what I am doing but they are still keeping me awake. I aslo want to caveat that I do have good shoes with my orthotics. Any pointers?

2. Sleep - so with this new routine by the time Friday and Saturday come I am beat. I am sleeping for like 12 hours and missing breakfast. Should I try and force awake after 8? What do I do with those missed breakfast calories? Try and eat them still? Or eat them?

4. Speaking of calories... I have MFP set up for the 1.5lb weight loss (not adding back in exercise calories and set at sedentary lifestyle) but because of my current weight that is a LOT of calories. Do I need to eat them all? I find I am some days 200-300 calories short. (usually eating 1800-1900 with suggested 2120)

5. Rest days - I know I have put my body through a shock; so how many of these should I be aiming for? Right now I have the 3 times a week HITT (did that for 3 weeks, then started to increase walking on alternate days to 2 times per week) so are the 2 rest days enough? With being so tired I wonder if I am running myself ragged but also don't want to be lax with such a big goal.

6. Pre-workout - So before my workout I have a protein shake (almond milk, protein powder, tbsp peanut butter) but I find I need a little extra oomph. My trainer said to get some carbs - any tips of good carbs before a workout (I typically go to the gym between 5-6pm)

Thanks in advance for any insight. This has been a very trying 5 weeks but I have better energy when I am not dead tired and am feeling a lot better!

Replies

  • FunkmasterRex
    FunkmasterRex Posts: 153 Member
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    One of the things that I do in order to avoid cramping at rest and recovery is to drink loads of water. Your body needs it so I make sure it is always available for whatever internal functions your body needs at any time. I have a pitcher with a water filter so that I always have filtered water available for me to drink. Get two pitchers with filters if necessary, but I keep water filtering all the time.

    As water passes through you, vitamins and minerals are being flushed out of your body. In order to replenish these, particularly potassium, I keep bananas or berries around to replenish these nutrients. I do not eat vitamin supplements or gels or protein powder or pre-workout. They may be fine but who knows what they put in it that is not on the label. I prefer to get nutrition from food if it is available, but having worked on a farm, you probably know food production is not perfect either. It is a choice I make, but may not be practical for everyone.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,952 Member
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    Count me as another voice discouraging the HIIT. I injured my knees in 2009 and they are still not back to normal, despite considerable physical therapy and weighing much less than you do.

    I totally understand the impulse to drop the weight as fast as possible, but that can end up being counterproductive if you hurt yourself.
  • thestoryofangelina
    thestoryofangelina Posts: 34 Member
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    Hi all! Thanks for your comments and advice. Gonna reply to a couple things and clarify too...

    - I started the 6 week HITT program to give me some discipline and the rest on my own walking and weight training. I also wanted to mention that it isn't a hardcore HITT per say; the trainer is one on one and tailors it to your body and fitness style. They're super watchful about my heart rate, recovery and often moves are modified for someone at my low level. Maybe I should have used LITT or MITT (low/medium ITT)

    - That being said - the timing and jumping from nothing to 3x a week was pretty intense and I am looking forward to dialing it back a bit but am thankful for the jump start and discipline it gave me. I also need to dig deep and do some of that work on my own too (will be moving to twice a week training)

    - Thank you for the tips on walking. Often I pressure myself to be going faster but it solidifies that a good walk at a steady pace is OK!

    - I suspect that you were eating more than 2120 calories before starting down this particular weight loss path. Why is it hard to eat 2120 (plus exercise) now? Answer: a lot of it was eating out and alcohol (wine)
  • FunkmasterRex
    FunkmasterRex Posts: 153 Member
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    Thanks for the update. I suggest that when you walk, find the pace where you are comfortable while just at the cusp of being uncomfortable. That is the pace where you want to live in while breathing deeply and intentionally with good posture. Here you are concentrating on moving you body weight from point A to Point B efficiently and as easily as you can muster. This is a 100% body weight strength and endurance exercise using the largest muscle group in your body - your legs. Shed a little weight and gain a little strength every day.

    At your current weight, it is not an easy exercise and you have to be very aware of whether you are straining your heart, joints, bones, etc. You only get one body in your entire lifetime and it is up to you to take care of it the best way you can. You don't get another body. I try to take care of my body the way Yo-Yo Ma takes care of his instrument - as if it were a Stradivarius. In fact your health depends on your body-instrument so why not treat it as an immensely expensive Stradivarius? [As a side note, Ma plays a cello built by Domenico Montagnana although he borrowed the Pawle Stradivarius while his Montagnana was undergoing repair].

    Best to you and think of losing weight and gaining health as recrafting your body to be the best it can be to serve you in the best way that it can. If you find it difficult, I find it inspirational to watch athletes training for the special olympics. They are missing arms, legs and other things we take for granted. And it never deters them from getting to the goals that they are trying to achieve. Hope we all get there.
  • feisty_bucket
    feisty_bucket Posts: 1,047 Member
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    Hi. Good job so far. Out of order responses, sorry:

    >Should I try and force awake after 8?

    IMO, no way. If you can sleep, then sleep. I wouldn't force myself awake unless it's a must like a job or time-sensitive chores, etc. Sleep is our friend.

    >my calves are killing me! I have done foam rolling and stretching, putting on icy gel and I've gone for a massage but can't do that everyday... They are fine until at night when I got to bed and then they ache something fierce and I cannot sleep.

    That's a lot. I'd dial things back to walking and lifting. Save the HIIT for when you're lighter, 'cuz it's intense and can wreck you if you're trying it too early. DOMS is normal and will go away on its own after a few days/week, but I think you're pushing too hard. I'm skeptical that there's a real need for foam rolling.

    >Do I need to eat them all? I find I am some days 200-300 calories short. (usually eating 1800-1900 with suggested 2120)

    It's fine. Everything to do with CICO is not nearly as precise as we pretend it is here. Just get the calorie balance somewhere in the ballpark and it will work over time.

    >Rest days - I know I have put my body through a shock; so how many of these should I be aiming for?

    I'd just walk every day and again: stop beating the crap out of your calves (and knees!) with the HIIT for a long time.

    >My trainer said to get some carbs - any tips of good carbs before a workout (I typically go to the gym between 5-6pm)

    Eh. I've been lifting for a very long time, and never found pre-workout stuff to make much difference either way. Definitely not enough to worry about. Maybe just eat a little of what you normally eat post-workout, but earlier if you want.

    You're doing great so far. The important thing is to keep up the improved physicality and sort out what you eat, and you'll be so far advanced a year from now that it'll blow your mind.
  • zebasschick
    zebasschick Posts: 910 Member
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    Hi all! Thanks for your comments and advice. Gonna reply to a couple things and clarify too...

    - I started the 6 week HITT program to give me some discipline and the rest on my own walking and weight training. I also wanted to mention that it isn't a hardcore HITT per say; the trainer is one on one and tailors it to your body and fitness style. They're super watchful about my heart rate, recovery and often moves are modified for someone at my low level. Maybe I should have used LITT or MITT (low/medium ITT)

    - That being said - the timing and jumping from nothing to 3x a week was pretty intense and I am looking forward to dialing it back a bit but am thankful for the jump start and discipline it gave me. I also need to dig deep and do some of that work on my own too (will be moving to twice a week training)

    - Thank you for the tips on walking. Often I pressure myself to be going faster but it solidifies that a good walk at a steady pace is OK!

    - I suspect that you were eating more than 2120 calories before starting down this particular weight loss path. Why is it hard to eat 2120 (plus exercise) now? Answer: a lot of it was eating out and alcohol (wine)

    you definitely need to dial it back. if you hurt a muscle or tendon, you may not be able to work out for some time (this happened to me, and it sucked!). besides, that level of exhaustion is your body telling you this is too much.

    do you have a heart rate monitor? i use one, and it's very helpful; i also occasionally check my blood oxygen level with a finger oximeter (which also shows pulse if you can't afford a heart rate monitor).

    best of luck to you, and remember that taking it a little slower means it'll be easier to keep going, stay healthier and feel better!