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I totally agree with Whalenard, I don't use the scale as a health marker either. Especially as I'm about to "roll" my 5th decade, I think its just too misleading and a "lagging indicator". Typically the poor choices I made 2 weeks ago are showing up today on the scale. I'd rather focus on - Am I eating right? <You know when you aren't, don't lie to yourself> Are my pants loser/tighter? Do I like the way I feel in my body? Am I improving? Am I making better choices than yesterday? Is my FTP holding or improved? Thanks to TrainerRoad & my StagesBike for that last one. The Pain Cave is FUN!!!
 

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Once I realized that my body fat weighed 10x as much as my 3 water bottles, and I am carrying it all up my steep hill climbs, I was pretty motivated to get back on the "get leaner (but without killing myself) train". So, that is one more piece of intrinsic motivation, along the lines of motivation/support, that this thread was made for.

Now for the obligatory, not asked for, how to fix it, in a thread about moral support... Here is what is working so far, but everyone is different, especially when it comes to this stuff:
  • I measure my body fat every week or two, so that I can see some progress in numbers, since weight might not change much if I am gaining muscle and losing fat (or the other way around!). I do this, because it is cheap and easy: How And Why To Measure Your Body Fat Percentage | Bodybuilding.com
  • Stopped eating and drinking junk most of the time. I used to have an IPA every night. Now it is mostly when my neighbor wants me to taste test a homebrew, or I forget how crappy I feel when I drink beer and I have one by myself (~1-2 weeks)
  • Easiest way for me to eat less crap was to have daily quotas for vegetables (3.5 cups), fruit (1.5 c.), and protein, and ideally water. I got the fruit and veggie numbers from some calculator that uses your bodyweight, but I can't find it
  • Strength training at home (resistance bands)
  • A few hours of biking a week, which is about all I can manage until my foot injury is totally healed. Maybe then I will start some structured training with intervals... it's been a few years since I could go all out without doing damage to myself
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Love the feedback guys, let's stick with it!

Some things I've identified: since I wasn't racing at all, I was just kind of plodding around on my bike rides. Still lots of fun, but I took out the not-fun part, which is push myself to ride fast/hard and get some intensity. I'm getting serious about training for some big rides later this summer, so the intensity is working it's way back into my schedule. Good news is it kinda feels good to push myself (except maybe the 40-minute threshold test, oof!) and I feel like I've made some small progress.

I've also made a conscious effort to skip the 3 pm cookie/chocolate treat for some kind of protein snack- because I want to keep on muscle, I'll need it later for my big ride. ;) And one beer only on the weekends, none during the week.

The after dinner treat is still really hard to beat. Trying to switch out that chocolate treat with some fresh fruit. Luckily mangoes are coming back in season and they are both delicious and very filling.
 

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Healthy breakfast. Healthy lunch. Don't graze in the afternoon unless it's something healthy like nuts. Skip dinner. Watch the weight disappear

Those of you skipping breakfast...its why you are so hungry late in the day. Late in the day eating = weight gain.

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Healthy breakfast. Healthy lunch. Don't graze in the afternoon unless it's something healthy like nuts. Skip dinner. Watch the weight disappear

Those of you skipping breakfast...its why you are so hungry late in the day. Late in the day eating = weight gain.

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Yeah, I don't think skipping meals is healthy in the long run.

Now, skipping doughnuts and sugar.... Yes;)

I can't function without a good breakfast.

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Ok so it's been 8 days now on my new "intermittent fasting" "system" that I invented.

There is very little science here, except that since my last diet attempts, intermittent fasting has become sort of an accepted thing at least, and I have some friends who skip days eating, so it emboldened me to try this new system. In the past I found that calorie restriction works for me to lose weight--which in fact it physically true for everyone...but problems I had with other diets:

--In the long term I can't be bothered to do special grocery shopping for myself. I can't be preparing myself special meals separate from the rest of the family. I'm not a foody person that gets enjoyment from cooking. Experience shows that I will slack on the diet to save on the grocery shopping or special meal prepping. I also don't like spending extra money to buy special food eat less calories, and extra time to prep meals, all to try to eat less. This is a problem regardless of diet i.e. atkins, low-carb, paleo, vegan, weight-watchers, etc...no matter what I would run into this problem. So I need a diet that works on the standard family groceries and meals and even out-to-eat destinations.

--Simple willpower, especially to eat small portions. I have a hard time eating 1/2 cup of cereal with 1/4 cup of skim milk for breakfast. It's barely worth it, but I really have to eat that little to lose weight. I have a hard time eating 1 small piece of pizza and nothing else, or otherwise not filling myself up but still sitting there while everyone else is eating. Portion control is hard and it requires me to count calories to actually calculate what is a good portion.

Resulting slack-optimized system:

Eat absolutely nothing (no snacks, certainly no flavored drinks, no milk in the coffee, don't even lick the butter knife when making the kids' PBJ's) until dinner (after 4PM). Just water, ice tea, or black coffee. Then eat a normal dinner; of whatever the family is eating; try not to gorge. Allow some small snacking for a couple hours thereafter, but no eating after 8PM.

Goals achieved: No need to calculate any calories or portions. No need to do any special grocery shopping. No extra cost whatsoever, in fact I just saved money by eating less food. No extra time whatsoever, in fact I gain time by skipping breakfast. Rules are so simple they can become habit. Instead of deciding whether I have enough calories left to eat the donuts at work or not, I already know the answer because I simply don't eat anything during the day. Instead of intermittent fasting on certain days, I don't care because I do the same thing every day. The only question is if I could survive not eating anything but dinner.

What I've learned is that while I could technically eat celery or foods with pseudo-sugar during the day, all it does is trigger hunger so it's not worth trying to have any zero-calorie snacks. Instead, when you get hungry, just get over it or go do something. Also, it's not as hard to avoid gorging at dinner as I thought it would be, because after fasting, eating a large amount is actually difficult and doesn't feel good, so it's pretty easy to have a normal portion at dinner. Physical effects of fasting are predictable: A little slow thinking, a few headaches, irritability, but I'm optimistic I will adapt over time. It's only been 1 week. So sort of like quitting smoking or something like that, it takes a while to get used to. I took some pretty decent morning bike rides and I didn't bonk or anything yet.

I'm not really weighing myself either because that takes effort too.
 

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Man, I’m up to 188 lbs and i really wanted to lose 30 lbs become the pandemic when i was 182 lbs :(

Definitely going the wrong direction, so I’m here.

Gonna try the whole taking out bread thing except the once a week. I had to cut dairy out (IBS), and a few other things but I have to get the crap out of my diet. Gonna start with bread and sweets. Gonna hurt but gonna try.

Thanks for starting this thread!
 

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One more thing to mention, sometimes if you are thirsty, the brain will trick you into thinking you are hungry.

Drink more water throughout the day and I bet you won't feel like snacking nearly as often

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Thanks. Snacking is my devil :(


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I know this is counter-intuitive to what is fashionable right now, but I load up on carbs pre-ride and sugar post ride. This makes intensity really easy to sustain (I have to purposefully dial back the intensity so I don't fatigue myself over the long run) and glycogen replenishment easy with the post ride sugar. And the next day, I can ride just as hard if I wanted to.

The other thing is to eat lots of real foods rather than processed foods. Eat lots of veggies, fruits, and oatmeal. That means you are getting lots of fiber and water in your food so that you feel full and satisfied for a long time. That reduces the snacking. Also eat some fish or chicken for the protein to keep you satiated even longer. I have found white rice to be the best source of energy an hour or so before my rides. Since eating like this, I don't count calories, I have plenty of energy to hammer, and my body fat % is <10%, and I am in my 40s.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Great work guys, keep it up. I think just trying to be aware of the food choices we make throughout the day is a great way to become aware of the junk we end up eating. A food diary is great for this.

I don't use it any more, but I found a great app called Chronometer to track my food intake. It's free and foolproof, you can scan barcodes on packages or enter in the ingredients yourself. It has graphs to break down individual nutrients and the breakdown of the macronutrients (Fat-Protein-Carbs) you get in a day. I learned I was pretty low on protein and worked on upping that number to about 20-25% of my daily intake. I was also really low on Vitamin D so I added in a supplement, that one is important!
 

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Great work guys, keep it up. I think just trying to be aware of the food choices we make throughout the day is a great way to become aware of the junk we end up eating. A food diary is great for this.

I don't use it any more, but I found a great app called Chronometer to track my food intake. It's free and foolproof, you can scan barcodes on packages or enter in the ingredients yourself. It has graphs to break down individual nutrients and the breakdown of the macronutrients (Fat-Protein-Carbs) you get in a day. I learned I was pretty low on protein and worked on upping that number to about 20-25% of my daily intake. I was also really low on Vitamin D so I added in a supplement, that one is important!
I hate food apps. Mainly because I eat a lot of homemade food, and a lot of it is Japanese and not always something you can find in the app.

So i go old school notepad, which makes more aware than putting it in the app too.

“Did i just write down a powerbar on a day I don’t ride?! UGHHHHHH..”

Yeah things like that :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
I hate food apps too, but I hate doing math even more. I just want to eat and not think about, "Did I get my 1.5g per kg amount of protein today?"

I used the app for a few weeks just to get a general idea of what my current diet looked like, made some tweaks, and then stopped using it once the new habits were in place. Every now and then when I feel like I'm off the rails I'll use it again. It was just a good place to start.
 
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