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A few bullets on my life and weight history:

  • I weighed as much as about 265 pounds after college.
  • Over the past few years, I have been between 220 and 240 bouncing around.
  • Within the last 6 months I have gotten my weight down to 200 lbs.
  • My diet consists of the following:
    • whole wheat bread
    • cheese
    • sliced deli meet
    • olives
    • raisins
    • dark chocolate
  • My workout consists of running 1-2 miles and doing pushups and stups.
  • I can run a 7 minute mile and can do 40 pushups with good form, and I'm getting better at the situps.

I want to lose some fat and get healthier. I am not happy with my current physical shape. I am looking for recommendations for my diet and exercise to help me achieve this goal. I am willing to work hard and change my diet if necessary.

I think my diet works fairly well for me because I don't mind eating boring diets which are fairly nutritious, though I do cheat and go out to eat once in a while.

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Just a few questions to help get you better answers.. Why do you think you're stalled? How long have you been at 200lbs? Is that really your entire diet? How often are you working out? What is your goal weight? Do you have other fitness goals? –  user3085 Mar 11 '12 at 21:00
    
I would suggest, in addition to setting goals for weight loss, also setting goals for reducing your percentage of body fat. You may think you've stalled at 200 pounds when really you've just been adding muscle while dropping fat. –  Moses Mar 12 '12 at 4:26
    
that is pretty close to my entire diet, though I also add tomatoes and lemons for vegetables and vitamin C as well. and i take a multivitamin. I also go out to eat about once a week and eat highly varied dishes such as fish, duck, eggplant and random varied stuff like that. –  Timtam Mar 12 '12 at 4:50
    
I think with a few extra items included it might be a fairly intelligent diet for weight control e.g. one that could be recommended to others. –  Timtam Mar 12 '12 at 4:51
    
Are you tracking your body fat percentage or any other metric besides yoru weight? @Moses could be correct, but we can't be sure if your not tracking other things. –  DForck42 Mar 16 '12 at 21:20
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4 Answers 4

up vote 3 down vote accepted

You may not have actually stalled... your weight loss may have just slowed down. You can usually easily drop a bunch of excess fat, but at some point, it will become more difficult to lose weight. As you lose weight, your body uses less energy to do things you do (walking around, running, etc.), so you will either need to work harder to burn more calories, or eat less.

When you start doing more exercise, it will probably demand you eat better (a more well-rounded, complete diet) than you are right now.

Until now, you've managed to drop weight by simply reducing the fuel you give to your body by controlling your calorie intake. Congrats for that self control, but you're probably entering a phase where you have to return to thinking about food as fuel for your activities.. just make sure you do a good amount of activity. You may stop losing weight at times as your body burns away fat and builds muscle (if you're eating a better diet), but that will be awesome for you in the long run. Your weight loss will be slower going forward, but even if you only lose 1lb per week, that's 50lbs over the entire year.

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thanks, I do think I am getting stronger, but it's fairly obvious that I have a lot of extra body fat hanging off my various body parts. I do believe a varied nutritious diet is critical. So I would like to be more active and continue to improve my diet –  Timtam Mar 12 '12 at 4:47
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Maybe you have hit a plateau. You can come out of the plateau phase by altering your exercise regimen. You can add new ones or increase the intensity of the present ones. You can add some strength training exercises targeting different muscle groups. Also bringing a variety in food helps, making sure you are adding only the healthy stuff. If the body gets too used to the food and exercise, body-changes slow down. So keep changing your exercise whenever you feel you are not losing anymore weight. Also keep a track of body measurements and body fat percentage as they are better indicators of your weight loss than just counting pounds. Hope this helps.

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Your exercise is not bad. Not ideal, but usually good enough Your choice of food is definitely not optimal. I strongly suggest that you meet with a nutritionist asap! They will review your specific needs, check what type of food you like and come up with a plan that's good for you and based on your personal food preferences.

Good luck!

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I think this seems like a typical case of a plateau. There are 2 things that need to be done when someone hits a plateau, well really its one thing split up into 2 parts. The idea is to shock the body. That means that your body has become comfortable with the activity level and calorie intake and there for is not letting go of the weight. This is essentially what a plateau is, so the 2 things to change in order to break through the plateau are, changing up the calorie intake and also to change up the workout. Allow me to explain. Changing up the calorie intake, contrary to popular belief means to increase the amount you eat over the course of the week. It does not mean to cut even more calories because that can be simply dangerous. The way to it is like this. If say your goal calorie intake for the day is 2000 calories, so what you would do is start the week out eating a little less, like maybe 1800 calories on Sunday then work your way up to 2000 calories on Monday by Tuesday you should be eating say maybe 2200 and on Wednesday again 2200 and then by the end of the week start coming back down to your usual 2000 calorie limit. This is known as the zig zag.

As for your activity level, you need to up the intensity of your workouts. For instance if you do 5 sets of pushups with 1 minute rest between sets then try doing the same 5 sets with only a half of minute rest between sets. Another thing you can change is the order of your workout, say you start your day with pushups and then do situps, what you can do is swap it around once in a while and do situps and then pushups, and then swap back always keeping your body off guard. One more thing i feel should be mentioned, is that you made no note of weather or not you give your body a chance to rest between workouts which you should and you probably do. However, on the off chance you don't you really should start because that alone can help you start losing weight again. Because if your muscles don't get the rest they require then your body holds on to more calories to heal them. Now im not saying not to workout on the rest days im simply saying to work on different muscle groups so that yesterday's muscles can heal while the other ones are getting a beating.

Hope this was helpful.

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agree 100% this is exactly what I am doing (more rest/off days) I appreciate this advice thank you. I'm down to 195 which is a nice start though I really need to keep working hard to get to my goal of 180lbs. –  Timtam Apr 7 '12 at 7:17
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