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Still waiting for "effortless weight loss"

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  • Still waiting for "effortless weight loss"

    I've been following PB for nearly 5 months and am loving how I feel. Since omitting grains/gluten/etc. from my diet, my IBS/food allergy/whatever it was that would send me running to the bathroom several times a week in a panic is gone, I sleep through the night, my skin looks better, I feel better, and I see this is as my new way of life.

    I am a former calorie counter/food measurer/eat breakfast 10 minutes after I wake up kind of girl, refuel immediately (well, within 45 minutes) after a workout girl, and now, I follow the "eat when you're hungry, stop when you're full" philosophy, I have tried IF a couple of times (made it 16 hours-which included 7 hours of sleep), and most days, I don't even have breakfast, but instead something small on my way to work out.

    I do CrossFit on average 4 days a week, and most days, as I said, I'll eat something small, like a hardboiled egg, handful of nuts or something (and by handful, I mean a small handful, don't even think it's an ounce), and some days, even on heavy lifting days, I don't get hungry after I work out.

    I am 5'5" and in December, weighed 169 pounds and currently am at 164. Now I know I don't have a ton of weight to lose, but I keep reading these great success stories of people who switch to PB and after a few weeks, are experiencing big results. I have lost a few inches, but again, I would expect to see bigger results with my efforts.

    I will be honest and say I am not 100% PB 100% of the time (and I have gotten much better about the whole 80/20, have cut way back on fruit and dairy, although today I probably had more fruit then I did in the past week) but I feel for as hard as I am trying, why isn't my body responding? Since I'm not tracking my food anymore (and that has been so freeing I can't even imagine going back to tracking every thing), I couldn't tell you how much I am eating and sometimes I wonder if I'm not eating enough, and I know people will tell me to eat more fat, but the hardest thing to do is take in more food when I just don't want to or have no appetite to, if that makes sense.

    Today I had the following:

    -4 pieces turkey sausage and a soft-boiled egg pre-workout (did Tabata workout at CF today)

    -Protein shake with whey protein powder, 1C coconut milk, 1/2 small banana, 1 strawberry, maybe 1.5tsp almond butter) post workout

    -About 3 hours later had some roast beef and ham (maybe 3 ounces?), 4 or 5 olives, 1/2 avocado with a drizzle of EVOO and maybe half an ounce of gouda cheese. Also had maybe 1/4-1/3C of cantaloupe

    -After work ate dinner (about 6 hours after I ate the meat/olives/cheese) and had a lasagna type dish I made, with sliced zucchini for the noodles and a creamed spinach filling, and for dessert had a small apple with less than a tablespoon of almond butter and less than an ounce of dark chocolate.

    Again, I ate way more fruit today then I normally do, and this was more food than I usually eat, but just wanted to give an idea of the type of stuff I'm eating. And I am seeing changes, people around me are seeing changes, but someone suggested I may be overtraining or under eating. Any thoughts on this? I know I should probably keep a log for several days to see how my eating patterns are, but again, going back to tracking food makes my brain hurt

  • #2
    I would suggest upping your starch intake with yams, and possibly decrease your fruit intake to 1 serving a day. With the amount of exercise you're doing, you're going to need glucose to soothe your cortisol levels.
    Last edited by Chaohinon; 04-26-2011, 11:17 PM.
    “The whole concept of a macronutrient, like that of a calorie, is determining our language game in such a way that the conversation is not making sense." - Dr. Kurt Harris


    • #3
      You're already very active and not too overweight, and it seems like your diet before was not too unhealthy either, which is why you're not seeing 'fast weight loss' (compared to people switching over from a 'diet' of ben&jerry's). And you said yourself that you've lost some inches! So you've clearly been losing fat. And putting in more exercise doesn't necessarily always lead to faster weight loss (although it has probably helped with fat loss in your case), I've heard before that some people 'slept off the last few pounds'--what is your sleep like?


      • #4
        Not enough fat, maybe too much fruit, and frankly, you're so close to goal weight that it's going to be very slow and incremental at this point. Sure, I dropped 50 pounds in the first three months, but I also started out at 400 pounds. You are nowhere near close to a weight that would have huge-and-spectactular weight loss. But you also aren't at a weight where that is either necessary or sustainable. You are probably losing weight incrementally; the "effortless" part comes about because you are not starving yourself to death or killing yourself with too much exercise.
        Primal eating in a nutshell: If you are hungry, eat Primal food until you are satisfied (not stuffed). Then stop. Wait until you're hungry again. Repeat.

        Looking for my Cholesterol Primer? Here it is:

        Ditch the scale!:

        My Success Story:


        • #5
          You may want to try Intermittent Fasting again, with a later eating window.
          Here are some links:

          The Lean Saloon | Intermittent Fasting. Liberate Your Life.
          Intermittent fasting diet for fat loss, muscle gain and health
          Ancestral Nutrition Coaching
          Pregnancy Nutrition Coaching
          Primal Pregnancy Nutrition Article


          • #6
            CrossFit four times a week? Sounds like you're in danger of overtraining / chronic cardio.
            MikeEnRegalia's Blog - Nutrition, Dieting, Exercise and other stuff ;-)


            • #7
              I think you are eating too much. How many calories was in that lot you listed?


              • #8
                Well, everyone is different and the best source of info is probably your own observations of your body. Weighing in daily to get an idea of how much your weight fluctuates day to day normally may help.

                Personally, I still feel that calories count more than diet composition. So even if you aren't 100% primal, if you are eating less than you burn daily, you should be losing. It's up to you whether you want to go back to calorie counting, since you mention being an ex-counter and being glad to have left it behind. If you really can't stand to do it, don't.

                But I can say personally that it's been my experience that calories in/out are what decides whether you lose weight or not. The actual foods you eat- primal or not, healthy or not- mostly just decide how good (or bad) you feel, how easy (or hard) it is to not overeat. For instance, I could eat 1300kcal of pure SHIT every day- sugar, white flour, etc- and lose weight. I could eat 2500kcal of pure primal healthy food- and gain fat. I would also be a cranky, exhausted, psycho, ravenous mess on the sugar diet, granted. But I would lose weight.

                My point is just that imo, questions of minutiae like too much fat, too little, too much training, too little etc do end up mattering less than calorie level. These questions would be more pertinent to how you *feel* and your energy level, hunger level, etc. But weight loss in my experience is about calories. If you aren't losing, you aren't eating less than you're burning.

                Though, on the bright side, you also aren't eating *more* than you're burning, since you mention that you aren't gaining.

                The 'effortless weight loss' of 50-100g of carb is, I suspect, more about how you aren't as hungry at this carb level, so it's a lot easier to not overeat, or to even undereat. But I know I could eat NO carbs, 0g carbs, and if I ate more than 2000kcal per day and didn't burn off the extra with more exercise, I *would* gain weight.

                It would just be, you know, REALLY hard to eat 2000kcal+ of fat and protein. It's REALLY EASY to scarf down 2000kcal+ of sugar and refined carbs, naturally.
                Getting my Grok on in the Pacific Northwest.

                "C is for cookie, that's good enough for me."
                "Cookie is a sometimes food."
                "Sometimes cookie monster eat APPLE instead of COOKIE. Sometimes eat CARROT."
                -Cookie Monster, partially reformed sugarholic



                • #9
                  Originally posted by reba627 View Post
                  -Protein shake with whey protein powder, 1C coconut milk, 1/2 small banana, 1 strawberry, maybe 1.5tsp almond butter) post workout
                  Is this something you have often? This is easily over 700 calories (1 cup of coconut milk has roughly 450 calories) , with a fair amount of carbs; it's super nutrient dense, however that is a lot for something that probably doesn't take very long to drink. I have to admit it does sound super delicious! But if your goal is fat loss, maybe consider cutting out this shake for a while, and just having some meat and veggies after working out?
                  (calories aren't everything obviously, but IMO they do matter to a certain extent)
                  "Over-thinking, over-analyzing separates the body from the mind."


                  • #10
                    You might want to take out the post-workout shake, or eat a sweet potato instead, if you're looking for fat loss. Unless you're an elite athlete or at your target weight/leanness, it's not helping you.
                    Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


                    • #11
                      i would def. get rid of post workout shake. i would just skip that between breakfast and lunch meal all together. looks like way too much food all together. if you look at the calorie count, it is a whole meal unto itself!


                      • #12
                        I've always see red when I read that XYZ diet gives you effortless weight loss. When I was diagnosed as hypothyroid, everything on the net said that the "weight will just fall off you" when you get your thyroid regulated. Well, that's BS. Nothing fell off me. It's work. Period. At least for me.

                        The sheer beauty of primal is that you won't gain weight no matter how much you eat, but you do have to watch calories if you want to lose weight. Here's a blog post from Dr. Eades that spoke volumes to me: The Blog of Michael R. Eades, M.D. » Low-carb and calories


                        • #13
                          No need for protein shakes, too much fruit, cut out the dairy and nuts. There's no way you could be in ketosis, either.


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by fishergirl106 View Post
                            Is this something you have often? This is easily over 700 calories (1 cup of coconut milk has roughly 450 calories) , with a fair amount of carbs; it's super nutrient dense, however that is a lot for something that probably doesn't take very long to drink. I have to admit it does sound super delicious! But if your goal is fat loss, maybe consider cutting out this shake for a while, and just having some meat and veggies after working out?
                            (calories aren't everything obviously, but IMO they do matter to a certain extent)
                            No, I've actually cut way back on the protein shakes, and this was with a cup of the SO Delicious unsweetened coconut milk, not the canned regular stuff (because the cans of coconut milk I do have, I can't open them with my regular can opener and when I can get them open, there is a bunch of solid coconut at the bottom, and this stuff was on sale, so I gave it a try). And I only had this because I was out of spinach (which I usually toss in a handful) and I knew I wasn't going to be home for several hours after and needed something quick. I'd say I maybe have one protein shake a week now, and like I said, fruit is maybe one serving a day, on average. Yesterday was just a lot more.

                            Thanks for the replies everyone (ps-sleep is great, 7 hours of solid sleep a night, and pre-PB I was up in the middle of the night for an hour or so several times a week), I'm due for a weigh in/measure in a few days so I'll see where I'm at and if I have to track calories for a couple of days to see where I'm at, I'll do that.


                            • #15
                              Here's a little sum up about fruit I found on this morning because I was curious about fruit and fat storage. Really interesting and something to consider if you're trying to drop the weight:

                              "Even though fructose is a sugar found in fruit and fruit juice, please, please, please don't take this point to mean that simply eating fruit is going to make you fat. It's not. Here's what I mean:

                              Your body stores carbohydrates in the form of glycogen in the muscles and in the liver. When your body needs energy, it breaks the glycogen down into sugar (glucose) for use in various bodily processes.

                              When your glycogen stores are full, extra carbohydrates will have a tendency to be stored as fat unless burned by activity. Fructose is more efficently converted into fat (more specifically, it's converted into the chemical backbone of triglycerides, which are fat molecules) than are other carbohydrates such as glucose. This makes it that much easier for excess fructose to be converted into fat.

                              While high fructose corn syrup is by far the main culprit when it comes to fructose and fat gain, even the fructose found in fruits and fruit juices can have this effect. Because fructose has "nicer" associations with it (being a fruit sugar) than other sugars such as sucrose (table sugar), a person may think they can drink all the juice they want and not run into the same trouble as if they drank the same amount of a sugary drink containing sucrose.

                              Fruit juices are essentially a concentrated source of fruit sugar and calories - as much as 150 calories or more per glass! Certainly, juice has more nutritional qualities to it than a soft drink but it is nevertheless important to realize that juice actually has a lot of calories and that the sugar it contains can easily be converted into fat.

                              What to do about it? Eating your fruit and drinking your fruit juice earlier in the day will greatly minimize any chance of spillover into fat stores. Also, take steps to minimize consumption of high fructose corn syrup, which is found in foods and drinks such as soft drinks and fruit beverages, cookies, gum, jams, jellies and baked goods. As always, read the labels!"