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Calorie Counting Revisited : Distillation and Update

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  • Originally posted by zoebird View Post
    So weird, posted in here yesterday. Ah well.

    Good to see Paleobird again! Hey, girl!
    Hi, Zoe! How are things in your hemisphere?

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    • To Denasqu, welcome and I'm glad that post could help. Yes, the bacon-mania does get a bit excessive around here sometimes. I think for a lot of senior members it is one big running joke but a newbie wouldn't know that. I didn't. I ate my bacon and wondered why the magic wasn't happening.

      Don't worry about what some internet table tells you you "need" to be eating just to keep breathing. Those tables are written by the same people who brought you the "eat three meals and two snacks a day" philosophy. They are based on a carb burning metabolism. Once you have switched yourself over to fat burning your body can operate just fine on far fewer calories than the official tables say because your body is making up the deficit by consuming its own fat.

      Keep at it. Anything more than two pounds a week is probably not sustainable in the long term, IMO. I think you are doing really well. (But no more burger buns <tisk, tisk>) I lost 35 pounds over about 5 months which works out to about 1.5lb/week.

      Oh, and BTW for anyone who is interested, I've maintained at my goal weight this whole time. So much for the naysayers who said that anyone who restricts calories is doomed to yo-yo.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
        To Denasqu, welcome and I'm glad that post could help. Yes, the bacon-mania does get a bit excessive around here sometimes. I think for a lot of senior members it is one big running joke but a newbie wouldn't know that. I didn't. I ate my bacon and wondered why the magic wasn't happening.

        Don't worry about what some internet table tells you you "need" to be eating just to keep breathing. Those tables are written by the same people who brought you the "eat three meals and two snacks a day" philosophy. They are based on a carb burning metabolism. Once you have switched yourself over to fat burning your body can operate just fine on far fewer calories than the official tables say because your body is making up the deficit by consuming its own fat.

        Keep at it. Anything more than two pounds a week is probably not sustainable in the long term, IMO. I think you are doing really well. (But no more burger buns <tisk, tisk>) I lost 35 pounds over about 5 months which works out to about 1.5lb/week.

        Oh, and BTW for anyone who is interested, I've maintained at my goal weight this whole time. So much for the naysayers who said that anyone who restricts calories is doomed to yo-yo.
        +1. Glad to hear you've been able to maintain your goal weight, Paleobird.
        If you have a problem with what you read: 1. Get a dictionary 2. Don't read it 3. Grow up 4. After 3, go back to 1/ or 2. -- Dennis Blue. | "I don't care about your opinion, only your analysis"- Professor Calabrese. | "Life is more important than _______" - Drew | I eat animals that eat vegetables -- Matt Millen, former NFL Linebacker. | "This country is built on sugar & shit that comes in a box marinated in gluten - abc123

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        • and you don't count anymore paleobird?

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          • Originally posted by Ayla2010 View Post
            and you don't count anymore paleobird?
            Hi Ayla,

            No, I don't. I don't need to. More rational portion sizes have become a habit. Plus , now I can eyeball guess how many ounces any given steak is. I still weigh myself daily. If I start trending upwards, I just cut out some of the "extras" like wine and chocolate.

            I went on a cruise and gained five pounds probably due to indulgence in a few too many glasses of Pinot plus all the junky oil they fry stuff in. It came right back off after I got back to my kitchen.

            It seems like my body has established a new setpoint. I think you can re-set your setpoint this way but it does take a bit of willpower to get through the first part. Anybody that tells you it is going to be "effortless" is trying to sell you a book.

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            • Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
              It seems like my body has established a new setpoint. I think you can re-set your setpoint this way but it does take a bit of willpower to get through the first part. Anybody that tells you it is going to be "effortless" is trying to sell you a book.
              So when you first did calorie restriction, was it hard? And then kind of effortless because you'd reached a new set-point? I think you brought up an interesting point about a mental set-point.

              I can't wait to start living on my own again now that I've recently scored a job. When I live on my own, it really isn't that hard at all to eat right. It's what I want to do. But the last few months unemployment has had me living back at home where my mom literally bakes dessert or buys a dessert almost every day (didn't help with my childhood obesity fyi). Even when I avoid eating it 95 percent of the time, I'm the outcast and it's led to daily stressors of a)avoiding the food without insulting b)being made out to be the outcast because I'm not eating the food c) being made a joke because avoiding the food hasn't made me much slimmer. So even when I don't eat the cookie, I've eaten other primal things to make me fit in socially or just to satisfy my brain whining "I've been deprived!" Avoiding these things once in a while at a party is one thing, but the inevitable everday test of your will is another. Ugh! At least I'm getting out on my own. It's hard to do this around people who can eat so much and not gain any weight.
              Starting weight: 225
              Current weight: 195
              Goal: One pull-up by December 31, 2012
              Method: Schwarzbein Principle II, program for insulin sensitive/burned-out adrenals
              My Primal Journey


              Created by MyFitnessPal.com - Nutrition Facts For Foods

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              • Originally posted by Lex26 View Post
                So when you first did calorie restriction, was it hard? And then kind of effortless because you'd reached a new set-point? I think you brought up an interesting point about a mental set-point.

                I can't wait to start living on my own again now that I've recently scored a job. When I live on my own, it really isn't that hard at all to eat right. It's what I want to do. But the last few months unemployment has had me living back at home where my mom literally bakes dessert or buys a dessert almost every day (didn't help with my childhood obesity fyi). Even when I avoid eating it 95 percent of the time, I'm the outcast and it's led to daily stressors of a)avoiding the food without insulting b)being made out to be the outcast because I'm not eating the food c) being made a joke because avoiding the food hasn't made me much slimmer. So even when I don't eat the cookie, I've eaten other primal things to make me fit in socially or just to satisfy my brain whining "I've been deprived!" Avoiding these things once in a while at a party is one thing, but the inevitable everday test of your will is another. Ugh! At least I'm getting out on my own. It's hard to do this around people who can eat so much and not gain any weight.
                It wasn't agony but it wasn't easy either. It was very tedious to weigh everything and plug it all in to Sparkpeople. But that structure keeps you honest with yourself. I wouldn't say that I felt physically deprived but I did get hungry before meals. But that's a good thing. That means the body is doing its job. I would say that the challenging part was really more mental than physical. Breaking old habits like mindless snacking while watching TV or little "rewards" like dark chocolate and red wine in the evening that I didn't need I just mentally wanted it. I had to get past that and say to myself, "I want to wear a size six jeans more than I want those extra little treats", and stick to the plan.

                That does sound like a tough domestic situation and yes, it is easier to take control of your eating when you do all the shopping and cooking. That said, the fork is still in your hand. I wish you well. Let me know how you are doing.

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                • Thanks for this thread, Paleobird! I've been feeling a bit lost, also, and like the bit of structure you provided in your first post. I've been primal for over a year now and have only managed to lose 10lbs. It is nice to know that it will easily be sustainable, but still I am frustrated because I made such a drastic change in my diet and saw little results when so many others saw the pounds melt off quickly. While it's true I am not considered overweight (bmi 23) and expected weight loss to not be as drastic, I thought a year would have been plenty of time to accomplish my goal! (bmi around 20ish).

                  I've started tracking what I eat at myfitnesspal and based on your recommendation I aim for 1220 cal/day (more when I exercise) and your ratio of p/c/f 40/15/45

                  I think you're right about mindless fat. I used to add fat to everything regardless if it really needed it or not. I think I'll have to reel that in a bit. I'm pretty on the mark with carbs, though I've been finding that I have trouble meeting the goal of 120g of protein a day, especially if I IF breakfast.

                  Comment


                  • I calorie restricted most of the last 15 years, had a stable weight of 97-102 for most of the 2000s then in late 2000s ate the same and moved more & now more or less underweight. It just occurred to me that in my 20s I never weighed much more than 110, never counted calories etc- ugh just such a waste of time. These days I calorie cycle ie allow myself to eat a lot more some days and less others for an average of about 1600 calories a day which seems to be maintenance for me and I bet I can eat even more than that and not gain lol.

                    Efffffff the calorie theory.

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                    • Originally posted by Sora View Post
                      Thanks for this thread, Paleobird! I've been feeling a bit lost, also, and like the bit of structure you provided in your first post. I've been primal for over a year now and have only managed to lose 10lbs. It is nice to know that it will easily be sustainable, but still I am frustrated because I made such a drastic change in my diet and saw little results when so many others saw the pounds melt off quickly. While it's true I am not considered overweight (bmi 23) and expected weight loss to not be as drastic, I thought a year would have been plenty of time to accomplish my goal! (bmi around 20ish).

                      I've started tracking what I eat at myfitnesspal and based on your recommendation I aim for 1220 cal/day (more when I exercise) and your ratio of p/c/f 40/15/45

                      I think you're right about mindless fat. I used to add fat to everything regardless if it really needed it or not. I think I'll have to reel that in a bit. I'm pretty on the mark with carbs, though I've been finding that I have trouble meeting the goal of 120g of protein a day, especially if I IF breakfast.


                      Hi Sora,
                      Now that I am in maintenance mode the ratio has shifted to being more like 20% carbs with the rest equally split 40% each.

                      You might try IFing lunch instead. If I get a good chunk of protein in me in the morning I find I have no interest in food until dinner.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by fiercehunter View Post
                        I calorie restricted most of the last 15 years, had a stable weight of 97-102 for most of the 2000s then in late 2000s ate the same and moved more & now more or less underweight. It just occurred to me that in my 20s I never weighed much more than 110, never counted calories etc- ugh just such a waste of time. These days I calorie cycle ie allow myself to eat a lot more some days and less others for an average of about 1600 calories a day which seems to be maintenance for me and I bet I can eat even more than that and not gain lol.

                        Efffffff the calorie theory.
                        This is easy to say for someone who is very thin and always has been.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by fiercehunter View Post
                          I calorie restricted most of the last 15 years, had a stable weight of 97-102 for most of the 2000s then in late 2000s ate the same and moved more & now more or less underweight. It just occurred to me that in my 20s I never weighed much more than 110, never counted calories etc- ugh just such a waste of time. These days I calorie cycle ie allow myself to eat a lot more some days and less others for an average of about 1600 calories a day which seems to be maintenance for me and I bet I can eat even more than that and not gain lol.

                          Efffffff the calorie theory.
                          You are young. 1600 calories is not a lot for any one. You need to give it time, young padawan, you will see ab fat in your future. Meanwhile, keep on being cocky!

                          Comment


                          • It's a personal choice. You don't want to calorie count? Don't. You want to calorie count? Do.

                            It doesn't mean that one person is super awesome and the other person isn't. It means that it works for some people and it doesn't. Seriously, no bigs.

                            No one is demanding that *someone else must calorie count!* it's simply "hey, this works for me, that didn't, maybe you should try this too, whatever.

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                            • and btw, fierce hunter claims to be nearing 40.

                              i don't happen to calorie count either. it's just not something that i feel is necessary. but, that beign said, i do it on occasion just to 'check' -- usually after reading a thread here where people are asking questions about calories/ratios/etc -- and it always clocks in about the same, so. . . yeah. No big deal.

                              Oh, and i'm 35, gonna be 36 in a few months; no major health problems -- gained weight at age 20 due to prolactin/pituitary tumor/emotional eating. Lost it as a vegan triathlete, kept it off while vegetarian/generally active, became paleo to make it easier for family feeding in light of DH's health issues, and here i am.

                              I would say that since being paleo i have lsot weight/inches (probably about 5-8 lbs, and definitely an inch to two off the waist), so i'm happy with these results. But i probably ate the same calories all along. I ahve good hunger signals and I follow them.

                              but again, just becuase I don't do it, that doesn't mean that calorie counting is bad, or isn't a great tool.
                              Last edited by zoebird; 05-31-2012, 11:59 PM.

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                              • Long time lurker, first post. Read this whole thread and I think Paleobird is onto something and has clearly proved a method that works for her.
                                I am a 30 year old male (starting weight two months ago 103kg/227lbs, currently 95kg/209lbs, still a way to go but on the right track I think) and the steps described in the first post make sense to me. I personally really needed high dietary fat period to actually start to lose any weight. I didn't lose anything for about a month and then BAM, 10lbs less in a few days after upping the fat in my diet. I no longer have any cravings and have done a few 24 and 36 hour fasts without too much effort. This would have been unthinkable just a few months ago so I guess I am being healed and I actually have a lot more energy and mental clarity.
                                That said, what I take on board from this is that I shouldn't go overboard with the dietary fat and probably see it as a phase I had to go through for healing my body and controlling cravings (turning into a fat burning beast instead of a wounded sugar burning animal). I don't think I have the discipline to actually count calories and weigh my food, but "portion control" is definitely something I can work with now that I have my appetite under control. For me: eat right and you'll automatically eat far fewer calories and carbs. Combined with 2-3 kettlebell work-outs a week and it seems to work well so far.
                                Getting married in 2 months time so not much time to get into shape!

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