Hi from the Uk! Also needed some advice :)
Hi! I've just joined to ask for some help after spending the last few weeks obsessively reading MDA since discovering it!
So - I'm a 21 year old female, 5'6.5 (that half inch is very important lol!) and 130-133lbs. So far I am completely loving the primal life, I've been low carb for a while now but going primal feels so much more natural and healthy. I am so happy to give up the horrible chronic cardio! I want to get super healthy, lose 10lbs or so and be lean and toned.
Anyway, I need some advice concerning a plateau. I thought I would be seeing some results by now but the scale is in the same range, I haven't lost any inches and don't appear to have gained any muscle. I'm not here for a quick fix but after almost a month of eating/exercising well I am finding it hard to keep motivated without results. I typically don't have trouble losing weight when dieting and working out. I eat loads of low carb veggies at dinner, try to keep dairy low, glass of wine 2-4 days a week. Eat too many artifical sweeteners which I will cut down (at the moment they help me to not binge or cheat).
A typical day;
B: whey protein shake with coconut oil, tea and soymilk
L: cherry toms and mayo, or an egg or coconut oil with cocoa powder
D: 4-8oz chicken or beef with loads of low carb veggies and coconut oil
S: sugar free jelly (need to give that up) or protein shake
Usually cals:1200-1800, carbs:30-80g, pro:70-120g, fat:50-100g
My workouts are almost exactly what Mark recommends (in fitness ebook)
Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance
Hi & welcome!
I have very similar stats to you, except that I'm 47! (Yes that 1/2 inch is so important, LOL!) I'm eating similar amounts of calories, though I tend to eat fat in the higher range (about 50% of my calories.)
Like you, I haven't seen much size change--yet--except for what looked like a couple of pounds of water loss in the first week. However, I've had my first pain-free period ever! My digestion has improved and I think my eyesight may be as well. So I am all for relaxing and watching the transformation continue at its own pace.
That said, lots of folks recommend cutting out dairy (except for butter) for awhile--some folks can't seem to lose weight on dairy, while it doesn't affect others at all. Also, there is a theory that artificial sweeteners trick the body into producing insulin--so probably best to drop those sooner, rather than later.
Finally, are you doing your sprints? Working out at the appropriate level? (I am doing PB Fitness, too!) I have only done one sprint session so far and I have read on the blog that interval/sprint work is really helpful for women who want to lose fat. And some women just don't work out hard enough. I am in good shape (former personal trainer), but doing the PB Fitness routines s-l-o-w-l-y and really pushing myself to get out that last push up helps me to know I am really working my muscles to the point where they will grow (At least 2 rest days in between LHT sessions is essential, IMO.)
Oh, and drop the soy milk! Def not primal and can mess with your hormones.
Thanks for the reply Dragonfly!
It's cool to see someone with similar stats! What are your goals?
I'm trying to cut out dairy, or at least limit it as much as I can without bingeing (I have problems with that - but primal eating is helping me overcome it).
Cutting out sweeteners it a bit more problematic for me....I don't eat fruit so without sweeteners I would have nothing sweet (I have a major sweet tooth!). Do you think it could be really affecting weight loss? If so I will definately cut down, although it will be soo hard to cope with the dessert cravings.
I'm starting the sprint part of the program this week, so hopefully that will help. I guess I could work harder with the moving slowly and LHT - but isn't the point of it to not work too hard and overtrain with cardio and weights?
I only have 50-200ml organic unsweetened soy milk a day...is it really that bad? I don't know what else to put in tea and coffee as cream is out because it's dairy and I have portion control issues with it. I can just about do black coffee if it has sweeteners, but not black tea! Any suggestions?
Thanks for your help so far!
you have a lot of processed food on your menu. i'm seeing a lot of protein shakes and coconut oil. focus on getting your nutrition from more whole food - meat and vegetables, fruit if you feel like it.
Is that a lot of processed food?! I thought I was doing quite well. Is coconut oil too processed then?
I can give up the mayo, but I don't want to give the shakes up..they are just so convenient and they help me to not overeat.
Another question (sorry so many!) I know it's important to keep calories and carbs in check to lose weight, but I am so bored with weighing and tracking everything. Will I actually lose if I eat when hungry/stop when full? I am hoping so but wondering if my body will just naturally maintain my weight but making me hungry for maintenance calories, if you know what I mean. Any experience with this, bearing in mind I am at a healthy weight but not lean.
You are welcome!
Originally Posted by snowy
See my journal (link in my signature) for my goals/daily foods, etc
Replace sweet with fat--for example, I have HUGE carbs cravings right now (during my menstrual cycle) and I just had a tablespoon of cashew butter. Nipped that craving in the bud! I have a major sweet tooth, too. Up your protein & fat & it will go away.
I use coconut milk (canned, BPA-free) in my morning tea (I have British parents)--takes a bit of getting used to, but now I love the taste. Yes, unfermented soy is bad--definitely not Primal, either. Coconut milk is better for you and you can use it in your smoothies, too.
I don't suggest you overtrain--just make sure you are lifting at your maximum effort--reduce rest periods between sets, etc. You should be pretty worn out (temporarily!) after an LHT, if you are working hard enough. Most women don't work hard enough, in my experience as a personal trainer--not true of all, of course! If you use Mark's guidelines for progressing on his PBF workout, you will be golden.
I agree with Batty--eat more real food--free-range organic eggs for example, for brekkie. Try a handful of nuts or some beef jerky for a snack.
Two shakes is two too many in my opinion! Coconut oil is fine--get the best you can find--Tropical Traditions is good--I think Spectrum has a good one in the UK. I still eat mayo, but really limited amounts...
Originally Posted by snowy
I only tracked the first week. You may want to replace the shakes with real food, track for another week & then relax. It takes some time to transition and I used to tell my personal training clients not to expect to see any results at all until 4-6 weeks after starting a new program.
We are really talking about a whole metabolism shift here, so be patient with yourself. Your body will sort itself out, as long as you take care not to eat emotionally and give yourself time & attention to get over the carb/sweet cravings. EFT, also known as "tapping" is a great tool for emotional eating and eliminating cravings.
Last edited by Dragonfly; 11-23-2010 at 12:38 PM.
coconut oil is a good thing, don't get me wrong, but i am of the belief that it should be used as a supplement and not a meal. i use coconut oil to cook stuff in, but rarely do i consume it directly. you can certainly consume it daily, but that's approximately 400 calories that you could dedicate to other food with more diverse nutrients.
Originally Posted by snowy
i am assuming that you were/are a carb/sugar junkie? because i think you've just shifted your dependence on those to a dependence on protein shakes, and that's really not good, either. BTW, whey protein isn't technically primal, either.
lastly, i suggest not worrying about what the scale says and focus on how PB foods make you healthier than you've ever been before. don't worry about tracking for now, don't worry about overeating. if you give your body the right stuff, it will react accordingly, and your ideal "lean and toned" body composition may or may not be '10 lbs less'.
[just to toot my own horn]
Depending on your ability to basically feel okay when technically hungry, i would suggest trying to incorporate intermittent fasting to your lifestyle. At first, it may be a bit hard but from my experience i can tell it allows you to better know about your appetite and hunger.
For some people, fasting is not an easy thing to do because they may already be relying on permanent sugar availability. And at work, you may not want to tell your boss you are attempting to regulate your hunger and system by fasting therefore rendering your brain less technically functional...
Do not hesitate to inquire about fasting if you want some people to give you their viewpoints and there own experience.:-)
i would not recommend IFing until you have the actual eating part down first. that's more important.
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