I would suggest focusing on your running goal rather than a weight goal.
Eat a moderate amount with a small deficit. You are correct that if you eat too low and go "diet mad" this can set a bad example for the kids. So I would look at eating no less than around 1500 daily. Especially since you're running, your body is going to need hundreds more calories than that daily, so that's still going to be loss - just maybe slow loss. But that's okay.
I don't HAVE to lose the weight by August 18, it's more that I wanted to take some off and feel really good by then. Why August 18? I'm running in a 5K and obstacle course that day and I just want to be able to do it and feel good, but having some weight off by then would be lovely too.
I'm trying to set up healthy eating patterns and I actually do feel better so far with the way I've been eating. I'm not worried about doing something unhealthy to lose the weight, I've already been there done that and I know that I don't feel as good when I do that as I do when I'm watching what I eat and being sensible. I used to be anorexic as a teen, but since I've gotten older and had kids I realize it's so important to take good care of myself and set good examples for them. I don't want them to grow up thinking they need to starve themselves or diet constantly. I'd rather that they just see me eat healthy and exercise and follow in those footsteps, instead of constantly thinking about how much they weigh.
I just wondered if I was on the right track to lose or if I was too low or too high with my calories to accomplish the weight lose I wanted. I'd rather it took longer and stayed off for good.
Fitness Minutes: (104,521)
3,799 6/16/12 7:56 A
I say, forget the aggressive weight loss goal. Set the goal to track your food, eat in your range and then set an exercise goal. Why not set the goal that by August you will run a 5k or do 15 consecutive "man" pushups? Setting a fitness goal will help you with your weight loss and will probably be more fulfilling than basing your success on the scale.
Fitness Minutes: (10,813)
6/16/12 6:53 A
I agree with most comments regarding water loss(which is not fat loss) and setting such a aggressive goal of 30lbs in 8 weeks. I just hope that you don't starve yourself in order to reach it. Or be disappointed if you are unable to do it and just give up. I only had 16lbs to lose and I stuck to my calorie ranges and added exercise but it still took me 10 weeks to lose it and the last 3lbs were the hardest. I lost the most in the first couple weeks (which I attribute to water) and then a steady 1lb a week after. I couldn't believe how long it took. But I can tell you it was all fat lose and I developed healthy eating habits as a result so that I can maintain my weight.
By the way, you are on track to lose a healthy amount of weight, just not as much as you were trying to do. The 1200-1500 calorie range is the least you can eat and still get enough protein, calcium, fiber, vitamins, and so on to have a chance of staying healthy. SparkPeople will never let you go lower, because it's not safe. If you tell it you want to lose too fast, the program will give you that minimum range. It won't tell you that your goal is unsafe or mathematically impossible; it will just tell you to eat the smallest safe amount and let you figure out eventually that it's not going to come off that fast.
Fitness Minutes: (20,400)
2,704 6/15/12 8:47 P
I'm almost exactly the same as you. I followed Spark's plan to the letter and it took me about four months to reach 122. I believe you can reach your goal weight, but I don't believe you can do it in a healthy way before August 18th. Sorry.
I think Deb is wrong. I think losing 30 pounds in 60 days to end up at a BMI of 21 actually IS impossible. It would be very difficult even for a person who weighed twice what you do.
Think in terms of percentages of your excess weight. If you're very careful about nutrition and you do moderate to vigorous exercise, it's normal to lose an average of about 3% of your extra weight per week. Right now, that's about a pound a week, give or take a few ounces. Since you lost 7 pounds your first week, it wouldn't be all that strange if you stayed the same now for a month or more. You might lose more, but some people just lose in chunks.
It's not impossible to lose a little faster than 3% per week, but it's not advisable, ESPECIALLY if there's a special event happening August 18. In order to speed it up, you either have to over-exercise, under-nourish yourself, or both. Either of those things can make you look pale and drawn, make it more likely that you'll catch colds, and make you generally grumpy. Eating too little so you get undernourished can roughen your skin, nails, and hair. You come out looking a lot worse than if you were just slightly chubbier.
If August 18 is an arbitrary deadline or a practical one (e.g. if you have to weigh in for the Army or something), doing extra exercise might work (although it still won't get you much below 135-140.)
If it's a day when you want to look pretty, on the other hand, you're better off losing less through good nutrition and reasonable exercise (including strength training) and buying better support underwear to smooth you out under the clothes.
Fitness Minutes: (21,710)
318 6/15/12 6:07 P
Thirty pounds in two months is a /very/ rapid pace for weight loss, which will probably not be stable. Like Unident, I recommend that you reconsider your time-frame to best support your success.
My dimensions are similar to yours: I'm 5'4" and weighed 153 when I started using SparkPeople. I've lost my weight in a few spurts, but I'm currently around 140. The difference of fifteen pounds (which is much closer to a realistic goal for two months of consistent, dedicated work) may be a good starting goal for you.
I'm sorry? You want to lose over 30 pounds in just two months?
Your goal is incredibly unlikely. It's not impossible, but the only way you could ever achieve that is with fad crash diets that will drop your lean muscle and body tissue as well as fat very rapidly. These are always unhealthy.
A healthy rate of loss generally is 1 pound a week, and being a bit slighter with only 30 pounds to go you would quickly find that even a full pound a week becomes very difficult to achieve. A good time to lose 30 pounds is therefore 30-50 weeks or so. A good goal date for that is mid February 2013.
6/15/12 2:44 P
1200-1550 is the minimum range for a female - you really should try not to go below it. Its important to fuel your body with enough nutrition.
Part of the 7 pound first week was likely water weight, from improving your food choices. You will probably see some weeks with no change - the goal is continual progress in the long term. I only lost .6 pounds in the past 2 weeks, but I'm down over 12 in the past 2 months. That's ok - its moving in the right direction.
According to what my calorie range is on here, I'm supposed to be eating 1200-1500 calories a day. I don't remember if I fooled around with that or if that's the number I was given (I signed up a few years ago and then never used it much until now). I've been staying in my calorie range, sort of bouncing between the numbers or somedays perhaps a little below the low number, each day. Last week I lost 7 pounds, which I know is high for one week. This week though the scale hasn't budged at all. I know there will be bad weeks and good weeks. Am I on track?
Just in case you need to know, I'm 5'3", 154 lbs, and trying to get down to 120, hopefully by August 18.
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