I think a lot of times, we look at how we fit in our clothes/ what sizes we wear, and we look at the number on the scale, and we think "I need to lose 30 pounds" or whatever. But the reality is, that we need to lose maybe 15 pounds, and get some exercise. Because just losing weight, is not going to get us the results we're really after. At my current weight, without any exercise, I'd wear a size 10 or 12. With exercise, I wear a 6 or 8. My weight is smack dab in the middle of the BMI for my height.
So it's not just about cutting the calories and what the scale says.... it's about fueling your body properly, to shed some fat and build some muscle and get that metabolism going. Severely restricting your calories is not going to be helpful in the long run. It's not as simple as, well if I only eat 500 calories a day my body will burn up x amount of fat. Because it won't go looking at the fat, to burn up first. It's going to burn up muscle. So while the scale might say you dropped 2 pounds or whatever, your thighs will still be flabby or your butt will still be big. Because you didn't lose 2 pounds of fat.
I personally think you'd find, if you followed the Spark recommendations for a calorie range and getting cardio and strength training-- by the time school started you'd be seeing the kind of changes you're really looking for and not just a lower number on the scale. And you'd be doing it in a healthy way.
Fitness Minutes: (4,777)
6/18/13 2:16 P
I agree with what everyone else has said. I follow the 1200-1550 calorie range and when I first started I noticed that the closer to 1200 I stayed the less I actually lost. I now make sure I'm comfortably in the middle of that range everyday and the weight has come off much easier. I am pretty close to the same weight as you, but a little shorter :) I wouldn't think you'd want to lose too much more weight and you would probably achieve a much better body with strength training for toning instead of just weight loss.
Another thing to think about is when you drastically reduce calories the body starts to slow down. It will want to conserve energy and to do that it will burn your muscle for energy, because muscle uses energy all the time even at rest. So what happens is you lose weight on a low calorie diet but it's muscle you're losing and the body hangs onto your fat stores because it thinks it's starving. Leading to a slower metabolism, and a body that wants to store anything and everything as fat and that's a really bad combination.
As some of the PP's have mentioned. Eating a healthy diet and lifting weights is the best way to slim down long term. The muscle you are building rev up your metabolism allowing you to eat more and still lose weight. The muscle looks really good too! Try not to get too hung up on the numbers on your scale either. They really don't mean a lot. How your clothes fit, what the tape measure says and what you look like naked matter more than numbers.
Edited by: JUSTEATREALFOOD at: 6/18/2013 (10:41)
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6/18/13 9:42 A
@JENNILACEY - I will check out the book! Thank you!
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6/18/13 9:41 A
@KCLARK89 - This comment was really useful for me. I don't think I'm anywhere near relapsing, but I probably do still think about weight loss in an unhealthy way because I've NEVER done it the healthy way (except at the very beginning of my ED, when I was eating plenty and on the swim team, which gradually led into starving myself). Thank you!
Edited by: BEULART at: 6/18/2013 (09:42)
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6/18/13 9:37 A
Thank you for your advice. After reading all the comments here, I'm revising my diet plan to add a few hundred more calories. Being healthy and fit is far more important to me than losing the weight quickly - I really wanted to be substantially thinner by September, but being on my way to fitness is more important.
Fitness Minutes: (85,382)
6/18/13 7:44 A
At your current weight... a deficit of no more than 200-500 cals/day. Eat more, hun. You won't be strong and healthy on 400-700 cals a day. I eat that much before noon and I'm rather petite. Strength train and eat close to maintenance, build strength and muscle and you will look thin at a healthy weight. I imagine that after years of suffering from an eating disorder you've lost a lot of lean muscle. Your goal shouldn't be losing weight since you are already in your healthy BMI. It should be losing *fat* and gaining muscle by creating only a small calorie deficit.
I recommend you pick up the book, "The New Rules of Lifting for Women: Lift like a Man, Look like a Goddess" by Lou Schuler.
They actually don't recommend creating a calorie deficit at all and eating at maintenance in order to burn fat while building lean muscle. They focus on boosting your metabolism to lose fat instead.
Personally, I typically eat between 1400-2000 cals a day and I'm 5'2 110-115 lbs.
as someone who is already close to a healthy weight and who is exercising, your daily deficit should be maxing out at about 250 cals. so your 1000-1500 deficit is about 4-6 times greater than what you should be aiming for. because they idea isn't to create the largest deficit possible, the idea is to get all the nutrients your body needs in and create a deficit. and your body can't get all the nutrients it needs is so few calories.
Fitness Minutes: (120)
6/17/13 10:40 P
My one question for you is, what do you plan to do once you get the weight off? I think you might be better off learning healthy eating habits along the way, so you don't fall into the yo-yo dieting path... which is what I've seen most people who eat very little while "dieting" do....they lose it all but then as soon as they start eating normal amounts, they gain it all back because they never learned how to really do it right.
Fitness Minutes: (4,362)
6/17/13 10:32 P
Congrats on starting school soon!!
I was enrolled and I got free nutritional counseling, therapy and medical visits every other week because of my eating disorder.
A couple of weeks before school starts, call to schedule appointments. You do not have to have a current ed to get services. Lots of athletes got the same amount of appointments as me---I tried to blend in with them in the waiting room. LOL....
Starting school is a transition in life and people with eds can have setbacks at that point. (My college had gyms, scales, and buffets! It was really stressful.)
Edited by: AILEBBELIA at: 6/17/2013 (22:42)
Fitness Minutes: (14,252)
9,692 6/17/13 10:06 P
As the others have mentioned, this plan isn't safe nor healthy. You're not, frankly, fat enough to lose 2-3 lbs per week. Losing so much so quickly is hard on the body, and can result in slowed metabolism at the very least... and fatigue, illness, suppressed immune system, and more besides.
I agree that you need to see out professional medical guidance in this situation. Eating disorders aren't something that just stop; it's like alcoholism; you don't cure it. You manage it, but it doesn't go away. Even your revised goal is very low on the BMI range, and is going to be very difficult for you to reach safely, and certainly not in the time goal you have set for yourself. It may (or may not) be possible for you, but even if it is, it will be slow going, and given your past medical history, it would be unwise for anyone here to really provide advice based on what we know.
Edited by: DRAGONCHILDE at: 6/17/2013 (22:09)
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1,078 6/17/13 10:04 P
I'm honestly a little scared for you.
As someone who almost fell into an eating disorder category, I can relate. I would run for an hour and sometimes double up workouts and eat the bare minimum of 1200 cals/day and I know some days it was way less than that. Will you lose weight that way? Absolutely. Is it healthy? Not even a little bit. If you start to ADD calories (at least 1200) and work out, you will still lose weight, I promise.
If you go to my page and look at my pics, you would probably guess a number for my weight that is 10-20lbs off because of my workout routine. I do a lot of ST and I eat around 1700 cals/day. Granted, I'm in maintenance, but my body needs the fuel for my workouts and to build muscle.
You said previously you had little muscle mass when you were 100 pounds. Drastically cutting calories and doing extreme amounts of cardio won't get you lean muscle mass, trust me.
Please take Becky's advice and see a dr/nutritionist/dietitian to get some kind of healthier eating/workout plan in place!
Your plan is not safe, it is not healthy, it is not appropriate. Please make a follow-up visit with your dietitian/counselor to discuss a healthy eating plan for your needs. Because your your eating disorder history, your plan will be different. The lowest calorie range allowed by Sparkpeople is 1200-1550 calories daily.
Becky SP Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
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6/17/13 6:32 P
Hi there! Thanks for your concern, but I'm actually really happy with my body as it is now, and I'm not currently suffering from an eating disorder. I definitely was in the past (at the point when I was eating 0-200 cals a day). But in the wake of recovering from that, I gained almost 50 pounds - because I was so scared that if I thought about tracking my calories at all, I'd fall back into disordered thought patterns. I'm actually really excited that I finally feel ready to lose the weight without the focus on food bringing those thought patterns back, and after a couple weeks of following this plan, I haven't felt any of the body hatred I used to feel. I'm really fine with my body as it is now, and the only reason I want to lose weight is that I'm a little concerned about how those around me view my body, and I want to be more in touch with my body and not feel like it's bigger than I think of it as being.
But you're right that my goal is underweight - thanks for pointing that out! I didn't calculate the BMI and didn't realize it was a little low. I was just thinking about how I felt when I weighed 110 in the past, and forgot that I also had very little muscle mass then, so I've revised my weight loss goal to 115 because I want to be healthy and strong - NOT underweight.
I say this out of a place of sincere concern and want for you to be ok - I would highly recommend talking to a dietician that specializes in eating disorders, or at the very least tell your doctor. There are so many red flags in your post, from eating 400-700 calories a day, up from 0-200, to thinking that your perfectly normal weight makes you the "chubby girl", to aiming for an underweight goal.
I am very concerned for you, and strongly encourage you to seek medical advice.
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6/17/13 6:11 P
I'm trying to lose 2-3 pounds a week, and thus going for a calorie deficit of 1000-1500 each day. I usually achieve this by eating somewhere between 400 and 700 calories a day, while burning off somewhere between 200 and 700 (averaging around 350 at the moment), mostly through cardio done at home. I don't have any device to record calories burned, so I try to underestimate the exercise I do to be on the safe side, while measuring my food carefully to make sure I'm not underestimating my caloric intake.
I'm estimating that my BMR is about 1480/day based on the fact that I weigh (I think - can't weigh myself) around 145 lbs. and am 5'5. So I'm calculating that 1480/day loss into my deficit.
I'm wondering - is there anything wrong with the way I'm thinking about this? Am I overestimating my BMR, assuming too straightforward a calculation when it comes to caloric deficit, etc.? I really want to get back to my old weight of 110 within a few months, if possible, because I'm starting school in September and don't want to be thought of as the chubby girl in a new crowd of people. I've lost about this much weight before (I went from 130 to 100 lbs.) in less time, but did so by severely restricting my caloric intake (0-200 calories/day) with no exercise, so I'm trying to find a healthier, steadier way to deal with calorie deficits now.
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