Fitness Minutes: (65,797)
2,489 1/23/13 11:38 A
As far as the math goes...
Let's say your maintenance calorie needs are 2000 cals a day and you lead a sedentary life. If you ate 1500 cals, you should lose approx. 1 lb per week. Now a heavier person's maintenance needs (to maintain their current weight) will be higher, say around 2500 cals. So that person could easily get a deficit of 1000 cals per week by eating 1500 and lose 2 lbs per week.
The person in their healthy weight range would lose 1 lb eating 1500 cals. The person in their overweight/obese range would lose 2 lbs eating 1500 cals.
Now if you factor in cardio you increase your maintenance calorie needs. So let's say an average sized woman who leads a sedentary life needs 2000 cals to maintain her current weight. Then she starts doing cardio and burns an extra 300 cals a day while still consuming 2000 cals, she would be creating a calorie deficit of 2100 cals. A little more than half a pound a week.
So yes, cardio will help increase your calorie deficit on top of the calorie deficit you are already creating by eating less than your maintenance.
Diet IS 80% of weight loss and it comes down to the calorie deficit you're creating. If you eat more than you burn, it doesn't matter how much cardio you're doing, you won't lose weight. And unless you can exercise for a couple hours every day, the calorie burn net is not all that high. Not to mention, the more you workout, the more you'll need to eat. I am also a strong believer that the healthier you eat, the more success you'll have with weight loss and keeping the weight off. As far as carbs go, I just try to limit refined grain/sugars. Complex carbs (whole grains, veggies, legumes, lentils, seeds, nuts and fruit) are awesome and help fuel me as well as keep me full. I usually always eat 1 banana a day but I try to get more veggies than fruit.
I personally try to look at everything as seperate entities. Cardiovascular exercising is for my heart health, energy and endurance. Strength training is for my health, strength and the tone of my body. Diet is for health and fat loss. All working together to make a healthier, more fit and beautiful me.
Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 1/23/2013 (12:05)
Fitness Minutes: (34,785)
5,088 1/23/13 11:28 A
In response to the title of your topic: I think the #1 rule to a "diet" is to not think of it as a diet. Think of it as a permanent healthy lifestyle. The word "diet" implies a temporary change in your eating habits that will end once you reach your weight loss goal. Instead, you should develop healthy eating habits that you stick with for a lifetime. Now to answer your questions.
1) Weight loss is 80% healthy diet, 20% exercise. Think about it: which one is easier - eating 300 calories or burning 300 calories through exercise? You simply can't out-exercise a bad diet.
2) You should count calories, carbs, fats and proteins to ensure you are eating a balanced diet. Follow SP's guidelines for your ranges.
3) 3,500 calories is equal to one pound of fat. You may have a weekly deficit of 3,500 calories (or 500 calories per day) but you may not even lose weight. I think people fret over the numbers too much, and they get discouraged because they did everything "right." But our bodies are complicated (and stubborn) and just because we think we did everything right doesn't mean that we're guaranteed to lose weight. It's a process that happens overtime. 45-65% of your calories should come from carbs. Again, follow SP's guidelines for your ranges.
4) I absolutely LOVE bananas. I eat bananas every day - they're my fuel for exercise. I agree with STEPHEN_NANNY - if you sit down on the couch at the end of the day and eat 3 bananas, that's not the best (or worst) thing to do. If you want to enjoy a banana, enjoy a banana!
It seems like you're worried about carbs. I suggest you stay away from or limit sugar, white flour, pre-packaged snack cakes, sweets, cookies, stuff like that (unless you're able to have one serving and walk away - I, unfortunately, haven't mastered that yet); they don't do anything to fill you up, they spike your blood sugar, and basically you're left wanting more or something else, which can lead to overeating. Your body does need carbs, so don't cut them out! Just limit sugar, white flour, sweets, soda, etc.
Edited by: KRISTEN_SAYS at: 1/23/2013 (11:33)
Fitness Minutes: (16,232)
385 1/23/13 10:59 A
Regarding the bananas and their "carbs"...
In an era of fad diets, drops, creams, cleanses, fasts, and fitness trainers writing dubious nutrition books, the biggest crime is the oversimplification of nutrition terms. This is done to fool the unwary and uneducated, and sell more product.
Bananas have carbs. So do apples. Your body needs carbs. But a carbohydrate is a category of many things, some better, some worse, depending on how it is packaged and depending how much you are taking in. You need carbs, to a point.
A banana has carbs. If all you ate were bananas, you'd have problems. A banana comes with other nutrients...potassium, fibre, etc. Is it good for you? Yes...it is better than a french fry, arguably less so than an apple. It has a higher glycemic index than some other natural foods...which is very handy if you are about to do a workout (or maybe just finished one), but maybe problematic if you are going to sit on your couch for the evening, watch a movie before bed, and wolf down 3 bananas (although, you could do worse).
So in your journey to produce your own, customized nutrition plan, and in asking the kind of questions you are (good for you!!!), keep on scratching beneath the surface when you hear broad generalizations, oversimplified terms, and extreme statements like "always" and "never".
Other people's opinions may vary, but here's what I know:
1. It IS 80% diet, 20% exercise. Those aren't exact figures, but that's the general rule. 80% of weight loss is in the kitchen, 20% is in the gym.
2. If you track your food on Spark, you'll be tracking both calories and carbs. Weight loss is a matter of expending more calories than you consume. At the same time, you need to be eating a balanced diet; the calories you consume need to be healthy calories. Spark helps you track that and achieve that.
3. If you have a 500 calorie deficit per day, you will lose one pound a week, generally speaking. Of course weight fluctuates with water and other factors, so it isn't guaranteed that an exact 500-calorie deficit will cause an exact one-pound loss every week -- it may take time to see results -- but over time, yes, that's the math. One pound is equivalent to 3500 calories, so 500 calories for seven days equals one pound.
4. Bananas are great. I'm not qualified to speak for diabetics, but fruit is a good source of healthy carbohydrates, and bananas are rich in nutrients. You wouldn't want to eat 12 a day, but there's no reason for the average person not to eat a banana.
I'm still trying to tweak my diet to a way where I will stick to it but at the same time see the effects I want. Here are my questions and I would value any responses :) thanks!
1) Can some clarify for me the 80/20 rule? I read that loosing weight is 80% diet and 20 % exercise and then i read elsewhere that its 80% exercise and 20% diet....which is true?
2) I work in an office and sit on my butt most of the day. I go home and try to workout a little, either walking the dogs or doing zumba. ( Soon to be adding yoga and weights in there) Should I be counting calories or carbs or both?
3) I've heard you should have a 500 cal deficit to really loose....true? If carbs are in the picture what is a good daily carb goal?
4) how good or bad are bananas? I read a lot of people avoid them because they are so high in carbs...?
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