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4A-HEALTHY-BMI's Recent Blog Entries

Clearing the monster out from under my bed

Monday, June 18, 2012

Halfway through my first season kayaking I got a painful dose of reality about my abilities
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=3506672

The experience I had in 2010 was so traumatic - my first bad day on a river ever - that it was crazy how fearful I became. It took a month for me to really get my nerve back.

I did get my nerve back and went on to run more rivers that year.

I lost my second season to a snowboard injury.

I'm happy to report that this past weekend I returned to that river and ran it twice. There were a couple of combat rolls, but no swimming. And despite my disproportionate fear on the first run, I hit most of my lines and had a very good time, with good friends.

Here are some websites about where this took place:
www.zoaroutdoor.com/dryway_ataglance
.htm


www.americanwhitewater.org/content/R
iver/detail/id/681


I've run harder things since then. But THESE PARTICULAR rapids had kicked my butt and assumed a terrifying status in my memory that was far out of proportion for my current experience and abilities.

I'm so glad to have run them again, and established for myself that I now have the experience and abilities to run them. It's like exorcising a monster from out of my closet or under my bed.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TENACIOUSTIGER 6/28/2012 11:04PM

    wow you are amazing loved the story, my monsters were about walking down corridors that seem like a skating rink, at work. I am now back to striding down the hall at work, but it has taken almost 18 mths to do so mentally not physically. I have a lot of sympathy for car accident victims it must be really hard to drive again after a crash, You are an extremist

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MINSOSTER 6/22/2012 12:30PM

    This gives me hope that I will be able to conquer a monster of my own. While downhill skiing in January 2011 my equipment didn't feel like it was fitting the way it should and the tension on the bindings was set too light so I kept dropping a ski. I told the group I was with that I was going to head in and I would meet them for lunch so we could head back out together after. I allowed them to talk me into one more run. This time when I dropped a ski I had a big fall injuring my pelvis that still flares up today. That ended my ski season for 2011. It took me a couple of trips to work my way out of the green runs and haven't been back to that bigger hill yet, but I plan to get back on it next season.

Congratulations on the progress you have made!

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DDOORN 6/19/2012 8:50AM

    THAT'S the way to NAIL those monsters! Way to SPARK! :-)

Don

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PATTILYNN224 6/19/2012 7:52AM

    You are amazing!

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KAYOTIC 6/18/2012 11:56PM

    good job! I find a similar experience with some of the trails we mountain bike, I'm able to ride much more than I have in the past, pushing past the fear is a good thing!

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WATERMELLEN 6/18/2012 8:41PM

    That's terrific: you stared 'em down!!

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TAMPATINK67 6/18/2012 7:37PM

    The US Whitewater Center is located here in Charlotte - I use the grounds for hiking... But the rafting and kayaking look very tempting!!!

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RG_DFW 6/18/2012 4:50PM

    Good for you

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VHALKYRIE 6/18/2012 4:47PM

    Glad you conquered that river! I admire you for going back to defeat it!

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FIT-HEALTHY1 6/18/2012 4:33PM

    At least you didn't give up completely. I am glad you were able to conquer that monster! Bravo!!

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GONEWLIFE 6/18/2012 4:32PM

    good for you !

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Weight Maintenance Definitions, Revisited

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

While Russ gets the wekeepitoff.com site back up and running, I'm going to repost my columns from there on my blog here so I can refer to them when I need to.

Last year I wrote a column about the varying definitions of maintenance used in scientific studies. www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4323116


I followed this up with an illustration using data from contestants on the TV show, "The Biggest Loser."
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4326080
In this second column I arrived at a definition of maintenance as "staying under a BMI of 30, assuming normal body composition."

I recently discovered a research article published in 2006 that reviews definitions used in the scientific literature and recommends using +/- 3% of body weight. (free to download, here: www.nature.com/ijo/journal/v30/n3/fu
ll/0803175a.html
)

If you're concerned with maintenance, this paper is well worth reading. The most interesting parts are Tables 1 and 2 which summarize the definitions of maintenance in scientific studies and the "Discussion and recommendations" section near the end.

The authors end up defining a working maintenance range as +/- 3% of a designated body weight.

Here is how they arrived at that number:
1) It needs to be expressed in % of weight because taller / heavier people experience greater weight fluctuations than shorter / smaller people and it has to work no matter how tall you are.
2) It needs to be smaller than clinically-relevant weight changes (generally accepted to be 5% or more of body weight). This is because if your weight changes enough to have an effect on your health, then you're not maintaining; you're either losing or gaining.
3) It needs to be bigger than usual weight measurement error due to hydration levels, etc. (generally 1-2% of body weight). We want the number to reflect actual weight changes, not random measurement error.

How you define the "designated body weight" is important, of course. As the authors point out in the "Biologic relevance" section, if you maintain an obese weight you might still have negative health consequences.

Let's use the same dataset of Biggest Loser contestants to see how this definition looks. We will arbitrarily define the "designated body weight" as the weight at finale, just to see how people might compare:
docs.google.com/spreadsheet/pub?hl=e
n_US&hl=en_US&key=0Ah4KrA4GkhKgdC1JLXN
FMjBhZEtOOGNrRi1RZUh3b0E&output=html


I've added a column "% Change from Finale Weight" and sorted from smallest to largest. People who reported a "Current Weight" (on 12/1/2009) within +/- 3% of their finale weight are highlighted in blue in this column.

The four that had remained within the 3% margin were Estella Hayes, Jerry Skeabeck, Nichole Machalik, and Ali Vincent. They also happen to be four of the six folks who stayed within 5 lbs of their finale weight.

Here is where it gets interesting, though. Would you consider Jerry Skeabeck a successful maintainer? He lost 119 lbs and got to a BMI of 38 (severely obese). By some definitions (mine included, BMI under 30) he isn't actually DONE losing the weight, and therefore can't be considered "in maintenance" in the first place.

On the other hand Mark Kruger kept his BMI under 30 but gained back 21.15% of his weight. Would he NOT be considered a successful maintainer? I would argue that he has been successful at keeping his weight in a relatively healthy range, even if he did regain 33 lbs.

Obviously finale weight is not a great definition of "designated body weight" if you want to include BMI or other weight-associated health scales. And it is probably a poor "designated body weight" anyway, as the contestants were competing in weight loss for money and can make a legitimate case for needing to lose as much as possible for the finale without expecting to actually live at that weight afterward.

In the end I think I still like my current definition the most (stay under a BMI of 30). But that is how it should be, I suppose, since it's my life I'm managing. Each of us has to come up with a definition we think is valid and that we can live with. And then stick with it.

The most important is -- whatís yours?

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

VHALKYRIE 6/15/2012 11:25AM

    I guess I think of it in terms of "not regaining what has been lost". Kinda vague, but I tend to set my goals in terms of "precision" rather than "accuracy". For example, I may set my weight goal at 115, but if I stay consistent at 125 +/-2 then I consider myself successfully maintaining, even if I haven't hit my target.

Comment edited on: 6/15/2012 11:28:29 AM

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KAYOTIC 6/15/2012 10:15AM

    I do appreciate all the information you put into these blogs! As for defining "designated body weight" it most likely will be a very individual thing, but personally, after a lot of 'try-outs' at different weight ranges, I'm settled into a range that just feels right personally. And it happens to be in a BMI under 24, so that is "normal" in the classification system. I think as flawed as BMI is, at least it give folks a starting point in picking a goal, and they can then tailor it to their own liking once they get closer to that goal.

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BREWMASTERBILL 6/13/2012 7:17AM

    I guess I haven't thought of it in absolutes. I keep setting small incremental goals. Sometimes it is to gain weight, sometimes to lose it. So long as I'm somewhere between 160 and 190, I think I'm OK. 190 puts me on the cusp of overweight if you use the notoriously flawed BMI. However, at 190, I'd better be very muscular.

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The myth of zero-calorie foods

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Lots of things we eat are labeled as having zero calories. Some even use it for marketing, such as Splenda.

It is interesting to note that while these items are low in calories, they are usually not devoid of them. The reason they are labeled as such has to do with labeling laws, not science.

According to US FDA labeling codes,

The terms "calorie free," "free of calories," "no calories," "zero calories," "without calories," "trivial source of calories," "negligible source of calories," or "dietarily insignificant source of calories" may be used on the label or in the labeling of foods, provided that The food contains less than 5 calories per reference amount customarily consumed and per labeled serving.
www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/
cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?fr=101.60


In other words, if a "serving" has fewer than 5 calories, then the manufacturer can label the food as "zero calories."

Here's a specific example. A standard 1g packet of Splenda contains 3.36 calories, mostly coming from the dextrose and maltodextrin used to provide bulk to the product. (Sucralose is very very sweet, so only a tiny amount is contained in a single packet, and itself contains negligible calorie content.)

For contrast, a standard 2.8g packet of granulated sugar contains 10.8 calories.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Splenda#Energy
_.28caloric.29_content


Having a packet of Splenda instead of granulated sugar is saving you 7.44 calories.

I'm not going to get into the debate here about whether non-nutritive sweeteners such as sucralose, saccharin, aspartame, or stevia are bad for you. But what I do want to point out is that a "zero calorie" serving of something usually isn't.

So, if you use a lot of these products and you care about tracking your food accurately, then you should assume that a serving of something that labeled "zero calories" actually is 4 calories. And you should track it as such. Just sayin'

EDIT:
How funny. I am listening to old episodes of the Fitcast and in the one I heard last night they happened to discuss this exact same topic with Tom Venuto.
thefitcast.com/episode-166-what-wome
n-want-w-tom-venuto


And they brought up the very good point that I failed to make above, that the labeling game for manufacturers is to shrink the "serving" size down to where it's under 5 calories so they can label the whole thing "zero calories."

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEVIECAT4 7/6/2012 11:15AM

    Ah, yes, the labeling game. Ever notice on pasta boxes that even though they put a serving is only 200 calories, they also claim that a one pound box of spaghetti is 8 servings. 8 servings??? I don't think so. Next time you boil a box of spaghetti when you have, try and separate it into 8 servings and see what you get! So if it's not being served as a side dish and you are eating it as your main meal, you're really eating 400 calories and not 200. It's all a myth. We have to be so label conscious.

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TENACIOUSTIGER 5/29/2012 9:16PM

    Interesting we are studying labeling and GM foods ATM in food safety systems have you watched food inc or fast food nation very entertaining

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CARRIE1948 5/20/2012 9:57AM

    Always good to be reminded of this

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TAICHIDANCER 5/19/2012 6:29AM

    Great blog.

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KAYOTIC 5/18/2012 11:50PM

    They do the same thing with "trans fat"grams, if it's less than a certain number they can list it as 0 on the label, even if there is some trace amount of trans fat in there. (I believe it's half a gram, but that's going from memory, which can be tricky these days....)

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BLVINBUTTERFLYS 5/17/2012 12:37PM

    emoticon

emoticon
Kat

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WATERMELLEN 5/16/2012 7:45PM

    Love this blog . . . doesn't make the Splenda look like such a great "calorie deal".

And you "cut right to the point" in commenting on my blog . . . chopping off a leg would reduce my weight, yeah! But not appealing really. Messy, and would reduce my ability to, um, exercise!!

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MOBYCARP 5/15/2012 10:21PM

    Of if you look at it another way, this is a reason to have reasonable serving sizes. Plus or minus 4 calories for one packet of Splenda isn't a big deal; that's less than rounding error in measurement of many foods.

The problem will arise when it isn't just one packet of Splenda.

In my case, you make me think of the "zero calorie" spray oil, where the "serving" is a 1/3 second spray. I don't know about you, but a third of a second isn't enough time to put what I need on a skillet. But I still regard this as negligible calories not worth tracking, because it's one skillet once in a day on days when I use it, and zero uses most days.

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AHAPPYLIFE 5/15/2012 7:07PM

    Where do you find your calorie counts? It would be interesting to obtain the real information instead of what a manufacturer wants you to see. I've had a few misgivings about the recipe maker here on Spark for that very reason. If you add 10 packets of Splenda, your recipe has just grown by 33 calories not by zero. I don't think it really causes that big of a problem but if you've hit a plateau, you need to be able to see those calories.

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BREWMASTERBILL 5/15/2012 3:21PM

    No, you dump the PB cap'n on the floor for the kittehs and you eat the box.

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GRACEFULIFE 5/15/2012 3:16PM

    So after I eat the PB capn crunch, I should nom the box. Good to know!

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BREWMASTERBILL 5/15/2012 2:58PM

    Ummm ... seriously? Sawdust? Do you think we have sawdust just laying around the office? We have a ton of cardboard boxes all over. If we're going to make this a lifestyle change, you really must consider availability. I can probably grab a box or two on my way home from work diving into various dumpsters.

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BLUE42DOWN 5/15/2012 2:09PM

    Interesting. I'd known for a while that nutrition labels are somewhat inaccurate due to rounding and the ability to not count things if they're less than a certain amount. (Splenda, as I recall, gets away with being less than 1 carbohydrate gram by just enough to put 0g. Which makes sense with 3.36, since 1 carb gram would be 4 calories.)

The other side of the no-calorie claims that I've heard about applies to sweeteners like Saccharin. Even if they have calories, they are in a form that our body cannot metabolize - so they pass right through us. (Which kinda fits with the cardboard. And perhaps explains why some diet foods taste like sweetened cardboard?)

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 5/15/2012 2:09PM

    Not Walden Farms BBQ sauce?

And anyway, why bother with pre-masticated wood pulp? Just have some straight sawdust. Moar fibar.

Comment edited on: 5/15/2012 2:14:52 PM

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BREWMASTERBILL 5/15/2012 2:08PM

    I'll work on that later, right now I'm trying to get through this pile of cardboard. A little salt and it ain't so bad.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 5/15/2012 1:35PM

    Geez, Bill. I didn't say ANYTHING about negative-calorie foods. Get your integers straight, already!
emoticon

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BREWMASTERBILL 5/15/2012 1:26PM

    This isn't a myth at all.

There's only one truly negative-calorie "food": cardboard, which is 100 percent cellulose. Because you don't have the enzyme required to digest cardboard, simply moving it through your body would require more energy (calories) than you'd get from the cardboard.

Source: http://www.livestrong.com/article/2
9555-list-negative-calorie-food
s/#ixzz1uxbGtfXt

Bon apetit!

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LASKIE2 5/15/2012 1:24PM

    Very interesting article! Thank you so much for this information!

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RG_DFW 5/15/2012 1:24PM

    Wow, I can't believe I've been lied to (again)

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DDOORN 5/15/2012 12:59PM

    Nope...no such thing as a "free" lunch!

Good reminder!

Don

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Horsie Vacation!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

I spent a few days this past week visiting my sister HAVASUROSE in Arizona where she helps out at a nearby Arabian horse farm.

Every morning we'd get up and go out there by 6:30am to feed them breakfast, rake up the poop, groom, and exercise a few of them. We'd work until noon (my HR monitor would report 650-700 calories), then go home and change into our swimsuits and eat a salad and hang out in her backyard by the pool, reading and napping until it was time for dinner. I caught up on a lot of sleep and lost some weight. HAVASUROSE said she lost weight too, under my influence. LOL

I wasn't sure how it would go, actually. Years ago in my 20s when I lost the weight the first time I enjoyed taking riding lessons - to pay for an hour of lessons at the college I attended I spent 8 hours a week grooming. transferring, tacking up, untacking, etc. for other people's lessons. I did that for about 2 years, and I loved it. But that was 23 years ago, so I really wasn't sure if I'd even remember how to handle a horse, let alone ride one.

And the horses we used were all warm or cool blooded, older rescue horses without pedigrees. Certainly not jumpy, intelligent purebred privately-owned Arabians. As it turned out, everything went much better than I expected. I surprised all of us (including I suspect the horses) by remembering how to sit a trot as well as post and canter on the appropriate lead, etc. And while I'm definitely no Clinton Anderson graduate, I still know how to maneuver them on the ground, brush 'em, tack 'em up, pick out their hooves, etc. Given my current fitness, no mounting block was ever necessary, either.

I mostly rode/exercised two of them.

This is a nice calm Arabian who will generally trot and canter once you get her going and goes a little nuts once you get her out on the trails:


Here's a sweet but young (and therefore sometimes uppity) Tennessee Walker. Once I got him paying attention he gated and rode in straight lines. LOL


And here's HAVASUROSE with a filly who was born there and turned two on the day we took the photo:


Overall it was a great time, and she said she enjoyed having me around because the chores went faster and it was fun having someone push her on the riding skills in the arena.

So I'm now looking for a place nearby where I can get maybe a lesson a week (on weekdays of course so it won't interfere with my kayaking), and I plan to go back in June.

23 years ago I was as crazy about the horses as I am about the kayaking, now. It feels nice to have something "new" to be excited about again.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IRISHF 5/8/2012 11:18AM

    Great photos. Exciting to have something to look forward to, especially an old love.

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WATERMELLEN 4/27/2012 5:57PM

    What a fun blog! Love the pictures, love to think of you regaining an old enthusiasm . . . and with your sister, too! Must be like riding a bicycle . . . you never forget (except of course you've gotta persuade the horses you haven't fogotten too).

Thanks for all your great comments on my recent blogs. Tracking actually takes me less time than I think it's going to (maybe 2-3 minutes tops a day. I absolutely agree that there's so much "not fair" in my life in the sense that I don't deserve my good fortune that I'm hardly "entitled" to complain about my difficult-to-manage metabolism; and the "discomfort" of sustaining weight loss requires maybe 2 hours mild discomfort max a day (tolerating hunger, enduring vigorous exercise) whereas the benefits of feeling fit endure 24/7 a day. Pretty good deal. Just gotta keep reminding myself of all these things over and over again!!

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MYLADY4 4/27/2012 2:23PM

    How fun, they are magestic animals.

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DDOORN 4/27/2012 10:15AM

    Sounds like such a lovely break and getaway for you! Always great to re-connect with family...wish I could afford to do that more often!

Horses & I parted company a long, long time ago as a kid when at a summer camp one bolted off with me on it...not a fan!

But pleased for you to rekindle this pleasure for yourself! :-)

Don

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RG_DFW 4/27/2012 8:35AM

    what a great time you must have had!!

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BLUE42DOWN 4/27/2012 1:11AM

    How very fun. The horses are beautiful - and having all that natural activity is so much more fun (even mucking out stalls).

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CASSIES 4/26/2012 9:51PM

    What a great time. Thanks for the photos. It it fun to have something new to be excited about!

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A way to estimate changes in body composition using BIA numbers - get stronger and lighter

Friday, March 16, 2012

A few months ago I wrote a post about how I estimate my total calorie burn given daily calorie intake and scale weight.
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4636113


At the end of that post I promised to explain how I estimate changes in my body composition (muscle versus fat). I have procrastinated because this topic is much harder to explain and the means of measuring it are much less reliable than a scale and counting calories.

Iím not going to bother going into all the different ways you can estimate % body fat. There is a blog post here that I wrote about that. Please refer to it for background information.
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4134115


What Iím going to talk about here is how Iím using Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) numbers to try and get a handle on whatís going on.

BIA is the method that you find in scales and handheld devices that sends a tiny electrical shock through your body and measures how much resistance there is. The amount of resistance is correlated with how much fat versus muscle you have because muscle contains more water and offers less resistance to an electrical signal.

BIA is very convenient to do but highly inaccurate. The results can be off as much as 8% due to hydration and other issues. James Krieger recommends spacing out measurements 3-6 months apart if youíre going to try using it to track changes over time. And to get around the hydration problem, you need to measure as close to the same time of day, etc. as possible.

Hereís my justification for using BIA:

1) I measure % body fat on my scale every day at the same time (when I get up).
2) I can average it to smooth out fluctuations just like I do my weight (see original post about calorie estimation above).
3) Iím only using the BIA numbers to look for trends. They donít need to be 100% correct in order to see a trend.
4) I am comparing BIA measurements three months apart. That is the smallest gap in time you can possibly use (otherwise the daily fluctuations and noise will swamp out the signal).

---------------------------

Armed with at least 3 months of daily weight and % body fat BIA records, I can generate a graph like this to see how Iím doing:

docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=
0Ah4KrA4GkhKgdGVLYnBlQnpnc0ZlMHkxc1hKc
Xpiamc#gid=2


You are looking at the slope of the curves for lean mass (blue) and body fat (red). The numbers Iím comparing are the date listed and the measurements three months earlier. The units on the vertical axes are # pounds gained (or lost) over a three month period.

When a line is above zero the amount is increasing. When a line is below zero the amount is decreasing. So for example you can see that in 2009 while I lost 160 lbs I was losing both muscle and fat, but I was losing fat faster (the red line is more negative than the blue line).

On January 28, 2010 the blue line crossed zero. That means starting January 2010 I began gaining muscle compared with three months prior. Fat was still being lost until May 21, 2010, when the red line crossed zero and went positive. At that point I was gaining both fat and muscle. On June 8 2010 the red line crossed the blue line and I was gaining fat faster than muscle.

Between November 2010 and March 2011 I was in serious trouble - I was gaining fat and losing muscle!

This story corresponds with my weight and what was going on at the time. I got to goal in late January 2010 and started trying to maintain. Slowly I lost my grip on calorie and exercise tracking (I was having so much fun whitewater kayaking and partying with friends on the rivers during the weekends). I gained both fat and muscle. In fall my exercise habits began to slip and I still was tracking only halfheartedly. I became pretty indulgent and had treats often, not tracking them. During this period of less restricted eating and minimal exercise I lost muscle and gained fat.

Hereís a blog post written in early January 2011 expressing my dismay about the regain.
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=3884913


I didnít manage to reverse this trend until about February or March 2011 (by which point Iíd regained 30 lbs from January 2010). I started tracking carefully again and working out regularly, even sometimes twice a day, and things got better.

The rest of the story on this graph also makes sense, but I wonít go into it because this illustrates that my method seems to track trends pretty well.

---------------------------

So there it is. I have found a nice way to track my body composition using BIA data. It makes sense, and I find it helpful because it reinforces healthy behaviors like eating right and exercising. This tool is helping me build a stronger, lighter body, from the inside out.

Iím happy to report that ever since February 2012 Iíve been gaining muscle and losing fat. It tells me that what Iíve been doing since the three months before that (starting November) is working for me in terms of improving my body composition.

This is an amazing place to be, because not only is my definition increasing but strength and muscle bulk are too. Iím all about a high strength to weight ratio to support my weekend activities (kayaking, snowboarding, road cycling, etc.).

In case youíre wondering, hereís what Iíve been doing:

Food:

~ 150g of protein per day (at least 20g post workout)
~ 40g of fiber per day (to keep the protein moving)
~ 1600-1800 calories per day on average

Exercise:

M - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Body Pump Class in the evening
Tu - Spinning in the evening
W - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Body Pump Class in the evening
Th - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Spinning in the evening
F- Rest, stretching, sometimes a deep tissue massage
Sa - Playing outside (kayaking, snowboarding, road cycling, etc.)
Su - Playing outside and 4hr kayak rolling / skills session

I should mention here that in Tae Kardio I strap 5 lbs to each ankle and wrist to add resistance to the workout. And in Body Pump I lift as heavy as I can without losing form. Sometimes I even do drop sets. At the moment I use the 10 lb and 8 lb dumbbells for everything (our class uses only dumbbells). I double them up for things like squats, lunges, and deadlifts (18 lbs in each hand).

I am always looking for ways to increase the intensity or difficulty of a workout when it starts to feel routine. Recently Iíve begun removing the seat of of the spin bike and riding the entire class standing and hovering. I try whatever it takes to keep squeezing the most out of my workouts, as my strength and endurance improve.

You might notice that my rate of putting on muscle has slowed a little lately while my fat loss rate has also decreased. The slowing of fat loss might be because lately Iíve been eating more like 1800-1900 calories per day on average. The slowing of muscle gain might be due to relying mostly on lifting heavy in Body Pump rather than just having regular weight lifting sessions. (Body Pump has an emphasis on many reps, which some argue is counterproductive when youíre trying to build muscle.)

Still, the fat is decreasing while the muscle is increasing, so Iím OK with that. Both are still going in the direction I want.

---------------------------

The rest of this post contains nitty-gritty details about the calculations in case you want to try and replicate my system. There is a lot of number smoothing. Maybe too much to please mathematical theorists. Iím no statistician. I just tried to find something that kind of works.

1) Calculate your trend body weight for every day. See here for the specific formula.
www.fourmilab.ch/hackdiet/e4/pencilp
aper.html

Iím doing all of the weighted moving average smoothing this way.

2) Calculate your trend % body fat the same way.

3) Calculate your estimated lean mass from each dayís trend weight and trend % body fat.

4) Calculate a trend for your lean mass.

5) Using the same steps, calculate a trend for your fat mass.

6) Subtract your trend lean mass for today from your trend lean mass from three months ago.

7) Smooth your trend lean mass difference. This is the blue line on my graph.

7) Subtract your trend fat mass for today from your trend fat mass from three months ago.

8) Smooth your trend fat mass difference. This is the red line on my graph.

As you can see I do all of this in Google documents. It requires having an ability with spreadsheets and formulas. Once youíve got it set up, though, you just have to put in your daily numbers and the graphs will draw themselves.

---------------------------
Thanks to BREWMASTERBILL and GRACEFULIFE for their comments and suggestions on this post.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TENACIOUSTIGER 5/16/2012 8:11AM

    wow this is really interesting, I am also using BIA to track my stats, also looking at trends , i weigh myself same time every day and keep a log as I'm just looking for a trend ( hopefully my fat % slowing decreasing and my muscle % increasing , i have noticed my hydration level makes a big difference so i have a glass of water and drink that before weighing myself.

good work thanks for sharing

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RAINBOWMF 4/15/2012 4:41PM

    Good info, thanks for sharing.

Mary

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GRACEFULIFE 3/24/2012 6:28PM

    I'm John and I approved this message.

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SPARKLISE 3/22/2012 1:04PM

    emoticon

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AMYNYNJ 3/19/2012 5:51PM

    Amazing analysis!

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WATERMELLEN 3/17/2012 12:51PM

    Your brain is every bit as fit as your body! I am impressed with your ability to create a tool that provides this specificity of tracking!

Very nice!! And your body confirms what your numbers are telling you!!

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BLVINBUTTERFLYS 3/16/2012 10:43PM

    emoticon

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CARRIE1948 3/16/2012 11:06AM

    What an incredible workout routine!!!

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KAYOTIC 3/16/2012 10:22AM

    nice tracking tool you have there, 4A! really does illustrate the work you're doing!

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