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ZUCCHINIQUEEN's Photo ZUCCHINIQUEEN Posts: 7,633
8/24/12 7:07 A

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Monthly weigh ins at WW help me with my maintenance.

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RUSSLANE's Photo RUSSLANE Posts: 401
8/23/12 10:51 P

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I think one of my favorite pieces of research is the complete lack of correlation between weight loss methods and weight maintenance efficacy (a fun word for "actually keeping it off.")

Strange observation: It's one of those strange mind-body correlations. The walk of life doesn't matter -- gender, sexual identity, economic background, etc. -- you see very different men and women dealing with the same things post-weight: relearning their relationships to themselves and everyone else, spouses/partners/"special friends" (ahem) stuff like that. I found it fascinating the the metric end of weight loss worked the same way ... different paths to the same (largely unexplored) destination.

Looking at my own life in lieu of the research ... I lost the bulk in the first year, and once I hit my original goal of 180 I was in maintenance (though I stay between 165-155 in normal situations these days). In both cases, I barrelled through both because I really didn't feel I had much choice in the matter. It was sink or swim.

Overall, I lost it faster than the only other significant weight loss, which was in high school, and it didn't stick -- largely because I was completely unprepared for how much hitting goal would flummox me.

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PEGGYT3's Photo PEGGYT3 Posts: 2,738
8/23/12 7:09 P

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Maintaining my weight loss has become a way of life. My tastes have changed, so I actually prefer steamed vegetables over french fries and a veggie burger over a hamburger. My husband has been a big help because he wants to stay healthy, too, so he does the grocery shopping and makes sure we have plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, fish, chicken and yogurt. Our favorite snack is 4 crackers (unsalted tops) with a slice of mozzarella cheese. My favorite time for that snack is 3:00 in the afternoon, when my stomach starts growling.

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GETFIT2LIVE's Photo GETFIT2LIVE Posts: 4,835
8/23/12 4:46 P

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Can I just say how happy I am to see this team and the discussions going on here??

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It is exactly what I need and where I'm at currently. Now that I'm down to my lowest weight in well over 30 years and within a very few pounds of a healthy BMI, I am working on both the mental and practical aspects of how to keep it off for the rest of my life. Hearing what others are going through in the maintenance stage and what you all have found, especially those who have kept the weight off for an extended period, is an incredible help. Gives me hope that I really can keep it off this time. Thank you for all the links and info; I especially appreciate what you said in earlier post on this thread, 4A-HEALTHY-BMI:

"In the end, the most successful plan in either weight loss or weight maintenance is the one that you will actually stick to."

That's what I try to tell my friends and family who want to know my "secret recipe" for losing weight; it's not a one-size-fits-all, do *this* and the weight will melt off. We have to find what works for us individually, and keep trying until we find our own "secret recipe" that we can keep doing for the long haul.

Denise (Half Fanatic #1279) - PDT Time Zone

"The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do."
- William Bagshot

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI's Photo 4A-HEALTHY-BMI Posts: 6,036
8/23/12 2:25 P

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Took a while, but I FINALLY think I've found the study I was looking for, where the whole point was about your question.

The association between rate of initial weight loss and long-term success in obesity treatment: does slow and steady win the race?
www.springerlink.com/content/18l1874
65
p6601k8

"Collectively, findings indicate both short- and long-term advantages to fast initial weight loss. Fast weight losers obtained greater weight reduction and long-term maintenance, and were not more susceptible to weight regain than gradual weight losers."

Thank goodness I found it. That was bugging me! LOL

Basically it's the same thing that they found in that other paper I described earlier. If you lose more to begin with, you're apparently more likely to keep more off.

Remember, this a research statistic summarizing a group of people. It is not about a single human with determination and the free will to choose how life is going to go.

You are an individual, and what YOU say and do is what matters.

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Never, ever, EVER give up!

From BMI 53 (336 lbs) to under 30. Now aiming for less than 20% body fat.

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NANCYANNE55's Photo NANCYANNE55 SparkPoints: (100,033)
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8/23/12 12:34 P

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LOGOULD- I don't know if I'd say losing was easy, but it was definitely easiER than maintaining. emoticon

Nancy Anne

My blog, about my personal experience and opinions of fitness related stuff: itallmakesadifference.blogspot.com/

My "Recipes For Bodybuilders (And People Who Just Want To Eat Healthier)" facebook page. I have videos here of my cooking yummy stuff! https://www.facebook.com/RecipesForB
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CELIAMINER's Photo CELIAMINER SparkPoints: (167,307)
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8/23/12 11:23 A

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Thanks for starting the topic, Mrscarly. And thanks to 4A for the solid scientific references. For me, I agree with Nancy Anne that making smaller changes and taking the time to incorporate them has worked for me this time. It took me 15 months to lose 75 pounds, and what I did differently this time was work on new habits, not eliminate foods (I ate cake and pizza, just not as much and not as often), and I cut myself slack on days that didn't go as planned. The biggest factor, though, was the support.

Celia
Maintaining since May 19, 2012


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MRS.CARLY's Photo MRS.CARLY Posts: 1,312
8/23/12 11:03 A

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Everyone is definitely different. I would love love love to get the rest of my weight off. I see success stories and people seem to get to their goal weight fairly quickly while I feel like it is taking me forever. I got the first 40 pounds off pretty fast (less than a few months), but the closer I get to my goal the harder it is for me...so much so that I give up, gain a few pounds back, then do it all over again. Even working out 6 days a week and following a very strict program for 3 months I still lost 7 or 8 pounds...for me that was REALLY good, but for some people that would be waaaaaaay too slow. I don't know if being hypothyroid has anything to do with me losing weight so slowly, or the fact that I only recently in the past year discovered several food intolerances. I go through periods where I am so fed up and get so mad and of course those are the times that the scale moves up 5 or 6 pounds (not so strict on myself). Then it takes me 3 or 4 weeks to lose that 5 pounds. Blah! I want that cycle to stop.

That is why it is super important for me personally to start learning about maitnenance, it IS a different mind set. I'm glad for the interest that it is generating on spark!



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4A-HEALTHY-BMI's Photo 4A-HEALTHY-BMI Posts: 6,036
8/23/12 10:34 A

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One other thing I wanted to mention.

Lately some research points to rapid initial weight loss as a way to promote more successful loss and maintenance.

Here's an article from last year (2011) that looked at speed of loss and where people were, 4 years later with their weight:
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PM
C3
183129/?tool=pubmed


"Losing a large amount of weight the first year was by far the strongest determinant of achieving a large loss at year 4. The step-wise regression analysis revealed that weight loss at 1 year accounted for an additional 22% of the variance in year-4 weight loss, beyond the 6.5% attributable to demographic characteristics and treatment attendance. Additional analyses showed that the odds of achieving a loss ≥ 10% at year 4 were 10.4 times greater in persons who had lost ≥ 10% at 1 year as compared to individuals who had lost less than 5% at 1 year. In this latter group, only 7.1% of participants eventually achieved a 10% loss, the individual goal prescribed for participants. Losing 10% of initial weight the first year similarly improved the odds of having a loss ≥ 5% at year 4. The present results extend in a far larger sample – and over a longer period of follow-up – findings from several studies that suggest the importance of large initial weight loss for maintaining a clinically significant long-term reduction (19–22,43)."

Although people have speculated on why this might be the case, I haven't yet seen any papers that claim to explain it.

In the end, the most successful plan in either weight loss or weight maintenance is the one that you will actually stick to. Whether you personally do better with rapid or slow weight loss probably has a lot to do with your own personal psychology.

For example, I'm an impatient person. I needed to get that weight off ASAP before I just got so sick of the whole process and gave up out of sheer boredom and exhaustion. So losing 160 in a year worked for me.

Someone else might not feel comfortable with such a tight calorie restriction, and might be better able to handle waiting a few years before reaching goal. It all depends on your own personal psychology.

And I'm STILL learning stuff about what I can handle, and what I can't, on this journey to sustainable maintenance. I just discovered two days ago that I need to eat when it's time to eat, even if I'm not very hungry. Because if I wait until the next mealtime, I'm ravenous and likely to overeat. So now I have more information about me, that I can factor in, the next time I need to make a similar decision.

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Never, ever, EVER give up!

From BMI 53 (336 lbs) to under 30. Now aiming for less than 20% body fat.

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Blogs
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Maintenance Info
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Goal 155 +/- 3%


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ZUCCHINIQUEEN's Photo ZUCCHINIQUEEN Posts: 7,633
8/23/12 5:04 A

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4 A Healthy BMI has some very helpful information for us to think about . I think maybe we are just never free of having to think about maintenance...just part of our make up that we will always have to be aware of.

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LOGOULD's Photo LOGOULD SparkPoints: (96,568)
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8/22/12 11:03 P

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I think it's obvious that the losing is the easy part....it is learning day by day, month by month, year by year to handle life without reverting back to old bad habits....many of which for me were DECADES in the making and are only reinforced by our society as a whole.

"Success is the result of what you do when the Woo Hoo is all through....."-ON2VICTORY (Robert)

"The miracle isn't that I finished...the miracle is I had the courage to start." - John 'The Penguin



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MRS.CARLY's Photo MRS.CARLY Posts: 1,312
8/22/12 10:23 P

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I agree about the taking more time allows for better habits to develop.

Thanks for the great research and articles!!

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MYSTERY-LADY1's Photo MYSTERY-LADY1 Posts: 10,050
8/22/12 9:36 P

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Make "YOU" a priority today!



4A-HEALTHY-BMI's Photo 4A-HEALTHY-BMI Posts: 6,036
8/22/12 7:29 P

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OK I found one of the references that addresses speed of weight loss and success in keeping weight off:
www.ajcn.org/content/74/5/579.short

The data summarized here are actually from a "meta analysis." That means they're summarizing the results from 29 separate research studies and trying to find common patterns between them.

Here's what they say:

"After VLEDs or after weight losses of ≥20 kg, individuals
maintained a significantly greater weight loss at 5 y than after
HBDs or weight losses of ≤10 kg. Our analysis suggest that individuals
are more likely to sustain long-term weight losses of
≥5% of initial body weight if they participate in VLEDs or lose
≥20 kg initially. This is not consistent with the common recommendation
that individuals lose weight slowly and set initial
weight-loss goals of 5% of their body weight (3, 6)."

VLED = very-low-energy diet less than 800 kcal/d (generally meal replacements)
HBD = hypoenergetic balanced diet (1,200 to 1,500 calories a day, actual food)

What they're saying (and this has been backed up in several other studies I've seen) is that if you do a clinical trial and put some people on a very calorie-restricted diet and others on a less-restricted diet and have both groups diet the same amount of time, the more restricted group will lose more weight. (so far, that part should be obvious)

But here's the not obvious part:

What they've found is that the group that loses more weight (because they lost it faster in the same time period) tends to keep off more weight when they go back and weigh the groups again after a period of maintenance.

In other words, according to this paper, if you've gotten more off in the first place, then you'll actually keep more off.

There was another paper I think I recall from the NWCR (which is based on surveys not clinical trials) where they looked at various types of diets and didn't find any statistical significance about how people lost the weight, or how fast they lost the weight, in terms of the success in maintenance afterward. I browsed briefly among my collection of the literature but that one didn't jump out at me so to find it I'd have to go back and re-read a lot of them.

One final note I should mention about the first paper is that it's about 10 years old. VLCDs have fallen out of favor except in cases where doctors think that putting someone on a restricted liquid diet is just about the only thing that will save their life. (For example someone who is too large to safely undergo a bariatric procedure.)

Edited by: 4A-HEALTHY-BMI at: 8/23/2012 (09:31)
Never, ever, EVER give up!

From BMI 53 (336 lbs) to under 30. Now aiming for less than 20% body fat.

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Goal 155 +/- 3%


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LJR4HEALTH's Photo LJR4HEALTH Posts: 32,281
8/22/12 7:16 P

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The first time I was here at SP I lost the weight very fast and gained a good chunk back between 30 and 40 pounds this time its taking my forever but as I go slowly I'm making changes that are sticking with me I still have a lot more changes to make but it will happen In pass as soon as I got to my goal number I went back to my old habits This time my doctor is more concerned with the number on the scale but I'm more interested in body fat %

Linda (Florida - Eastern Standard Time )

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ELECTRALYTE's Photo ELECTRALYTE Posts: 10,207
8/22/12 3:12 P

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me too Nancy Anne. In the past when I dieted and lost weight quickly, I gained it back PLUS more.
Changing daily habits is key, I think.

“it's been up to me to inspire me.”
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organization"
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NANCYANNE55's Photo NANCYANNE55 SparkPoints: (100,033)
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8/22/12 12:03 P

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My personal experience is that this past time I lost weight I lost it the slowest and have managed to keep it off the longest. I think it's because in losing it slowly, I incorporated habits as I felt I could manage them that I could actually live with. The times before I was pretty much just pulling out all the stops to get it off, but those things were too hard to keep up forever without my mind having time to catch up to the concept.

Nancy Anne

My blog, about my personal experience and opinions of fitness related stuff: itallmakesadifference.blogspot.com/

My "Recipes For Bodybuilders (And People Who Just Want To Eat Healthier)" facebook page. I have videos here of my cooking yummy stuff! https://www.facebook.com/RecipesForB
odybuilders


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4A-HEALTHY-BMI's Photo 4A-HEALTHY-BMI Posts: 6,036
8/22/12 9:50 A

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I can offer something even better than opinion or personal theories. It turns out that scientists have also asked this question.

The NWCR has actually looked specifically at this, and found no statistical correlation between how slowly someone lost the weight and how successful they were at maintaining.

I don't have the reference handy right here, but when I get home tonight I will update this message and add a link to it.

I personally found that result surprising, because there is a common misconception that the rate at which you lose affects the likelihood of keeping it off.

I personally went super fast. (47.7% [160 lbs] off in one year, the remaining 25 took several months longer to get off and a couple of years to stabilize off.)

I've maintained now for 2.6 years.

According to the research literature, while speed of loss isn't statistically significant, there are some significant predictors for successful maintenance.

You can see this blog post for a summary of the most common predictors and behaviors associated with successful maintenance:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
ur
nal_individual.asp?blog_id=4323111

There is a link in there back to the original paper, which is written for non-scientists and well-worth reading.

Our Team Goals are aligned with these predictors and behaviors.

About the whole LIFE intervening and regaining, I think that's pretty common. I suspect the difference there is that successful maintainers identify the trend sooner and reverse it sooner, and don't get discouraged and throw in the towel.

Learning how to accept the reality of occasional regain and then getting to work pushing it back off is something I'm still working on. It's one reason the support on this team is so helpful to me.

And learning how to live in the grey and think of my +/- 3% range as a legitimate "OK" range rather than demanding that I stay below a certain number is also something I'm working on. Logically I get it. Emotionally I still sometimes catch myself in "loss mode" mentality.

Hang in there. I think we can all learn from each other and get better at this. I think it's a skill, just like anything else.
emoticon

Edited by: 4A-HEALTHY-BMI at: 8/22/2012 (10:06)
Never, ever, EVER give up!

From BMI 53 (336 lbs) to under 30. Now aiming for less than 20% body fat.

Media
tinyurl.com/4a-healthy-bmi-me
dia


Weight chart
tinyurl.com/4A-HEALTHY-BMI-graph

Blogs
tinyurl.com/4a-healthy-bmi-in
dex


Maintenance Info
tinyurl.com/maintenance-links

Goal 155 +/- 3%


258 Maintenance Weeks
 
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MRS.CARLY's Photo MRS.CARLY Posts: 1,312
8/22/12 8:48 A

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Has anyone noticed a difference in people that have lost the weight more slowly versus people that have lost it more quickly as far as the weight gain? I haven't always followed the people from the biggest loser, but I know that some of them have gained SOME of the weight back (though definitely not all of it)! For me personally I lost my big chunk of weight over 10 years ago. I'm now only maybe about 10-15 pounds from what I would ultimately like to weigh although I'm more concerened about bodyfat % versus bodyweight. I kept it off for 5 year straight, but then I went through several changes at once and started over eating in response (gained 30 pounds in a few months), and lost that again and have maintained that loss for another 4 years. I feel like I haven spent more of my weight loss journey trying to maintain (without meaning to) while trying to lose weight!!

I wonder if any others have experienced this? Does it seem harder for people to maintain the weight when they have lost it quickly (quickly to me is like 10 pounds a month or more...I'm a very slow loser when actively trying to lose weight)? Or is it all the same?

My cousin lost 100 pounds several years ago,with very minimum excercise in the gym, but she works as a waitress. She has kept this weight off this whole time which is amazing! I think about her and mine journey and it was really different. I guess it is different for everybody. Just wanted to see if you all had an opinion or theory about it!

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