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ATARAXIAL SparkPoints: (58)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 5
4/19/13 8:54 P

Thank you all so much for your advice. You have all given me a lot of helpful information and I greatly appreciate it. I plan to start tracking everything on Monday, and will definitely incorporate a lot of the tips given. Thanks again!! :)

4/19/13 2:23 P

I like your idea of watering down the soda. It sounds gross, but it may be what I need to slowly cut it out. I did really well until today and am finishing up a Rt. 44 diet pepsi. If I cut it out cold turkey, then I get headaches from being so used to the caffeine. I may try your idea next week and see how it goes.

I too am impressed with all that she does! I have to work out at night at home when my babies are asleep. I hope that all of the wonderful ideas here (I'm going to be looking into them myself!) help you where you want to go! Good luck!

ICEDEMETER Posts: 1,332
4/19/13 12:46 P

Thanks for the additional info! I have to admit, I'm exhausted just hearing about all that you get through in a week, so serious kudos to you!

I would have to strongly recommend that you input all of your info, including the average calories burned each week, in to Spark and see what range it gives you. I suspect that it will be significantly higher than you think, and that the problem may be that you really are not eating enough. I'm thinking that if you put your goal as losing 1/2 lb per week, that you might well be looking at eating around 2000 calories per day (depending on your age).

As so many have said, I think you'd also find a big difference in adding some strength training to the cardio. Body weight exercises do a great job, and there are tons of videos here on Spark, as well as elsewhere on the net, to give you a start. You could also pick up some resistance bands, which are dirt cheap and would still allow you to work out at home whenever you find the time.

Just a thought on the Mountain Dew thing --- I weaned myself off of soft drinks a couple of decades ago by gradually watering them down. I started with pouring a 12oz glass with 11oz of soda with 1oz of water, and then kept adding an additional oz of water each week, until I was essentially having a glass of water with an oz of soda flavouring. By this point, straight soda was nauseatingly sweet to me, and I had no problem giving it up completely. This would gradually cut out the caffeine, too, so hopefully you wouldn't end up with the caffeine withdrawal effects.

I hope you found some helpful info here - I know that I've picked up some tips from the answers here, so thanks for posting your question.

JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (81,972)
Fitness Minutes: (86,286)
Posts: 2,489
4/19/13 8:39 A

Is it possible you're undereating for your activity level?

It sounds like you may be overdoing cardio and there is no mention of strength training. I strongly suggest you give equal time to both.

CMCOLE Posts: 2,667
4/19/13 8:06 A

lots of great suggestions given.

- make sure you are eating ENOUGH (especially with all that cardio)
- try to make sure you are sleeping ENOUGH
- balance your intake (and a great way of doing that is by tracking here on SP - it will give you a healthy range)

don't try to make changes all at once
don't try to cut out EVERY carb, because you need the carbs and fibre found in many plant products, and the good fats in things like avocado, etc. to give you a healthy balance and the micronutrients your body needs to survive well (especially with your exceedingly busy lifestyle)

4/19/13 7:18 A

When you eat a diet that contains mostly vegetables, meat, fats and fruit it is really hard to overeat.

Exercising with weights (or body weight) is a much more effective way to work out than doing chronic cardio.

LINEBACKER1968 Posts: 394
4/19/13 12:48 A


SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (253,450)
Fitness Minutes: (41,531)
Posts: 27,134
4/18/13 11:28 P

Do you manage to get any sleep? It sounds like this may be a bare minimum, yet sleep is very underated, and very important in not only helping with our overall health, but weight-loss journey! It is possible that the Mountain Dew was a subconscious 'pick-me-up' considering you are on the go all the time.

Rather than restricting your calories too much, you are better to eat, and eat a healthy balance. When a person does more exercise, they need to eat more, too, strange as it may seem :-)

You need a variety of exercise - walking/varying speeds, and weight-type stuff. You could cut your treadmill time a bit and use a couple cans (even weight) baked beans or similar for weights and do some work-outs with them. You don't need heavy weight for success. This will help to develop and tone muscle.

When a person is closer to their goal weight, the weight-loss generally is harder to get. Rather than increasing the time, increase your intensity with the work-outs, BUT, make sure that you get enough good nutrition and a healthy balance to accommodate this.

Is there anything that you can pare back on to give you some more 'down' time?

I would be inclined to make a list of all that you do. In one column put the things that you MUST do each day, and then list everything else that you do. Cross off ones that aren't necessary, and perhaps the reduce the frequency of the others. It might be vacuuming every week now, but maybe every 10 days or so in the future. That sort of thing will give you more time to do what you want and help you to reach your goals.

Good luck, and I must say, I TRULY ADMIRE anyone who can do what you are doing :-)


ATARAXIAL SparkPoints: (58)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 5
4/18/13 11:06 P

I am 5'3" and currently fluctuate between 150 and 155 lbs. I would like to be 130. I have been making subtle changes. I worked up to jogging at what I do, and every week or so I made a small change in my diet.. for example, I hate water, but I started drinking one 33 oz bottle of water every day. I can tell you one of my biggest downfalls is I'm a Mt. Dew drinker. I've cut down to one bottle a day (I know it's horrible for me), but I now drink 2-3 33 oz bottles of water every day. I rarely ever eat sweets, and I try really hard to eat healthy. I'm really frustrated with my complete lack of progress. I know my portion sizes are not bad, except for supper I usually make a big 'family meal' but I try to keep that low calorie (my portion sizes for supper might be a little bigger though). I've always been a runner, but since I started my new job I haven't been as active and I don't have a babysitter so I couldn't go running outside. I got my treadmill about 3 months ago and use it usually 5 days a week. I would be content being at the appropriate BMI. Thank you for your suggestions :)

ICEDEMETER Posts: 1,332
4/18/13 10:03 P

Well, there doesn't seem to be an awful lot of info here to work with, so the first things that spring to my mind are:

- you may not be fat enough to be looking at losing 1 or 2 pounds per week, so should be setting your goal for 1/2 pound per week or so (approx. 3% of what you have left to lose)

- you may not be eating enough to lose weight, and may need to increase your calories in order for your body to be willing to drop fat

- you've maybe recently started exercising more and your muscles are temporarily retaining more water because of it

- you may not be accurately measuring what you are eating, with a scale and measuring cups, and so are underestimating the actual amount of calories going in

- you may already be at a healthy weight, and so would be better off adding strength training and eating more in order to change the shape of your body instead of trying to lose weight

From my perspective, counting carbs ends up being just another way to count calories - all it does is shift what macronutrients the calories come from. Apparently the additional satiation from the protein and fat make it easier to eat less, but it's still the total number of calories that make the difference.

The thing to look at, though, is whether that kind of eating change is something that you will be happy to do for the rest of your life. I'm not a big fan of radical change, so have found that for me personally it is much easier to eat the way I like (which happens to be pretty close to the Spark recommendations) and just learn proper portion sizes to hit my calorie range. I have had to work a bit with the range too, as my body gets seriously unhappy at the bottom end of my range and I need to eat most often at the top end.

Good luck in figuring out what works for you!

ATARAXIAL SparkPoints: (58)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 5
4/18/13 10:00 P

I just started using this, haven't started tracking yet. I have been tracking myself not on this website. I certainly don't restrict my veggies or fruit. I've just kept my calories low and I use the weight loss setting (which is mostly power walking with spurts of running and it inclines). I don't consider that excessive. I actually use that as a way to get away from stress. I have two children, work two jobs and I am a student. I don't know what HIIT is, but I do need something I can do at home, because I cannot leave my children. Thank you for your help, I will try to incorporate your advice :)

AM_MORRIS87 Posts: 1,665
4/18/13 9:51 P

#1- Carbs are not bad. Simply watching carbs will not be the key to your success. Vegetables have carbs. Fruit have carbs. These are not things you should be seriously restricting. In my opinion (which you can take for what it's worth), your intake should be veggies, lean meats/egg whites, fruits, low fat dairy (cottage cheese and greek yogurt), and nuts/seeds. In that order. Now this WILL generally give you a lower carb diet overall, but when people get hung up on going "low carb" they think that it means avoiding fruits and veggies, and loading up on all the cheese, bacon, and pork rinds they can find. Also, low carb or no carb convenience foods, which are pretty much one of the worst things you can eat in my opinion.

#2- You should track the food you're eating if you're not already. (I didn't see anything on your food tracker.) You need to be in a caloric deficit to lose weight, period. You can eat all the clean, perfect, healthy foods you want, but if you're still eating more than you're burning, you won't lose weight. Your goal should be to eat as many calories as possible, while still losing weight. If you cut your calories too low, too soon, not ONLY are you damaging your metabolism, but you're literally giving yourself no room for improvement. How can you cut more and more calories as you get closer to your goal, when you are already at 1200 or 1000? It's tricky to find your metabolic set point, but once you do, you'll be hitting that perfect # and seeing a steady drop on the scale.

#3- Nobody needs to do 99 minutes on the treadmill. Excessive cardio and low calories is the key to metabolic damage, not weight loss. If you have the endurance to do 99 minutes on the treadmill, you need to switch to HIIT. 5 minutes warm up, 20 minutes busting your butt, and 5 minutes cooling down. There are tons of articles on SP,, and everywhere else on the internet. HIIT is the absolute best way to reduce body fat. You also should be hitting the weights or doing some kind of resistance training. This isn't going to necessarily make the scale drastically drop, but more muscle = a leaner look to your physique. Also, this can mean a higher metabolism, which means... more food. People think they are doing themselves a favor by doing TONS of cardio, but they're not. Doing tons of LISS (low intensity steady state) cardio, actually teaches your body to become more efficient at burning LESS calories in your everyday activities. Also, excessive cardio is usually really rough on your body. Why wear it out when you don't have to?

Unfortunately, there is a lot of mixed information out there, and you're doing what a lot of people *think* is the key to weight loss. Heck, there are even still personal trainers who make their clients do 60-120 mins of cardio 5-6 days a week. It's scary. Fortunately, a lot of people are doing a lot more to raise awareness about these deadly misconceptions and about the RIGHT ways to lose body fat.

I hope this helps!

Edited by: AM_MORRIS87 at: 4/18/2013 (22:00)
ATARAXIAL SparkPoints: (58)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 5
4/18/13 9:17 P

So, I have been keeping my calorie intake pretty low, and I exercise (99 minutes on the weight loss option of my treadmill) at least 5 days a week. I can't seem to lose any weight and it's very frustrating. I was told that I should watch my carbs instead of my calories.. Any thoughts?

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