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    Thread: Improving my PTWR/ My weight loss story

    1. #1
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      Improving my PTWR/ My weight loss story

      I started to try and lose weight in February this year. I've surpassed my goals and expectations, and it has been so easy to do, that I thought it would be a crime not to let you guys know how I did it.

      I've lost 12kgs in 8 months. Weight has been holding steady for the last 2 months
      I started at 82kgs in February. For a height of 167cm, that made me look slightly portly
      I'm now at 70kgs, and struggling to keep my weight from falling further.

      How did I do it? a lot of trial and error. Mostly error. This post should make it easier for you guys. Less errors, more trials.

      Basic things.
      1. Eat healthy.
      2. Exercise smart

      I now follow the Paleo Diet. most of the time. I'm not very strict about it. I cheat on the diet on a daily basis, but still lose weight effortlessly. Your best resource for the Paleo diet is-http://www.marksdailyapple.com/
      The website explains it a lot better than I can.
      In short-You eat as much lean meat , vegetables, fish and eggs as you want. Be careful with the fruits. Stay away from the grains.
      People start rolling their eyes and muttering about cholesterol when they hear meat. Go through the site in detail for explanations. No point in me repeating it here. As far as I'm concerned, my cholesterol has dropped, my Triglycerides have dropped, my HDL has gone up.
      And I'm now eating meat three times a day. Huge quantities of it.

      Exercising smart.
      I used to cycle a lot in the beginning. Serious miles. Mainly because I love cycling. But also because it allowed me to eat immense quantities of food and still continue to lose weight. Just before the monsoons started, I was doing 800kms of cycling a month. 30kms a day. every day. If you can sacrifice that kind of time from your life, then you dont need to follow the diet. Just eat what you want. as long as you can do these many miles, you will continue to lose weight.
      There are a few problems to this approach.
      1. Lack of time
      2. Its not very healthy
      3. Cardiovascular fitness improves, but everything else suffers.

      I'd still recommend http://www.marksdailyapple.com/ for workout ideas. But if you want a more conventional approach to excercising,

      You can do what I'm doing these days.
      3 days of weightlifting
      2 days of walking or running(if you feel like it) I'm now an excercise addict, so I go out for a ride or a run every day that I ont go to the gym.

      My weightlifting program is done solo and can be done at any basic gym where you can find real exercise equipment like barbells. Stop messing around and wasting time with those fancy multigyms.
      This website is what kickstarted my weighlifting training.
      http://stronglifts.com/stronglifts-5x5-beginner-strength-training-program/
      Dont get turned off by the corny before and after pics and the marketing BS that the author of that program gives you.
      This stuff actually works.
      2 months ago, when I started, I was the kind of person who was afraid to lift a heavy book off the floor. I'm now able to deadlift and squat my own bodyweight. My goal is to be able to squat and deadlift a 100kgs. Still a long way to go. I would have laughed if I was given this goal 2 months ago. Now I know that it's possible.

      Cardio training, which was initiallly my mainstay excercise, is now secondary. I only do it because I like doing it.
      I still follow the Paleo advice of keeping my cardio efforts really intense and really short, or really relaxed and really long.
      But like I said, I do it these days only because I enjoy cardio. Not to lose weight.

      I dont go on 100km rides anymore. Not at my previous average pace of 25kmph. I go trekking and moutain biking on the weekends, but the intensity of physical effort is pretty low.

      I'm not tired all the time like I used to be earlier. I'm in the best shape of my life, stronger and faster than I have ever been. I dont fall sick on a weekly basis like I used to earlier. All this has been pretty effortless, and if atleast some of you reach your fitness goals because of this post, I'd be very happy.

      It will be sensible to get a baseline set of tests before you start on a excercise/diet program.
      I'd suggest
      Blood sugar- Fasting, Post prandial.
      HbA1c
      Fasting Lipid profile
      Accurate weight and height readings
      ECG.
      Semi nude pics of yourself in all your beer bellied glory(You dont have to post them)

      That way you get a before and after set of data. Think of it as a tuning program for yourself. You want to see the difference, your effort has made, dont you?

      Please feel free to ask any questions you might have. I'd be glad to help in any way I can.
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      Damn! This thread couldn't have come at a better time.

      I registered myself into a chain called Body Care in Bangalore in 2008. In two months I lost 17kgs. What they did was treat my body to some sort of shock kind of treatment to burn the fat & put me on a strict diet. Meat only once a week & alcohol only once a month coupled with 5kms of walking/jogging everyday.

      I came down from 90+ kgs to low 70s. Then I lost my plot. Stopped working out, started eating like a pig. And now I'm hitting 80+ again.

      I used to feel fresh when I used to go walking everyday. Now I've started to feel like shit. Can't move stuff, can't walk from kitchen to the parking lot.

      Just waiting for exams to get over & I plan to join a gym for the 1st time in my life. Start jogging again or pick up a bicycle.

      Doc, going to read those links meticulously after exam and follow your advice strictly. I can no longer go hiking because my legs & back can't near my excess weight. Family is getting worries because we have a string of heart diseases at home.

      Better start before it's too late.

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      Wonderful thread doc...I am contemplating long time to reduce my weight....but due to my work timings (night shift) I am unable to do and also I give this as an excuse every time....

      Any suggestion on work outs for people like me who work in shifts?
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      mclaren1885- I would not try such rapid weight loss. It needs to be gradual and sustained. Targeting a loss of 2kgs a month is adequate. Any faster, and your body would rebel and make you gain it all back just as rapidly.

      All diets will not work for all people. Atleast not in the long term. if you dont enjoy what you eat, the diet will get out of hand.

      The Paleo diet is nutrient dense, but not overly stuffed with calories.
      Not eating meat felt unnatural to me. Some people feel eating meat is unnatural. Doesnt matter. You have to be comfortable with whatever diet you follow and be able to stck with it long term.
      Basic rules to follow
      1. portion control- eat less.
      2. Whole foods- the more processed it is, the worse it is for you
      3. weigh yourself everyday. If you see what you are doing to yourself daily, you will make instant corrections

      You cant go wrong with vegetables. Meat is a matter of personal preference, and to me, meat is eesential.
      I did start off by going vegetarian the beginning of this year, but I couldnt sustain it for more than a few weeks. Some of you might remember all the vegetarian jokes on my old facebook page.

      camchennai- all you need is 3 hours a week. You dont need to go jogging/cycling etc.
      setting up a basic home gym for the strong lift 5X5 program wont be too difficult or expensive.
      It will cost less than a treadmill. All you need is a bench for the bench press, and a squat rack. If you can find a basic gym near your house with flexible timings, that would be even better.

      The kind of gym I'm talking about here is one that will charge around 300rs per month. Stunning VFM, but none of us,like going to a place that smells of sweat and iron. We all want AC, multi gyms with fancy resistance training machines and cardio machines facing TV screens and full length mirrors. I made that mistake. I have a costly gym memebership that doesnt satisfy my requirements. When the subscription runs out in february, I shall get into one of the local gyms and start working out there.

      camchennai- what are your work timings like?
      Have a look at youtube videos for squats and bench presses. Ask around what it will cost to get that equipment home. If you think its not too expensive, and you have space at home, buy it.
      The alternative would be to find a cheap local gym for 2 or 3 months and see if the weightlifting program suits you. If it does,then, you can commit to it by buying equipment for private use later. Having equipment at home makes life so much easier when you are doing odd shifts.

      For effective, healthy,weight loss, I find powerlifting just as good as cycling. As long as you eat smart.
      Cycling lets you eat like a pig, and still lose weight.
      Powerlifting if combined with healthy eating, will make you stronger and leaner.
      Powerlifting, I feel is the healthier option all round. Cycling is also not as time efficient as weightlifting.
      I used to spend 10-15 hrs a week on cycling to lose 2 kgs a month. I can get the same kind of weight loss with just 3-4 hours of weight lifting a week. The time saving is huge.

      Another key issue.
      Weight loss should not be your goal. Fitness should be. Fat loss should be. Gaining muscle should be.
      Fitness includes not just cardiovascular endurance- it includes strength, speed,agility, and flexibility.
      Once a level of basic fitness is achieved, you could move onto a program like Welcome to CrossFit: Forging Elite Fitness
      I'm not there yet. But in a few months,I shall start using that program if everything goes according to plan. Crossfit is an even bigger saving in time and promotes all round fitness much better than pure weightlfting which neglects endurance and flexibility quite a bit. I dont have the experience with crossfit to recommend it yet though.

      These two android apps have been amazing motivation for me
      Noom Weight Loss Coach - Android Market
      JEFIT- Best Android and iPhone Workout App, Bodybuilding App.| Best Workout Tracking System
      Helps you keep track of everything you're doing to improve or destroy yourself.
      Last edited by Ripper; 4th Dec 2011 at 04:02.
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      Avoiding meat is impossible for me too.

      And like you said, more than losing weight, I want to get fit to be able to walk on trips. Recent trek to Skandagiri was horrible. Rainier had to literally carry me up all the way. Made me feel miserable.

      I'm the guy who was used to running 10+ kms a day back in school & college days. For must part of my life I've never crossed 55kgs.

      Then I stopped playing football, met ppl like Shyam & Sameel & only ate all sorts of junk food. That's how I put on weight. My body responds to quick weight loss as long as I exercise.

      Definitely going to hit the gym in Feb.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Ripper View Post
      what are your work timings like?
      I start to office by 6 in the evening and return home by 5.30 -6 max in the morning.

      Few things about me:-

      • I don't walk much, maximum I walk is to out of my office for a smoke (3 times a day)
      • I used to drink lot water but water consumption has come down
      • I eat 2 meal a day, one in the morning and another in the night....in between if I feel hungry I eat some Bajji or chats in the evening.
      • I drink one in 3 weeks
      • I am a vegetarian by birth, however i eat NV once a week
      • I love to eat Beef and Pork
      • I have a bad habit of eating full tummy....unable to change it...but have to change it
      • I sleep in the day time


      I will look at whatever you have said and think of procuring whichever is feasible. In the mean time you can also advise me whichever I want to change.

      Forgot to mention my age...I am 29
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      Quote Originally Posted by camchennai View Post
      Wonderful thread doc...I am contemplating long time to reduce my weight....but due to my work timings (night shift) I am unable to do and also I give this as an excuse every time....

      Any suggestion on work outs for people like me who work in shifts?
      What's your night shift timings? Why don't you try out in the later afternoon/evening and then start your night shift? You would feel fresh as well.
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      camchennai- I can see from your post that you already know what is wrong with your lifestyle. You know how to correct it. all you need to do is get over the inertia. I see enough people killing themselves with smoking and bad diet and that was my initial motivation. not to become like one of my patients.
      Other motivation was to be able to get outdoors and spend the whole day roaming without feeling like I'd drop dead from the exertion.
      When I started cycling, I stuck to the road inspite of having a pretty decent mountain bike.
      Decided to take it out on a trail, and that changed my approach to fitness.
      When your flying downhill on a rocky trail, upper body strength and the ability to fall and not break bones too easily becomes important. That's when I started weight training.
      Cycling remains my first love, trekking a close second.
      Everything I do now, is basically to make me better at these 2 things. That is a major part of my motivation.The other being my family.
      You need to find your own reasons. I suspect those reasons will not be very different from mine.
      There is so much life has to offer, and we will be able to make the most of it if we're healthy.
      There is something seriously wrong with our current attitude of health being the last priority.
      That needs to change.

      Coming to the issue of your excercise timings.
      I'd suggest hitting the gym after work. On an empty stomach. Go straight from work to the gym. Do not try to go home and then go to the gym. That never works.
      Some people like going to work after a session at they gym. I dont mind. I prefer the other way though.
      The advantage of excercising after work is that, you dont have to hold back any energy reserves. You can push yourself to the max not worrying about if you'll have energy left for the office.

      You'll probably feel like you've been hit by a truck the first few weeks. 2 weeks at the most. After that, it will be brilliant. and you will kick yourself for not having started sooner.

      EDIT
      camchennai- IMO Beef and Pork is good for you. as long as it's not fried or overly processed. If you can get it homecooked, there is nothing like it. eating meat from outside is usually not very healthy.
      If you are going to follow the Paleo diet, you will need the meat.
      Also, the Paleo diet, really doesnt advise you to starve. In fact you'll find that eating whole foods that are nutrient dense will fill you up much faster than eating a grain based diet.
      If you follow it strictly, it'll be almost impossible to overeat, even if you try.

      Having big meals instead of multiple small meals is a controversial topic. I used to believe, uptil a few months ago that frequent small meals were good for weight loss. I dont anymore.
      What matters is the quality of food that you eat. Good quality food(fresh vegetebales, lean meats, healthy fat) will not let you overeat.
      Currently I have 3 meals a day. and my biggest meal is at dinner.

      Stay away from stuff that comes in packets/cans/cartons-
      That includes zero calorie soft drinks, bread,biscuits,"healthy" fruit juices etc. That stuff is poison. Almost as bad as cigarettes.
      Last edited by Ripper; 4th Dec 2011 at 10:37.
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      Will try out gym first and then move forward slowly....current season is the best season to join gym

      Home cook NV is not possible as my family is pure vegetarian family...guess I need to avoid NV

      Will look at the Paleo diet and slowly start it
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      Quote Originally Posted by camchennai View Post
      Will look at the Paleo diet and slowly start it
      In my experience , If its slowly going to start, then in most cases it will never start. It has to either start today or never. Not sure about the Rest of the World tho'

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