Getting in Shape

Need advice--think my weight loss plan will work?

Hi all, I'm currently at 187 lbs and would like to be 140 lbs for my July 11, 2015 wedding. Over the summer I didn't exercise much, I probably went on a 3 mile walk once or twice a week. However, I've decided to use this new semester (I'm in grad school) as a fresh start--especially since I have a set schedule now. I've started working out five times a week with a mix of activities: swimming, circuit weights, and cardio machines. I'm trying to be more mindful about eating healthy or eating not-so-great foods in moderation. I think once I get rolling with my exercise routine, I will then attempt to do myfitnesspal to monitor my diet more closely. My plan is to lose 20 lbs in the fall semester and 20 lbs in the spring semester (and lose the remaining 7 during winter break & after school before the wedding). Does this seem like a reasonable plan? Any suggestions. Thanks for any help!

Re: Need advice--think my weight loss plan will work?

  • ohmrs2014ohmrs2014 Dirty Jerz
    Moderator 500 Love Its 1000 Comments Fourth Anniversary
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    I think it seems reasonable.  One way to track your food and calorie intake is by using myfitnesspal.  Its very popular, especially here on the boards.  If you aren't already using it, I would start.  Its a great resource.
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    greenapples27
  • I also recommend MFP.  I love the graph that shows my weight going down.  Very motivating.
    greenapples27
  • I think you should start tracking immediately.  Your plan is unrealistic, mostly because you'll lose more at the beginning than you will at the end-the last 10 pounds are always the toughest to lose (and seriously, don't count on losing 7 pounds over the holidays).

    This came off as very negative, but I DO think you can lose the weight-start tracking in MFP, determine what your target caloric intake should be to lose 1.5-2 pounds per week, and get going!  
  • Thanks! You all are completely right.  It's hard to face the music, but I need to watch what I eat. I re-started MFP today!

    And I swam :) It's easier to do than not do (i.e. eat less) for me, but I'll try to be diligent about tracking and eating better.
  • jenijoykjenijoyk
    Tenth Anniversary 500 Love Its 500 Comments First Answer
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    edited September 2014

    I tried all kinds of exercise plans over the years, including an intense daily boot camp. I never really lost more than a few pounds. I started weight watchers last January and I've lost 20 pounds. It was a complete game changer when I realized that, at least for me, food mattered a million times more than exercise.

    Around January my best friend also started a weight loss kick. She started doing zumba several times a week and has since become a zumba instructor. She hasn't changed her diet at all. Eight months later she definitely looks thinner, but she has basically not lost a single pound. So, FWIW, don't get discouraged if your working out doesn't pan out (but it will make you healthier!!!!). WW, MFP, whatever gets you to start paying attention to how much you eat every single day, might be the answer.

    Also WW was HARD for me for the first couple months. I was always starving and bitter about how few points I had. Then I finally realized how to work the plan (i.e. not just eat LESS of everything I usually eat, but instead I needed to eat different things that were very low in points). Once I figure that out, I started losing at a steady rate.

    greenapples27
  • I think definitely you have covered almost each and every plan out in terms of diet and workout regime, The kind of exercise you have mentioned which you are doing is going to be quite helpful if you are trying to lose weight at a quicker verge so stick to it and hope for better results in lesser times.
    greenapples27
  • OP -- Losing more than 1-2 pounds a week is hard for most women. I agree with other pps you may lose a lot at first and then find weight loss is slower. Way to go though, it sounds like you have a solid plan, I would just temper your expectations so that you don't get discouraged. If you keep at it over time you will make a lot of progress.
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    greenapples27
  • Thanks, ladies. Point taken about weight loss not being linear. I'm going to just try to keep watching what I eat and keep moving :)

    If anyone's on MFP, my username is greenapples27.
  • AprilH81AprilH81 Columbus, OH
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    Good luck!  

    While exercise is important to health an wellness food is MORE important to weight loss.  You can burn thousands of calories but if you are consuming more calories than you burn you will still gain weight.

    I don't want to discourage you, but you will have bad days/weeks, you will go over your calorie limit and you will skip a workout (or several).  When this happens try not to beat yourself up, just start the next day fresh and focused.
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    AlexaF2014greenapples27
  • Just a thumbs up for swimming.  If you aren't accustomed to things like running or elliptical, you could end up with shin splints or sore joints from the sudden increase in activity.  Swimming tends to be easier on your body, as long as you don't have some serious stroke/technique issues.  Just don't eat a lot after you swim!  When I was in high school and was a swimmer, there was a White Castle by where we practiced.  I'd go after practice and eat an entire crave case.  Seriously.  But then again, we were also burning a zillion calories and I was in my teens, so I stayed under 120 lbs. at 5'8".

    Now I swim on a masters swim team.  The workouts aren't as hard, but they still make me hungry.  Don't cave in and eat something you shouldn't, or eat in the car on the way home.  Make yourself wait to get home and fix a proper meal, like broiled fish/chicken, steamed broccoli, and half a slice of whole wheat toast.  If I have to eat junk (headed somewhere else after swimming, short on time), I stop by Wendy's and get a chili.  The beans make you feel full without eating a cheeseburger and fries.  And something about the warmth is nice after a swim.  Just don't let them put a handful of crackers in the bag.
    greenapples27
  • Thanks for all the tips, everyone! Here's an update: I've been exercising and average of six days a week (2 days of circuit weights, the rest cardio) and have been using myfitnesspal to track my calories.  I had been losing roughly a pound a week, but last week I gained a pound. The gain made me pretty discouraged especially since I had tried to be so disciplined, and so I had an eff it day that day and did not track what I ate.  Since then, I've tried to get back on the wagon. I know I shouldn't really let one pound throw me off (I weigh in once a week at the same time, fyi). I feel good about myself when I exercise, but the eating right part is challenging on the weekends when we meet up with friends. However, I will try to keep at it!
  • AprilH81AprilH81 Columbus, OH
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
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    mkmetz said:
    Thanks for all the tips, everyone! Here's an update: I've been exercising and average of six days a week (2 days of circuit weights, the rest cardio) and have been using myfitnesspal to track my calories.  I had been losing roughly a pound a week, but last week I gained a pound. The gain made me pretty discouraged especially since I had tried to be so disciplined, and so I had an eff it day that day and did not track what I ate.  Since then, I've tried to get back on the wagon. I know I shouldn't really let one pound throw me off (I weigh in once a week at the same time, fyi). I feel good about myself when I exercise, but the eating right part is challenging on the weekends when we meet up with friends. However, I will try to keep at it!
    Keep in mind that if you are accurately tracking your calories and portion sizes and working out it will be near impossible for you to actually gain weight.  The scale may go up, but it isn't a true weight gain.

    This is one of the reasons I weigh myself daily, so I can see the day to day (normal) fluctuation and it doesn't freak me out as much.
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  • mkmetz said:
    Thanks for all the tips, everyone! Here's an update: I've been exercising and average of six days a week (2 days of circuit weights, the rest cardio) and have been using myfitnesspal to track my calories.  I had been losing roughly a pound a week, but last week I gained a pound. The gain made me pretty discouraged especially since I had tried to be so disciplined, and so I had an eff it day that day and did not track what I ate.  Since then, I've tried to get back on the wagon. I know I shouldn't really let one pound throw me off (I weigh in once a week at the same time, fyi). I feel good about myself when I exercise, but the eating right part is challenging on the weekends when we meet up with friends. However, I will try to keep at it!
    Sounds like you're doing awesome. The eating is the hardest part, and for most folks (especially among us women) makes the biggest difference. 

    It's easier to stay on track when the weight is coming off. I had a really good first two weeks of weight loss and then, despite behaving myself, the next week didn't lose weight. This past weekend was spent moving and I decided I wouldn't count my calories because I didn't really have time for that. I got a ton of exercise from all the moving and ate what I wanted within reason. Still weighed in at the same weight, which is about 4 pounds down from where I started. 

    The key is to realize you are going to slip up sometimes, but generally trying to make your eating habits better and doing well with that over the long haul will mean maintainable weight loss. 
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    greenapples27
  • jenijoykjenijoyk
    Tenth Anniversary 500 Love Its 500 Comments First Answer
    member
    edited September 2014

    I have to weigh myself everyday, just because my weight fluctuates sooo much. If I only weighed myself once a week, and I happened to hop on a scale when my weight was "up", I would be totally discouraged.

    Seriously, my weight loss pattern looks like this:

    1X7, 1X8, 1X7, 1X5, 1X7, 1X6, 1X4, 1X6, 1X7, 1X4, 1X3... etc. So I could theoretically be losing weight (on average), but if I only weighed myself once during this hypothetical week and it was 1X7, I would totally beat myself up thinking I didn't lose anything.

    Moral: I'm a big advocate of the daily weigh in.

    greenapples27
  • I weigh myself everyday but I only really care about my weight one day a week which is Friday since I usually have spent the week really motivated and when the weekend hits- I cheat.  But most importantly- take your measurements.  When I started working out 6 day per week, my weight loss slowed down because I was gaining muscle (but I was actually getting skinnier!) If you are doing circuit training you are probably gaining muscle.  Remember that the more muscle you have (which of course weighs more than fat) the more calories you will burn at rest.  So keep up with it and don't get discouraged by the numbers.  They are only telling half the story.  
    greenapples27
  • Thanks all for the suggestions. The weekly weigh in can be frustrating, but for me personally when I start weighing myself everyday I get a little too obsessive. 

    I'm slowly losing weight. I've lost 6 pounds since the first post.  The biggest place I seem to run into trouble is the weekends. It's easier to exercise everyday and eat healthy during the week because I have my workout routine and pack healthy food at work & school.  The weekends are tougher because social settings lend themselves to drinks and eating out, and I find it harder to fit exercise in because I'm scrambling to do errands and homework.
  • mkmetz said:
    Thanks all for the suggestions. The weekly weigh in can be frustrating, but for me personally when I start weighing myself everyday I get a little too obsessive. 

    I'm slowly losing weight. I've lost 6 pounds since the first post.  The biggest place I seem to run into trouble is the weekends. It's easier to exercise everyday and eat healthy during the week because I have my workout routine and pack healthy food at work & school.  The weekends are tougher because social settings lend themselves to drinks and eating out, and I find it harder to fit exercise in because I'm scrambling to do errands and homework.
    Don't worry, you're not alone!  Weekends are my weakness, also.  I tend to not drink enough water, and don't consider what I'm eating as much.  But if you're still losing weight even with some bad weekends- that's great! Sometimes you need to cheat so you don't drive yourself nuts.  I also get obsessive with daily weigh ins but I only actually care on Fridays.  I did weight watchers for a while and got totally obsessive with my weight and how many points I was eating that I couldn't do it any longer.  When I started working out regularly and eating right during the week, I lost a lot more weight (even with the bad weekends)  It's all about finding the right balance!  Congrats on losing 6lbs! That's really great! Especially at this time of year when people usually go into hibernation mode.
    greenapples27
  • Thanks for the helpful advice and encouragement! I appreciate it!
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