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A few questions here.....

Discussion in 'Diet and Nutrition' started by Dorothy Anne, Nov 8, 2008.

  1. Dorothy Anne Member

    Sep 10, 2007
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    Okay, my weight varies from 178 to 164. I am 5'4" and want to get down to at least 135. From 1991-1997, I worked out to the Firm and never lost weight (150 lbs), but did lose inches. Now, I want to lose weight, and start working out again, but don't know what to do first. I want to lose weight in the worst way because when I see pictures of me, I don't like what I see even though people tell me they wouldn't know from looking at me that I weight what I do (I think they are being nice). I have ordered the STS series and probably won't be doing that for awhile, since I haven't worked out in years. I am confused about this clean eating thing. I have read Cathe saying she eats clean, and then she says she eats very clean. Is there a difference in eating clean and eating very clean? I am confused. I would write her in the Ask Cathe forum, but don't know if she'd answer me.

    Another question is, is it possible to work out a lot and still lose weight or do you just lose inches and not the weight? I do not want to weigh what I weigh. My husband is 6'3 and weighs 163 lbs. I don't like weighing more than him. My goal for next May, (no reason why I want to reach my goal by May) is to get down to 130, no more than 135 and I want to start exercising again, because I miss it. Its just every VCR I have bought breaks and probably 90% of my exercise videos are videos. Then I bought a few exercise DVDs, but then my DVD player broke, and my son just fixed it yesterday.

    So my questions are: are there differences in eating clean? Are there different levels of it? And is it possible to lose weight while doing exercises? I guess i should say that I am more interested in weight lifting than aerobics, however, I know its a necessary component in exercising. Would you recommend aerobics more at the beginning and then later on weight lifting? My goal is to have muscle definition along with the weight loss. Is it possible?

    Thank you to all who can help me.
    Dorothy Anne
  2. shanihib Cathlete

    Jul 31, 2008
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    A few answers!

    To lose fat, you need to focus mostly on cardio. That will get you to lose pounds (and inches). To get good muscle tone you need to do some weight lifting. So, I'd recommend you focus first on cardio, with say 2 days of weight lifting (maybe a circuit type workout so that you get your heart rate up there too). Maybe the first week do 3 days of cardio with a rest day in between each day, then the second week do 3 days of cardio with a strength day in between each cardio workout. Also, weight loss comes from 80% diet... so you'll need to cut your calories. If you can restrict 3500 calories from your needs a week, you'll lose 1 lb. Don't go below 1200 calories a day and if you are working out go for something closer to 1500-1600. You should see some good results from this. Also, try to drink 8 (8 oz) or more glasses of water a day. It will help your losses, and keep you from being too hungry!

    As you get closer to your goal, you can reduce the cardio and bump up the strength. :)

    Others may have slightly different takes on how to do this, but this should be a good start! Good luck! (I lost 30 lbs - went from 150 to 120, and have gained a few lbs in muscle weight since then.) You can do it!
  3. RapidBreath Cathlete

    Jul 27, 2008
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    thats a tall order but I will give it a shot. . .

    "Is it possible to work out a lot and still lose weight or do you just lose inches and not the weight?"

    I work out a lot so that I do lose weight. I'm not focusing on weight training right now. I do one circuit wo a week. But you must modify the eating and really pay attention to that in order to lose weight. You can't only exercise. It doesn't seem to work that way. I like to calorie cycle (vary my caloric intake by about 500 calories every other day) and carb cycle throughout my day what I mean by that is I keep my carbs to immediately after my am cardio because thats when my insulin receptors are open the most.

    Your goal seems very ambitious. Don't be disappointed and fall into all or nothing thinking. Goals are important motivational tools but being in the right direction is even more important than progress. Backsliding is more demoralizing and impacts the sense of self in a bad way because it eats at our sense of integrity, and darn it we always know when we have let ourselves down. Setting reasonable goals and setting goals that are behaviour based seems to work better for me. I don't know if that will help you in the long run, let us know :)

    Is the power in your home not good? You shouldn't be experiencing that many breakages with your VCRs. I've had the same one for 15 years.

    The dvd player that broke also makes me wonder if the electricity in your home is not good. Power fluctuations can cause problems with electronic gear but it depends on what is happening. I've had good experiences with the gear I bought at Costco.

    I do believe there are levels to eating clean. I think it has to do with the percentage of the time you eat clean. I suggest reading Tosca Reno's book on the subject. You could even try going to the library for information on that.

    "Is it possible to lose weight while doing exercises?" Do you mean weight training? Sure. I usually weigh a little less after my workout than before. But its probably water weight. I sweat a lot.

    "I guess i should say that I am more interested in weight lifting than aerobics, however, I know its a necessary component in exercising. Would you recommend aerobics more at the beginning and then later on weight lifting? My goal is to have muscle definition along with the weight loss. Is it possible?"

    Muscle definition will come with the weight loss. The muscle gets revealed as you trim down. Also, a moderate amount of weight training would seem like a good idea to me.

    What has been working for me always incorporates planned eating, cardio, light weight training (not weights that are light just once a week) and yoga. Intensity is key. Get a heart rate monitor if you can and work in that upper range to increase your metabolism and lose weight. The last part, yoga, is critical. The body needs to repair. I always lose weight when I do the yoga. Its really important. Even just 20 minutes in the evening before bed. Don't eat too little. That back fires by reducing muscle because the body turns there for protein. At least 1200 calories on a low calorie day and up to 2000 on a high day. Watch out for simple carbs in the afternoon/evening. If you want a treat, make it your self. If you want ice cream buy a serving not a gallon or half gallon. If you want ice cream get the real stuff made with sugar. Fake sweeteners cause major problems.
  4. kryptychyck Cathlete

    Apr 30, 2007
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    I know your frustrations...


    First off, good for you for trying to lose weight. It is a challenge - not only physical but emotional as well. If I may say so, it seems to me that you are very concerned with the numbers on the scale. My advice: throw out the scale. It sounds like you are working very hard and everytime you step on the scale and you don't see the number you want, you get disappointed. Sure, it is a disappointment, but it does not mean you are not making accomplishments along the way. For example, since starting to workout 1) are you stronger? 2) have you lost inches? 3) do your clothes fit better? 4) can you go a little further with each workout - even if it is one more rep or one more minute of cardio? If you can say yes to any of those questions, then you have made an accomplishment you can be proud of!

    I know a trainer (female) who is about 5'6 and 160. She is a size 2. She is rock solid. Muscle weighs more than fat and if you saw her you would not believe she is 160. I am 5'6, 150 and a size 8 or 10. I am stronger than most of the females in my gym. I can do pushups (not on my knees either) until the cows come home and I have a lot of endurance. These are accomplishments I am proud of. I may not look like a supermodel - but I am happy with me and my progress. Look to the positives and you will not feel like a slave to your goals. You will enjoy your workouts and feel better about yourself.

    The next questions: how is your eating? Do you eat any processed food or junk? Do you drink softdrinks? Do you drink juice? How is your sugar intake? Don't restrict yourself too much at first. Your body has to get used to all the changes you are making. However, do elimate junk food, atrificial and processed food. It does not contain any nutrients and will make it impossible to lose weight. Being healthy is one thing, but disordered eating is another.

    The best thing though is to talk to your doctor - there could be a medical reason you are not seeing results. He or she will do tests to see where you are. Plus your doctor can recommend a nutritionist to help you with what you need to be healthy. Too much protein is taxing on the kidneys. Too few carbs and you will feellight headed and cranky. Carbs are so important for your body when you are working out. A nutritionist can calculate what your dietary needs are based on your activity level.

    Also, don't be intimidated by STS. I have read many posts about people getting ready for this new workout. Ha! I have used periodization programs before and it is something for which you cannot "prepare". The whole point of any periodization program is constant challenge, consistent improvement, and great results (rinse and repeat) ;) Like I have said in other posts: if your 1 RM is 5 lbs for a bicep curl, then it is what it is and that is where you are. There is nothing wrong with that and you will increase your abilities over time. The program is for any level - don't worry about that.

    So if you want to order STS and give it a shot, go for it. Do what you can and you will change your shape. It all starts with 1. Years ago when I started to do push ups I had to do them with my knees on the floor. My goal was to do the sets with no knees on the floor. I started with one rep and worked up from there. My next goal: 100% unassisted pull ups. Right now I can do 1. I will get better from there. It just takes time.

    As far as recommending a workout for you...hmmm. My personal opinion is to do weightlifting with a cardio session at the end. But I am biased: I LOVE to lift weights and the heavier, the better. Do what works for you and what you enjoy.

    I workout at a gym. Right now I am in the strength phase of my own periodization program and I am lifting heavy. I do 5 sets of 5 - 8 reps of each exercise for my upper body. Legs are the opposite. I focus on plios and endurance since my legs are already VERY muscular and VERY strong. Next month I will max out my reps over a two week mini phase. Then I will go back to 3 sets of 12 reps of medium weights. I don't do the light stuff for a whole month b/c I have never gotten results from it. I went backwards and I was unhappy. I run for about 20 minutes or so after my upper body workouts and before my lower body so I can warm up and pre-fatigue the legs before the weight work since that weight work is on the lighter side. I work upper body one day and lower body the next day. My legs can handle it and I am seeing some good results. I participate in a boot camp class once a week for a higher intensity cardio workout and I do a body conditioning class. That is light weights for an hour and it hits everything. I refer to it as icing on my workout cake. It adds a bit of varitey and surprise to my muscles. Plus it is social and fun. I throw in rest days where I need them and and some core work and that is about it.

    If you want to change your shape, you have to lift weights. Cardio can help burn calories, but weightlifting is just as important.

    Good luck and I hope you see results soon.
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2008
  5. dbelden1 Cathlete

    Aug 30, 2008
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    First of all, I want to say that Dorothy Anne you just explained my situation better than I can so Thank you for posting your questions! I am in the same weight range but even shorter at 5'-0" and very stocky ("big boned") so I feel your pain, very whole heartedly!

    Becky, you even have me inspired right now! WOW! what a post! Thank you for your insight and recommendations!

    RapidBreath: I also appreciate your comment about not getting overwhelmed by our goals and biting off such a big chunk (I'm paraphrasing here :)) of weight to lose and getting frustrated when the results don't come as quickly as we would hope! I am there right now... while I'm not the best with my eating, I have been working hard on my workouts and making sure to get them in at least 5 times a week.. I do know that I am not getting enough cardio as DH seems to hog the treadmill! :p

    I am trying to take baby steps and build healthy habits one step at a time. Needless to say, my eating habits are my next hurdle to tackle!

    again, thanks Dorothy Anne for sharing your story and for everyone who responded with ideas and support!

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