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September 11, 2009

How to lose weight – Part 1

A while ago I wrote this article about weight loss, and the plan. I neglected to say where I got my sources from and how to go about losing the weight effectively, or how I calculated my diet. I got quite a lot of flack for that, so sorry to all those who wrote in and politely kakked me out.

It all started with something called The Daily Plate, a free application from Livestrong, of Lance Armstrong fame. Its a beauty of a program, and allows you to calculate your energy needs dependant on weight, height, age, and most important, your activity level.

When I started, I wanted to lose 1kg per week, so 2 pounds per week roughly. My values worked out to 2300 calories per day, as my activity level was high, but not super high at that point.

Since then, I have formed a regular exercise habit, and have dropped 7kg in weight. The veins on my arms and legs are proof that things are starting to come together, or as good mate Conrad Stoltz calls it, the Green Bean Index.

So yesterday I thought I’d have a check to see how my values have changed, now that I am leaner, and exercising more. Here is the input…

It spat out a new value of 2500 calories per day. Stoked! 200 calories up, with my new weight goal of around 450 – 500g of weight loss per week. 200 calories per day might seem like nothing to celebrate about, but its an extra banana and an extra apple per day, which still makes me happy.

To clear it up, I am FULL of energy at the moment, my biking and running and gym work are coming along very nicely, and I am still in the start of my base phase of training, so no speed is expected yet, but its already showing promise.

So I did a few other things, on Livestrong, which I thought might interest you. I did a Body mass Index calculator (BMI for future ref)

Glad to see I am still normal. When it shows I am unhealthy and too skinny, I`m sure I’ll be ready to rumble.

Another graph I think everyone would like to see is how steadily I lost this weight. I have a graph for that too, and its nice to see. Its starting to pan out and get flatter now on the graph, but thats the way I am planning it, as the weight loss will be more gradual now. Here is that graph.

But how on earth did I work out what to eat, is the most common question I hear. First off, if you wanted to lose the weight badly enough, you would click this amazing link and type in “calories in foods” and you would get thousands of results. It might take you 20min to half an hour to actually work out a diet that has the amount of calories in that you need to get in, to lose weight at your target rate.

If you can’t do that, I almost want to tell you that you don’t want to lose weight badly enough.

Its true, but I will try keep it to myself….

A useful resource for that information can be found here for:

Proteins, dairy on page 1, and click through to page 2 for vegetables, fruits, etc…

When going to the shops to buy your pre-determined diet, which by the way, saves loads of money, you need to look out for vegetables that look like this:

Packed in plastic simply does not count. Overcooked, ready made meals do NOT count. The other vital tips, which work for me, are:

1. No dairy
2. No wheat
3. No sugar

I can’t find a way to cut all 3 out all the time, as there is some natural sugar in many things, and I have a coffee every day with at least a splash of milk in, but my energy levels, my skin health, my vitality and yes, my regular morning bowel movements are much better when I cut these things out. My fiber comes from the fruit and vegetables I eat, so that sorts out the morning movements.

I am not a freak and I eat normally. I don’t go to restaurants and ask for “special food”. I don’t have vegetarian pasty skin. I do not talk about food all the time.

But I do realise that as part of my long term wellness, I have to take responsibility for my food intake, because it makes a huge difference to my long term outlook on life and the ability for me to grow old with grace.

I am a exercise nut, and I do train more than most, but that means I can also eat more than most people, which makes me happy, because the preparation, consumption and enjoyment of food is something that particularly excites me.

In the next part I will get all technical with the sporty guys on exercise nutrition and post-exercise nutrition specifically, as this makes a huge difference to the sporty guys.

Thanks, and have an awesome weekend.

2 Comments on “How to lose weight – Part 1

Tim
September 14, 2009 at 12:14 pm

Great – does a similar program exist for people wanting to gain weight? What would your approach be for people that are under weight?

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Urban Ninja
September 23, 2009 at 11:57 am

Hey Tim. apologies for the delay in response.

I believe your question is outstanding. Yes, you would need to put in more calories than you expend.

Daily Plate also has the option to pick up weight, so use the system. Raoul

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