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Help troubleshoot my weight loss plan?



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  • Help troubleshoot my weight loss plan?

    Hey all. First time asking a question here.

    I've toyed with Paleo over the course of the last 9 months and done two full rounds of the Whole30 program, which I love and is great for my body (I'm planning a third round for the end of November, that's how much I love how it makes me feel). After the first round I went back to SAD eating, but after the second round in July I've been almost entirely paleo and I feel great. I've started working out like never before, running 4 days a week (running! I've never run before!) and doing power yoga a couple times a week as well.

    My question relates to weight loss and how to keep it up… I'm a 24 year old female and I'm 5'4''. I started at the beginning of July at a record high of 162 lbs and when I weighed in this week I was at 144 lbs. My ending goal weight is 120 lbs and I'd like to be there by the end of this year, which would necessesitate a weight loss of slightly less than 1.5 lbs/week, which I feel is super reasonable and attainable.

    I was wondering if I posted a few sample days of meal logs if anyone could give me some feedback on what I could optimize or tweak to help me with my goals? I KNOW one thing I need to do is limit my alcohol intake further, but other than that? Below are a few sample days… if anybody has any ideas or input I would really appreciate it as I'm very motivated and open to advice!

    Cup of green tea

    3 slices Never Any! uncured bacon

    2 eggs fried in bacon fat

    Smoothie with banana, tropical fruit mix, and cashew milk

    La Croix

    Chicken with apple and sweet potato slow cooked

    Roasted broccoli

    Tequila mule

    Vegan carrot jalapeno soup

    1 glass red wine

    Water intake: Half a gallon

    Exercise: Jogged 2.1 miles

    Cup of green tea

    Leftover slow cooker chicken with apple and sweet potato

    2 eggs fried in olive oil

    Half an avocado with Cholula sauce

    La Croix, much La Croix

    1 apple

    Half a dairy-free tapioca/coconut pizza with veggies and bacon

    Water intake: < Half a gallon

    Exercise: 1 hour vinyasa flow

    La Croix


    3 slices of bacon

    2 pieces of melon and a few blueberries

    Cup of coffee

    Smoothie with banana, berry mix, and cashew milk

    Cup of green tea

    Plantain chips with Wholly Guacamole/pico

    Sweet potato fries with tomato dipping sauce

    Burger patty over chard with baconnaise and Valentina’s

    Water intake: Half a gallon

    Exercise: Ran 2.1 miles

    Cup of green tea

    2 eggs fried in coconut oil

    Roasted garlic broccoli

    1 coconut flour pumpkin/bacon/chive biscuit

    Mug of roasted butternut squash and apple soup

    Frozen grapes

    Small portion of slow cooker chicken with apple and sweet potato

    1 Ace Pear Cider

    Café Coco burger patty with lettuce, tomato & onion

    Small portion corn chips with homemade salsa

    Water intake: < Half a gallon

    Exercise: 30 minute power vinyasa flow

    These are just a few sample days from my food/fitness journal but hopefully someone can lend a little veteran advice! Thanks!

  • #2
    High there, softlysoaring. You have made great progress to date, well done.

    My initial thoughts are that you are drinking far too many calories - between the cider, wine, tequila and smoothies.

    You are not far from your goal so you will need to be more strict. I would cut all of those out and replace with meat and vegetables.
    The likes of corn chips and tapioca pizza are also quite high in carbs which can make you hungrier. It might be helpful to cut them (temporarily) and again replace with eggs or tuna or something more high in protein.

    Are you spreading out your eating during the day? I suggest not snacking between meals. Eat more at lunch to get you through to dinner. What is La Croix?

    Some weight training would add muscle to your body which consequently burns more energy. Also reshapes your body to look better even if not weighing less. 120lb with muscle looks better than 120lb skinny-fat.
    My first journal -


    • #3
      That looks like not a lot of food and not a lot of protein on most days. Have you ever calculated the calories for all this?

      But it may end up being appropriate given that your exercise seems fairly not strenuous (not in the way that weight lifting would be, anyway, which often requires a surplus of calories).
      Depression Lies


      • #4
        Yes, I was looking for the protein too.
        My first journal -


        • #5
          Thanks! Yeah my car's transmission is dying so I can't make it to the gym right now and have no weights at home, so I haven't been able to do much lifting this summer though I try to do power yoga at home and squats, burpees, etc to make up for it. I'm getting a car that can actually go faster than 30mph in like two weeks and when I do, you better believe I'll be back in the gym doing weights and resistance training for sure.

          La Croix is just zero calorie, zero sodium, zero sugar, zero anything naturally flavored sparkling water. I try to spread out my eating throughout the day but I work from home so sometimes it's hard.


          • #6
            What are some good ways to add more protein, just add more meat and eggs? I try to eat more meat and eggs especially on the days that I run but maybe I'm just not adding enough?


            • #7
              Oh, I thought La Croix must be food. It really looks to me like you need to consolidate into three meals all based around protein.

              Endless little snacks based around so many carbs is not satisfying enough.
              My first journal -


              • #8
                If I ate what you ate, I'd be really hungry so I'd say just yeah, eat more meat & eggs! But if you're not hungry, maybe the activity you're doing right now doesn't require it? Mostly I suggest people go by how they feel unless they're getting undesired results.
                Depression Lies


                • #9
                  If you save leftovers from dinner you can have them for either breakfast or lunch the next day. Then make eggs and maybe bacon the other meal.
                  My first journal -


                  • #10
                    25g worth of protein three times a day is not too much.
                    My first journal -


                    • #11
                      Is there any merit to the idea of carb (and therefore calorie) cycling a day or two a week on the days I do the more strength training based stuff like power yoga? Before I discovered paleo I did VERY low carb for a while and felt like crap and had a whole host of lady and hormone issues as a result but from what I've been reading it sounds like alternative between low(er) and high(er) carb levels based on activity levels for the day helps some people break through their plateaus and lose more overall…?

                      And should I be eating more calories or less calories? I run like four days a week and push myself pretty hard (hard for someone who's never run before in their lives) and I'm doing my first 5k in October… then on the days I don't run I do power yoga and only have like one rest day a week.


                      • #12
                        Hi OP! I can toss a few suggestions your way. I havn't trouble eyeballing the amount of calories your taking in there based on what you've listed.. but first things first. On the days your exercise you need to be taking in sufficient amounts of calories. At your height and weight you listed, I'd venture on exercise days you should be taking in around 2000 or so. Non workout days, maybe 1600-1700ish depending on how you feel. Part of the reasoning with this is, you want to minimize the amount of stress hormone (cortisol) is released. Cortisol masks itself as insulin resistance which will make it very difficult to lose weight.

                        Other things to try:

                        1) Carb cycling - On days you work out, maintain a high protein/high carb/low fat style of eating
                        - Days off, cut your calories by 300-400; cut your carbs in half, and your protein slightly, then the rest in fats

                        2) Intermittent fasting - 2 popular methods I've seen are 16 and 20hr fasts. An example of a 16hr fast would be from 8pm to 12pm. This gives an eating window for 12pm - 8pm. Then the 20hr fast, eating window usually I've seen either from 4-8pm, 5-9pm, or 6-10pm. Calorie amounts don't change, your just cramming in all the calories during those eating windows. The idea behind this is making yourself insulin sensitive.

                        3) Stack carbs only around pre and post workout. I suspect this will cause an initial hit in weight loss but might stall shortly after. It might jump start the metabolism again.

                        Remember though, the closer you get to your goal weight, the more strict you have to become with the diet. This is where food/calorie/macro tracking come into play.