Jump to content

3 months and ZERO progress.. Please Help!!


Sammie Sauce

Recommended Posts

Hello! I am hoping to get some guidance on what exactly i should be doing to lose weight. I am 33 year old female, 150 lbs and 5'5" tall. I have been doing SL 5x5 for about 3 months now and have not seen a bit of change on the scale or in measurements. My before and after pics look exactly the same. I am frustrated to say the least. So my routine isnt working for me, what should i do? Diet! Yes, change my diet. This is where i need help.

 

I have been pretty good about watching what i eat, with the exception of weekends. For some reason i think weekends dont count and i can do whatever i want. Not true, you say? I'm beginning to believe you. So i know that my TDEE is 1908 based on IIFYM calc. (workout 3x's/wk). And in order to lose fatty grossness i need to subtract 500 from that, right? So that puts me at 1408. Can that be right? I thought i needed more calories since i was lifting?

 

Let me tell you, i have been trying to stick to 1400 cals this week and i am ... hungry. Not starving, but i have that constant feeling of I NEED FOOD. Does that mean i need more protein? I have been tracking on MFP and i know i'm not reaching my daily protein goal, but how do i get more protein without getting more calories? Today this is what i'm eating..

 

       Breakfast: 1/2 chicken breast, coffee with creamer

 

       Lunch: 1/2 chicken breast, salad (baby spinach, thick sliced turkey breast of the lunchmeat variety, cherry tomatos, portabella mushrooms, carrots, cucumbers, a sprinkle of montery jack shred cheese and balsamic vinegar)

 

       Snack: 1/2 chicken breast, 1/2 cup strawberries (i need something sweet after lunch or i will go straight for the snack shelf at work. Today we have oreos, jelly beans and those minty girl scout cookies. mmmm.. girl scout cookies....)

 

       Dinner: TBD.. probably 4 large eggs and a sweet potato.

 

So today is the first day i am adding a third helping of chicken in hopes that it will help with hunger and meet protein requirements. According to MFP this does put me over the top, but now my calories are at almost 1600. What the hell? Oh, and my drink of choice is water. Water all day long.

 

What else can i add that would be helpful... my goal is to lose some inches and then work on building more muscle. My understanding is that it is best to focus on one at a time. Also, i've started to add in 20-30 min of HIIT cardio after lifting. Maybe i just need more cardio in order to lose those inches? They say everyone is different, right?

 

I'm sorry that this is really long but i hope that some of you friendly nerds can tell me what i am doing wrong. Should i not worry about the calories and focus on getting protien? If i do that then how will i ever lose any inches since i dont have a deficit?? ugh.. so confusing. I thought by the end of Feb i would see some clear results and start feeling better about myself. Now i feel like i have wasted more months and am still just as fat as when i started.

Link to post

If the scale/measurements aren't going down, and you want them to go down, you are eating too much.

 

Is your tracking accurate?  Measure and weigh food to verify.

 

Quit with the weekend free-for-alls.  The most successful people have consecutive day tracking streaks on MFP in the hundreds (I'm currently somewhere around 450 days).

currently maintaning

battle log challenges: 16,15,14,13,12,11,10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1
follow me: myfitnesspal
don't panic!

Link to post

Hi! Thank you for replying! Yes, i know that i am eating too much and have started to track all food 7 days/wk. My questions are regarding the correct amount of calories i should be consuming. According to IIFYM it should be 1408 if i subtract 500 to creat a deficit. Is that too low since i am lifting? If i hit my 150g of protein each day will that help with the hunger i feel at 1400 cals? How do i get 150g of protein without going over 1400 cals in a day?

Link to post

It sounds like 1400 calories will be fine.  You can try to do things to help ease the hunger - and in that sense, you might find protein to be a particularly filling nutrient - but ultimately, you'll probably be feeling more hungry than usual regardless.  As for the lifting, you'll probably find that your progress will slow and then stall at some point.  If you're getting enough protein (I'm guessing it's somewhere around 105g for you) and keep up the strength training anyway, you can keep the muscle you've gained.  If the same lifts are becoming too hard, keep the weight high but do fewer reps.  Intensity is more important than volume when maintaining muscle.

 

Just estimating, but 1.5 chicken breasts probably get you around 90g of protein for a little over half of your total calorie budget, leaving you ~650cals to find the remaining ~15g of protein and vitamins/minerals/fiber.  Protein powder is another thing you could try for a high dose of protein for relatively few calories; even if you use it though, it's probably best if it's only to supplement whole foods instead of replacing them entirely.

Link to post

You guys are all great, thank you! My goal is have 7 consecutive days of accurate MFP tracking. I figure if i take it one week at a time it wont be so daunting. I do need to get a scale to make sure my measurements are correct. I was staying between 1500-1600 cals before and then realized that my TDEE was 1900 so my math was off. I'm not going from 3000 cals down to 1400 overnight so i was surprised that i was so hungy. I will look into whey protein i think. I know there are some good and some bad, from what i hear. Any recommendations?

 

Also, has anyone ever had a B12 shot? A co-worker was telling me that they boost your metabolism and give you more energy, something i've been struggling with. I think if i can manage to get enough protein i should be ok with energy.. but does anyone have any experience getting a B12?

Link to post

How exactly have you been struggling with energy?  If you're concerned about how your nutrition is impacting things, you should talk to a nutritionist.  Taking a supplement because a coworker said it could help is not the way to go if you have a serious concern.

  • Like 1
Link to post

With all the blogs, anecdotal stories, and freely interpreted research, it can be hard to know what's necessary, what's normal, and what's just strange.  I think some people do take B12 injections, but I doubt it's by any means common like taking whey protein is.  If your sluggishness is due to a nutrient deficiency, there could be a variety of things off besides B12.  It's always best to talk to a nutritionist about these things, and the majority of nutritionists will prefer you get your vitamins/minerals etc through actual food rather than supplements - unless you have a true deficiency.

Link to post

I'd spend more time on your diet before worrying about a B12 shot. I see some spinach, but breakfast and dinner are devoid of veggies -where are the rest of your greens? Not only will these provide you with vitamins, fiber, and minerals you need, they'll help your feel full without packing in calories. How're your iron levels? I see a lot of chicken, but that's not a great source of iron. Throw in some beef, pork, turkey, etc. And seafood, too. (bonus: these are significantly better sources of B12 in your diet than chicken, and the seafood will improve your Omega 3 intake). You seem to be taking in the bulk of your carbs at dinner (in the form of sweet potato), which may not be ideal. Carbs are a fantastic source of energy - night time usually isn't when we need that. 

 

 

As for calorie goals... don't spend too much time right now stressing about the perfect number of calories. First focus on figuring out what you're eating now. Be precise. No internet calculator will be as accurate as tracking your intake, reducing it by a couple of hundred cal/day to start with, and tracking the results. Then adjust accordingly. 

Link to post

I'm bored just LOOKING at your meals.

 

If you enjoy what you eat, eating less of it won't bother you so much!

 

Google "Meals under 300 calories". There are tons of tasty options. 

 

You could also try having a bigger breakfast and lunch. I spend most of calories on lunch and breakfast (about 1000 of of 1800 cal), as I like to have the fuel throughout the day.

Lolavictrola

Amazon Adventurer in Training

 

STR 1 | STA 12 | DEX 1 | CON 11 | WIS 3 | CHA 16 -- 44 PT Total

 

My Epic Quest   ::   Current Challenge  

 

 

 

 

Link to post

What helps my cravings isn't more protein but instead more veggies. I down broccoli, spinach and haricot vert like crazy to not be hungry at the end of the day. And this is while BULKING :P

 

Basically even if I get enough calories, if too many of them come from food that doesn't give me much in form of nutrients (ice cream, pizza, junk food in general) I go to bed hungry even if I am in a caloric surplus.

 

So when I'm cutting later I know that I'll be eating TONS of vegetables. Since they are so low in calories you get a lot of food in you for very few calories. 300g of broccoli is roughly 100kcal and it'll go a long way to fill you up.

 

Hope that helps :)

Today I will do what others won't, so that tomorrow I can do what others can't

 

Battle Log - http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/43243-swes-path-fun-change/

Link to post

How is anyone supposed to function on 1400 calories per day? I'm still hungry if I eat twice that.

 

It's also super weird to me to see people on this website encouraging people to cut their calorie intake. Everything I see on the nerdfitness blogs is about stopping counting calories altogether and concentrating on eating healthy food.

 

So that would be my advice if you're interested. You feel hungry because you are hungry. If you're hungry you should eat more. Instead concentrate on making sure what you eat is as healthy as possible. Concentrate on whole foods, with lots of good fats, fresh veg and plenty of protein.

 

Eggs for breakfast will fill you up for a long time, I recommend always having some kind of healthy snack on your person (I'm never out of the house without at least a bag of mixed nuts) in case you get snacky between meals. This'll help you avoid the snack shelf. All of that chicken you're eating looks like a good lunch to me and then I recommend getting plenty of vegetables with your evening meal to help you sleep. 

Link to post

How is anyone supposed to function on 1400 calories per day? I'm still hungry if I eat twice that.

 

It's also super weird to me to see people on this website encouraging people to cut their calorie intake. Everything I see on the nerdfitness blogs is about stopping counting calories altogether and concentrating on eating healthy food.

 

So that would be my advice if you're interested. You feel hungry because you are hungry. If you're hungry you should eat more. Instead concentrate on making sure what you eat is as healthy as possible. Concentrate on whole foods, with lots of good fats, fresh veg and plenty of protein.

 

Eggs for breakfast will fill you up for a long time, I recommend always having some kind of healthy snack on your person (I'm never out of the house without at least a bag of mixed nuts) in case you get snacky between meals. This'll help you avoid the snack shelf. All of that chicken you're eating looks like a good lunch to me and then I recommend getting plenty of vegetables with your evening meal to help you sleep. 

It kind of depends. Even steve is an advocate of at least INITIALLY counting calories to get a rough idea of what you need and then stopping when you know how to estimate.

 

I prefer counting calories than eating healthy all the time for several reasons:

1. I can eat whatever I want as long as I get the right amount of protein and calories

 

2. I know that I am constantly on the right path. If I eat 250 calories surplus, hit the gym hard, sleep plenty and eat well (well meaning calories and protein not paleo) I am on the path to grow bigger and stronger. If I focus on just eating healthy I will sometimes be in a surplus but sometimes eat too few carbs or too few calories and I won't make progress in the gym as fast and won't grow.

 

3. I don't want to make my entire life about the gym and fitness. I am happier logging calories (easy to do as I still live my life just as I did before, the only difference is that now when I prep my food I also get out a food scale which takes me maybe 30 seconds extra per prepared meal). That way I can enjoy tasty things like ice cream, cookies, pizza etc. as long as I do it in moderation. It generally works great. I had my first cheat day in 2.5 weeks yesterday and went overboard on calories but most of the time I am perfectly happy sticking to my calories.

 

 

The biggest  reason I would advocate calorie tracking is that it's an easier initial step. Steve himself says that it's a bad idea to go from 0 to 100% overnight because it won't last. Start by tracking calories and you can eat what you would normally eat but less of it (in moderation). Then in the long run you can make goals like "4 days a week I will have no sugar except fructose" etc.

Today I will do what others won't, so that tomorrow I can do what others can't

 

Battle Log - http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/43243-swes-path-fun-change/

Link to post

It kind of depends. Even steve is an advocate of at least INITIALLY counting calories to get a rough idea of what you need and then stopping when you know how to estimate.

I prefer counting calories than eating healthy all the time for several reasons:

1. I can eat whatever I want as long as I get the right amount of protein and calories

2. I know that I am constantly on the right path. If I eat 250 calories surplus, hit the gym hard, sleep plenty and eat well (well meaning calories and protein not paleo) I am on the path to grow bigger and stronger. If I focus on just eating healthy I will sometimes be in a surplus but sometimes eat too few carbs or too few calories and I won't make progress in the gym as fast and won't grow.

3. I don't want to make my entire life about the gym and fitness. I am happier logging calories (easy to do as I still live my life just as I did before, the only difference is that now when I prep my food I also get out a food scale which takes me maybe 30 seconds extra per prepared meal). That way I can enjoy tasty things like ice cream, cookies, pizza etc. as long as I do it in moderation. It generally works great. I had my first cheat day in 2.5 weeks yesterday and went overboard on calories but most of the time I am perfectly happy sticking to my calories.

The biggest reason I would advocate calorie tracking is that it's an easier initial step. Steve himself says that it's a bad idea to go from 0 to 100% overnight because it won't last. Start by tracking calories and you can eat what you would normally eat but less of it (in moderation). Then in the long run you can make goals like "4 days a week I will have no sugar except fructose" etc.

Yep.

Eating healthy/clean is fine if it works for you. Unfortunately, it is not a mechanism for weight loss in itself. That comes from a caloric deficit. And the easiest way to ensure you're eating at a deficit is... to count calories.

Cowardly Assassin
Training Log | Challenges: Current, 6th, 5th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd, 1st

Link to post

I would suggest adding in periods of intermittent fasting. I am about to finish my first Whole30 and when I went very strict with my Paleo I was worried that I wouldn't be eating enough, so I started forcing myself to have breakfast even though my normal hunger signals usually don't kick in until 11 AM or so. On my 90% Paleo I was losing weight steadily, noticeably - and in my second week of W30 that stopped. I could feel my weight bobbing around a little bit, just in the way my clothes fit for about 2 weeks. This was with a strict diet, no cheat foods or meals, eating probably around 1200 calories a day, give or take a few hundred depending on the menu. This past week I have gone back to skipping breakfast, creating a 16h fast/8h eat pattern and within a few days I can feel my jewelry and pants getting back to normal.

 

The first few months of this year I did my fasting another way, eating whenever I want most of the week but eating only a small, protein lunch on Mondays, and nothing else that day. This seemed to kind of "summarize" all the fat loss from that week and I would see a steady, sustained decrease on the scale Tuesday morning. The breakfast skipping works better for me because I am someone whose natural rhythm doesn't ask for food in the morning.

Level 7 DINOSAUR Scout
STR: 9 - CON: 12 - DEX: 6 - STA: 10 - WIS: 16 - CHA: 11
Current Challenge
Scouts Base Camp
Scouts Tavern

Link to post

A few things here.

 

1) I agree with deleting your weekend binges. They work for some, but they derail me entirely. I eat like crap for 2.5 days (Friday evening through Sunday evening) if I do this. Watch your alcohol intake as well. It can be surprising how many calories you're drinking when you're otherwise "healthy".

 

2) B12 shots: Holy wow, this is NOT something that the average person needs. I would talk to a doctor to see if it's something you need. It shouldn't be taken as a "supplement" or booster or anything of the sort. I know one girl who had to take them regularly because she was genuinely deficient (which she realized because she was constantly napping and sluggish - like mono for an extended period of time).

 

3) Just because you are hungry does not mean you need to eat more protein. Try adding a cup of veggies at every meal. Fibrous things tend to help you stay full (I think). Although "eat when you're hungry" is a generally good rule, the body has certain mechanoreceptors in the stomach that are purely based on emptiness of stomach, and eating a bunch of broccoli and carrots will help fill you while barely raising your calories at all. When your stomach is empty, it tends to signal to your brain to release a hormone called ghrelin that gives you the "hungry" sensation.

 

If you're already eating the right amount of calories, adding veggies will help, I think.

Link to post

Clearly you know nutrition is the most important thing. One thing I can say is that looking at your menu, it's a bit, ahem, boring. Maybe subconsciously the bland menu makes you binge on weekends. The biggest thing for me has been creating delicious meals that I WANT to eat and oftentimes will crave even on my 1 cheat day.

 

Here are a few staples for me:

 

Whipped cauliflower - this is better than mashed potatoes when done right.

Roasted broccoli (or any other veggies)

Cauliflower pizza crust with turkey pepperoni and all my favorite vegetables (if you don't want to make the cauliflower pizza crust use a low carb wrap)

Spaghetti squash with homemade marinara (much lower in cals) and either TVP or ground beef/turkey (whichever you prefer)

Curry chickpeas 

Sweet potato topped with chicken, spinach, feta

 

Also, I would recommend giving yourself 1 cheat day a week, however, don't treat the entire day as a cheat day. For example, I generally use Fridays as my cheat days. Last Friday I ate like I normally would all day, but for dinner had a cheeseburger on a pretzel bun with fries. The next day I was right back to eating right and went for a 4.5 mile run+leg day (weights). 

 

Hope that helps and good luck! You can do it! :)

  • Like 1
Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

New here? Please check out our Privacy Policy and Community Guidelines