Weight loss thread 🍔
Elephantinthew… 28 Oct 22 14:02
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OK I have hit 11s which is officially a bit fat so it’s onwards and downwards for me. Goal 9.07  First goal 10.07 by 11 Nov. Putting plan together for diet and exercise and I know there is some good advice on previous threads which I will find. 

1250 calories a day max

500 calories burned in exercise min 

Porridge pot for breakfast 

Ryvita with benecol and marmite for lunch 

Normal (ish) tea 

If not hugely fit do your calories through brisk walking. A 45 minute / hour walk should be enough 

You’ll see big results in a month if you stick to it, but you will be hungry at first 

Are you m/f? Old/young? Fit/injured?

Will all change how many calories you need to consume to lose weight

Generally speaking lifestyle changes are better for ensuring weight is kept regular though - walk to work, take up a sport etc etc 

If you are consuming 1250 calories a day and burning 500 in exercise (so say 2,500+ a day consumption) you are below 50% which is pretty drastic

Yes, with drastic results as set out in problem questions 

Intermittent fasting. I have lost three stone (and still trucking) solely by not eating three days a week. This was easier psychologically than being able to eat 500 cals or whatever a day 2x a week, and certainly easier than 1250 a day for the foreseeable. 

Read The Obesity Code by Jason Fung, which “proves” most of what has been posted so far in this thread or how calories in/calories out does not equate very simply to obesity and does not work long term. 


Fwiw (and my personal experience agrees) I would say not to undertake a massive exercise programme. The influence of exercise vs diet is minimal, it makes you hungry doing it, and it’s demotivating if you are doing it and not losing weight. I only had the headspace for fasting and so far it is working. 

Ironically chuffers most clinical tests as to long term effectiveness of calorie control show that it doesn’t work long term (1yr+) in something like 99% of those who do it. 

I don't do calorie control but know what basically leaves my weight static so generally try to do that but every now I'm less active or the like for a bit so then requires slight adjustment.

Anon, I have gained weight for no reason and it’s an age thing. This is combined with not running around London all day and being near fridge so am planning to incorporate more exercise into every day. Today have hit the 500 calorie burning with tennis plus walking. Bowl of porridge and Syrian bean stew. The Apple and Brown Sugar Cake and even the Guest cake staring at me have no hold on me and am staring right back! 

Anon it was yummy but I didn’t make it. It was from a lovely cafe. Just going to make banana smoothie and then decide how to bash out the 500c exercise. This seems to be working for me (day2) as the exercise stopping me sitting round thinking and eating! Swim am maybe and Zumba this evening. Yes weight training is good and am considering as others have said life changing. I was going to try Body Pump which incorporates some weights. 

Anon. I’ve also been slim all my life until menopause when I gained a bit. Lost it again gradually but was found after several years of no diagnosis to be ill. Since having to be on steroids I’ve put myself on a stone and a half and like you I hate it. I can burn about 300 calories a day by walking. But that’s not enough. Am banned from gym and swimming because of my condition. But do weights at home. Definitely some of my weight gain is muscle but not all of it. Would love to be my slimmer self again. 

There was an interesting piece reasonably recently about the beneficial effects on body mass of wearing a weighted jacket/waistcoat.

Your body knows what weight it is, and so carrying around a few extra kilos during the day (which are basically not onerous to carry, but clearly a bit bulky), makes your body self regulate your calorie input to try and bring itself back to that weight. 

So you build up tone while on a diet you hardly realise you are on.

Then when you take the jacket off for holidays and weddings etc. you are all slim and gorgeous.

At a basic level, we are simply a walking series of chemical reactions.

And if you get the recipe slightly wrong,  that leads to all sorts of consequences.

Hormones, sadly for you, are one of the bigger drivers of this, and especially as regards mood and mass.

Think about a hyperactive thyroid. One way ticket to being fat, and there is very little you can do about it diet or exercise wise. You need surgery and/or massive chemical intervention.

Your body is now missing a chunk of its chemistry set, but still wants to perform the same reactions, save this time they are more like experiments.

Hoping you can find a regime that brings back some sort of equilibrium.

Good luck with the weight training. Do share what you're doing.. I've had to do my own prog at home which is less comprehensive but years of going to the gym and pilates have helped a bit.

"Think about a hyperactive thyroid. One way ticket to being fat, and there is very little you can do about it diet or exercise wise. You need surgery and/or massive chemical intervention."

Point of order: this is absolute nonsense. Firstly, hyperthyroidism is an overactive thyroid which makes you lose weight. I have this so I know. Drugs made me go a bit the other way but the doctors said not to worry, to just not overeat and the cals in/cals out logic would still apply and it did. I didn't gain weight and in fact through healthy eating managed to lose some more.

Elephant, my general approach to weight loss is:

Small bowl of porridge with frozen blueberries for breakfast

Half a tub of any fresh soup or a couple of eggs and a slice of toast for lunch

Fish, 150g baby potatoes and as much veg as you like for dinner. Lean chicken could also work.

Maybe a couple of snacks that equal about 100 cals each, like grapes, nuts or a mini bag of cookies.

Every other day, stop eating after dinner and don't eat until the following dinner and only drink water or tea/coffee without milk.

I also follow the walk for an hour every day philosophy. Yes, I could run and sometimes I do, but going for a walk doesn't repel me some days when I'm feeling tired/lazy as a run might so it ensures I do get out and moving and once I'm out I might feel motivated to do something a bit more involved. Also combining it with an audio book can help with the motivation to go out once you get into said book.

OK am going to have to check in as just had Leon breakfast deal and not really in plan.  Banana for lunch, run and may come back from this. 

Regarding the thyroid point. You can go from hyper to hypo (hope I have that the right way around!) and get fat as the thyroid effectively burns itself out over time. Thus it becomes inactive. Obviously the time period varies and everyone is different.

The big drivers of being fat. Sugar and beige food such as pizza and burgers and lack of portion control.

Ahh good to see the ever present nonsense that exercise has minimal impact. Yeahhhh. Keep telling yourself that.

If regular exercise vs no exercise - all other things equal - doesn’t have a dramatically positive effect on your body and health, you are doing something very wrong, or have something physically wrong with you.

If you want to rationalise not bothering to exercise by telling yourself it doesn’t make much difference, fill your boots. But don’t peddle the lie to others. 

Totally agree with the walking v running point.  Very fast walking (45 mins to do 5k) burns a very high proportion of the equivalent run.  And doing something is better than doing nothing.  Finding a good or some good podcasts that last the amount of time you walk helps.  There's also just something good for the old menkal helf too about getting out and breathing some fresh air.

the idea that calories in/calories out doesn’t work is arrant nonsense

that’s exactly how 2 lose weight, by cre7ing a deficit

the fact that each person is different, the impact of different 4ms of dieting is different, the speed, type and location of weight loss is different and the degree 2 which change is lasting is different, doesn’t alter the fact that the basic equation is the same

if u want 2 lose weight long term, then u cannot avoid the fact that the end result has 2 entail eating less and/or exercising more. the error margin in metabolism is negligible. there is no other magic 4mula

Restricting calories as a strategy for losing weight does not work over medium or long term. Short term or as a principle, yes, but it doesn’t work long term. That’s not the same thing as saying calorie deficit doesn’t cause weight loss. It’s more likely that for various reasons it’s impossible to stick to, but when the failure rate is 99%+ per cent I’d say you have to focus on the method one way or another. 

Also, I’m not saying exercise doesn’t make you feel better or isn’t good for you, but a focus on exercise over diet is a set up to fail. 

Anyway, people get weirdly defensive and aggressive on this subject. What I did worked for me and has a scientific basis behind it so that’s good enough for me. You do you. 

Also when I say it doesn’t work I mean long term daily calorie restriction. Intermittent fasting is a form of calorie restriction as well and I think does work, just not for the reasons most people think it does. 

Dont worry I am not doing no exercise just because it worked for ZG. I am trying to incorporate the 500c exercise into my day and so far it has put a bit of life into my routine and it is actually improving my life rapidly. I have tried fasting before and also helpful but more difficult to do combined with exercise. All of it has made me aware of my comfort and boredom eating which I wanted to stop. Thanks All! 

Jerry - Intermittent fasting (I am aware that it is a form of calorie control, but works differently to continual calorie restriction, psychologically if nothing else)

Elephant - Bon chance mes amis

Ah good timing as I am lazing about playing with my phone! Going out for another walk and swim 20 lengths and will jump on scales. Lost a bit of plump face. 

Checking in I don’t seem to have lost any weight according to the scales. 3 days left. Need to increase swimming to 20 lengths a day plus other exercise. Am going to try the one meal a day plan which may stop my cheating… 

Wtf. Are you eating a large meateor pizza with garlic dip every day and washing it down with 3 cokes?

Its very hard not to lose weight eating one meal a day.

I’ve said this before and will say it again. To lose weight, you must accept that you will be hungry, long and often, and probably also grumpy as you reduce fats and sugars. Just accept that fate. It’s not that bad. Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. Also, nothing tastes that good full stop. After you’ve eaten a big fatty meal, do you actually feel happy / satisfied? No, you feel guilt and regret. Think of that next time you crave fish and chips or whatever else.

Checking in I don’t seem to have lost any weight according to the scales. 

Get some of these.  They measure body fat and muscle mass.  When I was losing weight and exercising they were a lifesaver as I would have been demoralised by not losing weight but could see I was actually putting muscle mass on and losing fat.


One of the best £30 I ever spent.  It comes with an app on your phone which means it's always with you.


“Are you eating a large meateor pizza with garlic dip every day and washing it down with 3 cokes?”

NO!!! I’m eating a normal home cooked meal which is never fried, low fat, etc. And I don’t drink fizzy drinks! 

I’m going to try again for another fortnight and see what happens but it does feel like my metabolism is broken or something.

I've lost 2kg since this thread began. Keep up the good work. 

For me what works best is eating and drinking at the weekend as if it were a normal weekday. It's not much fun though. Fortunately once I've lost it my normal routine seems to keep me at a fairly even keel until I go on holiday or injure myself. 

Treat yourself to a day off a week, else it’s interminable. Food is great and you don’t want to develop an issue with it. Basically, you can get used to eating less. You need the long term effects of feeling better. Think of it like avoiding toxic threads on rof.

Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. Also, nothing tastes that good full stop. After you’ve eaten a big fatty meal, do you actually feel happy / satisfied? No, you feel guilt and regret. 

Thanks fxcking Christ I've never ever felt that way.  After the last mouthful of perfectly grilled USDA ribeye has gone down my gullet, my only feelings of regret are that I can't afford to indulge in it more often.  

Or yellowfin tuna grilled so it has just a hint of pink in the middle (I despite the seared tuna fad).  Or secreto iberico with roasted vegetables and potatoes.  Exquisitely steamed prawns, or wok fried mud crab pincers, fragrant with cracked black pepper and garlic, that when alive could have effortlessly removed your little finger.  FOOD GLORIOUS FOOD

Sounds particularly good if caught it yourself from some deep blue sea. My last post with the 20 lengths on top of everything else starting to work I think so off to the pool

"Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. Also, nothing tastes that good full stop. After you’ve eaten a big fatty meal, do you actually feel happy / satisfied? No, you feel guilt and regret."

I too have never felt that way. SO many things do taste THAT good.


How goes this Elephant?

Despite my initial annoyance at putting on weight instead of losing it, I am pleased to report the intermittent fasting does in fact work. Just in time for Christmas.

Hey HB that’s good news. I may slot in a fast day tomorrow. It’s going quite well. Driven by exercise which has stopped the comfort eating. Lost a couple of rolls of fat from the middle and the face! I should be hungry at some points during the day as if I am not it’s an indicator I am overeating. 

Glad to hear that El, it’s a funny thing but you get used to the hunger pangs isn’t it? They don’t bother me too much anymore. With the shrinking stomach comes the smaller portion size as I feel full much quicker. Yay for us x

Cutting back on carbs I have lost the best part of 2 stone since mid-July.  Waist down four inches to a size I barely remember.  So no longer fat, balding old man, just balding old man.  Good luck Elephant.

I am checking in as could do with improving exercise routine and losing a few pounds. Will return to one meal a day plus fruit which seemed to work well. Also resurrecting couch to 5k. 

It’s all about calories when you hit middle age. I do tons and tons of weigjts and cardio (5 mornings a week in the gym, I am retired) and while I am super fit I have NEVER lost one ounce through exercise.

The nurse at my GP said portion control and no eating between meals and that way I have lost about 5 kilos since summer. Less alcohol helps too. no eating between meals will fend off diabetes too, you cant have your blood sugar up all day.

My personal trainer talked about the fasting thing or 16:8 or whatever it is but it just seems to boil down to skipping breakfast which isnt very clever, apart from anything else I will suffer in the gym and also my brekfast is porridge skimmed milk and fresh fruit, all of which I need in my diet. 

The only solution is slow and steady. 100 cals a day is a stone over a year. Worth remembering.*

* understandable if you may not wish to hear diet tips from a fattie 😉

It’s the winter comfort eating. Just had a vegan Leon love burger and earlier, since post 😬 a cappuccino and croissant and the banana. I knew when I asked for the croissant I was in trouble. I looked around the patisserie and there were quite a number of middle aged women like myself stuffing cakes down. Thank you for tips all. Will need to put a plan together tomorrow to reduce calorie in take.


The croissants are out.

The cappucino is an interesting one. If you drink a lot of it, by switching to skinny milk and limiting to half what you usually consume you might well reach the 100 cal a day reduction which means a stone over a year.

Having a good night's sleep is important so bear that in mind. I've never been a gym goer until recently and it has massively improved my sleep pattern. Also the porridge in the morning helps. I normally have 2 mornings with the porridge and then 1-2 off as it gets boring eating porridge every single morning but it does help with having control over hunger. And, yes I find it tedious to count calories but the NHS app can give you a good idea what you can afford to eat if you want to lose weight based on the calories deficit 


Try it for a week and then you can rely on your sense of food calorie values and honesty to yourself as to how much you should allow yourself to eat each day.

Low fat plain Greek yoghurt is a good one too. Get one of the high protein ones and add 50g mixed berries (buy frozen and defrost overnight). A 150g portion plus berries is about 110 kcal and will keep you satiated until your tiny lunch.

I have had porridge and berries plus muesli Greek yogurt and berries for afternoon tea/evening snack. Baked beans on pitta for dinner. Chicken and broccoli hotpot lunch, breakfast Leon halloumi avocado muffin. Plus two flat whites one cappuccino. 

Oh come on, I bet you look just fine. x

If it helps though, if one is consistent with healthy eating and exercise from today for the next three months, one will be feeling great in time for summertime.