After reading BFL, I came to the conclusion that my body's refusal to lose weight over the last several years may be due to my body being in starvation mode. For the last year, I have been doing P90X and Weight Watchers because my normal workout routine stopped working for me. I toned up quite a bit, but I didn't lose inches or weight. I had plenty of points/calories remaining every week, yet I wasn't losing. The only "binge" I allowed myself was alcohol on the weekends. So, I decided to try BFL. However, I feel like I'm gaining weight because I'm eating more than I have most of my life, so could someone please verify if I'm eating too much or too little? Here's what I eat on an average day:
Any help or suggestions you make would be much appreciated! I'm only on week two and I want to do this right. I'm so tired of working my butt off only to be disappointed in the results.
My own humble opinion but you seem to continue to starve yourself and you aren't close to the protein intake you should be ingesting. Below is a table of your diet:. It appears you are roughly consuming less than 800 calories per day (this assumes you are having a cup of greek yogurt!) and 58 g of protein. You should be eating 1g of protein per pound of body weight (I assume you don't weigh 58 lbs?). You aren't even eating enough to maintain your weigh much less gain muscle mass which you need to increase your metabolism. In addition, you need to change the composition of what you are eating. You need more protein, less fat, and more calories. Are you hungry all the time? You shouldn't be. At least try to get all 6 meals even if you have to eat every 2.5 hours.
God I hate the copy pasting of tables here! Let me try the table again:
Wow...I had no idea that I was consuming such a small amount of calories and protein. I'm eating more than I did before, so it feels like a lot, but I guess that just means I was eating WAY too little before. No wonder I workout all the time and don't lose weight! Thank you SO MUCH for taking the time to show me this. I had never broken down the food like that.
Do you have any suggestions for strong food combinations? I'm struggling with what I can eat to get all the protein I need without eating a ton of food or too many carbs.
I used to be hungry all the time, btw, but with these 5 meals, I actually feel much more fulfilled than I did on Weight Watchers. I felt like I was always waiting for my next meal on WW, while now I feel like I'm forcing myself to eat, which is why I'm surprised that I'm still eating too little.
Thank you so much for the eye-opening breakdown!
If you are struggling with getting enough protein you should consider whey protein. You get a tub of it and you can add it to things. One scoop of EAS whey protein as 23 g of protein. If you added a scoop t to a cup of oatmeal it would be a great meal. Here are some other combos I love
lowfat cottage cheese - fruit
turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread
lean hamburger on whole wheat bun
salmon on salad with balsamic vinegar
protein shakes? I love them. so easy to deal with and loaded with protein. (real protein shakes, not slim fast)
seconding everything that john said. have you read the nutrition section of the book?
just a few meal ideas:
- 1 cup shelled edamame + salad + 2tbsp balsamic dressing
- edamame pods, boiled and topped with coarse salt
- 4-5 boiled egg whites + salad + 2tbsp lite dressing
- 200g lite cottage cheese + blueberries, pumpkin puree + cinnamon, or 1tbsp no sugar added jam
- 200g lite cottage cheese + 2tbsp salsa (not a savory cottage cheese person myself, but some swear by it)
- 4-5 scrambled egg whites + sauteed vegetables (possible add-ins: soy sausage crumbles, salsa), with a side of fruit, yogurt or oatmeal
- 4-5 egg whites + mustard on whole wheat bread (possible add-ins: leafy greens, red onion, a few slices of avocado, a bit of low-fat cheese)
- protein shakes (you can get creative with these. vanilla pumpkin is my personal favorite)
- veggie burger patty + sauteed vegetables over half a whole wheat bun
I have read the entire book, including the nutrition section, but the meal suggestions weren't all that creative (or appealing to me). My job also requires that I pack meals 1-3, so my options are limited for those meals. For the last three meals of the day, I can pretty much make anything work though. I hatehatehate cottage cheese, so all of the options are out, but I do love veggie burgers and edamame, so thanks for reminding me of that option!
I also bought a package of the EAS protein shakes. I was hesitant to include them as one of my meals because I was afraid of going over my daily calorie allowance, but now that I see how far below I'm falling, I'm going to start incorporating those on a daily basis. I'm just so scared to gain weight! But I need to try something different. Obviously cutting calories isn't working for me, contrary to all scientific background!
Oh and John: I increased my portions for today and I'm so stuffed! Is that normal? I'm assuming my body probably just isn't used to this much food in a day. It's nice not always feeling slightly hungry though!
I've had some meals that I'm literally forcing down my throat at times. It makes sense you are having a hard time if you've been eating small amounts for a long time. Let me know what you've eaten today and we can continue to tune it.
Thanks, John! I know yesterday wasn't perfect because I need to tweak what I buy at the store based on your recommendations, but here's what I had yesterday:
1. apple and 2 light Babybel (I'll swap this out for turkey once I go to the store)
2. 1/3 chicken breast, 2 tablespoons hummus, 10 whole wheat baked pita chips
3. salad (as listed above), nonfat Greek yogurt (whatever the single serving size is)
4. palm-sized white chicken meat and 6oz lowfat chocolate milk (another thing I will get rid of once it's gone)
5. chicken kebab (so grilled veggies and about 4 cubes of chicken) and a baked potato with nonfat Greek yogurt
6. attempted to drink my first vanilla EAS protein drink but I couldn't do it...it was too thick and chunky. I will keep trying different mixtures though!
I will jump in here and see if I can give you some advice...
The babybel is cheese...cheese is fat. Skip the cheese. There are better choices. You want protein and carbs here. ie. oats and egg whites, or oats and protein powder
the 1/3 chicken breast is probably too little. 1oz of chicken breast had about 7g of protein, you want to hit about 20 so you need about 3 oz at least. Then match the carb with something better than those chips like sweet potato or quinoa or ezekial bread, brown rice...
the salad should be romaine lettuce or spinach with some additional veggies and an olive oil and vinegar dressing. No cheese etc. The non fat greek yogurt is great just make sure you are having enough to hit the protein requirement. Maybe add some berries to the greek yog here to increase the carbs...
chicken is great (make sure portion is correct) and ditch the choco milk!! Have with some veggies and quinoa, brown rice or sweet potato
Make sure it is enough chicken to fulfill the protein requirements, the baked potato is great (sweet potato would be greater) and skip the greek yogurt...
attempted to drink my first vanilla EAS protein drink but I couldn't do
it...it was too thick and chunky. I will keep trying different
a great before bed snack is cottage cheese (non fat) and some veggies, or a protein shake and veggies...
Hopefully this helps a bit.
The idea is to get minimum 20g protein and 20g carbs per meal. Add veggies to at least 2 meals and a good fat (olive oil, fish oil) to at least 1 meal.
I would drop the babybel cheese and chocolate milk for sure! there has to be a better way than pita chips, greek yoghurt!. Get some decent protein in ya! I know when I first did BFL I felt like I was eating all the time. But you have to. John is giving you excellent advice here, and it sounds like you are tweaking things well, so "onwards and upwards".
I am startring my challenge on Monday 9th May, so I may well be back on here myself asking for advice!
I agree tho, try some Protein Powder, some bars, occassionally at least. I find cottage cheese is a must have, and lean ham is good. All the best, would like to hear how the food changes help you...
Kia Kaha - Be Strong
I don't like cottage cheese either, so I'm having to be creative. The protein shakes are something to get used to, for sure, but I've started adding ice and 1/2 a banana (I'm using the lite protein, tho, so there'sa little wiggle room for the carbs in the banana). Also try making the smoothie in the blender instead of shaking or stirring (otherwise it's gritty, and that sorta smoothes out the texture... guess that's why it's a smoothie :P)
Good job on tweaking the diet!
Thanks for the feedback everyone! I have tweaked my diet in a few places according to your suggestions. I am now having one of the lite protein shakes almost every day. I mix fruit and yogurt in them (according to the recipe on the back of the box) and drink 1/2 a day. And RockingMom...you are SO right about blending them! It makes all the difference in the world. I am also eating a lot of deli turkey and chicken since I know it's low in fat and high in protein. Plus it's easy.
Do you guys have any suggestions for snacks you can eat on the go? I am a teacher and I can't really stop to snack, so I need something quick that doesn't need to be refrigerated that I can shove down in the few minutes between classes!
1/3 of a chicken breast? Eat the entire breast. weight wacher meals are garbage, hummus? really? pita chips?
It is apparent that you do not have a valid grasp of nutrition. For a very basic understanding, please go read the book.
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