Weight Loss: Tried and Failed Goals

Today, I want to talk about weight loss and health goals.

3/4 people set a goal of weight loss each January

According to consumer reports, 75% of Americans want to loose weight each year. 68% of them report they will use cardio to do it. But, as we should all well know by now, running on the treadmill won’t get the results you want.

Why Cardiovascular activity isn’t enough:

Let say that in a day, you take in 1800-2500 calories. Those calories start with a 480 calorie drink from Starbucks and some egg bites or an egg sandwich. Near 10 am, you have s light craving so you wander to the break room (read kitchen currently in this pandemic) and look at what’s available. You choose the one donut that is left.  At lunch time you think you’ll eat a bit healthier, so you grab a salad with a hardboiled egg, some bacon and avocado. Then you put on the ranch or blue cheese dressing that comes in the package. You also have a cookie at the end of lunch, because, hey, you ate healthy. you can cheat, Right? Then for dinner you have chicken and rice.

You calorie intake: closer to 2900; Fat intake: 108 grams; Carb intake: 178 grams; Sugar intake: 98 grams (15 is daily requirement); Proteins intake: 81 grams

This is the standard American diet (SAD for future reference).

“You can’t out run a bad diet”

This statement is more than true, but what is a good diet? How do I make adjustments? What Diets are not fads?

  • KETO: According to Wikipedia, the diet is high fat, adequate proteins,  low carb diet used in medicine to treat epilepsy. The diet brings the body into ketosis by having the liver convert fatty acids into ketone bodies that cross the blood brain barrier. Ketosis occurs in the absence of carbohydrates transitioning into glucose. The diet originated in the 1920s.
    • This brings up the question: what is adequate protein? Answer: 1 gram of protein for every pound body weight at a healthy weight. Avg female is 115g-145g/day Avg male 145g-190g/day. Keep in mind the body only absorbs between 28-40 grams at a time. And that can be based on activity level. After a strenuous workout your body will use more.
    • What is low carb: 75-100 grams.
    • Calories: 1 gram of fat = 9 calories; 1 gram of carb or protein = 4 calories.
    • Who should NOT do this diet: people that already have ketones in their urine due to diabetes, or other metabolic disorders. People with Kidney dysfunction, kidney stones, or kidney and bladder infections. People who lack a gallbladder, have high cholesterol or have pain after 30 minutes to 2 hours after eating.
    • When and how long might i do this diet: 6-8 weeks maximum to train to the body to burn fat for fuel. Then switch to High Protein Nutrition plans.
  • Calorie restrictive: 1200kcal
    • This diet again should be maintained for short periods of time because it can have health benefits, but also detriments.
    • You must focus on hitting your protein goal daily and not eating processed foods so that you can eat plenty of vegetables and 3 servings of fruit per day.
    • This Type of eating should be “Cycled” in a fashion of 6 weeks on 6 weeks off or 12 weeks on 12 weeks off, depending on how much weight you have to loose.
    • Daily goals: Protein 125, Carb 100 or less, fat 35-45 depending on carb intake.
  • Paleo: goal of 1800-3500kcal per day depending on fitness, age, sex
    • Originally posited as a healthier way to eat in 1890; Made famous in 2002 with the book “The Paleo Diet”
      • 5 Previous books also exist.
    • Goal is to eat absolutely No Processed foods, No Dairy, No Alcohol, No Salt, No Processed Oils, No Coffee, No Grains, No Sugar and No Legumes.
    • You can eat Honey and Pure maple Syrup when In Season only (think spring/summer.)
    • Fairly similar to the Mediterranean diet when looked at overall. Think 15 servings of veggies and fruit, 6 oz protein each meal. Almost no processed food. (although does allow alcohol and 2-3 oz espresso daily).
  • Mediterranean Diet: Goal of 1600-3500kcal daily based on activity levels and Weight loss goals.
    • Consume 6-8 oz of vegetables 3-4 oz of fruit 1-2 ounces of yogurt or cheese and 4-6 oz of fish, lamb, or bird (Chicken, Turkey, pheasant, quail, etc) each meal.
    • Snacks are fruit or vegetables, including olives and nuts
    • You can have 6 oz wine daily. 2-3 oz of espresso, without sugar and milk, daily
    • 1 serving of grains (unrefined) per day or 1/2 cup
    • Started as research in the 1960s regarding why Americans have more health concerns like heart disease, obesity, diabetes than Mediterranean European Counter parts.
    • Also shown to reduce risk of Depression, Alzheimer’s, Seizures, Cognitive decline.
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  • Intermittent Fasting: around since 1915, there are a variety of options: Calorie goals should still be 1600kcal-3500kcal on the feeding times based on activity levels, weight loss goals, age and sex.
    • 8:16: you limit eating to an 8 hour window and fast for 16. Many recommend starting to eat later in the day as dinners out are more likely social events than breakfast. You should still stop eating 3 hours prior to bed time, or 7pm; which ever comes first. So daily you would eat between 11am-7pm.
    • 5:2 You Pick 2 days out of the week to fast, not back to back in the beginning, and then eat in a 10 hour window on the other 5 days. (See Proposed Schedule below)
      • Sunday eat between 10am-6pm
      • Monday Fast
      • Tuesday Eat between 10am – 6pm
      • Wednesday Eat between 10am-6pm
      • Thursday FAST
      • Friday Eat between 10am-6pm
      • Saturday Eat between 10am-6pm
    • 6:1 This way has you fasting for 14 hours, eating for 10 hours for 6 days, complete fasting for 1 day.
      • Sunday eat between 10am-6pm
      • Monday Fast
      • Tuesday Eat between 10am – 6pm
      • Wednesday Eat between 10am-6pm
      • Thursday eat between 10am-6pm
      • Friday Eat between 10am-6pm
      • Saturday Eat between 10am-6pm
    • 2019 study showed reduced risk of
      • Obesity
      • Heart disease
      • Insulin resistance
      • Diabetes
      • High Cholesterol
      • High Blood Pressure and
      • inflammation.
    • Important things to note:
      • If you have a sweet tooth, don’t keep sweets in the house. You will pop those in your mouth first after a fast and undo the good you did by fasting.
      • Diabetics should always consult physician and monitor numbers regularly (every 2 hours) until the body adjusts to the schedule
      • Exercise will likely be impacted

Strength training is the best way to loose FAT

I am sure you have heard the saying “Muscle weighs more than fat”. Well, that is inaccurate. The truth is muscle takes up less room that fat of the same weight. By almost half. So if you want to loose fat and be healthier, you have to build muscles.

Another misnomer is that strength training makes women bulky. NOT TRUE. Strength training, when done correctly, can actually trim you down at the waist, bicep, thigh and calf. Instead of focusing on a lot of weight, spend 6 days a week doing weights with 4/6 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps. You will get great tone, no bulk and improved strength. I can attest to this. I’ve been lifting heavy 3 days a week for the last 18 months. My thighs have lost 1/2″, but I have gained strength in my squat, Hamstring curl and dead lift. The other 3 days I focus on lots of reps with very little rest. I also do no less than 20 min cardio to warm up each session. Did you see that? 20 Minutes. Then, on day 7 I do a recovery cardio day.

Recovery includes family bike rides, hikes, walks. A light easy swim, Walk on a treadmill if the weather is bad, Rowing machine. All of it at “conversational pace”. Meaning I could sing the national anthem while still doing the activity without much effort.

One TRUTH that you need to hear: Muscle takes energy to maintain. That means that even at rest, the more muscle you have, the more calories you burn.

Where Do I start with strength Training then?

I use an app where a coach guides me through a series of questions to determine the right programming. The app allows me to take pictures, Measurements, Weigh in, Track food, Track Reps and sets with weights of each activity prescribed. I can also write notes about sleep, how I felt, what stressors were present, etc.

There are a bunch of these fitness apps. Mine is $50/year. If you want the link, email me

YouTUBE. There is so much stuff out there. You can find a workout with sheets as the resistance. No other equipment required.

Ask a friend who already works out

Search fitness on instagram or FB

What about the TIME it takes?

If you can not carve our 40 minutes a day for yourself, look at your priorities. I own a business, work 50 hours a week, run an online business, have twin boys in separate sports, cook a family dinner EVERY night and I still exercise EVERYDAY. I don’t do much social media and I don’t watch TV. I am an avid reader (2-3 225 page books/week).

Health is My Priority. What is yours?