Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Weight loss Wednesday - losing weight while fueling training

Well, I'm one week in on the re-commitment to dropping the pounds and I'm thrilled with the first weeks results.  I'm down to 196, a 2.4 pound loss since last week and a total of 48.4 lost.

The thing that is the biggest challenge for me is fueling my training while still keeping a calorie deficit.  This was my big stumbling block over the spring and summer and the reason I put weight loss on a back burner.  Now, weight loss is on a front burner, and if I have to I'm willing to let my training suffer a little bit.

The key parts of that sentence is "if I have to" and "a little bit".

This week, my focus has been on eating a balanced diet while maintaining a calorie deficit.  I view this as basically separate from my training.  I allow myself to be hungry frequently.  I've learned in the last couple years that I don't lose weight unless I'm hungry sometimes.  When I listen to and follow all my hunger signals, I simply maintain the weight I'm at.

Then when it comes to my workouts, I fuel those separately.  I usually have a small snack beforehand - something like a banana.  (I don't do well with too much in my stomach while running or swimming anyways.  Biking allows me a bit more leeway, but not much.)  If it's a longer workout (longer then 1.5 - 2 hours), I'll drink gatorade and possibly take a gel or eat some food during it.  When possible, I time it to be done so I'm eating a meal afterwards.  If not, I have something small to eat afterwards to aid recovery.

I don't stress about the extra calories I take in surrounding my training.  I know very well that training uses fuel and that's not where I'm trying to get my calorie deficit from.  I still want to perform to the best of my ability and I can't do that without sufficient calories.

One week in, I'll call it a success!  I do find it a tricky balancing act, so I'd like to only be in weight loss mode until January.  At that point, I'll be stepping up training again.


  1. I had a new record low for the year this morning (185 - down from 213 Jan 1). I realized I ate a late/fairly filling lunch yesterday and never got around to dinner (just a handful of pretzels). So I know it isn't "real" loss, but still a small success that helps. Congrats on your successful week. Even though I know what to/not to eat, I struggle a lot with diet. What have you been eating this last week? Drinking lots of water? I find I get in a rut quickly whether it is a "bad" food rut or a "good" food rut.

  2. Nice job on week one. I completely understand this post. I have tried a couple of times to lose weight while training and I can usually only maintain it for a couple of weeks before I succumb to the overwhelming hunger! I have learned that I am a major compensator! Whatever I burn, I's a never ending battle. Maybe I'll take you cue and try it again. I hate that I fail at the weight loss game over and over again...

  3. Oh, this is definitely the theme in my life right now too. Trying to find that right balance is tricky. My office has just started a weight-loss challenge ; perhaps this will be the nudge that I need to try harder?