How am I doing?
We just spent a week at Center Parcs. Usually, a trip to CP involves us doing a shopping trip where doughnuts, cookies and chocolate feature pretty heavily. I was a bit concerned about this, but actually, the week proved pretty great.
We ate tons of cabbage, broccoli and about a pint of coffee every day, but I managed to stay away from the biscuits.
- I was under my calorie goal on three days this week…
- …but on my worst day I was over by 775kcal.
Overall, based on a basal metabolic requirement of 2400 kcal per day, I’ve averaged a daily deficit of 865kcal, leaving me just over 6000 kcal down for the week.
My exercise has been going brilliantly. Center Parcs helped, with its rather inviting biking trails, and having free time in such a lush setting – you can see my mud splattered face on the right.
- Week 1: I burnt off 1157 kcal doing exercise
- Week 2: 945 kcal.
- Week 3: 2150 kcal.
This week? 2235 kcal burnt off! I’m thoroughly enjoying being more active, feeling much healthier, and have even beaten my 10K time down to 55:20.
Time to be frank: I’m a kilo and a half behind my goals at the moment.
My red average line continues to drop steadily, but I’ve left the blue goal line dropping away from me depressingly fast.
I suspect there are two reasons behind the slow loss:
- Based on my calorie deficit, I’m not quite hitting the goal of eating 7000 kcal less than I need each week. I’ve average 6,100 over the 4 weeks, which could account for at least half a kilo of weight.
- I’ve been doing steadily more strength exercises. Still only body weight work like press ups and sit ups, but my whole body feels firmer, especially my shoulder and arms, so its likely that at least another half kilo is muscle gain.
Macros are more about how I feel than the effect they have on my weight.
After planning to look at this every week, today I finally had a look through my macros.
- Protein aim: 40% – I’ve averaged 19%.
- Carbs aim: 35% – I’ve averaged 50%.
- Fat aim: 25% – I’ve averaged 30%.
I could get all excited trying to link high protein weeks with successful weight loss weeks: but ultimately, its impossible to separate this from the maths of calorie deficit. For me, especially whilst I’m not doing any significant weights or strength training, macros are more about how I feel than the effect they have on my weight.
I’m going to adjust my goals to those that more closely match the RDAs, and aim for Protein 25%, Carbs 50% and Fats 25%, and see how I see with that mix. I suspect I’ll struggle to keep protein that high, and may end up swapping out a bit for fats…
Changes, changes, changes.
I’m confident that if I carry on pushing, the weight will continue to fall off. Frankly, I trust the science more than I trust my scales. That said, metabolism, fat burning and calorie restriction are not exact sciences, so its worth slightly fiddling to see if there’s an improvement.
- Drop back to a 1200 kcal target. I think I can manage this, and I’m intrigued to see if its all I need to hit my targets.
- Carry on the exercise. 2000 kcal of exercise is a nice amount for me. Going to carry on the same routine as last week, with 2 circuit training days, 2 running days and 2 cycling days.
- Try to hit new macro targets. I’m keen to see if this has an impact on my percieved energy levels, or other pseudo-scientific effects…
Shout out thanks to Jon Smith for keeping me accountable, and texting me daily to tell me to “put down the butter dish and walk away”. Check out his ace 5K running app at RunwithKick.com…
These are all updated live from a central database, so feel free to check back daily for updates…