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Looking for Help to Identify the Issue

Discussion in 'Advanced Weight Loss' started by Evil_Squirrel, Mar 12, 2017.

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What do you think is the biggest problem?

  1. Not enough Activity/Working out

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  2. Too many calories on average

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  3. Binge eating on the weekends

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  4. Too few calories

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  5. Sleep Apnea

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  6. Another unknown Medical Condition

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  7. Recording your calories wrong

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Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Evil_Squirrel

    Evil_Squirrel New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2017
    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Cowtown, Canada
    I am looking for help in identifying what I am doing wrong in my weight loss regiment. I will try to make this post as concise as possible (I failed), so if it looks like some information is missing that you may feel is relevant to the problem, please let me know in a reply.

    So my questions (as if I put them at the end of this ridiculously long post nobody will find them) are;

    What should I expect for weight loss at my size? I was told 1% of your body weight per week is a healthy weight loss, 2% is very aggressive, I am currently at 0.22% weekly, which if I leave it at that will result in Mars being colonized before I reach my goal weight.

    Does anyone have any useful suggestions after looking over the information?

    Is there anything someone could suggest that my specialist look more closely at?

    With my current workout regime and caloric intake (detailed below), I should be losing more weight. Is this an indication of another issue? How low is too low for calories?

    How much does genetics play a part in this whole equation? I have heard 0% all the way to 80%. I would love to believe it is 0% and this is entirely my fault and I just need to change something in my life. Is there anyway of tailoring a diet or workout routine based on a genetic type?

    As I see it there are 3 parts to the weight loss equation;

    Calories Burned – As I had an Resting Metabolic Rate test done, how accurate is this test? With the workout routine listed below, approximately how many calories would be being burned? I have estimated between 500-1000 for each workout day for someone my size. This would put my average weekly Calories burned at ~27,000.

    Calorie Intake – Is it better to be eating 2000 calories a day 5-6 days a week then 4000 on “I can’t take it anymore” days averaging out at ~2500? Or is it better to maintain a higher calorie amount ~3000, but more stable daily caloric intake?

    With my current average weekly I am consuming ~23,250 a week. Would this ~3,750 weekly caloric deficit be enough to see any significant results?

    I am aware that the majority of the “lack of results” is the result of either overestimating Calories Burned or underestimating Calories Consumed. I have done my best to keep an objective stance on these numbers.

    Medical Issues – I have been looking at different possible causes since around November 2016. I have listed the ones I know of;
    • Cushings (Tested Negative)
    • Hypothyroidism (Tested Negative)
    • Diabetes (Tested Negative)
    • Excessive Stress, increasing in Cortisol (Tested Normal)
    • Low Testosterone (Awaiting Results)
    • Sleep Apnea (I suffer from this, but is caused by my weight)
    • Syndrome X, Insulin Resistance
    • Vitamin D deficiency
    • Ketosis, I doubt this applies
    Is there anything else that could be a cause? Both doctors have told me beyond my weight on paper I am healthy (low cholesterol, average blood pressure, etc)

    Stats & Recent Timeline
    Male
    Age: 33
    Occupation: Auditor (Accountant) Sedentary lifestyle
    Weight: 178kg (392lbs) Goal Weight: 127kg (280lbs)

    I am 192cm (6’3”) and a heavy build (wide hips, broad shoulders, etc). I have suffered a fair amount of injuries over my years from sports and stupidity. My heaviest estimated weight would have been 205kg (450lbs) in 2005-08, the lightest in my adult life would have been in 2003-2004, where I would estimate I was 115kg (250lbs).

    Fast forward to May 2012, I graduated University; I stopped drinking pop outside of mixing it with alcohol. Water was my main source of hydration, I was still not eating healthy (mostly greasy pub food), but I was working out on a 2 on 1 off rotation. Down to about 150kg (330lbs), unfortunately at this time I stopped having free time for working out and got a job + more school.

    Skip to August 2015 I was recommended to see a nutritionist by my general doctor. At the time I was 177kg (390lbs), got in in January 2016, spoke to them, good conversation about minor changes mostly portion size, eating breakfast and eating out a bit less. I was up to 191kg (420lbs).

    Depression set in for about a month. Late February 2016 I kicked my ass back into gear. I started going to the gym more often (3-5 times a week rather than my previous 1-3).

    I did my best to change my diet significantly to be as healthy as I could be without turning into a rabbit. After all my work trips ended for the season, I started weighing myself daily (for a weekly average) and started counting my calories again (did this back in 2013/14). At 185kg (408lbs).

    I took the stance of not being a special snowflake from the onset of this new regiment in late Februrary 2016. So I have been trying to just make sure I eat less than I burn.

    Being an accountant I have kept fairly accurate records of my weight, calorie intake and exercise frequency, which I have crunched into a nice summary table.

    In August 2016 my general doctor sent me to a specialist for weight management. October 2016, I see the specialist, I bring my data. He looks it over. At this time I also got an RMR test done, which indicated to maintain my weight I would need 3480 calories a day. He did not have an answer for me, wanted to get some blood work done to rule out some things.

    December 2016, blood work done, back in to see him. No cushing, cortisol levels and thyroid seems fine. Still not sure what the issue is, but suspects it is my sleep apnea.

    I was operating on a daily 2500 calorie “goal” intake from the start in July 2016. I, as you can see in the data, was failing on this. I chose at this time to change my goal to match my 3480 calorie intake, which was more realistic additionally with the workouts I believed this would result in less chance of me binge eating.

    The average calories for the week are literally just that, I would be at around 2500 calories Monday to Friday and then up to 5000+ on Sat/Sun averaging out to what the data shows. I felt this was the reason for my very slow progress.

    Switching to the 3500 goal did seem to fix the binge issue starting in 2017, I was able to come in under my goal most days and not feel starved. Due to having pneumonia in January, I lost 7.5kg (16lbs) in 4 days. This is kind of skewing the data for 2017.

    I kept on the 3500 calories a day until mid-February, when I dropped it to 3000 per day. I have been struggling a bit more with this, but other than this weekend, have been fairly tame on the binge eating.

    I am staying fairly resistant to falling back into old habits even with a less than, what I consider, acceptable weight loss over the course of a year. Especially with the significant changes I have made to my diet, I was expecting some fairly significant results from my weight over a full year.

    Eating Habits
    Average Weekday:

    Wake up 9am
    Breakfast (2016) – Toast, Fruit & Yogurt ~600cal
    Breakfast (2017) – Protean Bar or Shake ~200cal

    Work, Standing Desk Minimal Moving around
    Lunch (2016) – 6” Sub from Safeway w/ Pack of Sushi & Bananas ~1100cal
    Lunch (2017) – Panini from Safeway w/ Pack of Sushi (occasionally) & Veggies & Dip ~800-1200cal
    Snacks can sometimes consist of a protean bar

    7pm (MWF or TTS) – Gym
    Home – Cook dinner and lay about watching TV
    Dinner (2016) – Skinless Boneless Chicken Breast, baked with herbs and spices, baked cod or a large piece of steak grilled with steamed Broccoli, Carrots and Mushrooms with some chili oil on them. ~800cal
    Dinner (2017) – I make a Stew, Chili or Tuna Casserole on Sunday and have several servings portioned out for after work/gym. ~1200cal
    Sleep 1am

    Weekends I will have a very irregular eating pattern. Normally I will eat out Friday night. Since switching to the 3500 cal goal, I have been better about not eating out or not eating as much. I also normally have half of whatever I had on Friday night as lunch Saturday before going shopping for food.

    Saturday & Sunday sometimes I will eat out, usually I just eat something from what I bought.

    Workout routine

    I go to the gym every other day and try to stick to this as much as possible. I did increase this to a 2 on 1 off for a while, but found I was just getting too exhausted.

    I spend 7 minutes on the elliptical @ moderate resistance warming up, I then move to weight training.

    I concentrate on three areas for weight training. Back, Chest, Legs.

    All routines I perform 5 exercises, 5 sets, 6-12 reps, I increase the weight until I am getting to 8-10 with failure.

    I use a variety of machines, free weights and dumbbells. I do not know what my 1 rep max is on most of these machines/exercises as I am not trying to push my strength to its limits and just go to failure at 8-6 reps.

    I spend approximately 45 minutes to an hour on weight training. This has indicated to me that I am resting a bit too much between sets. And as of this week am planning to correct this issue.

    After weight training I go back to the elliptical for 23 minutes at the same intensity usually as I warmed up with, sometimes higher (chest day) sometimes lower (leg day).

    My heart rate is usually 90-115 for non compound exercise STR training, 110-130 for compound exercises and 130-150 for cardio. I use a Fitbit to measure my heart rate.

    Additional Information:

    I do not smoke anymore (Quit 2005, ironically when I started putting on massive weight)
    I drink alcohol rarely about 1-2 times a month and not heavily anymore (usually 1 pint with dinner)
    Normally I only drink water. I do have tea and coffee from time to time, no sugar or milk.

    I feel a lot better than I did a year ago, which is why I am not giving up. But also need to know what I am doing wrong so I can drop more weight, so I can start doing some things that my current weight/size is preventing me from, like skiing and travelling more.

    Data:
    I have attached a PDF copy of the raw data to this post if anyone cares.
     

    Attached Files:

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  3. Trusylver

    Trusylver Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2005
    Messages:
    5,805
    Location:
    Gympie, Queensland, Australia
    You have made some good changes, Your tests indicate a vit D deficiency, which can slow or stop weight loss, and will cause your bones to degrade over time as well as the effect it has on mental health. Try to stick to the moderate calorie deficit and try to avoid the big binge.

    You don't say what your resting HR is, so I cannot calculate an individualised HR zone for exercise bus I suspect you are not pushing yourself hard enough on the compound movements.

    Resting heart rate is best measured in the morning before you get out of bed.

    It sounds like you are only using warmup/cooldown intensity for most of your cardio, again, calculating a more accurate target zone would be helpful.
     
  4. Evil_Squirrel

    Evil_Squirrel New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2017
    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Cowtown, Canada
    I have yet to be tested for Vitamin D Deficiency, but this is a possible culprit as I am in a windowless office 10 hours a day and drive to work. Plus can't go out and do much in the sun at 9pm at night. I will get my Doctor to test me on this, however I have been taking supplements since about Mid February, which may screw with the test. Have not noticed a huge difference since mid Feb with the weight, but I am feeling better with the supplements.

    Resting heart rate is about 68. It is currently 84 as I type this, but I just got back from the gym.
     
  5. Trusylver

    Trusylver Super Moderator

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Location:
    Gympie, Queensland, Australia
    Using the Karvonen formula

    220 - 33 = 187 Max Heart Rate
    187 - 68 = 119 Heart Rate Reserve

    119 X 0.60 = 71.4
    71.4 + 68 (RHR) = 139.4 BPM This is the minimum target heart rate for cardio

    117 X 0.80 = 93.6
    93.6 + 68 = 161.6 BPM This a good target heart rate for cardio

    as your fitness levels improve and your resting heart rate becomes lower then this will need to be recalculated

    Lifting is a little different, if you are using mostly machines you will not get much added benefit of increased heart rate to go with the strength training but the big compound lifts will certainly push your heart rate right up, for example: On a set of 10 heavy squats my heart rate will hit 90% of my max heart rate.

    As for Vit D even people who get plenty of sun can still have very low levels, again as an example, I am D deficient, I spend a lot of time in the tropical sun, however, if I don't take my D supplement I have levels in the range of what my doctor describes as "an 80 year old in a nursing home that never sees the sun" I get tested roughly every 3-6 months to ensure I am supplementing enough.

    taking a supplement already will not mess up the test, but getting tested will determine if you need to take more than the suggested dose on the bottle under doctors orders, or whether you can safely reduce your dose.
     
  6. Evil_Squirrel

    Evil_Squirrel New Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Cowtown, Canada
    That is an interesting formula. As it essentially breaks down to, the more out of shape you are the higher your target range is, which to me is not logical, but perhaps I am missing the logic behind it all. As I took my heart rate again this morning and it was at 77, so assuming that my resting heart rate has gone up since I did my initial assessment last year and I am more out of shape now than I was then, which makes less sense, but maybe it was just a bad initial assessment. My range now would be 143-165. I must admit even when doing cardio I am at best in the middle range for this. I will push myself harder for the cardio aspect.

    I have noticed that my heart rate and cardio is tested quite a bit on squats and deadlifts. I currently do 275lbs for squats and deadlifts neither are to failure and are to 8-10 reps. But it usually does result in a much increased heart rate and a need for a higher rest time (about 2 minutes) between sets.
     
  7. Trusylver

    Trusylver Super Moderator

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    Location:
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    As you get fitter, it becomes a lot harder to push your heart rate up to the target zone,
     
  8. Evil_Squirrel

    Evil_Squirrel New Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Cowtown, Canada
    And there is the logic. Thanks.
     

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