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  • The worst shape of my life…. (flabby Brummie content…)
  • Premier Icon dirkpitt74
    Full Member

    So I think I’ve reached the point where I seriously need to do something about my weight & fitness.
    Currently 84kgs which I haven’t been for nearly 25 years….

    I’ve basically spent the last 23+ years trying to keep fit after I peaked around 86kg’s in my early/mid 20’s.
    At my ‘best’ I was down to 63kg – but that was when I was running 5-6 days a week averaging 50+ miles/week.
    After injury & kids in my mid 30’s/early 40’s I hovered around 70kg – which I was happy with.
    I crept up to 75kg over the last couple of years, which was manageable but not really where I wanted to be.
    Having had major depression issues over the last few years I’ve tried to keep my weight fairly stable – which was working until last year (2021) as this has a massive impact on my mental health – I hate myself being overweight and it leads to a spiral.

    Various family issues, health issues and (finally) liking my job have led to a slide in activity, fitness and diet – with diet being the biggest issue lately.

    I’m a sucker for chocolate, biscuits & cake….. which seems to have gotten out of hand over the last 12-18 months.
    So after shocking myself with wardrobe issues and the scales shouting at me I’ve decided no more.
    I would quite happily buy a packet of biscuits for my desk at work with the intention of them lasting for a week or so – inevitably they’d last 1-2 days at most, when at home I’d grab a biscuit/cake/chocolate bar when I went to make a drink etc.
    Exercise hasn’t been great over the last 12 months – still got issues with my hand which has limited my riding (off to see specialist on Monday to hopefully get it sorted), haven’t had the motivation to go for a run – the most I’ve done is walk the dogs.
    As I have been enjoying my job for the last 18 months I also took some time out to get myself professionally qualified/registered so spent quite a bit of time sorting that out to the detriment of fitness/exercise.

    So that leads my to yesterday when the realisation struck me that approaching the wrong end of my 40’s if I don’t do something now I’ll be screwed…..

    So the plan is to aim to get back down to the low 70kg bracket, looking to aim for 1000-1200 calories a day to drop 1kg/week and increase the amount of exercise and water intake (also a bugger for tea & coffee).
    To start off with addressing the diet – out go crisps, cakes, chocolate and biscuits.
    Next is portion control – I’m a bugger for piling food on my plate and eating it all – need to be much stricter with this.

    Plan is small bowl porridge for breakfast – filling and slow release, salad or fruit for lunch and a (smaller than usual) main meal in the evening.

    Also making sure I go for a decent walk during my lunch break – 1.5-2 miles – at a decent pace.

    Going to aim to get to the gym twice a week whilst my daughter is at dancing – gym just round the corner from her dance studio. Get out on the bike twice a week (once I have m hand sorted) and maybe a run on the mornings I WHF.

    I’ll update this thread with my progress over the coming weeks – did think about a current photo, but that might be NSFW in my current state lol.

    All encouragement greatly appreciated/received.

    Sod it – grotesque flab shots below – definitely NSFW

    Spoiler:

    Premier Icon Houns
    Full Member

    Pretty much me apart from the Brummie bit 😠

    Black Country ay I

    Premier Icon northernmatt
    Free Member

    I can relate to all of the above – except I’m heavier

    Premier Icon Freester
    Free Member

    Have a read of the Mosley’s Blood Sugar Diet.

    Cut down the carbs and sugar. You can’t exercise yourself away from a bad diet (well you can, for a while but it’ll get you in the end).

    Premier Icon IHN
    Full Member

    Plan is small bowl porridge for breakfast – filling and slow release,

    Or, skip breakfast. It’s a very easy way of reducing calorie intake, and helps the body to start using fat as a fuel (as it has no other option cos you’re blood sugar will be low first thing in the morning).

    Premier Icon northernmatt
    Free Member

    Or, skip breakfast.

    I tried this but by the time it got round to lunch I was so hungry that I just ended up being a big fat pig and eating everything in sight.

    Much like OP I need to cut out things like crisps, cakes, biscuits, and the like. Also beer, I need to drink less beer.

    Premier Icon IHN
    Full Member

    I tried this but by the time it got round to lunch I was so hungry that I just ended up being a big fat pig and eating everything in sight.

    Well, yeah, some self-control is assumed 😉

    Premier Icon ta11pau1
    Full Member

    If you aren’t already, get tracking your calorie intake in the my fitness pal app, you can be wildly underestimating how much you’re eating without doing this.

    Maybe also have a look into intermittent fasting, the 16/8 method just means no food after 8pm or before 12pm, essentially you skip breakfast and any late night snacks. Once I’m done with my current zwift training plan and a 3 day MTB trip I’ll start this, I lost 4-5kg over 6 weeks earlier this year just with a 500kcal deficit, could do with losing a few more kg to shift the last of the belly fat.

    Premier Icon dirkpitt74
    Full Member

    Thanks all – appreciate the replies.
    I tried skipping breakfast and like IHN lunch would get out of hand.
    Have gone back to calorie tracking with my fitness pal as this seems to focus me more on intake if I religiously update it during the day.
    Not looked into fasting but I suspect that might give me the same issue as just skipping breakfast.

    Premier Icon poolman
    Free Member

    Omg I wish I was 84kg….i m just drinking herbal tea when I would normally have a beer, and doubled up on exercise.

    Keeping a diary is helping, good luck

    Premier Icon n0b0dy0ftheg0at
    Free Member

    Skipping breakfast at ~0520 and not eating something until ~0930 (which I did anyway at work and now on days off simply have a delayed breakfast) has helped me eat less overall through the day, albeit there’s been a bit more choccy since Easter. I’ve lost ~4Kg since late Feb, while also doing frequent sub 20min Zwift races. The last day I didn’t ride for at least 24min was 1st Nov ’21, lots of z1/2, gradual increase in races this year (sorry for all the public Strava posting 😉 )… Besides being ~6Kg heavier than I was in Feb ’20 when I felt great, I’m getting very close to feeling fitter/stronger than back then aged 48.

    I piled on the pounds during the pandemic, got fedup of regaining then losing a load of fitness especially in ’21 (including bad reactions to Covid vaccines), I thought during my four week flu in October that my days of chasing my best efforts since ’17 were over. I’ve come close to or beaten every outdoor Strava segment except one I’ve attempted full beans over the last ~5 weeks.

    If I can turn things around, there’s no stopping others.

    Premier Icon stick_man
    Free Member

    For me the answer is not to overthink this and take the longer term view. You know essentially what you need to do (consume less and move more) so you could work on that without setting yourself a target weight or time to achieve it. Work on the process not the outcome you could say. Aim for an honest view of existing habits and working on new ones. e.g. noticing your triggers for scoffing cake and biscuits and doing something different at those times. Similar with alcohol if you enjoy a few beers.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Full Member

    3 things I’ve found that work in my favour when I find I need to remove the weight. They are

    1. Avaialibilty. This one’s fairly easy to control and is self explanatory, try to remove from immediate environment most of the things that make you fat. DO NOT attempt to turn yourself into a monk or martyr, allow yourself something. Perhaps a day off, or just a glass of wine with dinner, or whatever. Adjust to suit your own appreciation of your will power

    2. Association: We eat too much becasue we are either happy, or unhappy, becasue we’ve acheived something or have not acheived that thing, or becassue we drive past the McD on the way to somewhere else…whatever, we often try to compensate with food. examine your own food associations and try to figure out if they’re healthy or not. being aware of them is a good step to avoiding them. See- “I’ve cycled 40 miles, I deserve a giant bowl of crips and several beers” – Do you? Really?

    3. Accountabilty: If you either give accountability to someone else, or hold yourself accountable, you give yourself a reason not to eat the things that make you fat. Just having someone else read the scales as you stand on them once a week is perhaps all the motivation you’ll need.

    Premier Icon BruceWee
    Full Member

    Basically, every year over the last 15 years or so I’ve said at some point, ‘This is the worst shape I’ve been in in my life.’ I wasn’t really putting on weight but my general strength/fitness was getting a little bit worse every year.

    Then I hit 40 and something must have switched over in my body because my weight went from under 75kg to over 85kg within the course of a few months. I had a few attempts to reduce my weight through diet but I am simply not able to use health/weight loss as a motivator to stick with any type of calorie deficit.

    So, I decided that if I was going to be heavy I was going to have to get strong. I started lifting first thing in the morning and over time I found that resulted in me drinking less and eating healthier.

    My weight is still the same but a lot more of that weight is muscle now compared to 6 months ago.

    The biggest change was that I’ve found it a lot easier to be motivated to get out on the bike. Before the general fatigue I would feel made it a slog to go out and do any mountain biking. Now I feel that, even though I’m blowing, I’ve got the base of strength to allow me to have fun on the downhills without feeling like I’m struggling to hold onto the handlebars like I normally would early in the season in previous years.

    Now that I’m adding more riding into the mix as well as the lifting I’m hoping the cardio fitness will start to come up as well. I might even find the weight starting to drop but tbh, if I end up still weighing 85kg but most of it is muscle I won’t be heart broken.

    Premier Icon oikeith
    Full Member

    To start off with addressing the diet – out go crisps, cakes, chocolate and biscuits.
    Next is portion control – I’m a bugger for piling food on my plate and eating it all – need to be much stricter with this.

    Plan is small bowl porridge for breakfast – filling and slow release, salad or fruit for lunch and a (smaller than usual) main meal in the evening.

    I am currently using My Fitness Pal with some great results (for the second or third time), having to log the snacks and treats in the app really puts me off eating them, its also handy for bringing my portion size down, if youre not using it already I would recommend it.

    Premier Icon DougD
    Full Member

    I know he’s a bit marmite, but my partner’s been following the Joe Wicks plan and she’s found it brilliant.

    You get a load of meal plans and workouts. The food has been genuinely delicious and you never feel like you’re starving yourself. Yes, it takes more prep and you are weighing out portions etc, but that’s been really helpful to see how easy it is to over-eat and also that previously our balance of meals wasn’t great. You can also make yourself snacks for the day which include chocolatey trail bars or pancakes which means you don’t have to go cold turkey on the treats.

    The workouts are v good too, mainly HIIT ones which vary from 20mins to 40 or so which means she’s finding it much easier to fit into her day, morning, lunch or after work.

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Free Member

    How tall are you OP?

    Premier Icon sobriety
    Free Member

    I wish I was 84kgs, I’d only have 2kgs to drop to be almost back at race weight then. As it is I’m 94kgs, and that’s already having lost 7ish kgs since I started trying to eat right and cycle to work, rather than wfh in a house full of snacks. Being 6ft and broad shouldered I hid the extra weight well, but my shirts and trousers were on the verge of being unacceptably tight.

    Premier Icon IHN
    Full Member

    Just a final word on the fasting/breakfast skipping:

    The point of fasting is not just to reduce calories, it also helps change the way the body uses fuel, pointing it better towards using fat rather than relying on available blood sugar. As you get used to it, you don’t actually feel hungry because you’re body is ‘fuelled’ just fine

    And the ‘lunches would get out of hand’ thing, well, <tough love> have a word with yourself. You’re in charge of what you shove in your gob, and if you don’t have the willpower to control what you eat for lunch then, well, you’re screwed, whatever method you choose.</tough love>

    Premier Icon droplinked
    Full Member

    Good luck, hope you smash it.

    I’m a fatty (more so than you), and have yo-yoed with my weight over the years, and one key piece of advice that has worked for me is try not to make too many changes at once, especially extreme ones. You’ll be far more likely to establish good sustainable habits if you focus at one thing at a time, and it’ll be easier to adjust to also.

    The things that have worked for me are:

    -Counting calories, and setting a realistic target (i.e. not too much of a deficit)
    -Low GI diet, cut refined carbs and sugar out as much as you can
    -Allow yourself treats – I find it much easier eating healthier during the week when there’s something to look forward to as a ‘reward’
    -Exercise – in whatever flavour you choose, just make sure you’re doing some at least 3 times a week
    -Mental health – for me, all the above goes out the window when I’m not in a good place mentally, so keeping that in check is important

    For me the hard part isn’t starting it’s maintaining the discipline – but once the momentum builds and the weight starts coming off, your clothes fit better, you have more energy, and you’re in a good routine etc then it becomes much easier to keep it going.

    Premier Icon onehundredthidiot
    Free Member

    Smaller plate and smaller fork. We’ve got forks that are for starters and I’m using the as opposed to the scoopers.
    More time taken to eat less is having a positive effect and you don’t notice.

    Premier Icon pondo
    Full Member

    *following thread for tips*

    Premier Icon Tallpaul
    Full Member

    Eggs for breakfast; simple lunch like a chicken sandwich/soup, a few nuts & a piece of fruit; eat a proper dinner*; no snacks.

    Throw in 4-5 days of exercise and you’ll start to see a real difference in 3 months.

    *Dinner being a takeaway once a week won’t hurt.

    Premier Icon jam-bo
    Full Member

    I would say a big calorie deficit, and trying to up exercise at the same time is a recipe for failure.

    personally, I focus on getting fitter/faster and not eating too badly and weight loss tends to follow.

    I run or ride every day, even if its 30mins at lunchtime.

    Premier Icon dirkpitt74
    Full Member

    @chakaping

    How tall are you OP?

    Around 5ft 9in / 175cm.

    Going off the NHS BMI calc (BMI of 27.5) my ‘healthy weight range’ is between 57 – 77kg.

    @DougD

    I know he’s a bit marmite, but my partner’s been following the Joe Wicks plan and she’s found it brilliant.

    You get a load of meal plans and workouts. The food has been genuinely delicious and you never feel like you’re starving yourself. Yes, it takes more prep and you are weighing out portions etc, but that’s been really helpful to see how easy it is to over-eat and also that previously our balance of meals wasn’t great. You can also make yourself snacks for the day which include chocolatey trail bars or pancakes which means you don’t have to go cold turkey on the treats.

    The workouts are v good too, mainly HIIT ones which vary from 20mins to 40 or so which means she’s finding it much easier to fit into her day, morning, lunch or after work.

    We have a Joe Wickes book on the shelf – I need to dust it off lol

    Premier Icon twinw4ll
    Free Member

    Choose between a carefree joyous existence or be slim, I’m slim but **** me lifes a f***** joyless drag.

    Premier Icon BigJohn
    Full Member

    When your blood sugar is low, the craving for sweet and fatty food cannot be overcome through willpower. It’s an evolutionary thing.
    That’s why diets which encourage appetite suppression work, if not good long term plans. Low carb, keto, Atkins are varieties of these.
    If anybody remembers the iDave plan, that’s one that suits a lot of people. Basically cut out foods that cause an insulin spike for 6 days a week and eat what you want on the 7th.
    No cereal, (that’s bread, pasta etc), potatoes, sugar, sweetened drinks and fruit.
    I try to follow it from Sunday evening to 6pm Friday and it’s very effective.
    It’s nice to feel hungry once a day and regard it as your friend and without the urge to grab a kit kat.

    Premier Icon jairaj
    Full Member

    I was in a similar situation a couple years ago 180cm, 95kg and ~25% body fat.

    Decided I needed a massive overhaul in diet and exercise routine and in 3 months, I was 80kg and 18% body fat and a few months after that got down to 75kg and 14% body fat.

    It felt amazing loosing a whole DH bikes’ worth of weight! My riding buddy was not happy at my new found fitnesses and strength! 🙂

    In recently times I’ve let that slip a bit and I’m back up to 85kg with the help of stress and other factors but I’m working to get that back down again.

    The key thing for me was routine. As soon I stopped my routine of doing good I was soon loosing fitness and putting on weight. So have a routine and make sure it’s something sustainable. For the short term you can have a highly intense and strict routine to get to back into shape fast but its hard to maintain that for a long time.

    As said above diet is very important, it’s very hard to exercise your way out of a bad diet. Cut out the bad stuff and reduce portion sizes. Cut out the carbs and sugar, increase variety. It will take a few weeks to get used to smaller portion sizes but after 3-4 weeks your stomach shrinks and gets used to smaller portions and you will satisfied. On your way there you can use tricks like bulking out the portion size with things like lettuce, cucumber. These will add a low calorie way to increase the amount of food.

    And then of course add some exercise into the mix. For me I found high intensity interval training lifting weights was a very effective way to gain muscle and loose fat. 1 hour, 3x per week saw me loosing 15kg in 3 months with a strict diet.

    It certainly gave me more overall fitness but I definitely benefited from more cardio related exercises in addition to lifting weights when it came to riding the bike. So again in short term your gain can be to just loose weight and get in shape but for longer term on the bike fitness look to start bringing in different types of exercise.

    The other thing that helped was regular measurements of weight, belly size, arm size etc. From day to day you wont see much gain but over the course of a 4 weeks you’ll see a change and it will encourage you to keep going and trying harder.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Full Member

    I always lose weight on holiday, despite not doing that much biking (usually some though) and not dieting. On this trip though I’ve been wearing a Garmin and it’s shown how much more general activity I get. 15k steps a day easily besides actual exercise just walking to and from beaches, shops and around towns etc; rather than 3-4k whilst WFH.

    So I’m now resolved to significantly increase my non biking activity.

    Premier Icon LMT
    Free Member

    Sounds very familiar and yep brummie too never carried any weight until I had a back issue a couple of years ago and being past 40 I guess that doesn’t help..

    I find I snack lots more than I used to, I cycle to/from work not lots but 3 miles there flat and uphill home, I have an active job so find I snack more at home need to keep busy to cut it out.

    I’ve gone big and ordered a gravel bike, found some 50-60 mile routes hoping that will push me out, struggled with some mental health stuff since an incident in September meaning I don’t cycle as much and it’s more an event to go biking than a fitness thing it was. Determined to drop some weight, work shifts was 4am starts which lead to unhealthy eating but currently has moved to 8-5/9-6 type of shifts. Need to cut out the meal deal lunch and go with fruit or something healthy instead.

    Lots to do, need to get past the head stuff that effects me at work and home, hope your journey goes well update as time goes by!

    Premier Icon IHN
    Full Member

    When your blood sugar is low, the craving for sweet and fatty food cannot be overcome through willpower. It’s an evolutionary thing.

    The craving might not be overcome, but the response to it can be. And after a while the craving goes anyway (especially if, more generally, you’re reducing the amount of ’empty’ sweet/fatty stuff from your diet anyway).

    It’s nice to feel hungry once a day

    Indeed, there’s nothing wrong with feeling hungry, it just means you need to eat at some point. It doesn’t mean you have to eat NOW, or eat LOADS. In fact, I’m a bit hungry at the moment, and I’ll have dinner in about three hours. I’m not going to die of malnutrition or feint from low blood sugar in the meantime.

    Premier Icon dirkpitt74
    Full Member

    @LMT good luck too!
    I’m hovering over the ‘buy’ button on a Gravel Bike – just waiting to get my hand sorted (or at least have a plan to get it fixed) before I commit.

    Yes the ‘head stuff’ is a major obstacle – I’m getting there and trying to get back on track.

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Free Member

    Around 5ft 9in / 175cm.

    Going off the NHS BMI calc (BMI of 27.5) my ‘healthy weight range’ is between 57 – 77kg.

    You’re packing just a little bit more timber than me, at a similar height.

    The good news is that it’s quiet do-able to get down to a better weight. The bad news (as we know) is that it’s not easy when you’re under stress and in the wrong habits.

    I’ve recently made a similar decision myself to get back in better shape, good luck.

    Premier Icon loum
    Free Member

    If lunch is “getting out of hand” when fasting , then makes it earlier.

    Make yourself a lunch with loads of veg and some protein at breakfast time before the “cravings” get control.
    Don’t eat it straight away, eat it later when you’re hungry instead of cake.

    Premier Icon BigJohn
    Full Member

    This has (partially) just prompted me to do my own 9 week fatness to fitness programme.

    Yes, I’m a Brummie (born Dudley Rd Hospital, 1st house we knew the Villa score ‘cos we could hear the cheers) and in 9 weeks I’m off to Vass for 2 weeks of windsurfing and mountain biking. 94kg and a bloody disgrace right now. Beach body – here we come!

    Premier Icon dirkpitt74
    Full Member

    So 2 weeks in – how am I doing?
    Have kept my calories intake to around 1100 average over the last 2 weeks – so off to a good start.
    Not noticed that I’ve been feeling overly hungry, managed to ditch the snacks too!
    Exercise hasn’t quite ramped up yet – still walking around 1.5miles briskly at lunch time, still getting a decent walk with the dogs in the evening too.
    Good news on my hand- had another round of injections when I saw the specialist – have rested it for 2 weeks, brace can come off on Tuesday and I should be good to go for getting back on the bike. Have pretty much full range of movement in my thumb and very little/no pain when I grip so fingers crossed.

    So, scores on the doors – last weigh-in when I started was 84kg.

    Today I’m 81.5kg – so managed to shift a whopping 2.5kg’s in the first 2 weeks.

    Very happy with that for a start – I realise that I won’t be able to maintain that every week, but if I can still drop around 1kg each week I’ll be happy.

    No dodgy photo’s this week – I’ll do those monthly lol

    Onwards & upwards!
    HAGWE

    Premier Icon bigdean
    Full Member

    Well done, you original post could be me.
    Still struggle with motivation to get out and move more.
    A teams call yesterday was bit of a shock and realizing only one shirt still fits!
    I’m back on the 5-2, only diet that’s ever worked for me snacks are already limited.
    I’ve printed a chart to record weight and %fat form now till July.
    Keep it up👍

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Free Member

    Good going OP.

    How are you splitting those 1,100 cals across the day?

    Premier Icon nickc
    Full Member

    Today I’m 81.5kg – so managed to shift a whopping 2.5kg’s in the first 2 weeks.

    That is a fantastic effort well done!! You’l be under 80kg at that rate in no time.

    Premier Icon dirkpitt74
    Full Member


    @chakaping

    Good going OP.
    How are you splitting those 1,100 cals across the day?

    Thanks.
    Roughly averaging
    20% breakfast
    35% lunch
    45% dinner
    According to MFP.

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