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Embarking On The Next Weight Loss Journey

September 15, 2015

A long time has passed since my last post. In fact, it has been a whole year during which a lot has happened. To summarise, I met an adorable woman, I ran a half-marathon, I travelled the world, and I have been maintaining my weight loosely around the 93kg mark. The latter is slightly annoying – while preparing for the half-marathon I had a medical examination and while it confirmed my general health and fitness, it also determined my body fat percentage at around 25%. 

Ever since I started to gain weight during my twenties I have been dreaming of a lean body. I ballooned up to 118kg and then decided to change my eating patterns about 5 years ago, and quickly lost and kept off 20kg, and while some would consider that a big achievement, I really wanted more. In retrospect it is difficult to say why I could never overcome the 90kg “barrier” … but the past is the past.

What could be a reasonable goal for me? I always used weight as the “currency” for weight loss, but maybe body fat percentage is more appropriate. 20 years ago I weighed 80kg and wasn’t totally lean – who knows what it would mean for me 20 years later to weigh 80kg again. Body fat percentage is a better metric since it takes lean tissue into account. I will try to go for 12%, which is quite ambitious for a 40 years old guy. 

Initially I wanted to write a lot about my strategy, but it is actually very simple:

  1. Eat adequate protein
  2. Skip some meals (eat 1-2 meals per day)
  3. Eat only when hungry
  4. Alternate days of caloric deficit with days of caloric balance, in alignment with exercise (the more exercise, the less deficit)
  5. Maintain a weekly caloric deficit consistently
  6. Eat clean most of the time (80/20 rule)
  7. Fast/junk food and candy/sweets are fine occasionally, as long as caloric deficit is maintained
  8. During vacations and holidays the diet is modified: Caloric balance and more daily meals allowed (breakfast)
  9. Macros: neither low-fat nor low-carb
  10. No excessive calorie tracking – instead eat a small, but varied number of meals with known macros/calories

I’ve been on this protocol for 10 days now and it feels great. Obviously it is a form of intermittent fasting, but I never liked that term because it sounds so complicated. I always found it quite easy to skip breakfast – which is actually a bad way to put it. I would rather say that I wait a couple of hours after waking up so that I hav my breakfast at lunch time.

Why do that? Because I enjoy having big meals and find it easy to skip meals. I know many people who say that they absolutely cannot do it. I’m not sure whether that is actually true for all of them – I know that when I regularly have breakfast in the morning, suddenly skipping it causes cravings for me. Those tend go away after a couple of days, but that may not ve the case for everyone. Regardless, I do not recommend this approach as a one size fits all solution, and in the coming months we will see if it even works for me. It surely did in the past.

That’s all for now … stay tuned for updates on my progress, as well as some book reviews. 

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