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Thursday, August 6, 2015

Fasting + low carb = dead sexy, part 2

Last month I started a fasting experiment in which I skip breakfast, limit my carbohydrate intake to 50 grams or fewer and space my two meals roughly six hours apart every day. You can check out my previous post to explore my personal and scientific reasons for my tightening up my diet in this way, but let's recap the results from June, then take a look at July's.

By July 1, I was down to 196.4 lbs, a total loss of 12.3 lbs and a BMI of 26.7. On top of the pants and shirts that fit better, these were very satisfying results. So after another month, my results were as follows:

Date
Weight (lbs)
% change
Loss to date
BMI (lb/in2)
07/06/15
200.1
1.88%
8.6
27.1
07/13/15
199
-0.55%
9.7
27
07/20/15
197.8
-0.01
11.3
26.8
07/26/15
197.4
-0.2
11.3
26.8
08/02/15
197.2
-0.1
11.1
26.7

















You'll notice that my weight went up slightly over the course of the month. I got down to as low as 195 lbs on July 18, but a couple of cheat days during the weekends may have temporarily stalled my progress. I also went back to a regular weight lifting schedule to avoid losing strength, and may have added a little muscle mass which is influencing the numbers on the scale, though for the better.

Another possibility is this: years of eating a certain way have effectively conditioned my body to maintain my weight within a relatively narrow range, which is much higher than my goal weight of 185 lbs, probably between 210 - 220 lbs based on what I've weighed for the last three years. It's possible to lower this set point, but my body may be fighting the downward change because, as far as it's concerned, my weight is too low.

Honestly, though, who the hell really knows what's happening? Nutrition is hardly a science. There's so much that we don't know about diet and weight loss (and probably never will) that it's difficult to assess your progress from week to week. The only reasonable thing you can do is track your long-term progress and adjust your habits as necessary.

With that in mind, I'm down roughly 60 lbs since 2012; I'm wearing clothes that haven't fit since I was 13 years old. Moreover, losing weight has opened the door to a lot of (ahem) experiences that I use to think were off limits to me. Dropping another eight or 10 lbs is really just an academic exercise at this point.

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