Skip navigation
Community: Exchange advice in the forums and read running commentary Resources: Personal running log, calculators, links and other tools for runners News: Running news from around the world Training: Articles and advice about fitness, race training and injury prevention Races/Results: Find upcoming races and past results Home: The Cool Running homepage
Cool Running homepage  Search Cool Running Community

4290 Views 12 Replies Latest reply: Dec 4, 2009 5:59 PM by KS89 RSS
JesseOwens Rookie 5 posts since
Sep 13, 2009
Currently Being Moderated

Oct 17, 2009 10:32 AM

Diet recommendations for noob runner

I was overweight, about 280 lbs. at the end of January 2009. I went on a crash/starvation diet at first and lost about 30 lbs . .  then plateaued. Next I found a book by professsional weight trrainers that enlightened me on diet with execise and I lost another 30 lbs since. My current diet is the same as I have been doing since I read that book about 3 months. It consists of mostly high fiber grains, fruits, vegetables, and lots of water.

 

I started running about 6 months ago and have worked up slowly to running about 4-5 miles at a time.

 

My question  is, why am I not losing any more weight? I have been at the same weight now for over a month and no matter what I try . . . even starving myself . . . I stay the same weight, within a few pounds. I am at 220 now, but I want to get back down to my "normal" weight of 190.

 

Any ideas out there?

 

Thanks.

  • Marzipan16 Pro 59 posts since
    Dec 19, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Oct 18, 2009 9:14 PM (in response to JesseOwens)
    Re: Diet recommendations for noob runner

    I've had the same experience.  I was over 200, dropped my calories to 1200-1300 intake per day, and 30 pounds melted away.  Then I started training for a half-ironman and the pounds started creeping up and eventually plateaued.  With my training I was working out 6 days/wk, sometimes 2 workouts a day and for the last 5 months have been hovering between 180-185.  I am a vegetarian, have been for over 10 years, so like you, my diet is very similar.  I have seen 2 nutritionist, and I am still working with the 2nd, but anyway, this is what they have come up with.

     

    Because my energy ouput went up and my caloric intake was too low, I wasn't buring fat anymore, my body was eating away my muscle.  And my body was retaining more of what I ate b/c the lack of nutrition.  So once I raised my calories, the pounds starting dropping, very slowly.  Also, are your run times getting slower or faster?  I find once I stopped worrying about my weight and shifted my focus to performance, the weight started dropping slowly again.

     

    All in all, be patient, in due time everything will come together.  Put your mind toward your running and the weight will follow.  Good luck!

  • _Miles Pro 147 posts since
    Jul 26, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Oct 20, 2009 1:23 PM (in response to JesseOwens)
    Re: Diet recommendations for noob runner
    I am no nutritionist...but it comes down to calories in vs calories out. Unfortunately, working out doesn't burn THAT many calories to make a huge difference. It sounds like you are eating the right kinds of foods, but are you eating the right amounts? I personally calorie count, and mess with that to the point where I don't feel like I'm starving but am losing about 1 lb every two weeks or so. It's very slow, and a single day or two days of bad eating can mean no weight loss. How often are you running? From what I can gather you'd need to get in higher mileage before you see a real improvement in metabolism. So I'd focus on food log, and focus on increasing your weekly mileage (wouldn't worry about speed). Good luck.




    C25k Completed 08/19/11

    OHR Completed 10/23/11

    5k 09/24/11: 39:10

    2011: 280 miles, ~14:00 mm avg

    2012: 321.2 miles (so far)

  • Healthymommy1 Amateur 8 posts since
    Oct 17, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    4. Oct 20, 2009 4:58 PM (in response to JesseOwens)
    Re: Diet recommendations for noob runner
    Read the book The Abs Diet.  It was written by David Zinzenko (sp?) who is the Editor of Men's Health magazine.  This book will help you eat what is most efficient for the body.  I lost weight using this diet even though I am a woman and that combined with exercise was a great combo.  And it isn't a crash diet it is a lifestyle which you can maintain!




    Running is my ME time!

    Proud member of Internet Ceo Moms

    http://www.internetceomoms.com/healthymommy

    Read my article about being a stay at home mom

    http://www.examiner.com/x-26395-Charlotte-StayatHome-Moms-Examiner

  • Marzipan16 Pro 59 posts since
    Dec 19, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. Oct 20, 2009 5:57 PM (in response to JesseOwens)
    Re: Diet recommendations for noob runner

    Don't be surprised when you raise your calories, your weight may go up at the start, but it will come back down in due time.  Also, as to not get discouraged because you can't see the number of your weight go down, start taking body measurements.  Take measurements of your arm, chest, waist, hips and thigh, for example.  That way, you can see how your muscle is toning.

     


    Also, don't dramatically increase your speed or the mileage of your runs so you can lose the pounds faster.  This most certainly will lead to injury.  Week after week, start adding another 5 minutes or pump up the speed the last 1/2 mile, these little bursts will ease you into gradually increasing your runs.

  • KS89 Rookie 6 posts since
    Dec 3, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Dec 3, 2009 7:04 PM (in response to JesseOwens)
    Re: Diet recommendations for noob runner

    You should definitely try eating more.  I know this is much after the orignal post was posted, but how much do you weigh now?  The heavier you are, the more calories you need just to be awake, nevermind doing any kind of movement.  If you weigh 250 lbs (depending on your height of course, but I'm assuming you're not 6'2" or anything) you are DEFINITELY burning more than 1,500 calories.  Basically your body needs a minimum number of calories to be burning what you burn at your basal metabolic rate.  This means how many calories you would burn if you literally laid in bed all day and did not move.  If your body isn't getting those calories, it believes that you are starving and will start conserving energy (aka making fat) and eating away at your muscle for fuel to get through the day.  Since you want to burn fat, not muscle, you need to start eating more so your body does not think that you are in a famine!  Try going online and searching for a calculator that will tell you how many calories you burn in a day (it will ask you to enter your height, weight, and age usually).  Then you can get a very general idea of what you are burning.  Add in exercise and you will see the calories you expend every day.  I would not go much below 500 calories per day of that to lose weight.  To lose weight and keep it off you need to take it off SLOWLY.  Good luck!

  • KS89 Rookie 6 posts since
    Dec 3, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    8. Dec 4, 2009 8:18 AM (in response to JesseOwens)
    Re: Diet recommendations for noob runner

    You actually seem quite under weight.  When I put in your stats in the BMR calculator it says that you will burn 1385 calories just existing.  So what you can do to get an accurate assesment of how many calories you are actually burning would be to do a physical activity analysis.  That means writing down EVERYTHING you do and how many minutes you do it for, then finding an activity calculator online, putting in your weight and how many minutes you did what activity for, and it will tell you how many calories you burned, say, walking to the store, or standing for five minutes.  For sleeping, you use your calculated BMR/minute for however many minutes you slept for.  115 lbs seems very low for six feet tall to me.  I would add some calories to your diet (as well as adding more protein) and do some more strength training to add muscle.  With more muscle in your body, you will more likely see those abs you'd like because I really doubt you have a lot of fat on you.  Also, having more muscle will increase your metabolism and you will have a higher BMR.  Let me know how this goes and good luck!

  • KS89 Rookie 6 posts since
    Dec 3, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    10. Dec 4, 2009 4:14 PM (in response to JesseOwens)
    Re: Diet recommendations for noob runner

    Oh, did you mean you weight 215?  So you're trying to lose weight.  That would make more sense to me.  Let me know if that's correct.  Also, are you looking specifically at BMR calculators (those will measure JUST what calories you burn basically being alive).  You might be looking at a calculator that takes into account your daily physical activity. 

  • KS89 Rookie 6 posts since
    Dec 3, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    12. Dec 4, 2009 5:59 PM (in response to JesseOwens)
    Re: Diet recommendations for noob runner

    I would try raising your calories for a while and see if it helps.  I would also say as you are adding these calories add a higher percentage of protein and then add more strength training to your regimen.  This will build muscle and in turn kick up your metabolism, hopefully making it easier and faster for you to lose weight!  Good luck!

More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...