Posted by: Dave | 2007/11/26

Diet whilst loosing weight running

I am 42, 5'8". I currently weigh 80kgs having lost 12kgs over the past 2 months. In the firtst month I fasted (water only) Monday through Wednesday then I ate mainly fruit and veg (potatoe once a week) During this month I also ran between 3kms and 4kms on Fridays and Sundays (when I was eating). In the second month I have tried to maintain my new eating habit whilst increasing my running to around 40km per week. I have also been happy to include meat in various forms though never together with any carbs.
All is good and I feel great.
My problem is that I still feel I have some weight to lose and I am not sure where to make the cuts. I do eat a lot of fruit in the morning and late in the afternoon. Apples,oranges and bananas mostly. Dinner is a stirfry and lunch a generous salad. My sence is that if i kick in with to many carbs my body will use these for energy instead of breaking down fat. I really dont know. I have increased my running slowly as I have become fitter but i havent lost anything in three weeks! Should i cut back on the fruit? Is it possible to eat to much fruit? Where would the balance be where I am healthy and recovering well from my running but am still loosing kgs?Your advice will be helpful. Thanks

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageDietDoc

Dear Dave
Your present BMI = 26,8 which is slightly above the upper level of normal, but if you have developed a great deal of muscle tissue by doing all this running, then this is not to say that you are actually overweight. As you near your ideal weight, weight loss does slow down. I would recommend that you keep up the exercise and stick to your diet, BUT please add some form of calcium to your daily intake (at least 2 cups of fat-free milk or yoghurt) to ensure that you consume at least 800 mg of calcium a day otherwise you are going to develop a calcium deficiency which will impede your running. You do realise that all the top athletes use a very high carbohydrate diet to fuel their exercise and replenish their liver and muscle glycogen after strenuous exercise and they are all very thin! The idea that an athlete should cut down on carbs is not a good one at all. Luckily you are getting some carbs from the fruit and vegetables you eat otherwise you would not be able to run 40 km per week. Carbs only supply 16 kJ per gram compared to 37 kJ per gram for fat, so it is more sensible to eat low-fat carbs and cut down on fat than to starve your body of fuel. Click on 'Fitness' at the top of this page and then on 'Nutrition' and read the articles on carbohydrates, protein and carbo-loading.
Best regards

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