Posted by: Nic | 2009/01/26

Weight loss/toning questions

I want to lose 4 kg' s and define my muscles. I follow a very good, high protein, low carb diet during the week and cheat a bit over the weekends. (I love meat and cakes) I did lose 3kgs last year and was looking good, but have slowly put it back on. I am not sure if I am close to my ideal weight, because I can never get to 55kgs (am 1.62m tall) and stay there - it is incredibly difficult. Last year was the first time in about 15 years I exercised, but now work full time and have stopped, but am determined to start again. What would you recommend for me to lose the weight, build some more muscle or get toned and keep it that way? Are my eating habits ok? Would you recommend a lot more exercise. The articles I have read say it is 80% diet and 20% exercise, but I have found this to be the other way around. Please help.

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Our expert says:
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Hi Nic

Diet is really important. I'm already nervous that you're on a high protein low carb diet, because there's no evidence that this is "good". It might even be bad for you. If it's working, then fine, keep it going, but there's a lot of mythology about this.

My advice to you is actually to focus more on fitness than weight. This concept of an "ideal weight" being an exact number is also false. You don't have one exact ideal weight, its' a range, and more than likely, you're in that range. If that's true, then what you can still do is tone and change appearance, but not worry so much about the scale, because it really isn't that important.

So my advice is to work on a consistent exercise programme that makes you fitter. That means choosing a sport, it means gettnig on a plan, and then working towards that goal. I can't comment on either the eating or the training, because I don't know what they are apart from the general things. They sound OK in terms of training, but there's always more to be done. And diet is vital - I wouldn't say it's 80%. Perhaps the best way to describe it is 100% exercise, 100% diet, because if either is not right, results are difficult.

Good luck

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Our users say:
Posted by: Boyscout | 2009/01/26

Hi Nic

What works for me is also a relatively high protein diet, no or little carbs in the afternoon and none at night. 6 Meals a day, train 6 days a week.

I do 20 minutes high intensity cardio intervals as well as 40 minutes weight training everyday except Sunday. The cardio I do using my heart rate monitor so that I know what zone im in at all times (too avoid going too easy on myself) and the weight sessions are short but high intensity.

I have a " cheat"  day on Sunday but generally stick to my diet on a sunday too.

From your description it seems like you' re not doing enough quality exercise. Depending on your body stats you should be aiming to loose between 0.5kg to 1kg a week. Obviously if your % body fat is high you' d want to loose more because you have more fat to burn.

I hope this helps.

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