My loving wife, Polly, makes some great observations. I am driving her to a friend's house and she says to me, "People would not believe you lost 150 pounds based on how much (and often) you eat each day!" This statement is SOOOOO true, as I would not believe it myself if I had not lived it.
I have learned to eat regularly and for the most part smarter and in smaller portions. Eating more frequently:
- gets your metabolism going and keeps it working at an elevated level throughout the day
- you should plan to have the RIGHT (SMART) food around for 5-6 meals/snacks per day
- will AMP up your energy and keep your insulin level constant
- will give you the feeling of eating more food even though you are eating less
- keeps you from getting 'very' hungry and making bad choices both in type and volume of food
Throughout my journey I have eaten 5-7 times per day. Even when I was taking in 1100-1500 calories per day, I ate a minimum of 5 times per day and never went more than 4 hours without eating something. Being a 'recovering Fat Guy', I can tell you this is one of the big parts of my success.
Physical activity is also a huge part of the equation. Exercise has helped me to burn more calories each day, improve my stamina, and build/tone muscle.
Burning more calories is important particularly if you know your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate). Basically, this is the number of calories you would burn each day if you stayed in bed and did nothing. You can go online, search BMR calculator, and plug in a few numbers to find your BMR. My present BMR is 1977 calories per day. That is the average number for my age, weight, and height. By knowing this number and my basic activity level and can roughly figure calories intake versus calories burned each day. And the bottom line (as I always say) is if you burn more calories than you take in you are going to lose pounds over time.
My improved stamina helps me to operate better physically and mentally. When I am active I tend to eat better and feel better, or feel better and eat better. I guess it is the chicken and the egg thing here! Also, I feel my improved stamina helps me to make better choices over the course of each day.
Lastly, my physical activity has helped me to improve my muscle tone and mass. Muscle burns more calories than fat each day. Just how much of a difference is up for debate! I have worked to lose fat then build muscle to become a more efficient engine for burning calories. It must be working as my body fat on January 22nd at 215 pounds was 22.6%. My body fat last week was 19.7% at 218 pounds. More muscle, less fat, hence a better engine!
I have worked to learn about me, nutrition, and exercise one step at a time. None of us can know everything, but I try to take small steps in the right direction each day!
Note to YOU and ME: Eat more often, smarter, and smaller! Take small steps in the right direction to take care of YOU!
The Fat Guy